How is the Garden of Caves? – My one-word answer is “Fabulous”! I can add more adjectives and adverbs for this amazing place, but let me explain the reasons, and then you choose the appropriate one.
The very first thing I’d mention, if you are planning to visit Cherrapunji, you must not miss the Garden of Caves; the place is a hidden gem in Meghalaya.
Amazingly beautiful hilly landscapes full of greenery all over the Meghalaya attract thousands of visitors every year from all over the world. But many of them are not well-aware of the Garden of Caves. Eventually, the heavenly place remains unseen by most of the visitors.
I am gladly uncovering a detailed overview of the Garden of Caves; I suppose, you can’t exclude this place in your next Meghalaya trip but become an eye witness to this beautiful place.
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How is the Garden of Caves: The Impression
The name itself signifies the place — a bunch of caves combined to form a garden of caves. But it’s not an ultimate definition because the place offers many more than this simplest statement.
Garden of Caves is an amazingly beautiful place near Cherrapunji, which is decorated by nature herself — the place is beautifully organized by caves, rocky hills, waterfalls, narrow streams, and endless greenery. A 1-2 hours peaceful walk through the hilly paths of “Garden of Caves” offers an ever refreshing experience, and definitely, a lifetime memory.
Every corner of the “Garden of Caves” becomes well-accessible because of some man-made modifications. A number of waterfalls and caves were perfectly created by nature, but connecting them in an organized way wasn’t easy. Planned engineering by real humans let it be possible — man-made hiking paths through the dense forest connected every corner perfectly; in fact, the path directs you from the good to the best in a gradual way.
[Preferably Use Headphone and set the video quality to 1080p – HD]
So, I must say, don’t miss the Garden of Caves; the place is the perfect one to spend a couple of peaceful hours in the enchanting nature with your loved ones.
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Where is Garden of Caves?
Garden of Caves is situated in Meghalaya — a state in northeastern India. Meghalaya is a very popular destination for adventure and nature lovers due to its majestic beauty.
In the southern part of Meghalaya, the Garden of caves is situated at Laitmawsiang village, close to Cherrapunji. To reach “Garden of Caves” you have to follow a road divided from the Shillong-Cherrapunji highway.
Let’s have a Trip to Garden of Caves
I visited several beautiful places in Meghalaya; however, I must keep “Garden of Caves” at the top of my favorite list. The reasons are pretty simple —
- It’s easy the reach out
- No hectic hiking require to enjoy the green paradise
- Majestic beauty in every corner
- Young to aged— anyone can enjoy this place.
Cherrapunji is the best starting point to reach the Garden of Caves. It needs only 40-50 minutes by a car.
You have to pay only INR 20 (Rs. 20) per head as entry fee and INR 50-100 for your DSLR or camcorder (rent may change with time). I must say it’s a pretty affordable deal for such a beautiful place.
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What you’ll see inside? — An overview
- Hilly hiking paths inside the caves.
- Awesome greenery.
- 5 waterfalls — each are having their own significance.
- Narrow streams running beside you.
- Mother’s womb natural sculpture.
- Sunset point/ lover’s heart
- Bamboo Bridge.
- Natural medicinal water resource point.
It’s a huge area inside but very well organized. Few workers will guide you sometimes to follow the proper route.
The Garden of Caves — Viewpoint 1: Cave and Waterfall
At the very beginning, you’ll be passing through the tunnel of a cave, it’s wet — water leaks out from the walls of the cave.
A stunning waterfall will appear just at the end of the cave, it’s small but magnificent. Cold spring water comes from the top of the cave and passes through a narrow hole. The big stone with green algae just beside the shower makes the sight perfectly photogenic!
It’s definite that you’ll be spending more than 10 minutes here to take unlimited snaps.
The Garden of Caves — ViewPoint 2: Waterfall 2
Let’s move on towards the next attractions!
After a little walk through the hilly path surrounded by natural stone sculptures, you’ll find the path divides into two directions; Take right to reach the next viewpoint.
It’s a two-step waterfall. You can’t reach very close to it, but you can take some snaps and selfies before moving forward to the next viewpoint.
The Garden of Caves — ViewPoint 3: Waterfall 3
Cross a tiny bridge and walk again to discover the next one.
The next waterfall is narrow and taller than the last one. The fall’s water comes through a curved path and showers down far below. It’s not an extraordinary waterfall, you’ll find many similar waterfalls all over the state of Meghalaya.
However, the main significance of the waterfall is not the stream itself, but the cone-shaped formation made of fern/algae just beside the shower is something different and also wondering.
The Garden of Caves — ViewPoint 4: Watching a waterfall from the backside
Upon moving forward a few more steps you’ll discover an amazingly tall waterfall; it travels a long way, right from the top of the cave, and lands on the boulders far below.
The most amazing part is, you can walk to the backside of this waterfall. Moving behind and watching the nonstop shower falling from the top, it’s an exceptionally splendid sight. You can consider this one as the second-best waterfall in the Garden of Caves.
Caution: Definitely it’s an exciting one, but keep an eye on the youngers while moving to the backside of the waterfall, because the downside is far steep and there is no proper guard.
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The Garden of Caves — ViewPoint 5: On the sand before the waterfalls
Now, you need to walk a bit longer and hike a few stair-steps to reach the next stop. But don’t be worried, because you’ll be walking through the enchanting nature, sometimes with the stream, sometimes beside baby waterfalls, sometimes with the silence of green forest.
I personally felt, this amazing place never let someone tired, probably because you’ll be hiking through the green paradise with crazy feelings of the next excitement.
The roaring sound of falling water appears after 10-15 minutes of hiking.
