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Meghalaya Travel Guide: All You Need To Know

Are You Planning To Travel Meghalaya? Here’s The Guide That Can Help You

Meghalaya Travel Guide
Meghalaya Travel Guide

Quick Information

Information At Glance

  • Location: Meghalaya is located in the Northeast of India.
  • Total Area: 22,720 km²
  • Capital of Meghalaya: Shillong
  • Languages Spoken: English, Khasi, Garo, Pnar, Assamese, Bengali, Nepali, Hindi
  • Climate: Meghalaya is the wettest place on earth. The climate of Meghalaya varies with the altitude. It’s neither too warm in summer nor too cold in winter.
  • Best time to visit: October is the very best month to visit Meghalaya
  • Best way to travel: By Bus and Car
  • Famous festivals: Shad Nongkrem, Shad Suk Mynsiem, Behdeinkhlam, Shad Sukra, Wangala
  • Type of Location: Mountainous, with stretches of valley and highland plateaus surrounded by lush greenery
  • Recommended no. of days to travel: 9-10 days

Meghalaya Overview

Let’s Know A Bit About Meghalaya

If you ask about one of the most beautiful states in northeast India than the name of Meghalaya comes at first. Meghalaya is a very beautiful and hilly state. This name literally means ‘the abode of clouds’

This very beautiful state of North-East India offers a variety of sights, activities, food, and festivals to the tourists. You can witness nature revealing its true beauty here in the surroundings of Meghalaya in its best possible way.

This state shares its boundaries to the south by Mymensingh and Sylhet of Bangladesh, to the west by Bangladesh’s division of Rangpur, and to the north and east by the India’s State of Assam.

Covering an area of about 22,720 km², the state of Meghalaya is mountainous with vast stretches of valley and highland plateaus surrounded by the lush greenery.

You can also see here various unexplored and hidden rocks which are the very best place for adventure junkies to go.

The highest point in Meghalaya is the Shillong Peak located in the city of Shillong. It has an altitude of 1961 m.

And, the highest point in the Garo Hills is Nokrek Peak with an altitude of 1515 m.

The state of Meghalaya is famous for its magnificent beauty. Tourists from all over the world visit this place to have their drained souls get rejuvenated.

If you are still left, then come here and feel the mesmerizing nature.

If you come here and just explore you can witness a wide variety of untouched natural beauty.

In fact, every trip to each location in the state seems to be a treasure hunt for the adventure lovers and nature enthusiasts.

Shillong is the capital of Meghalaya, and it’s the most urbanized area you will see in the entire state.

You can witness here the various leftover British colonial influence that is evident from the plentiful British architecture, along with the magnificent hills, and lakes surrounding the city.

Other parts of Meghalaya are surrounded in the canopy of nature amidst the hills, valleys, plateaus, and waterfalls.

Being surrounded by the panoramic landscapes, cascading waterfalls, foggy hills, and terraced slopes it is sure to bring a lot of awesomeness amongst the travelers visiting this state.

There’s a lot more to know about Meghalaya. Just keep reading this post and eventually keep learning more about Meghalaya all at a glance before you make a visit to this pretty awesome state.


Weather Forecast

Have A Look At The Monthly Weather Forecast Of Meghalaya

NO.MONTHSEASONMINIMUM (avg)MAXIMUM (avg)
1.JanuaryWinter11°C26°C
2.FebruaryWinter13°C29°C
3.MarchWinter16°C29°C
4.AprilSummer20°C31°C
5.MaySummer22°C32°C
6.JuneSummer23°C32°C
7.JulyMonsoon24°C32°C
8.AugustMonsson24°C34°C
9.SeptemberMonsoon24°C33°C
10.OctoberWinter22°C33°C
11.NovemberWinter17°C29°C
12.DecemberWinter13°C27°C

