Okay, I have been a keen traveller yet it took me a lot to finally find a clan who knows that Sikkim is not one of the parts of Northeast. You might blame it on the geographical knowledge of the people, I would blame it on myself living in Delhi. Not to mention that Sikkim is impeccably beautiful. So, one fine evening, over a few drinks, I decided to have a road trip to North East. A couple of days were spent in planning, that anyway didn’t work much for me, as the friends that were so keen to have the trip when they were high, turned down.
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Road to Shillong from Guwahati!
Finally, I decided to have the pleasure alone. My first road map included Guwahati-Shillong road trip. I find it immensely beautiful, driving onto the mountains when the dawn breaks. It happens to be so mesmerizing. So, I started on NH-40, sharp at 6 am in the morning. But first, I needed myself to get fuelled up. While the Bullet was being filled of the petrol, I filled myself of tea.
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And then I started, to Shillong. What I had expected, that it would be the road less travelled but it was not. Not because of the travellers, but because of the daily commuters (Thankfully). Road side fruit vendors make the trip a little more juicy for you. About the midway, a beautiful lake named Barapani is there. Stop right there! Enjoy the beauty, soak in to the view but don’t click (IT’S PROHIBITED). Technically, Nongpoh happens to be in the midway of Guwahati and Shillong. I found the journey to Shillong more beautiful than to be in Shillong. The view takes the breath away. What’s better than a beautiful view? The beautiful view with Maggi. I did have that! That’s the ritual, when you are on the mountains!
Anyway, entering to Shillong only amazed me to the core. The radio stations were playing only English chartbusters, people are so westernized there, affluent in English. And the most important part of the day was, eating the traditional Khasi lunch. A pork platter basically, at a traditional Khasi restaurant in Police Bazaar of Shillong. It was amazing, I must say!
I tried to buy few things in the traditional market of Shillong, but as soon as they notice you as the tourist, they hike up the prices. That’s natural though, we Indians usually don’t chuck the opportunities. I missed my mom at that very moment. Had she been there, she would have bargained to the limit, and I could have stocked up. But yes, people are so warm there. Even if you don’t pass a smile, they would smile back at you.
Road to Cherrapunji from Guwahati!
Shillong is undoubtedly beautiful, but the places around this city might take your breath away. I am talking about Cherrapunji, that resides at just 54 kilometres from Shillong. Once known to be the most wet place of the world, it has got spectacular beauty. The town is in the East Khasi Hills of Meghalaya. The villages around here are amazingly clean, people are warm and the climate is moist. Anyway, after having a tea, I headed to take the glimpse of Seven Sisters’ Falls. I must say, it has been one of the most spectacular views I have ever had!
My appetite was not fed I guess! Local people asked me to visit the Living Root Over Bridge. The name has been given as it is all natural, made by the roots of the trees. Nature is amazing and so is this natural bridge. But what makes it more beautiful, is the stream that flows beneath. Nothing can beat the calmness of sitting there and listening to the aria of the stream.
Road to Mawlynnong
Not many know that, the cleanest village in Asia, Mawlynnong, is near to Shillong as well. So, took the leap, to add the place in the list. Though I was not very much interested in visiting the place, yet I thought of giving it a try! Riding almost 80 kilometeres from Shillong, I got into the village that’s amazingly clean and beautiful. Having grown up in North, I had the picture of the villages that I had seen in Uttar Pradesh but wow! I took some time to believe that it’s in the country and no wonder, the cleanest village in Asia. The weather there, makes it worth the visit. I would say, visit the place either in monsoon or in winters. And don’t forget to thank me later! See you again, on a next road trip.
By: Kumar Anubhav | Source: NortheastIndia.com