Reasons to visit Cherrapunji: Cherrapunji is a Meghalaya town located in the East Khasi highlands. The name Cherrapunji was given to the town by tourists from other regions of India, given the fact that it means “land of oranges.” The town was previously known as Sohra and is situated at a height of 1430 metres. The area holds the Guinness World Record for being the wettest place on earth. Because the millimetre count is 5-digit, rainfall in Cherrapunji is measured in feet. It receives 11,777 mm of rain every year. The Khasis are a group of people who have lived in Sohra since the early 16th century. Cherrapunji is also known for its live root bridges, the oldest of which is estimated to be around 500 years old.
There are many reasons to visit Cherrapunji, the world’s wettest region, including mesmerizing waterfalls, rain, hills, greenery such as velvet cape, bright blue sky, pleasant temperature, caves, root bridge, and a diverse range of flora and fauna. Among the many reasons, we have compiled a small list just for you:
Reasons to visit Cherrapunji:
Cherrapunji is home to some of the most spectacular waterfalls, including NohKaLikai Falls. The 340-meter-long highest plunge waterfall provides a phenomenal sight during the year-round monsoon.
This waterfall has a legend attached to it. The name of the fall is derived from “the leap of Ka Likai,” a tale about a woman who lived thousands of years ago. According to folklore, Ka Likai had a daughter with her first husband, and she married another man after his demise. Her second husband adored her and loathed her stepdaughter.
It was one evening when Ka Likai came home from work and saw her husband preparing dinner for her. The unsuspected Ka Likai ate the dinner, and her husband subsequently confessed that the dinner he cooked was actually his stepdaughter. He murdered the young girl, then cooked and served her for dinner.
On learning about her daughter’s gruesome death, the heartbroken mother committed suicide by jumping from the cliff where the Nohkalikai falls originate.
Double Decker Living Root Bridge
In the Tyrna village of Cherrapunji, a 2-tier, 100-foot-long root bridge is a bioengineering marvel. The town is rich in scenic beauty, and this root bridge is just another milestone for hikers from all over the world and one of the amazing reasons to visit Cherrapunji. This 150-year-old root bridge is an artificial masterpiece, and the bridge is located at 2400 feet and spans the Umshiang River. The Double Decker Living Root Bridge symbolizes mother nature as a teacher and skilled people of the Khasi tribe.
Seven Sister Waterfall
Seven Sister Waterfall is my favorite of all the lovely places in Cherrapunji, and it’s also one of the most popular tourist sites in Meghalaya. This is the country’s fourth-largest waterfall. The waterfalls are from a height of 315 meters from the top of the limestone cliff, with an average width of 70 meters. It is located around 1 km south of Mawsmai village in East Khasi Hills district. This waterfall is also called Nohsngithiang Falls or Mawsmai Falls, and there are no words to convey its breathtaking magnificence adequately.
Nokrek National Park
This park is known for having a wide variety of flora and fauna. Nokrek National Park is located 130 km away from the town of Cherrapunji, on the Tura Range of Garo Hills. The park is home to Asian Elephants, different species of Cats and Primates, Himalayan Black Bear, Slow Loris, Guar Clouded Leopard, and a large population of Hoolock Gibbon (the only ape breed found in India). This national park is also home to the group of Red Pandas.
The park is positioned on the cliff’s edge, about 12 kilometers from Cherrapunji’s main town. Thangkharang Park looks out over the splendid Kynrem Falls, which cascades down three levels. The destination must be visited to see the breathtaking views of the Bangladesh Plains and Valley. The park is known for its Shiva Rock, also known as Khoh Ramrah Rock. The park also incorporates a two-foot bridge from which you may look down on the river. During the monsoon season, Thangkharang Park transforms into a lush green paradise, and it is at its best in the early winter months.
Cherrapunji is well-known for its numerous caverns and underground tunnels. One of the caves is Mawsmai Cave, the fourth-longest cave in the Indian Subcontinent. The beautiful limestone cave is close to the town, about half kilometers away. Apart from being the fourth-longest cave, the cave is well-known for the tiny ponds inside, which are generated by five distinct rivers.
The small town where India and Bangladesh meet. The small town is also famous for having Umngot River, Jaflong Zero Point, Byrdaw Falls, Mawshun Cave, Borhill Falls and crystal clear blue-green waters in India. The town, also spelled as Dauki, is located in the West Jaintia Hills district of Meghalaya. The city is a complete package in itself with astonishing views all around.
The reasons to visit Cherrapunji are numerous, and I managed to provide a brief insight of a few places. Other attractions to check in the second wettest city of the world is – Dainthlen Falls; Krem Phyllut; Mawlynnong (Asia’s cleanest village); Nongsawlia; Khasi Monoliths; Mawsynram (wettest place on the planet), and more.
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How to reach Cherrapunji?
The nearest railway station is Guwahati, 180 kilometers away from Cherrapunji. The railhead is well connected to the rest of the country, as trains run frequently. From the train station, cab service to Cherrapunji is available.
Umroi Airport of Shillong (domestic airport), which is about 60 kms away from Cherrapunji, is the nearest. Also, Guwahati International Airport, approximately 170 kms away from Cherrapunji, is connected to the rest of the world.
Cherrapunji can be reached via government-run buses, private buses, rented cabs, and taxis from various parts of Assam and Meghalaya.
Best time to visit Cherrapunji
Cherrapunji receives rain throughout the year, so there’s no need to be concerned about whether you should visit during the monsoon or not. The question is, how much rain should you expect during your visit?
|March to May||13°C to 23°C||Pleasant Rain|
|June to September||12°C to 16°C||Heavy Rain|
|October to February||5°C to 15°C||Pleasant Rain|
Why visit Cherrapunji from March to May?
Every year during April, local Khasis celebrate an annual dance festival called The Shad Suk Mynsiem (Dance of Happy Heart). A yearly celebration is a form of thanksgiving dance and music event held to express gratitude to God for the year that has passed and to ask for blessings for the year ahead.
Why visit Cherrapunji from June to September?
If you adore the monsoon and enjoy sitting by the window as it rains severely, going between June and September is ideal. During these months, Cherrapunji’s true splendor emerges:
- The waterfall is everywhere.
- The hills appear to be made of green velvet.
- The chill weather becomes even colder.
Although the severe rain would limit your movement throughout the town, Cherrapunji’s magnificence is worth everything.
Why visit Cherrapunji from October to February?
This is the finest time to visit Cherrapunji for a thrilling adventure. The season is ideal for tourists because of the lovely rainfall and cool temperatures. Cherrapunji celebrates one of the most colorful festivals, the Nongkrem Dance, held every year in November. The festival lasts for five days and is honored to thank God for the harvest and pray for the community’s peace and prosperity. The winters in Cherrapunji are meant for trekking, picnics and a visit to national parks.
However, I recommend visiting during the early winter months, when the precipitation begins to drain, and Cherrapunji’s true grandeur shines.
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