The more I write about Shillong, the more I ache to go back there. I now know why we say mountains are calling. Also the reason I had to take a break for a while. Monsoon is here in Mumbai, the climate is pleasant and greener. I can now write about Shillong without the urge to fly there.
The Dawki tour was quite exhausting so I decided to take it easy on the next day. After a good breakfast at Madras Cafe, I hired a cab to tour Shillong. The charges are Rs. 1500/- for the tour and Rs. 2000/- if you include Laitlum Canyons. Worth it, if you are travelling in a group. The cab driver belonged to the Khasi tribe and followed Christianity. He was very chatty and was totally fixated on my weight and my single status. It was annoying but I did not let on as I wanted to know more about the local culture. He was single too and cribbing a lot about Khasi girls, on how city life has ruined them. Also, very proud of the fact that they don’t use much oil or masalas in their food, which helps them be healthy. The Khasi girls are really pretty and strong and the kids super cute! I was too shy to ask them if I could click their pictures. Next time, I hope I have more courage :p
Shillong Tour: Remember that most of the places are closed on one day or the other. Ward’s Lake is closed on Tuesday and Museums are closed on Sunday. So plan your tour accordingly.
Ward’s Lake: Ward’s lake is a horse shoe shaped artificial lake, surrounded by a lush garden. Boating facility also available. It is peaceful in the morning. You could just stroll around the garden, do boating, carry a book and read in peace. The lake is 100 years old but very well maintained. Must visit place.
Right opposite to the Ward’s Lake, there is a rose garden. Don’t miss Nehru’s statue :p
Lady Hydari Park: Lady Hydari Park is named after the wife of the first Governor of Assam. The local name is Ka Phan Nonglait Park and Animal Land. It is a huge and beautiful park. There are lots of varieties of plants, shrubs and trees. You will be welcomed by a heart shaped fountain. There is also a section for kids playground, equipped with slides and swings. There is a small pond, with ducks and pelicans. And the garden also has a mini zoo. The zoo, however is not well maintained and is quite pathetic. Since it was drizzling, could not see all the animals.
Catholic Church: Apparently the first church in Shillong. It’s very beautiful. When I visited, Sunday Mass was going on, hence didn’t go inside the church. The people were sitting outside and singing the hymns. The area surrounding the church is beautiful and peaceful!
Golf Course: Nothing much to see here except the green expanse.
Elephant Falls: As per Mr. Modi, this is a must visit place. But tbh, I have seen better falls. Here there was lots of crowd, it was raining and people were just clicking selfies. Not a very enjoyable moment for me atleast. The falls are divided into three parts..
After Elephant Falls, it was time for Shillong Peak. However, there was lots of traffic on the way to the peak (yep!) So I asked the cabbie to take me to Laitlum instead. We pass lots of small villages on the way to Laitlum. The drive itself is worth it. If you have only one place to go in Shillong, this should be it!
Laitlum Canyons: It’s a beautiful place with a breathtaking view. Nothing to do here except enjoy the view, chill and take lots of pictures. The clouds come anytime so there would be times where you can’t see anything in front of you. Be careful though as accidents can happen here.
The Khasi Hindu Pooja Ritual
Cherrapunji: Part Four 🙂