Meghalaya: A date with your own soul!

Tripoto
20th May 2016
Photo of Meghalaya: A date with your own soul! by Chetna Khetawat (The Vagabond Dreamer)
Photo of Meghalaya: A date with your own soul! 1/43 by Chetna Khetawat (The Vagabond Dreamer)
The Clear water of Dawki river
Photo of Meghalaya: A date with your own soul! 2/43 by Chetna Khetawat (The Vagabond Dreamer)
Just another view.. Clouds romancing the hills
Photo of Meghalaya: A date with your own soul! 3/43 by Chetna Khetawat (The Vagabond Dreamer)
Umium lake
Photo of Meghalaya: A date with your own soul! 4/43 by Chetna Khetawat (The Vagabond Dreamer)
Early morning sun at the Umium lake
Photo of Meghalaya: A date with your own soul! 5/43 by Chetna Khetawat (The Vagabond Dreamer)
The small trek to Umdikian Falls
Photo of Meghalaya: A date with your own soul! 6/43 by Chetna Khetawat (The Vagabond Dreamer)
Umkhakoi lake: see the huge nature made potholes.
Photo of Meghalaya: A date with your own soul! 7/43 by Chetna Khetawat (The Vagabond Dreamer)
The Queen of Meghalaya streets: Maruti 800
Photo of Meghalaya: A date with your own soul! 8/43 by Chetna Khetawat (The Vagabond Dreamer)
Yes. not fog.. Clouds it is!!
Photo of Meghalaya: A date with your own soul! 9/43 by Chetna Khetawat (The Vagabond Dreamer)
The Suspension bridge.. The boar!!
Photo of Meghalaya: A date with your own soul! 10/43 by Chetna Khetawat (The Vagabond Dreamer)
in love with the clouds!
Photo of Meghalaya: A date with your own soul! 11/43 by Chetna Khetawat (The Vagabond Dreamer)
Our Drive!
Photo of Meghalaya: A date with your own soul! 12/43 by Chetna Khetawat (The Vagabond Dreamer)
Dawki!!
Photo of Meghalaya: A date with your own soul! 13/43 by Chetna Khetawat (The Vagabond Dreamer)
Trekking for Umdikian falls
Photo of Meghalaya: A date with your own soul! 14/43 by Chetna Khetawat (The Vagabond Dreamer)
Our constant companion: clouds!
Photo of Meghalaya: A date with your own soul! 15/43 by Chetna Khetawat (The Vagabond Dreamer)
A cute kid posing with Bamboo bins at Mawlynnong
Photo of Meghalaya: A date with your own soul! 16/43 by Chetna Khetawat (The Vagabond Dreamer)
Entering the dark woods!
Photo of Meghalaya: A date with your own soul! 17/43 by Chetna Khetawat (The Vagabond Dreamer)
Umdikian Falls!
Photo of Meghalaya: A date with your own soul! 18/43 by Chetna Khetawat (The Vagabond Dreamer)
Photo of Meghalaya: A date with your own soul! 19/43 by Chetna Khetawat (The Vagabond Dreamer)
The wonder of Nature : Living Root Bridges!
Photo of Meghalaya: A date with your own soul! 20/43 by Chetna Khetawat (The Vagabond Dreamer)
Photo of Meghalaya: A date with your own soul! 21/43 by Chetna Khetawat (The Vagabond Dreamer)
