Have you ever explored caving as a holiday option with family? Many would think it is over-adventurous to visit such places as a family traveller and that too with kids! On the contrary, caving in Meghalaya at Arwah cave and Mawsmai cave is a thrilling, yet fun-filled experience for everyone. You can uncover some hidden wonders of the mysterious underground world.
Arwah cave is a huge cave situated on the Khasi Hills in Cherrapunji (Sohra). You can’t miss the board mentioning “Arwah View Point” just before entering the city of Cherrapunji.
A clean concrete road leads to the entrance of the cave and you can take your vehicle up to this point.
From the ticketing counter to the cave, it is around 30 minutes walk through a scenic wooden bridge.
The sheer beauty of the path is so pleasing that you will feel absolutely rejuvenated after walking across the bridge.
There is also a sitting area on the way to the cave with a viewpoint to enjoy the picturesque lush green surrounding and magnificent waterfalls.
If you are interested to know more about the scenic and highest waterfalls in India, check this post.
All the efforts get more than compensated when you begin a treasure trail through the Arwah cave.
Inside The Arwah Cave
Once inside the cave, you can explore myriads of unseen gems of nature. The walkway is well lit by artificial lights, though you might still find many dark chambers inside.
Gazing at the gigantic cave makes you feel, how small a creature humans are in front of this might of nature.
The cave is known for its limestone formations created over the years by the continuous dripping of water from the caverns.
You will come across lots of stalagmites & stalactites along the walls and ceiling of the cave. All the limestone formations look spectacular and highly artistic.
Fossils in The Cave
You will be amazed to find several fossils of marine creatures along the cave walls including fishes, snails and other marine species. Locals say that these fossils could be millions of years old.
There are numerous turns and twists along the walkway but the stretch is still walkable. You might have to squeeze yourself a bit when passing through the narrow crevices inside the cave. All such beautiful memories are what make caving in Meghalaya a fascinating holiday experience.
Mawsmai cave is amongst one of the popular tourist places in Cherrapunji, just 6 km away from Cherrapunji city and 58 km from Shillong.
This cave has different entry and exit points, unlike Arwah cave. A short hike through the forest takes you to the main entrance of Mawsmai cave.
Only a portion of the cave is open for tourists and lit by artificial lights. There are quite a few gloomy tunnels inside marked prohibited for tourists. Follow the properly lit walkway and you will stumble upon stunning limestone formations along the cave walls and ceiling.
The cave also has fossil carvings of some pre-historic creatures on the walls. Caving in Meghalaya is not just about visiting the caves but also discovering such unseen marvels of nature.
Reaching The Caves
Both Arwah cave and Mawsmai caves are situated in Cherrapunji and are easily reachable by car up to the entrance gates.
Cherrapunji is well connected to Shillong by road and you can find many local buses also plying from Shillong.
Guwahati is the nearest airport to Cherrapunji, just 164 km away. You can make a stop at Shillong (115 km from Guwahati) or head directly to Cherrapunji.
Where To Stay
There are plenty of hotels and homestays in Cherrapunji. Book a homestay if you want to experience the local culture and cuisine. You can also stay in Shillong as Cherrapunji is just a 2 hours drive from there.
Best Season To Visit
Cherrapunji gets rainfall throughout the year. You can visit any time of the year as the weather remains pleasant and cool most of the time.
Make sure to check the weather forecast if you plan to visit during monsoon. Incessant rains during monsoon season sometimes cause flash floods, forcing tourist attractions to shut off.
- Carry a small torch or travel light
- Wear sturdy sports shoes
- Must carry a water bottle
- Hire a local travel guide to avoid missing any major areas inside the cave
- Don’t venture into the prohibited sections of the cave
- Entry fee
- Adults – Rs. 20 per head
- Children – Rs. 10 per head
- Camera – Rs. 50
- Guide fee – Rs. 100
- Open from 9:30 am – 5:30 am (IST)
The thrill of descending into the unknown underground world makes caving in Meghalaya an experience of a lifetime.
If you want to know more about the other enchanting places to visit in Meghalaya, check this post.
Over To You Now…
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