India Guide

Meghalaya India Holiday Guide to Meghalaya State Tourism, India

Meghalaya India Holiday Guide to Meghalaya State Tourism, India

Translated as the Abode of Clouds, Meghalaya is a relatively new state of India, gaining statehood in 1972. Nestled within this state are some of the lushest surrounds with a large portion covered with beautiful scenery, impressive waterfalls and an extensive cave network. These scenic elements make Meghalaya a North Indian gem, appealing to a wide range of people who come to explore the largely untouched region.

Meghalaya


An interesting aspect of the state is that a majority of its two million plus population is made up with tribal people. The main tribes are the Khasi, Jantia and Garo tribes and although each tribe has its own dialect, English is the official language, making it relatively easy for many tourists to communicate when visiting. That said, tourism hasn’t taken off yet with the state still in planning mode, creating a more tourist friendly location. However Meghalaya is still very enjoyable and can be considered ‘off the beaten track’ in its current state.

Many know of it as the one of the wettest places on earth, so one would think that finding water would never become a problem. Unfortunately due to the inadequate irrigation systems, the state is unable to make use of its abundant water supply during the monsoon period and provide the necessary clean water year round. Often people have to travel a fair way to get clean water when the rain stops. Apart from the rains, Meghalaya’s climate is rather pleasant with winters in the low single digits and summers varying from the early twenties. Most recognise the period from October to March being the best time to visit.

From landing at Guwahati airport, you can travel by car or bus to your desired destination where you can usually find adequate accommodation. Note that most hotels are not of the most luxurious quality but will provide you with a comfortable stay in most cases.

To start your adventures, begin in the capital, Shillong. Here you can journey just 10km to be at the highest tip of the state and enjoy the awesome panoramic views. Close by also is Umiam Lake where you can take pleasure in the many water sports including sailing and water skiing. Further on the adventure side of things, other activities of Meghalaya include trekking and caving with the expanse of caves spiralling through the underground.

Going further into the state you will find Cherrapunjee which is well known for its record rainfall. These rains give birth to spectacular waterfalls that plunge into great gorges. The Nohsngithiang Falls is one of the most talked about waterfalls in the area with several strands of water cascading over 300m over the cliff. Another waterfall around this region is Nohkalikai Falls which is one of the tallest in India at 335m in height.

While the fantastic waterfalls catch the eye above ground, venture below ground to experience the long limestone cave mazes. There is said to be over 1,000 caves, many of which are largely unmapped. This is one of the most popular adventure activities in the state with many choosing to explore the Krem Phylutt and Soh Shympi caves.

If you can plan your trip around the fabulous festivals of Meghalaya you won’t be disappointed. The Wangala festival, the dance of hundred drums is not only an important festival for the people of Meghalaya, it is also a wonderfully colourful annual event that lasts a whole week. Another festival that will surely interest you is the Doregata Dance where women try knocking off their partner’s turbans off using only their heads! It is a wonderfully cheerful event worth getting a glimpse of.

So venture into this largely undisturbed land to experience the beautiful nature, lush lands, copious caves and grand waterfalls. You will surely leave satisfied you had a unique adventure.