Way to Mawsynram
Photo of Meghalaya: A date with your own soul! 22/43 by Chetna Khetawat (The Vagabond Dreamer)
Constant water dripping on Shivalinga: Mawsynram
Photo of Meghalaya: A date with your own soul! 23/43 by Chetna Khetawat (The Vagabond Dreamer)
Nature created honeycombs on ceiling of the cave.
Photo of Meghalaya: A date with your own soul! 24/43 by Chetna Khetawat (The Vagabond Dreamer)
True bliss is her smile!
Photo of Meghalaya: A date with your own soul! 25/43 by Chetna Khetawat (The Vagabond Dreamer)
Dawki border.
Photo of Meghalaya: A date with your own soul! 26/43 by Chetna Khetawat (The Vagabond Dreamer)
The savior who gave us food!
Photo of Meghalaya: A date with your own soul! 27/43 by Chetna Khetawat (The Vagabond Dreamer)
Dawki boating!
Photo of Meghalaya: A date with your own soul! 28/43 by Chetna Khetawat (The Vagabond Dreamer)
Livingroot bridges
Photo of Meghalaya: A date with your own soul! 29/43 by Chetna Khetawat (The Vagabond Dreamer)
Umkhakoi lake
Photo of Meghalaya: A date with your own soul! 30/43 by Chetna Khetawat (The Vagabond Dreamer)
Mawlynnong Village
Photo of Meghalaya: A date with your own soul! 31/43 by Chetna Khetawat (The Vagabond Dreamer)
Photo of Meghalaya: A date with your own soul! 32/43 by Chetna Khetawat (The Vagabond Dreamer)
The skywalk bridge at Mawlynnong
Photo of Meghalaya: A date with your own soul! 33/43 by Chetna Khetawat (The Vagabond Dreamer)
Cafe Cherrapunjee
Photo of Meghalaya: A date with your own soul! 34/43 by Chetna Khetawat (The Vagabond Dreamer)
cafe cherrapunjee
Photo of Meghalaya: A date with your own soul! 35/43 by Chetna Khetawat (The Vagabond Dreamer)
Mesmerizing
Photo of Meghalaya: A date with your own soul! 36/43 by Chetna Khetawat (The Vagabond Dreamer)
The clouds in the valley
Photo of Meghalaya: A date with your own soul! 37/43 by Chetna Khetawat (The Vagabond Dreamer)
A typical umbrella in Mawsynram
Photo of Meghalaya: A date with your own soul! 38/43 by Chetna Khetawat (The Vagabond Dreamer)
Umkhakoi lake
Photo of Meghalaya: A date with your own soul! 39/43 by Chetna Khetawat (The Vagabond Dreamer)
Potholes of Umkhakoi lake
Photo of Meghalaya: A date with your own soul! 40/43 by Chetna Khetawat (The Vagabond Dreamer)
Cute Khasi Kids performing at Mawlyngbna
Photo of Meghalaya: A date with your own soul! 41/43 by Chetna Khetawat (The Vagabond Dreamer)
Kids teaching me dance steps
Photo of Meghalaya: A date with your own soul! 42/43 by Chetna Khetawat (The Vagabond Dreamer)
Photo of Meghalaya: A date with your own soul! 43/43 by Chetna Khetawat (The Vagabond Dreamer)
The journey!

