From the undomesticated Garo mounts to the Jaintias rice bowl—and someplace in between with the capital of Shillong, Meghalaya conveys its differences well. The wettest place on earth is also known as the ‘Abode of the Clouds’. The chunk of the population is tribal people; among them Khasis is the largest group, then Garos, and Pnars.
#1 Living Double Decker Root Bridges
When you visit this north eastern state, and deep in the thick jungle you are sure to find some amazing manmade natural wonders. One among them is the living Double Decker root bridges. The Khasi tribes have made them grow from the roots of very old rubber trees which are native to this place. There are 2 places from where you can site the bridges: near Cherrapunji as well as Mawlynnong.
#2 Mawlynnong – The Cleanest Village
Apart from having an effortlessly reachable living root bridge close by, picturesque Mawlynnong is worth visiting as it is the “Cleanest Village in Asia”. Also nicknamed as ‘God’s Own Garden’, the hamlet is an exceptional instance of community-established eco tourism. The locals have built an extraordinary Sky View stage from bamboo on top of the highest tree in the woods. It presents a panoramic view of the hamlet and bird’s-eye view across to Bangladesh. The place is only a 3 hour drive from Shillong.
#3 Mawphlang Sacred Forest
Mawphlang the home of a sacred plant orchard of the Khasi clan and is full of therapeutic plants, situated almost forty-five minutes drive from Shillong. In case you are very energetic and feel like spending a day out in company with nature, try the David Scott track from Maphlang to Lad Mawphlang. This very charming 16 kilometer track is fraction of an old horse trail which dates back to the British period.
Meghalaya is as well recognized for its wonderful caves. There are above 1,000 of them! The most regularly visited cavern is Mawsmai, close to Cherrapunji. It is managed as a show cave for tourers and is illuminated throughout. Apart from this cave the other caves are more intriguing to stopover and are suitable for caving trips with suitable caving tools.
#5 Garo Hills
In case you are also a nature lover then you really should head to the thickly wooded Garo Hills. This enormous area is home to the Siju Wildlife Sanctuary, Balpakhram National Park, and Nokrek Biosphere Reserve. The highlight is the butterfly tours.
#6 Shillong Iewduh Bara Bazar
The Iewduh Bara Bazar is considered as one of the leading customary-style markets in northeast India. This frenzied and overcrowded market is located in the heart of Shillong and where home Khasi women sell their fresh produce as well as farm animals. If you are like me then you are sure to enjoy local food from wayside stalls. The market is open from Monday thru Saturday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. except Sunday which is a holiday.
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