With oblique drops of cloudburst tumbling down on the houses dispersed across the countryside, Mawsynram located in the state of Meghalaya, is the wettest place on Earth. It is so intense that the villagers use thick grass to sound-proof their huts from the deafening rain.
Strangely, residents of Mawsynram, a small cluster of hamlets in Meghalaya state have only a little idea that their picturesque home holds a Guinness record for the highest average annual rainfall of 11,873 millimeters (467 inches).
Unsurprisingly the village is stunningly lush and green, rich with waterfalls and fascinating caves carved in the limestone by the falling water. And people in Mawsynram use rain covers known as ‘knups’, made of bamboo slivers, plastic sheets and broom grass to create a rain shield that resembles a turtle shell, which is then worn on the head. These knups are large enough to keep rain off the whole body right up to the knees. The intensive process of weaving a knup takes at least an hour to complete and keeps the women of the village occupied right throughout the rainy season.
What makes Mawsynram memorable for you is its alluring panorama. Surrounded by the beautiful villages this place is a must-do-experience for all the monsoon travellers. Below is a list of a few places that you must see while in Mawsynram:
- Mawsmai Cave: In Mawsmai village you come across the holy cave of the Khasis which is 150 meters long. For those who are explorers at heart, this cave is relatively easier to pass through. It hosts cave diving as well. So yeah, don’t miss a visit to Mawsmai Cave!
- Mawsmai Falls: In that same village, breathes another major tourist attraction, the Mawsmai Falls, that’ll take away your breath with its mesmerizing beauty for sure. Water rushes here atop the limestone cliffs of the Khasi Hills at a height of over a thousand feet. This is the fourth highest waterfall in India and is a waterfall that has seven segments.
- Nohkalikai Falls: Nohkalikai, one of the tallest plunge waterfalls with a magnificent panorama, is located 5km away from Cherrapunjee. Falling from an altitude of 1,115 ft, it mostly procures its ale from the clouds. The pool formed from the thrust with verdant and misty clouds above makes it sumptuous.
- Mawlyngbna: One of the cleanest villages in Asia with scenic beauty and savory home-cooked food by the locals.
- Tungrymbai: The name of this place is associated with the name of a cuisine “Tungrymbai”. If you are a vegetarian, do try out the Tungrymbai which is a plate of fermented soybeans and bamboo leaves stirred with local spices. Its festive times which is during Behdienkhlam in July, you get to see the culture of this quaint place very closely. I had heard lots about the Nongkrem Dance Festival and had visited during the autumn break. It was a wonderful experience to sit and eat with the Khasis and take part in their local customs.
- Living Root Bridges: The Living Root Bridges of Mawlynnong will definitely leave you awestruck. They have earned the name of a UNESCO World Heritage Site. You must not come back without having a look at them hanging over cascading watercourse. The gigantic roots of a single rubber tree connect to another and are a unique natural phenomenon.
- Cherrapunjee: Another famous place of North-East that you must not miss is Cherrapunjee. It is the second wettest place on earth. This is the only place in India where it rains all throughout the year .The beautiful town is also referred as Sohra or Churra and is only 15 km away from Mawsynram. Sitting in the homestays with a hot cup of tea in hand while the rain dances on the roof is a wonderful memory that you will cherish forever.
Monsoons are for rejuvenation, enjoying the beauties of Nature. Rain lovers will find solace in this exquisite place Mawsynram. When the rain gods are calling, it’s time to run away, far away from the maddening crowd and seek shelter amidst the falling raindrops of this beautiful land. Come; drench yourself with beautiful memories from a Mawsynram trip and let the experience wash away the quirks of your daily scrapes.