Meghalaya Plateau: A Hidden Gem of Northeast India
Northeast India’s Meghalaya Plateau is a breathtakingly gorgeous region that is frequently disregarded by tourists. There are numerous natural treasures in the area, such as waterfalls, caverns, and dense forests. The Plateau will be thoroughly discussed in this article, including its geography, history, distinctive culture, and food.
The Meghalaya Plateau is a region of undulating hills, deep valleys, and thick forests that is situated in the state of Meghalaya in Northeast India. The Garo Hills to the west, the Khasi Hills to the east, and the Bangladesh Plains to the south encircle the plateau. With innumerable waterfalls, caves, and picturesque panoramas, the region is renowned for its breathtaking natural beauty. The Plateau has a lot to offer, but because it’s still largely unknown to tourists, it’s the ideal place to go if you want something different and off the beaten road.
The Geography of Meghalaya Plateau
The Plateau has an area of around 8,660 square miles and is typically located at an altitude of about 4,000 feet above sea level. The area has a reputation for having a lot of rain, with an average annual rainfall of 11,777 mm. This rainfall produces a network of rivers and waterfalls that serve as a major tourist attraction, along with the region’s steep slopes and deep valleys.
The Three Plateaus of Meghalaya
The Garo, Khasi, and Jaintia Plateaus are the three separate plateaus that make up the Plateau. The geology, climate, and culture of each plateau are distinctive. The westernmost plateau, the Garo Plateau, is distinguished by its dense woods, undulating hills, and rough landscape. The middle plateau, the Khasi Plateau, is renowned for its massive waterfalls, narrow gorges, and extensive cave networks. The easternmost plateau, the Jaintia Plateau, is distinguished by its productive valleys, extensive river networks, and unusual rock formations.
Waterfalls of Meghalaya Plateau
Numerous waterfalls, from little cascades to enormous falls that plunge hundreds of feet, can be found on the Meghalaya Plateau. Nohkalikai Falls, the tallest plunge waterfall in India, and Seven Sisters Falls, a collection of seven cascading waterfalls, are two of the most well-known waterfalls in the area. Krang Suri Falls, Dainthlen Falls, and Wei Sawdong Falls are three further noteworthy waterfalls in the area.
Caves of Meghalaya Plateau
In addition, the Meghalaya Plateau is home to a vast network of caverns, many of which have not yet been thoroughly explored. The Mawsmai Caves, which are renowned for its magnificent stalactites and stalagmites, and the Krem Liat Prah cave system, which is one of the longest cave systems in India, are two of the most well-known caves in the area. The Siju Cave, Krem Mawmluh Cave, and Mawjymbuin Cave are a few other noteworthy caves in the area.
The History and Culture of Meghalaya Plateau
The history and culture of the Meghalaya Plateau are intricately entwined with the geography and its natural beauties. Many ethnic groups, including the Khasi, Garo, and Jaintia people, who each have their own distinctive customs and traditions, reside in the region.
Meghalaya Plateau Culture and Traditions
The Meghalaya Plateau‘s inhabitants have a distinctive culture that is based on their ties to the land. Their traditions and practises are a reflection of their profound respect for nature and the environment. The Nongkrem Dance, which the Khasi people hold every year to commemorate the harvest season, is one of the most important customs in the area. Young men and women dressed in traditional garb do the dance as drums and other musical instruments play in the background.
Meghalaya Plateau Cuisine
The Plateau’s numerous ethnic groups and their distinctive culinary traditions are reflected in the region’s cuisine. Rice is a common dish in the area and is often eaten with different types of meat and vegetables. Jadoh, a rice dish cooked with meat and spices, and dohkhlieh, a salad made with raw meat, onions, and chillies, are two of the most well-known meals in the area. The area is particularly well-known for its distinctive beer made from fermented rice and known as Rice Beer.
Exploring Meghalaya Plateau
The Meghalaya Plateau can be explored in a variety of ways, including hiking, trekking, cave exploration, and waterfall hopping. There are many hiking paths in the area, from simple strolls to strenuous hikes. The Living Root Bridge walk, which passes through gorgeous villages and over historic root bridges, and the David Scott Trail, a multi-day walk that passes through some of the most stunning areas of the Khasi Hills, are two of the most well-liked trekking routes in the area.
Meghalaya Plateau Adventure Activities
The Plateau is a fantastic location for adventure activities in addition to trekking. The area is renowned for its caving adventures, which provide a special chance to explore some of India’s largest cave systems. Rappelling, zip lining, and kayaking are a few other popular adventure sports in the area. The Jaintia Hills’ Umngot River is a well-liked place for kayaking and provides spectacular views of the surrounding mountains.
Meghalaya Plateau Accommodation and Transport
The Meghalaya Plateau offers a variety of lodging options, from inexpensive guesthouses to opulent resorts. Since many of the guesthouses and homestays in the area are owned by local families, they offer a special chance to get a taste of the local way of life and cuisine. The Plateau has excellent road connectivity, and there are private cabs and buses available for hiring. The closest airport is located in Guwahati, which is about 100 kilometres distant.
FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions) about Meghalaya Plateau
Q1. What is the best time to visit Meghalaya Plateau?
A1. The Plateau is best visited between October and April, when the weather is nice and dry. The region’s caves and waterfalls can be difficult to explore during the monsoon season, which lasts from May to September.
Q2. Is Meghalaya Plateau safe for tourists?
A2. Travellers can feel comfortable visiting the Meghalaya Plateau. However, just as in any other location, visitors should use caution and pay attention to their surroundings.
Q3. What is the cost of accommodation in Meghalaya Plateau?
A3. The Meghalaya Plateau offers a variety of lodging options, from inexpensive guesthouses to opulent resorts. The price of lodging varies according to location and type of lodging.
Q4. What is the nearest airport to Meghalaya Plateau?
A4. Guwahati, which is located about 100 km distant, is home to the closest airport to the Meghalaya Plateau. To go to the Plateau from Guwahati, take a bus or a taxi.
Q5. What are some popular tourist attractions in Meghalaya Plateau?
A5 The Living Root Bridges, Mawlynnong Village, Cherrapunji Waterfalls, Nohkalikai Falls, and the Krem Mawmluh Cave are a few of the well-known tourist destinations in the Plateau.
Q6. What is the best way to explore Meghalaya Plateau?
A6. Walking is the greatest way to see the Meghalaya Plateau. There are various trekking paths that take you through some of the most stunning areas of the Khasi and Jaintia Hills. Trekking and hiking are popular hobbies in the area.
The Meghalaya Plateau is a fascinating location that provides tourists with a distinctive window into the tradition, culture, and natural splendour of northeast India. The Plateau has much to offer everyone, whether they are interested in trekking and adventure activities, cultural exploration, or culinary pleasures.
Prepare for a unique trip by packing your baggage and donning your hiking boots.