Interesting Facts

12 Interesting Facts About Meghalaya

  1. Meghalaya receives a huge amount of rainfall every year and is the wettest region of India. Meaning “abode of the clouds,” it’s home to the top two wettest places on earth, according to Guinness Book of World Records. These two places are Cherrapunji and Mawsynram.
  2. Cherrapunji in the Khasi Hills holds the world record for maximum rainfall during a calendar month. Whereas, Mawsynram near Cherrapunji holds the world record for having the maximum amount of rainfall throughout the year.
  3. It’s home to the cleanest village in Asia, Mawlynnong. Mawlynnong located about 100 km away from Shillong, Meghalaya. The cleanliness of this beautiful village depends on a community based eco-friendly initiative.
  4. You are free to talk in English here. The majority of the locals can understand this language. The principal languages in Meghalaya are Khasi, Pnar, and Garo with English as the official language of the State.
  5. Meghalaya is the only Indian state that follows the Matriarchal system of society. The Khasi tribe of Meghalaya follows the Matriarchal system in the society where the woman takes care as the head of the household and earns a living for the family and the man simply manages the house and the children. The children take the surname of the mother. Girls in the family inherit the property from their parents and boys go to the bride’s home after marriage.
  6. Nohkalikai Falls is the highest waterfall that is located here. It is located at a height of about 1,115 feet.
  7. India’s longest natural cave, Krem Liat Prah is located here. It is not only the longest natural cave in India but also in South Asia.
  8. Shillong the capital city of Meghalaya, due to its home to several waterfalls, outstanding naturalistic beauty, rolling hills, and attractive landforms. That’s also why it is sometimes referred to as the “Scotland of the East”.
  9. The tribes of Meghalaya can be mainly classified into 3 groups: the Garos, Khasis, and Pnars. The Khasi Tribe of Meghalaya is the largest tribe not only in Meghalaya but in the whole of northeast India. Khasis at Meghalaya can be traced in various regions with various names.
  10. At about 25 km from Shillong, there is a small village named Mawphlang in the East Khasi Hills district of Meghalaya. This village is an important Khasi Heritage Site which has one of the Khasi Hills sacred forest groves. Nobody is allowed to take anything from this forest, not even a dead leaf or stone intentionally.
  11. Shillong Peak is the highest peak in Meghalaya which has an altitude of 1,961 m. Shillong got its name from the Shillong Peak. This peak offers a breathtaking panoramic view of the entire city.
  12. Meghalaya is famous for its orchids. The forests of Khasi hills are known to have 325 different species of orchids. It’s also known for having a number of species of mammals like the wild buffalo, Asiatic elephants, mongoose, wild boar, and red panda.

Why Visit Meghalaya?

8 Major Reasons To Travel Meghalaya

  1. Explore nature: The top choice to explore Meghalaya is its wonderful and awesome natural beauty. Go through the various tourist destinations, trekking routes, driving paths, and picnic spots in Meghalaya and find yourself surrounded by the wonderful canopy of nature.
  2. Adventure: Meghalaya is the best state for adventure lovers. You can try the extreme and exotic adventure activities like hiking through the hills, trekking to the valleys, climbing the rocks, exploring the caves, boating in the mountain rivers, etc. Meghalaya is indeed one of the best places for camping, mountaineering, etc.
  3. Expeditions in the limestone caves: Meghalaya is one of those states of India that has an extensive network of underground caves, some of which are still undiscovered. The state is well known for having some of the longest caves in the world and the deepest caves in India.
  4. Experience the native culture: Come here and experience the native and uncommon traditions, cultures, cuisines, and dressing styles of the local tribes. The 3 main tribes of Meghalaya are the Garos, Khasis, and Jaintias.
  5. Explore the wildlife: There are a total of 2 National Parks and 3 Wildlife Sanctuaries in Meghalaya. This state is still being preserved under the canopy of mother nature. Thus, it has a large variety of mammals, birds, reptiles, and insects which cannot be so easily seen anywhere else in the world. Some of the interesting animals that you can see in Meghalaya include Hoolock Gibbon, Golden Cat, Leopard, Jungle Cat, Large Indian Civet, Himalayan Black Bear, Barking Deer, Pangolin, etc.
  6. Explore these no. 1 places: Visit Nohkalikai Waterfalls (the highest waterfall in Meghalaya and the 3rd highest in India), Nohsngithiang Falls (the largest waterfalls in East Khasi Hills district of Meghalaya), Mawlynnong (the cleanest village in Asia), Mawsynram (the wettest place on earth), Krem Liat Prah (longest natural cave in the world), etc. There are so many other locations as well. Just keep reading to learn more.
  7. It’s the best choice amongst the Hikers: As already mentioned that Meghalaya is one of the hilliest regions of India surrounded by lush greenery. This landscape makes it a wonderful sight for trekking and hiking purposes. This state is a dream come true for hikers.
  8. Go for sightseeing tours: How can one forget the sightseeing tours? Meghalaya is the best place in India for sightseeing. The place is filled with scenic spots, hill stations, clean villages and much more all in the paradise of nature. Enjoy the culture of the local people, the mesmerizing destinations, do the various interesting things while enjoying a romantic vacation with nature.

