Shillong, Mawlynnong, Wahthyllong, Cherrapunjee and more - Meghalaya in the monsoon.

anupmathur

Super Moderator
Staff member
PRELUDE:
Sorry, this is a much delayed travelogue of a trip made in June 2011.
Starting date: 18th June 2011, Saturday.

This is a very photo-heavy travelogue!
Here are some quick links to make the navigation a little quicker for those who may need it:

Umiam Lake views

Umiam Lake boat ride

Ri Kynjai Resort, Umiam Lake

Mawlynnong

Living Root Bridge of Wahthyllong (near Mawlynnong)

Shillong Golf Club

The Don Bosco Museum, Shillong

Police Bazaar & Jadoh

Butterfly Museum, Shillong

Laitkor (Cantonment area), Shillong

Cherrapunjee (Sohra)

Elephant Falls, Shillong

Ward's Lake, Shillong


The Brahamaputra River Cruise, Guwahati

Paradise Restaurant, Guwahati

____________________________________________________________
The Travelogue starts here:

Not our usual style of holiday. We were going to the hills but not in our own car.
The hills this time were distant and time was at a premium.
So, the plains were covered in an aeroplane.

Four low cost Indigo Airlines tickets were booked Delhi to Guwahati for Saturday, the 18th of June 2011. Guwahati to Shillong would be by road, as guests of Brig. Anuj Mathur, posted in Shillong as BGS, Assam Rifles (Friends of the Hill People).

Be warned, since I was not driving, I went on a shooting spree! Strong case to make this more of a photo-log than a verbose travelogue. Many of the pics are clicked from a moving car.

We left from home in a Meru cab at 0600 hrs for the 0745 flight, thus a bit of breakfast was in order at Delhi Airport, Terminal 1. Also got some chicken patties packed for 'tiffin' on the flight.

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The A320 took off on time; Indigo is known to do this! However, more pressing matters creep into mind - does the pilot hold an authentic licence? Will he do a nosewheel landing at Guwahati? Will he manage to stay awake for the duration of the flight? Or, at least, will he wake up in good enough time not to overshoot the runway? Haha, the tribulations of air travel in India!

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At the Guwahati airport baggage carousel, after a comfortable flight and a safe landing, we discovered to our dismay that the wheels of one of our
stroller-bags had been amputated by the baggage handlers! Complaint lodged, form filled, photo taken, we proceeded to the waiting car.

We were whisked away to the Assam Rifles' Transit camp. It was very impressive indeed! We freshened up, had a nice, regulation veggie lunch, and then it was time to start gaining altitude, this time in the Brigadier's Bolero. Glad to be away! Guwahati was hot and humid!

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anupmathur

Super Moderator
Staff member
Re: Shillong, Mawlynnong, Wahthyllong, Cherrapunjee and more - Meghalaya in the monso

Transit camp to Shillong.
The Brigadier's younger son, Anant SixFootTwo, studying Hotel Management at Pusa, Delhi, had come from Shillong to escort us to his current hometown. He had got home for the summer holidays only a week earlier. The elder son, studying at Jaipur, will be joining us at Guwahati on the 23rd June, before we proceed to Arunachal Pradesh. He'll arrive just in time for the trip!
Here's the Google map showing the route and where I took photos.

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In a little over an hour we had reached the half way point, Nongpoh village, with it's old and famous L.C. Woodland Dhaba.

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After trying out all that had been recommended by BeingBaggu here (http://www.bcmtouring.com/forum/itinerary-f10/plan-meghalaya-arunachal-pradesh-t34260-4/#post444239) (with fond memories of his youth spent at Shillong), and having purchased some pickles as advised, we were on our way again.
The overall experience at Woodland Dhaba was just a shade above average. Sorry, Rajiv, the times they are a-changin'!
 