A brief about the Magical Land:

Sometimes I feel blessed that I stay only at a few hours distance from this amazing land "abode of clouds"-Meghalaya! Do you remember the Typical scenery which we as kids used to draw during junior school?? Beautiful little huts in the hills, gravel roads, a spring or a waterfall by the side and the sun peeping through the clouds!! Well thats quiet the Meghalaya for you! The only difference is.. Its much more beautiful in the real life!

Shillong which is the capital is a busy city with a lot of traffic yet some beautiful places to visit, but the real beauty lies in the small villages around. It proudly has the "wettest place on earth"- Cherrapunjee and the "Cleanest Village of Asia"-Mawlynnong. There are many beautiful and yet unexplored places in this little land of mystic! It brings you closer to your own self. Like mother nature giving u a warm hug and asking you to leave the ties of the concrete jungles behind and breathe in some life!

The friendly locals welcome you with smiles and English understood by most local people although Khasi is most commonly used language. People here are mostly self sufficient and peace loving. They have little farms of their own and grow their foods. (Pineapples are a must have!). The beauty about their culture is, while India is mostly a male dominated country, this part is women centric and and follows a Matrilineal system.

Our short Trip:

Day 1: "Peep Peep" was the only sound we could hear at 7 AM in the morning when Nayan was waiting for us downstairs and constantly blowing the horn while we quickly just got ready and Left. Left from Guwahati at 7 AM with a few breather stops and weather changing from a humid to Pleasant, we reached Shillong at around 9:30 AM. Stopped for breakfast, but they didnot start serving, so quickly made our way out of the rather confusing Police Bazar and Off to Dawki.

The Journey from Shillong to Dawki is really beautiful, The irish style landscape and hardly any traffic. Most of our journey was covered in rains or clouds though. We were actually driving through the thick clouds. There is a stretch of 20 kms from the Main Roads to Dawki which is breathtakingly beautiful. Visited Dawki, went on till Shnogdemph(Really bad roads though) and from a shortcut full of beautiful landscapes and waterfalls we reached Mawlynnong. You can have lunch here, visit the Eco camp, Living root bridges, Balancing Rock, Bangladesh border and awe at the cleanliness of the village.

Left around 5 PM for Cafe Cherrapunjee. The drive was pleasant till the sunset, but the real adventure began after that. We were only driving through the clouds in the dark, the headlights or fog lights all in vain. Playing Hanuman Chalisa in my mind and on a speed of not more than 10 km (And nearly dying twice) we reached Cafe Cherra, Unwinded, relaxed and had an amazing conversation over the fireplace post dinner with Mr. Lyngdoh about how Meghalaya has evolved. It was just magical after a tiring day!

Places covered on Day 1: Shillong, Dawki, Shnongdemp, Mawlynnong

Day 2: Somehow waking up and skipping a bath :p, we got ready, had a quick breakfast and left for Mawsynram. Good Music, Rains and picturesque views. what a life! after a drive of over 2 hours and asking too many people the directions, we reached the village with peculia umbrellas, Mawsynram! Visit the shivling cave here, Maybe have some tea or snacks and leave for Mawlyngbna. The roads get narrower and a little risky. It gives you a feel like Kinnaur region of Himachal Pradesh. After crossing many weak tinder bridges(Am still amazed Nayan drove so well), We reached Mawlyngbna.

After trying to communicate with a few people, we met Mr. Michael, a friendly local who could communicate in both English and Hindi. We were fortunate enough to See kids performing on Khasi songs.(The irony is: They perform on the story of Lord Krishna but don't know who he was- The entire area is Converted Christians. Their forefathers belonged to Hindu religion earlier so their traditional folk dances remain the same but their beliefs and religion has changed). Michael took us to MeeUm, Umkhakoi Lake, Lawbah Hot Springs and Umdikian falls. Left for shillong. wanted to cover Mawphlong, the sacred forest, but we were pretty late. Spent the night at Shillong.

Places Covered on Day 2: Mawsynram, Mawlyngbna, Lawbah.

Day 3: After a Lazy delicious brunch at Cafe shillong, we went to the crowded yet beautiful shillong Peak and Elephant falls. Later on moved to Cherrapunjee. Lucky enough to find a little lesser rains, we could get a few glimpses of the Mawdwok valley. seven sisters falls and Nohkilikai Falls were mostly covered with clouds so the view wasnt clear. But i have been here and it is both splendid!! Left in the afternoon, Put on some good music and off to Guwahati! Around * at night and the 30 hours long Road trip comes to an end with amazing views to cherish forever!

Places Covered on Day 3: Shillong, Cherrapunjee, Mawdwok Valley, Barapani.

Maybe a small trip! But Mehghalaya always touches your soul and surprise you! Go ahead, be pampereb by mother nature, Loose your heart to the hills and clouds, Take a shower in the rains on the wettest place on earth! Date your own Soul! Be spoiled!!

The small village on the India Bangladesh border is a treat to visit. The friendly BSF jawans are there on the border telling stories and clicking pictures for you. The beautiful Dawki river is so clean, you can actually see the bottom of it. Definitely go for the boat ride and you might want to take a plunge in the shallow waters. The suspension bridge is magnificent and looks beautiful from down under.