Best Time To Visit

Want To Visit Meghalaya? Know The Very Best Time To Visit

The North-Eastern state of Meghalaya, also known as the ‘adobe of clouds’ is by far, one of the refreshing and the best place to visit in India.

The annual average temperature ranges between 4°C to 26°C and is so suitable to visit at any time of the year. The state remains neither too hot nor too cold.

Although any time of the year is suitable to visit Meghalaya. But, to be very true the month of October is the very best time to visit Meghalaya.

During the month of October, the autumn season prevails here and this is one of the best seasons to plan your trip.

Here, in Meghalaya, the month of October is so melodious and mesmerizing that you will surely enjoy the most fantastic form of nature.

The autumn season boosts the beauty of the state at its best.


Tourist Attractions

Famous Cities/Villages in Meghalaya

NO.PLACEDISTRICTKNOWN FOR
1.CherrapunjiEast Khasi HillsIt is the 2nd wettest place on earth due to its extreme level of rainfall
2.MawlynnongEast Khasi HillsThe cleanest village in Asia
3.DawkiWest Jaintia HillsFamolus for the Dawki River which is a crystal clear and transparent river
4.ShillongEast Khasi HillsIt is also known as the “Scotland of the East” due to it’s beautiful landscape and surroundings representing like that of Scotland
5.BaghmaraSouth Garo HillsKnown for its several historical and tourist spots
6.LaitumkhrahEast Khasi HillsOne of the oldest places in Shillong
7.NongthymmaiEast Khasi HillsKnown for the presence of the North Eastern Hill University (NEHU) campus
8.MawsynramEast Khasi HillsWorld’s no. 1 wettest place due to highest amount of rainfall in the world
10.Tura West Garo HillsA famous and beautiful hilly town in the West Garo Hills
11.NongstoinWest Khasi HillsKnown for the Nongkhnum River Island, Weinia Falls, Shadthum Falls, etc
12.JowaiWest Jaintia HillsIts scenic views with the historical heritage and culture of the Jaintia Kingdom
13.William NagarEast Garo HillsA popular tourist spot in the East garo Hills
18.MawphlangEast Khasi HillsKnown for its sacred forest groves

Famous Waterfalls in Meghalaya

NO.WATERFALLLOCATIONKNOWN FOR
1.Dainthlen fallsCherrapunjee, East Khasi HillsWaterfall with the natural rock carvings
2.Nohkalikai fallsCherrapunjee, East Khasi HillsHighest waterfall in Meghalaya and 3rd highest in India
3.Nohsngithiang FallsCherrapunjee, East Khasi HillsSeven-segmented beautiuful waterfall
4.Khoh RamhahCherrapunjee, East Khasi HillsKnown for the Pillar Rock which is an impressive rock formation in the shape of a giant cone
5.Kynrem FallsCherrapunjee, East Khasi Hills3rd Highest waterfall in Meghalaya
6.Elephant FallsShillong, East Khasi HillsMost popular tourist place in Shillong
7.Spread Eagle FallsShillong, East Khasi HillsIt looks like an eagle with its spread wings
8.Imil-Chang-Dare FallsTura-Chokpot Road, West Garo HillsDeep, wide pool at the bottom of the fall
9.Sweet FallsShillong, East Khasi HillsIt looks like water coming out of a large sizeed water pipe
10.Rongbang FallsTura-Williamnagar Road, West Garo HillsDue to its mesmerzing beauty seen from the bottom of the waterfall
11.Pelga FallsTura, West Garo HillsA favourite place for the anglers and picnickers
12.Thlumuwi FallsJowai Amlarem Road, Jaintia Hills DistrictThe only historic and picturesque waterfall on the Jowai Amlarem Road
13.Krang SuriAmlarem, Jaintia HillsOne of the most beautiful waterfalls in the Jaintia Hills District
14.Thum FallsDilingim, West Khasi HillsMain attraction is the base of the waterfall that looks gorgeous
15.Weinia FallsDilingim, West Khasi HillsOne of the popular tourists destination in the West Khasi Hills District
16.Tyrshi FallsShillong-Jowai Road, Jaintia HillsRepresents the same like that of the Elephant Falls in Shillong