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anupmathur

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Re: Shillong, Mawlynnong, Wahthyllong, Cherrapunjee and more - Meghalaya in the monso

Here we are, on the road again. The next stop will be Barapani, or Umiam Lake, just on the outskirts of Shillong.

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But wait! A little before Barapani, a 'Thrills Fun Park' is coming up. Pool cottage, go-karting and cafeteria. Work in progress, but looks promising for the future.

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Little did we know that Barapani (Big-Water) was looking more like Chhotapani (Small Water) these days! The paucity of rainfall this year has reduced the level to unprecedented lows! Nonetheless, it looked very beautiful to us, with many little islets that, we were told, had never been sighted before! These had always been under water, and would soon, with mercy from the Rain Gods, be submerged again. Presently, however, they stood out proud for us!

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That's RiKynjai, zoomed in!
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anupmathur

Super Moderator
Staff member
Re: Shillong, Mawlynnong, Wahthyllong, Cherrapunjee and more - Meghalaya in the monso

Having clicked all the photos we wanted, we moved on toward Shillong.

Having made it in about three and a half hours was indeed lucky, as we had heard horror stories about the nasty jams that occur on the Guwahati-Shillong road due to the coal trucks that ply this route in their hundreds! These days the coal trucks are being let loose only at night. Small mercies!

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It took another 40 minutes to reach 'home', located at the far end of town in the Happy Valley, Shillong.

A quick familiarization tour and a high tea later, we were all seated in the lovely portico, having our favourite pre-dinner drinks and hors d'oeuvres. At over 1600 mtrs altitude the weather was very pleasant with no need for even a fan; the temperature hovering around 22°C. Really felt good to be in this very beautiful 'home'!

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Thus ended Family Mathur's first day out. :)
 
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anupmathur

Super Moderator
Staff member
Re: Shillong, Mawlynnong, Wahthyllong, Cherrapunjee and more - Meghalaya in the monso

Tomorrow is Sunday; and we'll head out to Mawlynnong, claimed to be India's cleanest village, which it did seem to be, not that I have seen many villages!

More impressive than the village was the Living Root Bridge, at nearby Wahthyllong. However, you have to trek down a good 250 feet or so in altitude along a rough and rocky path to reach the bridge. Going down is fine but the climb back up ...oof...knocked the wind out of me! Hmm...city slickers, couch potatoes!

This living root bridge is said to be about a hundred and fifty years old!
These bridges become stronger with age as the roots of the trees are alive and keep growing. This is the opposite of what happens to iron or timber bridges that only weaken with age as the rot sets in.
The Khasis have, over generations, 'grown' hundreds of such bridges to cross the many streams around the East Khasi Hills. Completely unique and ingenious!

Such bridges do not exist anywhere else in the world, so says everybody, their uncle, aunt and Wikipedia. :grin:
 

anupmathur

Super Moderator
Staff member
Re: Shillong, Mawlynnong, Wahthyllong, Cherrapunjee and more - Meghalaya in the monso

Good morning! It's Sunday morning.
I woke up early and set about making a round of the lovely 'home' we were guests in.

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KnightRider

Active Member
Re: Shillong, Mawlynnong, Wahthyllong, Cherrapunjee and more - Meghalaya in the monso

sirji..actually i was searching for this log last week itself..but not able to find..also checked in threads started by user..my bad..

but now i am happy to see it :)..lovely pics
 

rahulsingh

Active Member
Re: Shillong, Mawlynnong, Wahthyllong, Cherrapunjee and more - Meghalaya in the monso

Wonderful captures sirji. Maza Aa gaya.
 

Aman Pruthi

Crime Master GOGO
Re: Shillong, Mawlynnong, Wahthyllong, Cherrapunjee and more - Meghalaya in the monso

Sir Ji

Lovely Pics,

When i m in job I have been to Guwahati around 14 years back for around 12 days and i Visit Shibsagar, Hajo and many other place but when time comes to visit shillong my Company calls me to join office.

Lucky You:)
 
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