Photo of Dawki, Meghalaya, India by Chetna Khetawat (The Vagabond Dreamer)
Photo of Dawki, Meghalaya, India by Chetna Khetawat (The Vagabond Dreamer)
Photo of Dawki, Meghalaya, India by Chetna Khetawat (The Vagabond Dreamer)
Photo of Dawki, Meghalaya, India by Chetna Khetawat (The Vagabond Dreamer)
Photo of Dawki, Meghalaya, India by Chetna Khetawat (The Vagabond Dreamer)

The Cleanest Village in Asia is a title well deserved by this beautiful, well kept small village. Lovely people and such a beautiful little place. Something out of Gummy bears tales. i have been to this place before, but its all the more beautiful everytime. You can also stay here at the decent Homestays and enjoy the beauty of nature. Skywalk bridge, balancing rock, Bangladesh border and the beautiful living root bridges.. All are here at this little garden of paradise. It is also famous for butterflies.

Photo of Mawlynnong, Meghalaya, India by Chetna Khetawat (The Vagabond Dreamer)
Photo of Mawlynnong, Meghalaya, India by Chetna Khetawat (The Vagabond Dreamer)
Photo of Mawlynnong, Meghalaya, India by Chetna Khetawat (The Vagabond Dreamer)
Photo of Mawlynnong, Meghalaya, India by Chetna Khetawat (The Vagabond Dreamer)
Photo of Mawlynnong, Meghalaya, India by Chetna Khetawat (The Vagabond Dreamer)
Photo of Mawlynnong, Meghalaya, India by Chetna Khetawat (The Vagabond Dreamer)
Photo of Mawlynnong, Meghalaya, India by Chetna Khetawat (The Vagabond Dreamer)

8 kms away from Dawki;, on the way to Jowai.. This is a must visit place.. you can camp here during winters and the feel is ethereal.

It was the wettest place on earth prior to Cherrapunjee.. Beautiful little village and the roads to this are breath taking. Remember a Villian from the Arabian Nights who once kidnapped Jasmine? He was from Mawsynram. You must visit the Shiva cave here. The beauty is that there is a constant flow of water on the shivlinga and you dont know where the water comes from!!

Photo of Mawsynram, Meghalaya, India by Chetna Khetawat (The Vagabond Dreamer)
Photo of Mawsynram, Meghalaya, India by Chetna Khetawat (The Vagabond Dreamer)
Photo of Mawsynram, Meghalaya, India by Chetna Khetawat (The Vagabond Dreamer)
Photo of Mawsynram, Meghalaya, India by Chetna Khetawat (The Vagabond Dreamer)
Photo of Mawsynram, Meghalaya, India by Chetna Khetawat (The Vagabond Dreamer)
Photo of Mawsynram, Meghalaya, India by Chetna Khetawat (The Vagabond Dreamer)
Photo of Mawsynram, Meghalaya, India by Chetna Khetawat (The Vagabond Dreamer)

This is a beautiful lake created by a dam in the village Mawlyngbna or Lawbah. The natural Potholes on the ground are remarkable. you can do boating here but it was raining when we visited so couldnt.

Photo of Umkhakoi lake by Chetna Khetawat (The Vagabond Dreamer)
Photo of Umkhakoi lake by Chetna Khetawat (The Vagabond Dreamer)
Photo of Umkhakoi lake by Chetna Khetawat (The Vagabond Dreamer)
Photo of Umkhakoi lake by Chetna Khetawat (The Vagabond Dreamer)
Photo of Umkhakoi lake by Chetna Khetawat (The Vagabond Dreamer)
Photo of Umkhakoi lake by Chetna Khetawat (The Vagabond Dreamer)

This was the third time i stayed here at the luxury tents of Cafe Cherra. Its located between Shilling and Sohra. They have amazingly helpful staff, great food and super comfy and cozy tents and rooms. The fireplace in the lobby takes you back to the colonial times and listening to amazing stories about Meghalaya from the likes of Mr. Lyngdoh is like the icing on the cake! Highly recommended.

