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Khasi Hills, Shillong Overview

Named after the Khasi tribe of Meghalaya, the Khasi Hills are part of the Garo-Khasi range, and a part of the larger Patkai hill range, a series of hills found across the Indo-Myanmar border in the northeast region of India. With deep lush valleys and conical peaks, these hills are famous for housing the Sohra or Cherrapunjee scarp, one of the regions with the highest annual rainfall in the world. The Nongkhum island, the second largest river island of Asia, is also located within this spectacular area. The dense forests mingling with tributaries that eventually drain out into the holy Brahmaputra, combined with the rich biodiversity of the region has earned Khasi Hills the title of 'Scotland of the east'.

The Khasi hills were divided into the East Khasi Hills and West Khasi Hills in 1976, with the Ri-Bhoi and South West Khasi Hills Districts being formed afterwards. The picturesque capital of Meghalaya, Shillong, is the district headquarters of the East Khasi Hills district, and the most developed town of the region. The Khasi Hills are a great convergence of lush forests, endless verdant grasslands, majestic hills surrounded by playful clouds, waterfalls and rivers flowing through the creeks, and ancient monoliths loaded with mystical caves. Complemented with the abundance of diverse wildlife seen throughout the area, the Khasi Hills region is world-famous for being a prime ecological hotspot.

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Places to Visit in East Khasi Hills

Mawlynnong Village: The village, which is situated around 90 km Shillong, is known for its serene beauty and cleanliness throughout the world. It is declared as the cleanest village in Asia where dustbins are made of bamboo and no waste product such as plastic can be found anywhere around the village. The tourist attraction also offers picturesque and natural sights including balancing rock, root Bridge, etc a perfect relaxation getaway to the tourists. 

Smit: Smit is another small village located around 16 km from the capital city of Shillong in the East Khasi Hills surrounded by lush green hills. The village can be reached through the winding roads which offer an elegant view of the mountains. The houses in the village are made up of bamboo and Woods and the locals are very friendly with the guests. It is one of the must-visit destinations in East Khasi Hills where tourists can enjoy local food, relaxing environment and natural sights. 

Mawphlang: Mawphlang is it sacred forest located in the mid of East Khasi Hills and has been preserved for centuries, having religious values and sanctions. Mawphlang means glossy stones and is considered as a place which is extremely loved by tourists who admire the natural beauty. The forest is also famous for Presbyterian church of Wales missionary along with medicinal qualities and is filled with stunning life forms including orchids, trees and flowers. 

Laitkynsew village: It is another village located in the East Khasi Hills district and is famous for the 53 feet long living root bridge which is over a hundred years old known as Jingkieng Deingjri. Tourist love to visit the living root Bridge as it offers a peaceful environment with a soothing sound of the river flowing beneath. Other famous attractions in the village include Ka Likai waterfall along with the local food.

Places to Visit in West Khasi Hills

Nongkhnum River Island: Located around 14 km from Nongstoin district, this is the biggest river island situated in Meghalaya. It is also the second-largest river Island in Asia and is well known for its beautiful sandy beach where tourists can enjoy various activities such as sunbathing, fishing, boating and camping. 

Sohtyngkhur Village: The village is situated in the West Khasi Hill district, around 15 Km from Mairang. The village is famous for the two beautiful waterfalls known as Kohmang Falls and Khudoi Falls. Tourists and reach the village through taxi and public buses from Sohtyngkhur. 

Wah Rilang river: Situated around 5 KM from Mawkyrwat at Mawranglang, Wah Rilang river is a beautiful valley that offers a magnificent view with fresh air flowing continuously that gives once in a lifetime experience to the tourists. 

Mawthadraishan Peak: It is the highest peak situated in the West Khasi Hills which is above 1800 meters from the sea level. Tourists can enjoy trekking to the peak (which will take around 1 hour) to be astounded by the panoramic views of Himalayas to North along with the Garo Hills in the west, East Khasi Hills and Bangladesh in the south. There are various ponds situated in the nearby area which is the perfect delight to the eyes. 

Langshiang and Thum Falls: The two waterfalls are situated near Dilingim and Sangriang, Nongstoin where the tourists can feel refreshed by taking a shower and take pictures of the beautiful falls. 

Kyllang Rock: Certainly a must-visit sight in the West Khasi Hills, which is open for tourists from 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM. Tourists can visit the rock through trekking that takes around 30 minutes. It is the cloudy trek where precautions are necessary. The Rock offers a magnificent and breathtaking view of nature and is a perfect destination for adventure lovers. It is said that the igneous rock contains a magnetic field which makes sure the people do not fall.

Activities At Khasi Hills

The Khasi hills are an adventurer's fantasy come to life, with countless caves, peaks and viewpoints spread across its entirety.

Trekking: Private treks are organised all across the Khasi hill range, exploring the quaint towns like Mawlynnong, Cherrapunjee, Langkawet, and Nongkriat. These treks are rich with the thriving greenery infused within the glorious sight of the hills, accessorised by the ever-present lakes and waterfalls of the region.

Cave exploration: With Meghalaya housing one of the largest cave networks in the world, the labyrinth of rock formations is a sight to behold, with years of mineral deposits from the tributaries of the Brahmaputra creating incredible stalagmites.

Rock Climbing: The excess of impressive structures like monoliths and mighty hills offers tourists a chance to engage in the sport of rock-climbing, where one can get a surreal view of their surroundings from the top. The giant monolith Kyllang Rock is a favourite amongst rock-climbers and trekkers.

Boating: The abundance of lakes offer tourists the rare opportunities to enjoy a nice relaxing picnic as well as boating services to immerse oneself in the tranquillity of the area.

Nature walks: With its amazing ecological diversity, the region is home to numerous natural parks, where one can marvel at the lush greenery which has been so beautifully maintained by the locals.

Best Time to Visit Khasi Hills

The best time to visit the Khasi Hills is from October until April. During this period you will be able to enjoy the natural beauty of the land with waterfalls brimming with life due to the recent monsoon rains, and the flora & fauna will be soothing to the soul. The winters can be chilly, so adequate coverage is required. Avoid going during monsoons, as they are marked by heavy showers, proving to be highly inconvenient for travellers.

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