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10 Best Places to Visit in Shillong Meghalaya for A Memorable Trip

Shillong, the quaint hamlet in Northeast India, is the capital of Meghalaya, which is also called “The Abode of Clouds.” It is also the district administrative centre for East Khasi Hills. The town’s surrounding hills are claimed to have given the British a Scottish impression. As a result, they would also call it the “Scotland of the East.” During the British occupation and later till the formation of the independent State of Meghalaya, Shillong served as the capital of composite Assam. Shillong is about 100 kilometres from Guwahati, which can be reached by car along NH 40. The drive takes around two and a half hours and passes through verdant hills and the Umiam lake.

Shillong is an important part of any North East India tour which includes the best tourist destinations to explore in Meghalaya. In this blog, we will discuss the places on the Shillong itinerary, which will help you in making a perfect Shillong tour plan. Treat this article as a Shillong travel guide and start planning a trip to this wonderful hill station. Let’s read now.

Summary of the 10 Most Famous Places to Visit in Shillong

Places Why Should You Visit?
Umiam Lake Places for Water Activities
Laitlum Canyons Stunning Views of Deep Gorges and Scenic Vistas
Elephant Falls Crystal Clear Cascading Water
Shillong Peak Witness The Stunning Views of Shillong City
Don Bosco Museum Extensive Collection of Indigenous Tribal Culture
Phan Nonglait Park Japanese Style Park with Flora and Fauna
Sweet Falls Birdwatching and Haunted Lore
Spread Eagle Falls Ultimate Place for Photographers in Shillong
Rhino Heritage Museum Historical Artefacts and Their History
Meghalaya State Museum Best Place for History Buffs

Popular Shillong Meghalaya North East India Tour Packages

Umiam Lake – Places for Water Activities

Umiam Lake Shillong

Umiam Lake is one of the most picturesque locations and the top tourist destination to visit in Shillong. It is surrounded by dense coniferous trees and the East Khasi Hills. This huge man-made lake body, also known as Badapani, was created by damming the Umiam River. A few little islands dot the lake, and Lum Nehru Park, which is nearby, is a great area to wander and have a picnic. Umiam Lake is a key stop on the sightseeing tour of Shillong since it offers exhilarating water sports and entertaining activities like kayaking, boating, water cycling, and scooting in addition to its natural beauty.

Top Things to Do in & around

  • Boating
  • Fishing
  • Trekking
  • Camping
  • Yachting
  • Cruising
  • Water Scootering

Distance from Shillong City: 17 Km

Laitlum Canyons – Deep Gorges with Stunning Views

Laitlum Canyon Shillong

The Laitlum Canyons, located in Shillong’s East Khasi Hills, may be the most amazing and enjoyable tourist destination. It represents “The End of Hills” or “The End of the World” symbolically. The Laitlum Canyons, which are nestled in the embrace of majestic slopes and valleys, are one such location from which the vast, verdant, and alluring show of Meghalaya could be seen and admired. For lovers of hiking, the countryside, and those looking for peace, Laitlum Canyon is the perfect location. Enjoy breathtaking views of gorges, far-off hills, valleys, and winding mountain roads when you visit this high viewpoint. This is undoubtedly one of the best places to explore in Shillong because of the natural beauty and peace of the area.

Top Things to Do in & Around

  • Hiking
  • Trekking
  • Village Walk
  • Sightseeing
  • Watching sunrise and sunset

Distance from Shillong City: 21 Km

Elephant Falls – Crystal Clear Cascading Water

Elephant Falls Shillong

Elephant Falls, the city’s most impressive waterfall, is a three-tiered cascading beauty and one of the best places to visit in Shillong throughout the year. Because of a large nearby rock that bears an uncanny resemblance to an elephant, the British gave it the moniker “elephant rock.” The rock was demolished in an earthquake, thus it can no longer be seen. The Elephant Falls are actually “three step waterfalls,” with the first one being a big one tucked away among the lush greenery, the second one being thin water threads, and the third one being the most stunning and clear falls rushing against the background of a dark colour.