Photo of Cafe Cherrapunjee, East Khasi Hills, Meghalaya, India by Chetna Khetawat (The Vagabond Dreamer)
Photo of Cafe Cherrapunjee, East Khasi Hills, Meghalaya, India by Chetna Khetawat (The Vagabond Dreamer)
Photo of Cafe Cherrapunjee, East Khasi Hills, Meghalaya, India by Chetna Khetawat (The Vagabond Dreamer)

This is a beautiful waterfalls hidden from the crowd. you have to trek through the jungles for 2 kms and reach this quaint waterfalls, and trust me its all worth it. you may get lost here, so it is preferred you take a local from the nearby village Mawlyngbna or Lawbah with you. The stream water is so clear that we can actualy drink straight out of it. There is also a place Hew Luri Laura which has old fossils of animals and humans together. Because of heavy rains, we couldnot go.

Photo of Umdikian falls, Meghalaya, India by Chetna Khetawat (The Vagabond Dreamer)
Photo of Umdikian falls, Meghalaya, India by Chetna Khetawat (The Vagabond Dreamer)
Photo of Umdikian falls, Meghalaya, India by Chetna Khetawat (The Vagabond Dreamer)
Photo of Umdikian falls, Meghalaya, India by Chetna Khetawat (The Vagabond Dreamer)
Photo of Umdikian falls, Meghalaya, India by Chetna Khetawat (The Vagabond Dreamer)
Photo of Umdikian falls, Meghalaya, India by Chetna Khetawat (The Vagabond Dreamer)

A big fat 3 tier waterfall a few kms from Shillong.

Photo of Elephant Falls, Shillong, Meghalaya, India by Chetna Khetawat (The Vagabond Dreamer)

More than the village, the journey and the valleys are worth it! Awesome drive and beautiful scenes with constant clouds or rains!

Photo of Cherrapunjee, Meghalaya, India by Chetna Khetawat (The Vagabond Dreamer)
Photo of Cherrapunjee, Meghalaya, India by Chetna Khetawat (The Vagabond Dreamer)

A beautiful lake popularly known as Barapani just 15 minutes before shillong on the way from Guwahati. Breathtaking! They have a few resorts around which are totally worth spending time.

Photo of Umiam Lake, East Khasi Hills, Meghalaya, India by Chetna Khetawat (The Vagabond Dreamer)
Photo of Umiam Lake, East Khasi Hills, Meghalaya, India by Chetna Khetawat (The Vagabond Dreamer)
Photo of Umiam Lake, East Khasi Hills, Meghalaya, India by Chetna Khetawat (The Vagabond Dreamer)

1 of the longest waterfalls in the world. Beautiful! this falls got its name from the agony of a mother who jumped of from this cliff on realizing that her husband her killed her daughter.

Although crowded, yet good for beginner level explorers!

A small village 16 kms from Mawsynram and around 2 kms from Lawbah. It has a natural water rock "Mee Um" like a small water fountain coming of of a rock! Although the construction around it has stolen the beauty of the place. We were lucky to find a cultural show going on and joined the kids for some dance!

Photo of Mawlyngbna village, Meghalaya by Chetna Khetawat (The Vagabond Dreamer)
Photo of Mawlyngbna village, Meghalaya by Chetna Khetawat (The Vagabond Dreamer)
Photo of Mawlyngbna village, Meghalaya by Chetna Khetawat (The Vagabond Dreamer)
9 Comment(s)
Sort by:
we are planning to go in the month of June total of 6 people..can you tell me the places and budget it will cost for 3 day trip
Mon 04 09 18, 20:23 · Reply · Report
Hi Chetna, That was a very good description. Is there a place to stay in Mawsynram? Is it worth staying there? Thank you. Regards Nitin
Mon 01 22 18, 20:53 · Reply · Report
We are visiting in month of august end week ...anything you do like to mention ..as we are visiting during monsoon ...quite excited
Sat 07 01 17, 09:35 · Reply · Report
Wonderful ....
Sat 07 01 17, 09:33 · Reply · Report
Wonderful.. In which month did you visit?
Wed 03 29 17, 00:09 · Reply (1) · Report
in the month of May
Fri 03 31 17, 00:48 · Report
Show More Comments