Day 1: GUWAHATI to SHILLONG
Ranchi to Kolkata: Kriya Yoga Express (18616)
An overnight train from Ranchi to Howrah from where we could easily take a cab to Dumdum airport/ Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose International airport.
Santraganchi to Dumdum Airport: Took a cab for the airport.
Kolkata to Guwahati: Indigo Airlines departure was at 10:25 am and arrival was at 11:40
3 of us reached early the other 2 were at the other flight and they reached at 2 pm.
We booked a cab from airport to Shillong, Police bazaar. It charged us Rs 500 per person.
On way we had lunch as we wanted to have the authentic food the driver took us to one on way to Shillong. We stopped at Sunrise Restaurant which is on the highway en-route to Shillong.
The setting was very peculiar, the contemporary wall painting in the interiors with the look of the restaurant being very vernacular.
SHILLONG: we got down at Police bazaar and shopped for umbrella and raincoat and headed to have some Khasi street food.
Or home stay was around 5kms from the main market so took a cab there. We got a room for 5 perfect in size at Troya home stay and after the whole day journey we were dead asleep.
Day 2: SHILLONG to CHERRAPUNJEE
Morning we were ready to leave for Cherrapunjee after breakfast.
We had booked a cab for whole day not just to drop us till Cherrapunjee but also to take us around to places. He charged us Rs 2500 for the day.
Tea Garden, Shillong:
When you leave the city the view is very serene and calm and green.
Mawkdok Dympep Valley:
It’s the view point just from where the valley starts and there’s a nice park that is have the best experience of the valley.
There’s also zip lining for the adventurous which few of us did try. A must do thing along with having pineapple which are the tastiest.
Wah Kaba falls:
Yet another waterfalls view point which was all covered with clouds and we realized that the place is more beautiful when it’s covered with clouds.
It’s a view point from far and top. Walking further we found a way where there were steps made to go down but it has collapsed after some distance. This magical view of the waterfalls which plunges to the turquoise color lagoon becomes more interesting which the clouds play hide and seek amid the mountains.
There is the huge Greenfield with few rugged benches made and a pathway built which probably goes to a nearby settlement. One of the most serene places to be.
Amid the green fields:
A naturally built lime and sandstone cave was out next stop. Meghalaya is known for these naturally created caves do visit few of them.
Nohsngithiang Falls/ Seven Sisters falls:
We were just wishing to be lucky here as well to see this yet another remarkable waterfalls. After a wait for 15 minutes or so we could get the clear view of the waterfalls. Till then we went on the other side of the road where there was a clear water stream.
The view is spectacular with waterfalls on one side and vast range of mountains covered in forests was unending.
We called the day off as it grew dark now and receded to our home stay.
Day 3: TREK TO DOUBLE DECKER LIVING ROOT BRIDGE
We packed our small bags with essentials for the next 2 days and 3 nights as we had to stay at Nongriat village: Double Decker Living Root Bridge and left the major luggage at the home stay.
Took the cab to Tyrna village, the beginning point of the trek. This trek even though is not very long yet it was very exhausting as there’s steep steps made on the slope. It was hot and sunny as we were walking our legs started shivering but the mesmerizing view kept us on track.
We crossed the dense forest, the sacred grave, suspension bridges with the clear water river flowing by and the mountains enveloped in forest.
Finally we were close to the Nongriat village, as we crossed the last suspension bridge we went down to the river and sat there dipping our feet in that cold and clear water soon we saw small fishes swam across eating the dead cells and thus we had the free pedicure.
NOTE: Leave the major luggage in your hotel back at Cherrapunji or Shillong and carry a small bag, it'll be easier to trek without a guide and porter then.
MUST CARRY: Swim suit(a must to take a dip in the natural pool), mosquito repellent cream, some food and water(even though there are few sacks selling snacks and drinks) , cap, raincoat (required as it rains every day).
PREFERABLE TREKKING ATTIRE: It's better to wear little as it's an exhausting trek due to the uneven and steep steps made and you'll sweat a lot so you have to let your skin breathe. Wear shoes or crocs if it rains.
WHERE TO STAY: there are few home stays with basic facilities.
Soon after we reached the village we checked in a home stay- Serene Home stay , changed and rushed to the Double Decker Living Root Bridge.
Double Decker Living Root Bridge:
This is the major attraction in Cherrapunjee, even though there are other living root bridges but this is where we see two root bridges one above the other, the unique in the world. These are the bridges made on the rivers made of the roots of the huge trees weaved together. It's the ancient art of making bridges of the people of the Khasi hills.
The day ended with warm dinner after this cold and relaxing bath.
Day 4: TREK TO RAINBOW FALLS
It's a trek of 2 hours (depending on your pace) from Double Deck Living Root Bridge. On way there are streams, pools, suspension bridges, living root bridges, some hidden scenic spots and some roads and some broken trees. The trek is wearying and yet it's adventurous.
After 2 and a half hours of trek we reached Rainbow falls, one of the hidden jewels of Meghalaya.
We didn't go down to take adip as it looked quiet dangerous and also there's a sign of 'Do not swim'. We started our trek back to Nongriat and on way we went a little off road and found an amazing spot with small water fall, the clear water rushing among the rocks, a little sand, huge rocks, and all surrounded by forests and hills.
We were back to Double Decker Living root bridge and jumped intot he cold water and all the tiredness was washed away and we were back to the home stay for dinner. Yet another day was over with lot of beautiful experiences.
Day 5: NONGRIAT to CHERRAPUNJEE to SHILLONG to GUWAHATI
We had to return to Guwahati and it was trekking and long road journey. Morning it was cloudy as always and after the rain we left for Sohra.
We had to trek to Tyrna village and then we took a cab to the home stay to pick the luggage at Sohra.
NOTE: Avoid going or returning on Sunday's a there very few cabs available on that day and they even charge more to go.
We had our lunch at Royal view Resort at Tyrna and then they booked a cab for us for the return which charged at Rs 1000.
From Sohra/Cherrapunjee we took another cab to Shillong which dropped us to the bus stand from where we took a shared vehicle for Guwahati.
And the best thing after this long journey was the Singpho Thali at Tai Singpho Restaurant. The traditional Arunachali dishes made the day and we went to the home stay that we booked near the airport.
NOTE: If you have a flight to catch better stay close to the airport the traffic in the city is horrible.
Day 6: SUALKUCHI, and then back from GUWAHATI-KOLKATA-RANCHI
It was the last day of the trip and we wanted to visit this small village named Sualkuchi, known as the village of the silk weavers. We booked a cab and went there, it was a nice experience to see the weavers working on those beautiful silk sarees, there were too many stores around the place. Spending this hot noon at this village we rushed back to the hotel as our flight was at 2:25 pm. We took our luggage as walked to the airport which was just 5 minutes walk from the guest house.
We were back to the home stay by 1 pm and then we walked to the airport which as 5 minutes away from the airport. And soon we were flying back to home.
So it was clear for me "you'll never know what you missed until you visit again".
Meghalaya version 2.0 was equally amazing as the first one.
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