Mesmerising Meghalaya - miles away from the madding crowd, I found my home in the magical clouds.

Tripoto
27th Jul 2019
Photo of Mesmerising Meghalaya - miles away from the madding crowd, I found my home in the magical clouds. by Shrestha Ghosal
Day 1

How do you feel when you wake up in the morning to be greeted by a grey sky and a rhythmic drizzle? If your answer is heavenly, then let me tell you my friend, if you set your foot on the land of Meghalaya, you'll surely be in for a treat.

Day one started with the rainfall which came to Guwahati to accompany me all the way to its abode in Meghalaya. After having a breakfast at the hotel we had checked in the previous night, we booked a private cab and set for Shillong. There is availability of shared transport if you wish to go economical but I had planned on taking multiple stops along the way to admire the view and click tons of pictures. Since it was raining heavily, it took us longer than usual to reach.

On the way, we took a stop at Umiam Lake, also known as "Bara Pani" or Big Water Lake which you come across just when you're about to enter Shillong. Apart from its scenic view, it also provides a picnic spot, the Lum Nehru Park and you can also enjoy the various fun water activities that are carried on here. Fun fact, the lake is a part of the dam which was the first hydel power project construction in Meghalaya.

It took us a little while to reach the city of Shillong because of the traffic. On the way, you can take halts at the numerous picturesque churches and the quaint cafes in the city and do not forget to taste the pork dishes there, they're insanely good.

After checking in into our pre-booked hotel, we left to explore the Elephant Falls and the Shillong Peak. A light drizzle was our constant companion. Shillong Peak was astonishingly beautiful. Watching the vibrant city playing peak-a-boo behind the cover of the clouds was a delectable food, both for the eyes and the soul. You can literally sit there for hours nursing a cup of hot tea with your hands and nibbling on the lip-smacking pakodas which you get in the stalls nearby.

In the evening we took a stroll in the lively markets and shops in Police Bazar. If you're a shopaholic you can find lots of stuff to pick up from there, especially dresses. The people in the north east have a distinctive sense of fashion which somewhat resembles the dressing style of the Koreans and Japanese people. They like to layer up their clothes which looks quite colourful yet chique. Knowing how to bargain is a must though. Also make sure that you don't forget to try the mouthwatering panipuri here. In case if you have booked a car and traveling isn't an issue for you, I'd personally recommend you to opt for a homestay located at a little distance from the main city instead of living in a hotel. That way you get to enjoy a slice of the natural beauty that this state has, to offer you in abundance.

Photo of Shillong, Meghalaya, India by Shrestha Ghosal
Photo of Shillong, Meghalaya, India by Shrestha Ghosal
Photo of Shillong, Meghalaya, India by Shrestha Ghosal
Photo of Shillong, Meghalaya, India by Shrestha Ghosal
Photo of Shillong, Meghalaya, India by Shrestha Ghosal
Photo of Shillong, Meghalaya, India by Shrestha Ghosal
Photo of Shillong, Meghalaya, India by Shrestha Ghosal
Photo of Shillong, Meghalaya, India by Shrestha Ghosal
Day 2

The heavy showers on day two delayed our journey by an hour from our scheduled time but our spirits were in no way dampened. We stopped many times en route from Shillong to Mawlynnong, to gaze at the marvelous views. The most magnificent one was at the Mawjngih Lapynshongdor View Point. Almost throughout the journey, the clouds were so thick that we could hardly see anything in front of us. The drive was an exhilarating one and we held our breaths as our driver skilfully manoeuvred his way through the curvy roads.

After some three odd hours, we finally reached Asia's cleanest village, Mawlynnong. We had to wait inside a tiny, ramshackle tea shop till the rain subsided and once it did, we explored around the village. The Church of the Epiphany was an architectural beauty but what was more eye-catching was the brightly coloured flowers surrounding it everywhere. We walked up the Sky View Tree House Viewpoint, made at a height of 85 feet, with bamboos, from where the view was breath-taking and we could also see glimpses of the landscape of the neighbouring country of Bangladesh. It costs a nominal value of only INR 10 to enter. The cleanliness of the village is worth a mention, every house has a dustbin made of bamboo, placed outside. There are several homestays in and around the village in case one wants to spend a night there.

After a quick lunch at a modest restaurant in the nearby Riwai village, we headed towards the living root bridge which was approximately a 30 minutes walk. The Jingmaham Living Root Bridge is a single decker root bridge and has been declared as a world heritage site by the UNESCO. These handmade wonders, built by the Khasi and Jaintia tribes, to facilitate their movement across the streams in olden days, are amazing to look at. The Jingmaham Living Root Bridge is easily accessible as compared to the other root bridges in Meghalaya where you have to undergo arduous treks to reach them.

Since we were on a tight schedule and had to return back to Guwahati that evening itself, we decided to sit back and spend some time there instead of exploring any other place. We stayed back for an hour, listening to the water gushing down below and the birds chirping in the woods. The occasional drizzle sprinkled perfection over nature's lullaby. With the rainwater caressing my face and a chilly wind ruffling through my hair, I succumbed myself to the pristine serenity of the ambience. Only after losing myself in the wilderness, did I end up at the threshold to a whole new world, a world far beyond and quite different from the one we find ourselves trapped inside.

Ps, picture credits for Umiam Lake and Jingmaham Living Root Bridge goes to Avik Guha.

Photo of Mesmerising Meghalaya - miles away from the madding crowd, I found my home in the magical clouds. by Shrestha Ghosal
Photo of Mesmerising Meghalaya - miles away from the madding crowd, I found my home in the magical clouds. by Shrestha Ghosal
Photo of Mesmerising Meghalaya - miles away from the madding crowd, I found my home in the magical clouds. by Shrestha Ghosal
Photo of Mesmerising Meghalaya - miles away from the madding crowd, I found my home in the magical clouds. by Shrestha Ghosal
Photo of Mesmerising Meghalaya - miles away from the madding crowd, I found my home in the magical clouds. by Shrestha Ghosal
Photo of Mesmerising Meghalaya - miles away from the madding crowd, I found my home in the magical clouds. by Shrestha Ghosal
Photo of Mesmerising Meghalaya - miles away from the madding crowd, I found my home in the magical clouds. by Shrestha Ghosal
Photo of Mesmerising Meghalaya - miles away from the madding crowd, I found my home in the magical clouds. by Shrestha Ghosal
Photo of Mesmerising Meghalaya - miles away from the madding crowd, I found my home in the magical clouds. by Shrestha Ghosal
Photo of Mesmerising Meghalaya - miles away from the madding crowd, I found my home in the magical clouds. by Shrestha Ghosal
Photo of Mesmerising Meghalaya - miles away from the madding crowd, I found my home in the magical clouds. by Shrestha Ghosal
Photo of Mesmerising Meghalaya - miles away from the madding crowd, I found my home in the magical clouds. by Shrestha Ghosal
Be the first one to comment