Unlike other spots you covered so far, here you have to hike a little downwards to reach the point. You’ll be on the sand surrounded by the flowing water while the non-stop waterfall situates just in front of you.
We traveled with our babies; they were extremely happy to get sand and water together — probably it’s like an unexpected sea beach for them.😃
Undoubtfully, this place is the best among all other sports in the Garden of Caves. You may spend here a long time sitting on the sand with your loved ones while listening to the rhythms of falling water.💗
Love Sea Beaches? You may like: Cola Beach in Goa
Garden of Caves — ViewPoint 6: Mother’s womb
The Garden of Caves offers a few more attractions on your return journey.
Returning path is not the same that you followed so far; rather it’s a shortcut to reach the starting point.
A little walk by following the directed signboards leads you to a spot where the road stops by a big stone. A naturally formed curved dig on the stone looks exactly similar to a baby inside mother’s womb. It’s just a natural sculpture; you may take a snap and move forward.
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Garden of Caves — ViewPoint 7: Sunset point & Lover’s heart
Hiking a few more steps will take you to the top of the region. If you visit “Garden of Caves” in the afternoon session, you may experience a beautiful sunset view from there (of course if it’s not a rainy day).
A naturally formed heart-shaped dig on the rock is a nice addition there; you may take some snaps sitting behind the “heart” with your partner — it’s funny and of course a memorable one!
Garden of Caves — ViewPoint 8: Bamboo Bridge & medicinal water
the bamboo bridge is situated only a few steps away just beside the sunset point. You have to pay an entry fee of INR 20 per head.
The medicinal water is not an interesting thing to watch, but the bamboo bridge is. (especially if you didn’t watch any other bamboo bridge in your Meghalaya trip)
The bamboo bridge connects the medicinal water spot to the mainland of the Garden of Caves; you can see a narrow stream far below.
Caution: the bamboo bridge is a bit shaky, so walk slowly over it.
The medicinal water is only the flow of natural water that is full of minerals. The local people believe it can cure several diseases. I’m not sure about the trueness of this statement, but definitely, it’s pure and healthy mineral water.
Garden of Caves: End of the session
If you are not in a hurry you may spend a few more times on the rocky valley in front of the entrance of the medicinal water spot. It’s a fine place to take some solo and group snaps. The local people are friendly and expert in photo-snapping; you may request them to click some group photos on your camera/mobile.
So, you have completed the trip. The main entrance of the Garden of Caves is just a few more steps downsides.
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How to reach the Garden of Caves
You may reach Shillong via air or train route. Kolkata is the nearest international airport. There is an airport in Shillong, but flights are pretty irregular there due to frequent rain. It is suggested to reach Guwahati by train or flight and then take a rented car to reach Shillong.
Garden of Caves situates on your way from Shillong to Cherrapunji, though not exactly on the Shillong-Cherrapunji highway.
If you are looking to visit the Garden of Caves on your way from Shillong to Cherrapunji, you have to follow a route that is divided from the main road towards the Garden of Caves.
But it is wise to reach Cherrapunji and visit Garden of Caves the next day, because —
- There are many beautiful places on the way from Shillong to Cherrapunji; if you cover them all, either you’ll become tired or you can’t manage time.
- Garden of Caves is much closer to Cherrapunji.
- You should enjoy such a beautiful place when you are in a relaxing mood and not tired.
From Cherrapunji it takes only 30-40 minutes by a car to reach the Garden of Caves. You can easily plan to visit there in the morning or afternoon session. My personal recommendation is afternoon session, because you may experience the sunset from the top of the Garden of Caves.
Caution: Don’t plan to visit “Garden of Caves” by a tour operator’s bus that starts from Shillong. Tour operators generally skip this place; they start early morning from Shillong with a packed bus, cover some commonly popular & overcrowded spots in Cherrapunji and get back to Shillong at night.
In real sense, Cherrapunji is a place where you should spend at least 3 days to cover it perfectly (you may spend even more time).
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Where to Stay?
An article is upcoming shortly listing the best resorts and homestays near Garden of Caves.
A related Article: 10 Best Hotels in Shillong: Must Check Before Your Shillong Trip
When to visit Garden of Caves
Cherrapunji is known as the highest raining place in the world, so rain is very common there throughout the year, except in winter. But, to be honest, it’s not wise to visit Cherrapunji in winter, and the same is applicable for the Garden of Caves.
Beautiful waterfalls are the major attraction of Garden of Caves, but in winter most of the waterfalls get dried, so you may not experience the real beauty in winter.
As per my recommendation, March to May and September to November are the best season to visit Cherrapunji as well as the Garden of Caves. If you ask for the specific months, I’d recommend, September, October, March, and April.
However, in October it may be a bit crowded because people from the neighboring states visit there to spend festival holidays. The month of May is also the time for summer vacation, so it may also be crowded in May.
However, irrespective of any season Garden of Caves remains peaceful most of the time, because not many people know about this place; in addition, tour operators generally skip this place due to some unknown reasons.
Let’s wrap up
So, I think I have presented a full overview of the Garden of Caves. It’s my strong recommendation that, you shouldn’t miss this amazing place at any cost, if you are planning a Meghalaya trip.
And yes, you must watch the FULL video shared below; it offers a clear view of Garden of Caves. It’ my strong recommendation to Use a Headphone/ Earphone and set the video quality to 1080p – HD while watching the video.
[Perferably Use Headphone and set the video quality to 1080p – HD]
Do you still need to know some other details on “Garden of Caves”?
Don’t hesitate, just post your query in the comment box below, I’ll be more than happy to help you out.
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Have a nice trip!