Famous National Parks in Meghalaya

NO.NAMELOCATIONKNOWN FOR
1.Balphakram National ParkSouth Garo HillsThe park is famous for the golden cat and the barking deer. Elephants, jungle cat, etc. are also seen.
2.Nokrek National ParkWest Garo HillsCapped Langur, Clouded Leopard, Leopard Cat, Fishing-Cat, Golden Cat, Hornbill, Peacock, etc

Famous Wildlife Sanctuaries In Meghalaya

NO.NAMELOCATION
1.Baghmara Pitcher Plant Wildlife SanctuaryBaghmara
2.Nongkhyllem Wildlife SanctuaryNongkhyllem
3.Siju Wildlife Bird SanctuarySouth Garo Hills

Famous Pilgrimage Sites in Meghalaya

NO.NAMELOCATIONKNOWN FOR
1.Nartiang Durga TempleWest Jaintia HillsA 500 year old Durga temple and one of the 51 Shakti Peethas in India
2.Cathedral Catholic ChurchLaitumkhrah, ShillongThe architecture of Cathedral Catholic Church makes it one of the most beautiful buildings in Meghalaya
3.Mawjymbuin Cave TempleMawsynram13th century old temple that has a naturally formed Shivalinga
4.Kamakhya TempleGaro HillsA place to worship Goddess Kamakhya and offer her prayers. People visiting this temple with utmost devotion and dedication gets blessed with a delightful life
5.Madina MosqueLaban, ShillongMadina Mosque is the first and only glass mosque in India
6.Dwarkamai Sai Baba TempleByrnihat, Ri-BhoiA very popular Sai Baba Temple of Meghalaya
7.Mahadev Khola DhamShillongA famous temple dedicated God Shiva
8.Borghat TempleBorghat, Jaintia HillsAncient Jaintia Kings used to offer sacrifices in this temple
9.Dargah of Hazrat Shah Kamal BabaAt Indo-Bangladesh border, West Garo HillsIs thought to be a place where the prayers are answered
10.Matri MandirShillongA famous temple dedicated to Goddess kali

Famous Historical Sites in Meghalaya

NO.NAMELOCATIONKNOWN FOR
1.David Scott MonumentCherrapunjiA memorial pillar in memory of David Scott who was an agent to the British Governor General of North-East India
2.Kiang Nongbah MonumentJowai, West Jaintia HillsA monument built in honour of U-Kiang Nongbah, a popular Jaintia patriot
3.Khasi MonolithsCherrapunjiFascinating structures related to the Khasi tribe
4.Nartiang MonolithsNartiang, Jaintia HillsThis site can be literally called a garden of monoliths
5.Don Bosco MuseumShillongProvides a glimpse of the rich and multi-cultural lifestyles of the indigenous peoples of North East India
6.Ever Living MuseumMawshbuit, East Khasi HillsProvides a glimpse of Meghalaya’s natural & cultural heritage, including crafts & fossils
7.Captain Williamson Sangma State MuseumShillong, MeghalayaShowcases the history of the local Meghalaya tribes
8.Khasi Heritage VillageShillongShowcase the traditional lifestyle of the Khasi tribes