Top Things to Do in and Around

  • Photography
  • Sightseeing
  • Hiking
  • Relaxing
  • Village walk
  • Shopping

Distance from Shillong City: 11 Km

Shillong Peak – Witness The Stunning Views of Shillong City

View from Shillong Peak

Visit Shillong Peak, the highest viewpoint and one of the top tourism sightseeing places in Shillong for a breathtaking perspective of the surrounding hills and valleys. At 1,961 metres above sea level, this summit provides amazing views of the surrounding landscapes. You must present identification documents at the gate because the IAF is responsible for managing the area. Given that the air can become hazy, you should always have a good camera with you. To gain close-up views of the town, a telescope has been set up. Shillong Peak, one of the top tourist attractions in Shillong sightseeing tour offers views of Bangladeshi lowlands, waterfalls, and Himalayan ranges nearby.

Top Things to Do in & Around

  • Birdwatching
  • Photography
  • Hiking
  • Sightseeing

Distance from Shillong City: 4 Km

Don Bosco Museum – Extensive Collection of Indigenous Tribal Culture

Don Bosco Museum Shillong

The Don Bosco Museum of Indigenous Cultures is one of the top tourism places in Shillong and extends a warm invitation to all visitors, art lovers, and history buffs. One may see panoramic views of the entire Northeast India in addition to art galleries and large collections of handicrafts, artefacts, clothing, decorations, and weapons utilised by diverse tribes in North-East India. The museum is a seven-story structure with seventeen separate galleries that is housed on the grounds of Sacred Heart Church. This is unquestionably one of Shillong’s top tourist destinations. This museum has 17 galleries spread over its seven levels, including the Agriculture Gallery, the Basketry Gallery, the Ornaments and Jewellery Gallery, the Fishing and Hunting Gallery, and others. These exhibit relics, paintings, and sculptures that provide you with a deeper understanding of the past.

Top Things to Do in & Around

  • Museum tour
  • Exploring artefacts
  • Sightseeing

Distance from Shillong City: 3.3 Km

Phan Nonglait Park – Japanese Style Park with Flora and Fauna

Phan Nonglait Park Shillong

Phan Nonglait Park, one of the top Shillong tourist places, is situated in the very centre of the city. Every day, thousands of locals and visitors go to the lovely park, which is built in Japanese style. There is a zoo inside the park where you may see creatures like the Himalayan Black Bear, Porcupine, Jackal, and Leopard, among others. You will be charmed by the park’s abundantly beautiful ponds and diverse, lush flora and wildlife. Even boating in the lake is enjoyable when the beautiful landscape is around. As Phan Nonglait Park is located in the city it can be reached by cab. It has an entry fee of Rs. 10 which is doubled if carrying a camera.

Top Things to Do in & Around

  • Witnessing Flora and Fauna
  • Boating
  • Museum Visit
  • Exploring Butterfly Park
  • Sightseeing
  • Photography

Distance from Shillong City: 2 Km

Sweet Falls – Birdwatching and Haunted Lore

Sweet Falls Shillong

Sweet Falls is the ideal destination to escape the rush of hectic city life because of its tranquil setting. This location offers you beautiful views of nature and is one of the top tourist places in Shillong. Although there are some dangerous sections and slick stones on the trail leading to these falls, the effort is well worth it. These falls are the subject of a ghostly lore. The locals think the odd-numbered groups always come back in even-numbered groups! A peaceful setting for a picnic is frequently produced by the sounds of birds chirping, fresh water running, and the tranquillity emanating from the lush greenery. Many Shillong residents go to Sweet Falls, which is 94 metres high and known for its lush flora.

Top Things to Do in & Around

  • Picnic
  • Hiking
  • Sightseeing
  • Photography

Distance from Shillong City: 12 Km

Spread Eagle Falls – Ultimate Place for Photographers in Shillong

Spread Eagle Falls

One of the best things to do in Shillong is to see Spread Eagle Falls, one of the city’s many captivating waterfalls. It is a perfect location where water babies and nature enthusiasts can go to relax and spend some time in the great outdoors. The only therapy you will require to quiet the restlessness in your thoughts is the sound of flowing water. It is a fantastic location for photographers and is also known as Sati Falls. The falling waterfall’s wing-like design is not only amazing, but also a superb illustration of nature’s artistry. When searching for the popular points of interest in Shillong, take this one into consideration.

