Sohra Circuit

Sohra

Sohra (Cherrapunjee) View Guide Map

Location: East Khasi Hills District, Sohra

Sohra, previously known as Cherrapunjee, a Sub-Division in the East Khasi Hills District of Meghalaya, is set upon a plateau on the southern slopes of the state. Sohra is dotted with waterfalls cascading over deep gorges. The swift flowing rivers and streams flow in a southernly direction to the plains.

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Sohra is 56 kms from Shillong and is literally the high point of any visit to Meghalaya. One of those ultimate eco-friendly destinations, a place renowned all over the world for having the privilege of receiving the highest rainfall in the world. Set against the backdrop of breath-taking landscape, it is a place to discover the Indian summer monsoons. An unique annual meterologicai phenomena directly influenced by the south west monsoon and the north east winds. The heavy monsoon rains over these mountains undoubtedly creates in Sohra one of the rarest bio-diverse vegetations in the world. Truly a beautiful corner in north-east India, waiting to be discovered and explored.

The four main seasons of Meghalaya are Spring (i.e. March to April), Monsoon (May to September), Autumn (October to November) and Winter (December to February).

The temperature starts warming by the third week of May and continues right to the end of September and sometimes gets extended well into the middle of October. The average rainfall is 12,000 mm a year, with the maximum rainfall occuring over the southern slopes of the Khasi Hills in Sohra. The highest recorded total annual rainfall was 24,555 mm in 1974. The maximum for a single day was recorded in 1876 in Sohra, when 1,040 mm fell in 24 hours. Sohra also holds the World Record for a month's rainfall when 9,300 mm fell in July 1861.

The old Cherra or Sohrarim was the original Cherra village but with the coming of the British who set up their headquarters further south, the village came to be known as 'Sohra' or present day Cherrapunjee. It was here that the British realised the enormity and intensity of the rainfall and set up a meterological office for measuring the rain.

Sohra was declared by the British to be the capital of Assam in 1832, which was later shifted to Shillong in 1866 due to the inclement weather.

Mawkdok Dympep Valley View

Location: East Khasi Hills District, Sohra

mawkdokA few kms from Umtyngar, as one takes the right turn from the road junction, one comes across a beautiful bridge known to the locals as the Duwan Singh Syiem Bridge, that is the entrance to the Sohra tourist circuit. From here the landscape abruptly changes into picturesque deep gorges. The Forest Department has constructed a view-point where visitors can stop a while and enjoy the spectacular natural beauty.

Sa-I-Mika Park

Location: East Khasi Hills District, Sohra

sa i mikaLocated on the way to the world famous ‘Dainthlen Falls’ and about 3 kms before reaching Sohra town is Sa -I - Mika Park, a one stop tourist destination. Set amidst 69 acres of pristine surroundings, Sa -I - Mika offers not only accommodation but a host of activities that is caters to people from all ages and walks of life. At present there are four double bedded rooms with all modern amenities and two traditional cottages. On offer are well appointed rooms, hot and cold running water, room service priced at Rs.1200/- and Rs.1500/- per night. There is also a 200 capacity conference hall which is suitable for hosting cooperate and departmental events, seminars, workshops and concerts. On request, the management can also arrange to organise barbecues, bonfires, tour guides, traditional Khasi dance and local cuisine and drink.

The park has the distinct advantage of being located close to the waterfalls and one can arrange treks and tours to these places, as well as the caves and other areas of tourist interest. Since the management is closely associated with the community, one can also opt for a homestay in one of the villages, to experience life with a typical Khasi family.

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Dain-Thlen Falls

Location: East Khasi Hills District, Sohra

dain thlenJust before reaching Sohra, a road to the right, leads one to the falls which is 5 kms away. The waterfall derives its name from a Thlen or a snake of gigantic size which dwelt in a cave. Legend has it that the people destroyed the snake in order to rid themselves of its reign of terror. Adjacent to the very spot where the Thlen was slaughtered lies the Dain-thlen Waterfalls. Natural rock carvings of the episode draw visitors to see the image of the Thlen, the symbol of greed, corruption and evil.

Noh-Kalikai Falls

Location: East Khasi Hills District, Sohra

nohkalikaiA hauntingly beautiful waterfall, cascading down from the top of the gorge to the mystic deep green pool below, reminding one of the tragic legend associated with it, of a grief stricken mother who plunged to her death, unable to overcome her sorrow over the murder of her daughter by her husband.

Ka Kper Syiem Sohra (cremation ground of the Sohra Syiemship)

Location: East Khasi Hills District, Sohra

Sohra cremation

By the side of the Pomsohmen stream lies the cremation ground of the Sohra Syiemship (Cherra Chieftain). Cremation of the dead Syiem (Chief) of Sohra is one of the most expensive and intricate ceremonies. The body of the Syiem is normally kept for years together, if customary formalities are not performed by the Syiem-elect.

