Our trip to Meghalaya in May 2018 was an unbelievable success. Firstly cause we were three friends travelling from three different parts of the country. Nisa from Delhi, Faiza from Hyderabad and I from Mumbai. It was also unbelievable because I absolutely didn’t expect it to happen and was 90 per cent sure, someone would cancel, including me. But, it happened and everything from deciding the dates to coordinating flights and planning on where to go and what to see happened on WhatsApp. Since all three of us are working, we would hardly be able to connect at the right time or talk on the phone. And we managed! To travel to Meghalaya from three different cities and have a hell of a time. We managed it all on our own and if we can do it, so can you.
So here’s the itinerary we used. Mentioning all the details that’ll help you plan your memorable trip to Meghalaya.
Duration: 05 Nights – 06 Days
Destinations: Shillong – Cherrapunjee – Cherrapunjee – Mawlynnong – Shillong
Highlght of the Trip: Umiam Lake, Nohsngithiang Falls, Nohkalikai Falls, Mawsmai Cave, Double Decker Living Routes Bridge, Mawlynnong Village, Elephant Falls, Shillong Peak etc.
DAY 01: ARRIVE GUWAHATI- SHILLONG
We took flights that would reach Guwhati by 1.30-2 PM so that all three of us would be there together. From the airport we took a cab to Shillong. We did not book in advance and got a cab easily right outside the airport. Outside the airport there is a taxi stand and the people are helpful too so we decided to do it on the spot which worked out for us. We paid Rs. 2500 for the drop to Shillong. We reached Shillong by 7PM with stops on the way and a kind of long-ish lunch break. Our hotel for the night was already book via MakeMyTrip.
We stayed at Hotel Pagasus Crown which is a great hotel right in the main city centre and very easy to commute. Shillong, fondly known as the Scotland of the East. On the way to Shillong we stopped at the Umiam Lake, which is located just 15 km before to the capital city of Meghalaya. The crystal clear blue lake is about 220 sq km in radius and surrounded by the beautiful hillocks. The Lake is also commonly known as Barapani is the best place for picnics and outings. We reached shilling and after checking into our hotel, went out strolling to see the hill-town. It was bustling and beautiful.
We were here for just one night and the next morning we left for Cherapunjee.
DAY 02: SHILLONG – CHERRAPUNJEE
After an early breakfast we left for Cherrapunjee which is barely 65 kms from Shillong – approximately 2 hours. It is the wettest destination in the world and on our drive to Cherrapunjee, we came across beautiful, roaring waterfalls. We arrived by 11 am and checked into our homestay which was pre-booked.
We stayed at Laiaikar Inn ( Yai – +91 9863063705). A fabulous, homely cottage stay situated on Sohra-Shella Road in Cherrapunjee. We were put up here for just one night but extended our stay by one night making it a total of 2 nights. After freshening up we planned to set out for sight-seeing in the evening. But we had not booked a car in advance so our host was kind enough to lend us his own car and driver at a minimal price of Rs. 1000. We visites the famous Nohsngithiang Falls, Nohkalikai fall and Mawsmai Cave.
For dinner, we stuck to a local restaurant which undoubtedly had the best chicken curry and rotis. Also, be careful of local food as they eat a lot of pork and other meats which you may not be keen on trying.
Cherrapunjee, officially known as Sohra, is 56 kms from Shillong, and a “must see” destination for all tourists. It also known the wettest place in the earth with a record rainfall. Cherrapunjee was the headquarters of the Khasi & Jaintia province during British rule before shifting to Shillong in 1864 and this was due to the inconvenience caused by excessive rain during the monsoon months.
DAY 03: CHERRAPUNJEE
After an early breakfast (at the same restaurant where we dined) we went on a trek to visit the Double Decker living Routes Bridge, the most brilliant of all the living bridges found in the world. The trek took us approximately 4 hours and all the while it rained heavily. (Will do another post on the things to carry and do for living roots bridge trek)
DAY 04: MAWLYNNONG
Early morning we left to visit the cleanest village in India – Mawlynnong, which is nearly 80 kms from Cherrapunjee and just close to the scenic villages; there are interesting sights like the living roots bridge and a beautiful sight boulder balancing on another rock. We hired a car that would now stay with us till Shillong which was great. On the way we visited a few other places and had snacks at this beautiful restaurant that was literally in the middle of nowhere. The car took us first to Dawki a small town which is famous for the lake where boating facilities are available. We also had our lunch here which consisted of a local Khasi thali and was ofcourse delicious.
By 4PM we reached Mawlynyong and checked into our Airbnb – a small wood cottage. This is a small village which can easily be seen on foot and surely a pretty sight. Unfortunately not a lot of tourists stay back here and thus food facilities are scarce. Thankfully we had with us cuppa noodles and complain which we eat with the help of hot water from the heater available in our room.
DAY 05: SHILLONG
After breakfast we left for our drive back to Shillong while enjoying the local sight-seeing. We visited Cathedral Church, Lady Hydari Park, the Orchidarium, Elephant Falls 7 the Golf course.
By 12Pm we checked into our hotel. This time we stayed at The Majestic Hotel another brilliant choice which was booked via MMT. We stayed the night and would check-out by 11am next day.
Police bazaar is the best place to live, in Shillong. It is the city centre of the town and easily accessible.
DAY 06: SHILLONG – GUWAHATI – DEPARTURE
Morning after breakfast we drive back to Guwahati. We take a short stop-over at Umiam Lake once more just to bask in the glory of this natural beauty. We reach the airport well in time for our flights which are times for 2PM onwards to all the different destinations.
To Be Noted:
- From Cherrapunjee, go to Mawlynnong, the cleanest village of Asia and stay there for one night. Contact with Embor Klamet 08974269132. He will meet you at Shillong. He is the son of the soil of mawlynnong. His mother who is a retired school teacher, still lives at Mawlynnong. Embor will arrange for a home stay at Mawlynnong.
- From Mawlynnong, start in the morning at 8.00 am and proceed for Dawki river and Tamabil border. The bridge on the river Dawki and the boats on the green water are worth for visiting. You have to take meal at Dawki in any ordinary hotel.
- For local sight seeing, you may call Mr. Parimal Pal – 09862102512. He has a black-yellow Maruti Taxi. The fare is very cheap. But, the driver is so friendly that he will guide you to tourist spots at Shillong, Cherrapunjee, Mawlynnong and Dawki-Tamabil.
- Two full days will be necessary to visit all spots at and near Shillong. Two full days will be required for visiting all spots at Cherrapunjee. From Cherrapunjee, it will take around 2 hours to reach Mawlynnong. No, you will not need to go back to Shillong to reach Mawlynnong. There is a direct route from Cherra to Mawlynnong.
- From Mawlynnong to Dawki, it will again take another 2 hours. It may be a day trip to Mawlynnong and Dawki (and also Tamabil border) from Cherrapunjee and come back to Shillong.
- We would suggest everyone to stay at Mawlynnong for one night. The single living-root bridge is located near Mawlynnong, so the entire journey will be comfortable if you stay at Mawlynnong.
- From Shillong to Cherrapunjee, the rate of small taxi is Rs. 2000. But for large car, such as Toyota, it will take Rs. 2500.
- At Cherrapunjee, the car fare for local sightseeing is Rs. 800-1000. For taxi, you may call Mr. Parimal Pal 09862102512.
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