Top Things to Do in & Around

  • Photography
  • Water activities
  • Nature Walks
  • Hiking
  • Swimming
  • Sightseeing

Distance from Shillong City: 3 Km

Rhino Heritage Museum – Historical Artefacts and Their History

Rhino Heritage Museum Shillong

One of the most well-known war museums in North East India is the Rhino Heritage Museum. It is rumoured that Japanese World War II captives were held here. One of the best places to visit with family in Shillong hill station, the Rhino Heritage Museum was founded in 1928. Lt. Gen. Shokin Chauhan, director general of the Assam Rifles inaugurated the renovated building of the museum. Both military-related historical images and items relating to the local culture are shown in the museum. The rich history of the HQ 101 area and its units will be on display at the recently refurbished Rhino Heritage Museum. Additionally, it will give audiences insight into Headquarters 101’s involvement in the 1971 Indo-Pak War, which resulted in the creation of Bangladesh. The museum remains open throughout the week except on Thursdays.

Top Things to Do in & Around

  • Museum Tour
  • Sightseeing
  • Nature Walk
  • Exploring historical artefacts

Distance from Shillong City: 4 Km

Meghalaya State Museum – Best Place for History Buffs

Meghalaya State Museum

One of the top things to do for history lovers is to make a trip to Meghalaya State Museum, Shillong, one of the best visiting places. The museum houses a large collection of tribal-era items as well as a significant collection of ancient writings. Visitors can learn more about the tribes of Meghalaya at this cultural museum. The museum, also known as Captain Williamson Sangma State Museum, is housed within the State Central Library complex at Lachumiere and is run by the state government. Visit the museum, which is one of the top-rated places of interest in Shillong to see antique tools, jewels, instruments of music, and dinosaur replicas.

Top Things to Do in & Around

  • Sightseeing
  • Museum Tour
  • Exploring artefacts
  • Learning about tribal tools

Distance from Shillong City: 2.7 Km

Hope this article will serve you the best knowledge in knowing how to plan a perfect trip to Shillong. We also included the details of activities you can do in each place, so that you can spend your holidays in Meghalaya as per your wish to visit places. However, we also have customised Shillong tour packages/Meghalaya tourism packages that you can take into consideration. Lastly, we want to suggest that you not miss any of these places in Shillong if you are willing to exploring North East India from Meghalaya. Every place is worth visiting.

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Frequently Asked Questions

Which month is best for a Shillong holiday trip?

March to June is the best time to visit Shillong, the capital of Meghalaya. Tourists can enjoy visiting the places in summer as the weather remains pleasant and rainfall is minimal.

What is Shillong famous for?

Shillong, the capital city of Meghalaya is famous for its natural beauty, waterfalls, lakes, natural caves, heavy rainfall, sacred forests, living root bridges, indigenous tribes, culture and breathtaking landscapes all around.

What is the famous food of Shillong?

Jadoh, is the famous food of Shillong, as well as Meghalaya. It’s a dish of rice cooked in a flavourful mix of spicy and sour along with ginger flower, mint leaves and mixed with pork and meat.

What is the name of the statue?

The statue is referred to as 'Viswas Swaroopam,' which means ‘Statue of Belief.’

How many days are required to explore the best of Shillong tourism sightseeing tours?

Minimum five days are required to explore the best of Shillong tourism sightseeing tours.

What are the best places to visit for couples in Shillong?

Some of the best places to visit for couples in Shillong are:

  • Umiam Lake
  • Elephant Falls
  • Laitlum Canyons
  • Ward’s Lake

What are the top places to visit near Shillong?

Some of the top places to visit near Shillong are:

  • Laitlum Canyons
  • David Scott Trail
  • Mawlynnong
  • Nohkalikai Falls
  • Umiam Lake
  • Elephant Falls
  • Mawsynram
  • Cherrapunjee

Published: 08 Nov, 2022

About the author

Nandini Bhattacharya

From the ‘City of Joy,’ Kolkata, Nandini Bhattacharya is a Travel Writer by profession and traveller by passion. She loves to explore places around the world, new cultures, different cuisines and all new things that one can learn outside the home. She also loves to document her journey so that people can be inspired and travel more. Nandini is a nature lover and talks about sustainable tourism. She wants to make this world a good place where people can live healthy and happily.