Best Things To Do

Some Of The Awesome Things To Do In Meghalaya

  1. Go for a sightseeing tour to Shillong. Visit the Shillong Peak, Elephant Falls, Umiam Lake, etc. Not only these, but there is also so much more to explore nearby Shillong.
  2. Go for a day tour to Cherrapunji and admire the breathtaking beauty of this destination. While you will be visiting Cherapunjee you can also explore the nearby destinations like the Shillong peak, Elephant Falls, Duwan Syiem Bridge, Ram Krishna Mission, Nohkalikai Falls, Mawsmai Caves, the Seven Sister Waterfalls, etc.
  3. Get out for a trek to the Double Decker Living Root Bridge located in Cherapunjee. Tyrna village in Cherapunjee is the base point of this 1.5 hour-long trek.
  4. Indulge yourself in a wide range of activities ranging from camping, rock climbing, rappelling, zooming, zip-lining nearby Umiam Lake. Kayaking, boating, and various water-sports activities are available in the Umina Lake. Umiam Lake is a huge water reservoir in the hills located just 15 km north of Shillong in the state of Meghalaya, India.
  5. Trekking through the famous trekking trails of Meghalaya like the Umden Village Trek, The Living Roots Bridge Trek, Mawlongbna Village Trek, Mawlyngot Trek, Dawki Trek, etc.
  6. Indulge yourself with the fun-filled and enjoying water activities like kayaking, boating, scuba-diving, etc. in the Dawki river.
  7. Explore the parts of beautiful and unseen caves of Meghalaya. Some of the famous caves are Mawsmai Cave, Siju Cave, etc. We bet that this will be the best thing to enjoy in Meghalaya.
  8. Don’t forget to visit Mawlynnong Village. It is the Cleanest Village in Asia as recorded in the Guinness Book of World Record.
  9. Don’t forget to visit Mawsynram Village. It is the wettest place in the world as recorded in the Guinness Book of World Record.

Famous Food Of Meghalaya

A Few Of The Famous Food & Cuisines To Taste In Meghalaya

  1. Jadoh: It’s a famous food in the Khasi community. It’s prepared with rice and pork along with vegetables, eggs, or fried fish.
  2. Doh-Khlieh: It’s another very famous food in the Khasi community. It’s like a pork salad which is prepared with chopped pork pieces mixed with onions, chilies, spices, and salt.
  3. Doh-Neiiong: It’s a famous pork dish that is prepared with fried pork served with a rich and thick gravy flavored generously with green chilies, pepper, onions, local spices, and black sesame.
  4. Nakham Bitchi: This is a very delicious soup prepared with dry fish mixed with vegetables.
  5. Pumaloi: Pumaloi is the type of steamed rice dish which is spicy and is taken during breakfast, lunch, or dinner time.
  6. Pudoh: This is a gravy type dish prepared with rice which is steamed along with small pieces of pork.
  7. Tungrymbai: Tungrymbai is yet another popular dish of Meghalaya that can be seen in the majority of the houses of the local people. It is made from fermented soya beans mixed with boiled and chopped pork, black sesame, ginger, onion, and other spices.
  8. Bamboo Shoots: Various bamboo shoots dishes can be seen in Meghalaya. These are usually prepared with chicken or pork mixed with crushed vegetables and spices.
  9. Sakin Gata: Sakin Gata is a type of sticky white rice cake mixed with sugar. It’s a famous dessert in Meghalaya that is often served with breakfast tea.
  10. Kyat: Kyat is a type of fermented rice beer that has a unique flavor and taste. It is one of the famous party drink in Meghalaya.

Festivals Of Meghalaya

Some Of The Well-Known Festivals Of Meghalaya

NO.FESTIVALMONTHPLACEKNOWN FOR
1.Ka Shad Suk MynsiemAprilShillongCelebrated as a thanksgiving to mother nature for good harvest and for fresh sowing of seeds
2.Chad SukraApril-MayAll over MeghalayaThe end of this festival marks the sowing of seeds on the agricultural lands by the Pnar people of the state
3.Bob Dylan FestivalMayShillongThis festival is a tribute to ‘Bob Dylan’, an American folksinger and rock musician who won the Noble prize for literature
4.Behdeinkhlam FestivalJulyJaintia HillsThis festival is also known as the festival of sticks and rath which is celebrated for 3 days
5.Ka Pom-Blang NongkremOctober-NovemberSmitCelebrated as a thanksgiving to mother nature for good harvest in the month of October-November
6.Autumn FestivalOctober-NovemberShillongIt showcases the rich diversity, culture, and heritage of Meghalaya
7.Wangala FestivalNovemberTuraA Garo post-harvest festival that marks the end of the agricultural year
8.Ahaia Winter FestivalDecemberDakopgreThe Garo tribe offer love and thanksgiving to their gods during this festival
9.Cherry Blossom FestivalNovemberShillongThis festival celebrates the mesmerizing and unique flowering of cherry blossom. This is celebrated with unique shows, concerts, music, dance and showcases the region’s unique food, culture, and cuisine

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