Meghalaya is one of the most beautiful and fascinating states in India. From its rustic, mountainous landscapes to its stunning forests, this state has something for everyone. In this article, we'll be exploring the different ways you can reach Meghalaya, the best time to visit, and all the amazing things you can do once you're there!
Meghalaya is a state in northeastern India. The name means "the abode of clouds" in Sanskrit. Meghalaya is bounded by the Indian states of Assam to the north and Bangladesh to the south and west. The capital is Shillong. Meghalaya covers an area of 22,429 square kilometers (8,621 sq mi).
The state is hilly, with an average elevation of 1,400 meters (4,593 ft). The highest point in Meghalaya is Shillong Peak at 1,965 meters (6,447 ft). Three main rivers run through the state: the Brahmaputra, the Umiam and the Jaintia. Seventy-five percent of Meghalaya's population belongs to three major ethnic groups: Khasi, Garo and Jaintia. English is the official language; however, Khasi, Garo and other indigenous languages are also spoken.
The best way to reach Meghalaya is by air. The nearest airport is at Guwahati, which is about 200 km from Shillong, the capital of Meghalaya. Shillong is well-connected to Guwahati by road and there are several buses that ply between the two cities.
If you're coming from Kolkata, you can take a train to Guwahati and then continue your journey to Shillong by road. There are also direct trains from Delhi and Chennai that go all the way to Guwahati.
Once you're in Shillong, you can easily get around using public transport or auto-rickshaws. There are also a few tourist taxis that ply between the different tourist attractions in Meghalaya.
The best time to visit Meghalaya is from October to May. The state experiences subtropical climate with very warm and humid summers and cool winters. Monsoon hits the state in June and lasts till September. Although the rains turn the state into a green paradise, road conditions get hampered due to landslides. Hence, it is advisable to avoid visiting Meghalaya during monsoon.
If you're looking for a unique and off-the-beaten-path destination for your next trip, Meghalaya should definitely be on your list. Here are just a few of the many places to visit in this beautiful state:
1. Shillong: The capital city of Meghalaya, Shillong is often referred to as the " Scotland of the East" due to its similarity in terrain to the Scottish Highlands. Shillong is a great base for exploring all that Meghalaya has to offer, with plenty of hotels and restaurants catering to tourists. Be sure to check out some of the city's colonial-era architecture, including the Catholic Cathedral and Don Bosco Museum.
2. Cherrapunji: If you're looking to escape the hustle and bustle of city life, Cherrapunji is the perfect spot. This quaint town is nestled in the Khasi Hills and is known for being one of the wettest places on earth. Take a walk through Cherrapunji's living root bridges, explore the Nohkalikai Falls, and visit Mawsmai Cave to get a glimpse of its incredible limestone formations.
3. Dawki: Head to Dawki for an unforgettable boat ride along the Umngot River, which is considered one of the cleanest rivers in India. Enjoy breathtaking views as you float down this crystal-clear river, and don't forget to check out the nearby Living Root Bridge.
4. Mawlynnong: An idyllic village located near the Bangladesh border, Mawlynnong is often referred to as "God's Own Garden". This charming village features well-maintained homes and pathways lined with bamboo trees, and is home to some of Meghalaya's most beautiful natural wonders like Double Decker Living Root Bridge and Balancing Rock.
5. Mawsynram: Located near Cherrapunji, Mawsynram is a tiny village known for being one of the wettest places on earth. With plenty of rainforest trails to explore, waterfalls to admire , and picturesque landscapes to admire, Mawsynram is sure to offer a unique travel experience.
1. Visit the Elephant Falls: The Elephant Falls is one of the most popular tourist attractions in Meghalaya. It is located in the Shillong city and is easily accessible from all parts of the state. The falls are named after an elephant that used to bath in the pool below the falls.
2. Take a dip in the Dawki River: The Dawki River is one of the cleanest rivers in India and it flows through Meghalaya. It is a perfect place for swimming, boating, and fishing.
3. Trek to the Double-Decker Living Root Bridge: The Double-Decker Living Root Bridge is one of the most unique bridges in the world and it is located in Meghalaya. It is made out of living roots of rubber trees that are intertwined to form a strong bridge.
4. Visit the Mawlynnong Village: Mawlynnong Village is often referred to as the cleanest village in Asia. It is located in Meghalaya and is worth visiting to see how the villagers keep their environment clean and tidy.
5. Explorethe Bakhwan Cave: The Bakhwan Cave is one of the largest caves in Meghalaya and it offers stunning views of stalactites and stalagmites formations.