Are you in love with the smell of rain, with the lush greenery and the pitter-patter of raindrops? If you aren't getting enough of the rains, make a trip this monsoon to the very abode of clouds, the captivating land of Meghalaya. Situated in north-east India, Meghalaya is known to receive the highest rainfall and remains wet through much of the year, making it an ideal monsoon travel spot in India.
The perennial rains make Meghalaya one of the most nature-rich parts of the country. It has many lakes, waterfalls, caves, viewpoints and forests. Here are a few monsoon spots in Meghalaya that you simply shouldn't miss!
Shillong - The Scotland of the East
A trip to Meghalaya starts with Shillong, which is the capital city and is also referred to as 'The Scotland of the East' owing to the rolling hills that surround the place. Shillong is favoured by tourists for the pleasant temperatures, surrounding hills and other attractions. Visit the Elephant Falls, located 12 km away from the city and the Shillong Peak situated 10 km away. Meghalaya has a unique cuisine, and you must try some of the traditional food at Shillong. Relish Songa or sticky rice with the interesting preparation of Kapa and pickled bamboo shoots.
Cherrapunji - Biodiversity and Bioengineering
Popular world over as the region to receive the highest rainfall, Cherrapunji in Meghalaya is naturally a must-visit monsoon spot. At a short distance of 17.8 km from Cherrapunji is the village Nongriat, popular for two fine examples of bioengineering. Confused? We are referring to the two natural bridges that the Khasi tribesmen have made by training the roots and shoots of Indian Rubber trees. A fun fact about one of these bridges near the Nongthymmai village is that it is nearly 200 years old!
Also take a trip to the tallest plunge waterfall in India, the Nohkalikai Falls, that goes through a dramatic transformation with the monsoons.
Mawlynnong Village - Green and Clean
Better known as Asia's cleanest village, Mawlynnong is located amidst dense forests of the foothills and is yet another popular monsoon spot in Meghalaya. The village overlooks the plains of Bangladesh and is an ideal backdrop for the monsoons. Savour the amazing sunsets and take time to relish the local culture and cuisine. If you are looking for an unforgettable experience, stay at a village home-stay or better yet in a tree house!
Jaintia Hills - Caves and Legends Galore
Meghalaya is known to have over 500 natural caves formed from limestone and sandstone. Visit the longest cave named Liat Prah and the deepest cave called Synrang Pamiang in the Jaintia Hills. The caves are known to attract explorers from the world over, and new caves are being constantly discovered. In fact, ten new caves were discovered in the year 2011.
The vibrant scenery, dramatic water bodies and mysterious caves can make a monsoon trip to Meghalaya an enthralling experience and one that is not to be missed!
How to Reach Meghalaya
By Road: Meghalaya and Assam state buses regularly ply the route between Guwahati to Shillong.
By Rail: The nearest railway station is Guwahati, at a distance of 103 km from Shillong.
By Air: The nearest airport is Guwahati, at a distance of 128 km from Shillong.