If the rain spoils our picnic but saves a farmer’s crop, who are we to say it shouldn’t rain? Rain is grace; rain is the sky descending to the earth; without rain, there would be no life. It’s a relief to hear the rain. It’s the sound of billions of drops, all equal, all equally committed to falling. Rain!!! Cherrapunji!!Rain!!! That’s what it’s all about in this part of the globe. Located in East Khasi Hill district in the Indian state of Meghalaya, Cherrapunji –locally named Sohra is credited as being the second wettest place on Earth just falling behind its neighbor Mawsynram.
The cliffs of Cherrapunji, the wettest place on Earth, receive heavy rainfall due to heavy monsoon winds blowing from the Bay of Bengal. Lush greenery, beautiful landscapes, and mystical waterfalls are what you will find in abundance.
Amazing landscape at cherrapunji second wettest place on earth
How to Reach Cherrapunji?
Guwahati railway station is the nearest railhead to Cherrapunji. Guwahati is well connected to major cities of India by road, rail, and air. On reaching Guwahati the best way to reach cherrapunji is to take a shared taxi till Shillong which takes around 2-3 hours and again a shared taxi all the way to cherrapunji which is about an hour drive. While searching for a shared taxi in Shillong, ask for Sohra as most of the drivers are not familiar with the name cherrapunji. Visit IRCTC for train bookings.
Best time to visit:
The weather conditions of the town remain pleasant and comfortable for the most of the year. Cherrapunji receives heavy rainfall almost throughout the year. The best time to visit Cherrapunji is between the months of October to March when the weather remains calm and pleasant. Also, it is less foggy and you can enjoy the view of the beautiful landscapes.
Entrance of Cherrapunjee
Places to stay:
Not so famous amongst the tourist and having Shillong in the vicinity, Cherrapunji has very few stay options. People visit cherrapunji as a one-day excursion trip from Shillong. Cherrapunjee Holiday Resort, Nongriat Guest House, Serenity Homestay and D Cloud guest home are the few stay option that I am familiar with.
My journey to the land of rain started when I got into a taxi which was heading towards Sohra. The road journey from Shillong to Cherrapunji is one of the lushest road trips I’ve ever traversed. I had never seen a sky so clear. Pollution!! Ohh this terminology does not exist in the dictionary of Cherrapunji. I am out of words for the magical landscape you will witness during this entire road trip.
cloudy sky on way to Sohra
Greenery everywhere on route to Sohra(Cherrapunji)
The weather in Cherrapunji is almost unpredictable. You never know when heavy rains will welcome you. From what little I knew about cherrapunji in my school days, I always imagined it would be a place where I would find dense jungles with water level around 6-7 feet and people living in houses made from bamboos, standing high on pillars. All my thinking turned into a bullshit as I reached the second wettest place on planet earth.
There is almost no public transport available in cherrapunji which you can use for local sightseeing. So I decided to cover all the must-see places by walking. And to my misfortune, all locations of interest were far from each other. Seeing me walking all alone with a huge backpack, it was the kindness of few tourists who offered me lift as they were going to the same spots.
Cherrapunji wettest place on earth has so much to explore that you at least need 2-3 days. Being here just for a day, I decided to have a visit to all must see places.
Seven Sisters Falls:
Also known as Nohsngithiang Falls is a seven-segmented waterfall located just 1 kilometer south of Mawsmai village. It has a reputation of being the fourth highest waterfalls in India which plunge over the top of limestone cliffs of the Khasi Hills. Foggy weather can ruin your visit. Check out Seven Sisters Falls Wikipedia for more details.
Seven Sisters Falls
Situated around 6 Kms from Cherrapunjee, the Mawsmai Caves is by far the most accessible cave for many travelers. Though the caves are long, only a distance of 150 meters is open for tourists, while the other section is closed. The limestone constructions of the cave would surely leave you fascinated.
It is the tallest plunge waterfall in India at the height of 1115 feet (340 meters). Below the falls there is a plunge pool with unusual green colored water. A viewing gallery allows the visitor to savor the beauty of the place. For more details refer Nohkalikai Wikipedia.
Nohkalikai Falls Cherrapunji wettest place on Earth
You can enjoy breathtaking views of the ‘Green Canyons’ of Cherapunji along with the waterfalls which are in the vicinity. The eco-park also has a crystal clear water stream within its boundaries. From the other side of the Eco Park, you can view the Bangladesh plains.
View from Eco Park
Double Decker Living Root Bridge:
You need to be here to believe in the existence of such an incredible structure. There are few journeys in life which you remember forever and for me, one would be a trek to Double Decker Living Root Bridge. The trek to the 250-year-old bridge commences from Tyrna village which passes through dense forest and then climbing down in complete 3000 steps on the whole route. Once you reach the amazing structure, I can guarantee that you would be out of words for this sheer brilliance of human innovation. For more info check out Living Root Bridges Wikipedia.
Cherrapunji has a lot to offer from root bridges, valleys, caves, forest to breathtaking waterfalls. So what are you waiting for??? Get up, pack your bags and reach Cherrapunjii!!!!!
Are you looking for some essential travel gear? Check out my blog post on What’s in my Backpack.
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