Cherrapunji The Place You Cannot Say Goodbye To

Cherrapunji The Place You Cannot Say Goodbye To

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Trip Introduction

Imagine driving along a mountain road, a few thousand feet above sea level. The scenery – hills crested with pines and firs, deep valleys with gurgling streams below, a gentle sun shining upon you, bright but not sunny, and crisp, cool air. Typical of any Indian 'hill station'. But now imagine – it all vanishes in less than a minute, as a fog appears from nowhere, blanketing everything in sight. And then the name of the state strikes you – because you realise that you just drove into a cloud!

That's how Sohra or Cherrapunji in Meghalaya says hello to you!

The British name of Cherrapunji was officially changed to the historical name Sohra a few years back! The name Sohra, which was pronounced "Churra" by the British eventually evolved into the current name, Cherrapunji. The word "Cherrapunji"  actually means 'Land of Oranges'.

How to get there

By Road

Cherrapunji is 56 km south of Meghalaya's capital Shillong. You can get there from Shillong in three ways, depending on your budget. If you are willing to splurge, hire a car. This will let you stop at every fifty metres to photograph the irresistible scenery. Alternatively, you can share space in one of the taxis that ply regularly between Shillong and Sohra. But most recommended is that you take a minibus. The discomfort of overcrowding will be more than made up by the sweet-sounding Khasi songs playing on the sound system and the cheerful chatter of the people.

To get to Shillong is another matter. There are regular flights from most Indian metros to Guwahati (booked well in advance, it cost me Rs. 9000 for a Mumbai-Guwahati-Mumbai round trip). From the airport you can take a taxi to Guwahati city for lunch (try Delicacy on Guwahati-Shillong Road for a sumptuous Assam thali). Alternatively, taxis (costing between Rs. 1000 – 1500 depending on whether you hire an Indica or Innova) are available to get directly to Shillong, where there are hotels to suit every budget. You can prefer to stay in Shillong and make day trips to Sohra, or stay in Sohra itself.

It is best to go there just after the monsoon. Much of the rain will have finished falling, yet the hills will be green. Nevertheless, it rains through the year in the North East.



Posted By: surendra kaushik

A good travelogue indeed. My wife and I are planning a trip to Assam and Meghlaya in the month of May . Would like to get in touch with the Author for some advice. Do email me is contact email address . Shall be obliged. My email is surikay903@gmail.comThanks again, Suren Kaushik, Pune

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