The Scotland of India – Shillong, a place where you can find a beautiful combination of nature and adventures, modern and cultural differences and a perfect capital city of the jewel of seven sisters, Meghalaya. The state has witnessed many wonders, plenty of picturesque landscapes and hundreds of waterfalls. Out of several other sites, the site that has captured the attention and highest place is Nohkailikai waterfall.
Around 3-hour drive from Shillong to Cherrapunji – the rainiest place on the Earth, promises to give you plenty of beautiful and picturesque landscapes of Khasi hills and ribbons of countless waterfalls, which will definitely make you fall in love with it. Cherrapunji has witnessed highest rainfall -1563 mm in a single day in the year 1995, resulted into multiple waterfalls, decorating the Khasi hills. The Nohkailikai waterfall along with four other notable waterfalls are located near Cherrapunji. This tourist place is home of the India’s highest plunged waterfall, Nohkailikai waterfall which is 340 meters tall, also holds a place of world’s 4th tallest plunge waterfall.
The Nohkailikai fall is one of the most beautiful and photogenic place, as water dives from a height of 340 meters directly, without residing on any obstacles. It looks like a beautiful white stroke from the cliff to the ocean of deep green valley. The view is breathtaking. The falling water has carved a waterhole at the bottom of the fall, waterhole as blue as sky, as if it is trying to match with the color of the sky. Water level reaches to minimum in winter but falls are just so rich in summer. To experience the enthralling and closer view of the fall, there is an arrangement of stairs that leads near to the bottom of waterfall but ends directly in the middle. Though there is no proper road to the base of the fall, there is a great stand point to cherish the moment and enjoy the view of fall.
Photo by Kalai Sukanta
Nohkailikai which is a translated word of “Ka Likai’s Jump” from Khasi tribal language. A sad and tragic story of a local woman, Ka Likai, which gave her name to this fall. As per the legends, a woman named Likai used to live in a village Rangjyrteh, nearby the fall. After her husband died, she with her infant girl had no other income source, except to be a porter herself. Her work required to left her infant girl alone at home for whole time. But whenever she would be at her home, she tried to give all her love to attention to her baby and used to spend her time with her daughter and would take care of her baby. Likai remarried but unfortunately, her second husband was extremely jealous of her infant, knowing that she loved her more than him and doesn’t give him time.
Having this anger and jealousy in mind, one day her second husband killed Likai’s infant girl, after she went for her work. He threw her head and bones and chopped her flesh and cooked her meat. After Likai came back from, she was amazed to see the meal prepared by her husband. She couldn’t see her daughter and no one at home, so she wanted to look out for her daughter, but since she was tired of work, she decided to have her meal first and then to check for her daughter. After her meal, she went to have betel leaf as usual. As she sat down at the place where she sliced the leaves daily, she found a tiny finger of her daughter. In a blink of eye, she realized what all happened in her absence and that she ate her own daughter’s meat. Greatly saddened by this, she went mad with anger and started running with a hatchet in her hand and threw herself from the verge of the cliff. Later, the fall was named as Nohkailikai falls.
The place is now a famous tourist’s spot. The entry fee to the fall is just Rs. 10 and also has car park facility. The place is occupied by various fruit and food stalls. One can also find some stalls for pure honey here. Like other tourist’s sights, one can find various stalls of clothes, hats, bags, handled mainly by locals.
The ideal time to visit this place is during monsoon, since the view is most spectacular. But during heavy rain, clouds and fogs are frequent and it becomes difficult to get the clear sight of the fall.
Featured Photo by enor