Shillong is known as Scotland of East. I am not sure of that as I have never been to Scotland. 🙂
But yes, Shillong is a beautiful place and monsoon is a season when it is visited most. Good thing about Shillong is that you can visit it any time of the year. It is small but a wonderful town. You can spend 4-5 days covering Cherapunjee, Mawlyngnong and some other nearby sites.
We went there recently in April and the weather was amazing. It was pleasant through out the day and little cold during nights and early mornings. There was light showers sometime and it made the town look more beautiful with its flora and fauna.
The drive from Guwahati Airport to Shillong is not long (3-4 hrs) and the road is under construction right now, some patches are ready. First thing which you get to see on your way is the local areca nut trees.
“Even in Heaven, people eat Kwai,” goes a popular Khasi saying. Kwai, which is nothing but a paan served with a generous dose of areca nut, betel leaf and lime, is loved by one and all in Meghalaya. In winter, there is nothing like the Kwai with a piece of ginger to keep one warm in this part of the country. Every second person in Meghalaya chews on the Kwai at home, play or office and Khasi women selling Kwai in carryall wicker baskets is a common sight everywhere in the state.
On your way to Shillong (15 kms before) you come across a huge lake – Umiam Lake and locally called as Bara Pani (Big Water). The Lake is popular for the Water Sport and adventure facilities that it offers.
We were there for Easter Sunday and the market was full with shoppers. Police Bazaar is the main area for all local shopping as well as tourists.
Glady’s Plaza is a shopper’s paradise at PB. There are lot of Tibetan Shops selling trendy apparels and accessories. Woodcraft is famous in this part of the country and there are two major shops selling these stuff at PB.
Although the streets were empty, but there was one place which was completely packed. Shillong Cafe. It’s a nice place to hangout. Thanks to our host who recommended us this place. We had a great time listening to locals performing there on Saturday Evenings. The staff at Shillong Cafe was very friendly and were full of energy while serving a packed cafe.
There are many tourist sites in and around Shillong. We started with Shillong Peak, it gives an aerial view of the town. I’ve heard that it looks beautiful at night but since it is part of the defense area, entry is restricted at night.
Lot of tourists are found dressing up in local Khasi dress. One tourist was happy to pose for me. 🙂
The other places to visit are Elephant Falls, Hydari Park, Ward’s Lake, Don Bosco Musuem and Sacred Forests. My next post will be on Sacred Forest, Hydari Park & Ward’s Lake and Don Bosco Musuem.