Nongsawlia

Location: East Khasi Hills District, Sohra

Nongsawliais about 2 kms south of Sohra, the place that the first Welsh Missionaries visited during the year 1942. Their visit not only enriched the life of the locals, but Khasi Literature was also enriched by the invention of the Khasi Alphabet by Thomas Jones. Thus the Sohra dialect became the lingua-franca of the Khasis. The mission started here in Nongsawlia later spread to many parts of the Khasi and Jaintia Hills.

Mawmluh Cave

Location: East Khasi Hills District, Sohra

Mawmluh CaveAccess to the cave is via the river, which lies to the south east of the Cement Factory. The entrance is about 10 ft. above water level. A single entrance leads to a double passageway, where the upper portion in certain areas have caved in due to the intensive quarrying of limestone above the cave. The river enters the cave and forms pools of water within the cave. This cave stretches for about 4,500 meters but is marred by pollution entering the cave from the cement factory. Locally known as Krem Mawmluh, it is one of the longest caves in the Indian subcontinent.

Eco Park

Location: East Khasi Hills District, Sohra

Eco Park SohraA large "Eco Park" established by the Meghalaya government in the plateau, which hosts several hybrid and indigenous orchids in the Green House donated by Shillong Agri-Horticultural Society. Also the Eco Park offers breathtaking view of distant Sylhet Plains of neighbouring Bangladesh.

Mawsmai Cave

Location: East Khasi Hills District, Sohra

Mawsmai Cave6 kms from the Sohra market to the south lies the village of Mawsmai in the direction of Bangladesh border. At the village crossing, one passes grasslands surrounded by forests, ending in a clearing. From this clearing, a concrete pathway through the jungle leads up to the main cave entrance. This cave is the only cave that is fully lighted. The cave can be divided into two parts (old and new). Of the two, the new cave is yet to be lighted. It has impressive formations of large passages and chambers.

Noh-Sngithiang Falls

Location: East Khasi Hills District, Sohra

nohsngithiangalso known as Mawsmai falls, is 1 km south of Mawsmai village and derives its name due to the fact that the waterfalls are situated in a south westerly position and get illuminated by the sun from dawn to sunset. The vibrant colours of the setting sun on the waterfalls make it beautiful to behold.

Thangkharang Park

Location: East Khasi Hills District, Sohra

thangkharangManaged and well maintained by the State Forest Department, this park on Mawsmai - Shella Road - about 8 kms from Sohra is a popular tourist spot. There are many rare and exotic orchids and some rare species of plants endemic to the area. A panoramic view of the plains of Bangladesh is clearly visible on a clear day from the park.

Thangkarang Park laid on the high rocky cliffs overlooks the plains of Bangladesh. You can spot the imposing Kynrem falls cascading down majestically in three stages. The bird sanctuary at nearby Thangkarang with the awesome view of the imposing waterfalls set against the backdrop of Bangladesh plains is a bonanza for tourists, both foreign and domestic.

Ka Khoh Ramhah

Location: East Khasi Hills District, Sohra

khoh ramhahalso known as Motrop, is an imposing single rock formation in the shape of a giant cone. According to folklore, this was the fossilized cone shaped basket of an evil giant. It lies in close proximity to two other very similar rocks standing like a pair of giant sentinels. During the heavy monsoons, water flows between the two rocks and the cascading waterfall presents a breathtaking sight. The place attracts a lot of visitors throughout the year and is an idyllic picnic spot.

Kynrem Falls

kynrem falls

Location: East Khasi Hills District, Sohra

The highest waterfall in Meghalaya, it cascades down in three stages from the top of the hill and overlooks the Thangkharang Park.

The Lawshynna Cave

khoh ramhah

Location: East Khasi Hills District, Sohra

This Cave lies in the slope of U Lum Lawshynna Hill. It is approximately one kilometre in length. It is adorned with different types of carving and formation designed by nature itself which adds lot of beauty to the place. A stream runs through the cave from beginning till the end, making us feel as if we are walking in a river. The height is very high and the breadth is very wide, but it gets narrower and narrower as we move further. Birds and bats frequently visit this cave and make it their home.

The cave is covered by a thick forest, called the ‘Law Shynna’. Different types of local species of trees, orchids, wild flowers, shrubs, bamboos and coloured leaves are found in this forest. On the way to the cave, there is a viewpoint, from where we can see the beautiful Wahkaba Falls, the natural landscape and the river which flows to Bangladesh through Nongpriang Village and Sohkhmi Village. The hill where the cave is located is called ‘U Lum Shynna’. This hill is very high and it overlooked the Sohra town and even the plains of Bangladesh could be seen from this hillock. That is why it is called Lum Shynna which literally means Clearview. All through this hill, from North to South runs the David Scott Bridle path build by the British which once upon a time connects the Brahmaputra Valley and the Surma Valley in Bangladesh. This path was used by people to go to Shillong or Laban, to the market and to Bangladesh for trade. This path is still visible now, while some parts are destroyed due to soil erosion and landslide caused by coal mining. Resting places for those who are tired are also found along the route. At the foot of this hillock, there are the remnants of the ‘Kyntursniang Village’ a historical site where foundation of the present Sohra Syiemship was laid by Buh Sing Syiem and his myntris.

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