Nongkhnum Island – largest river island of Meghalaya
Nongkhnum Island is Meghalaya’s largest river island and the second largest in India after Majuli in Assam. Known for its pristine beauty, Nongkhnum is hidden in the lush green landscapes around 160 km from Shillong. The river island was formed by the bifurcation of Meghalaya’s longest river Kynshi into Phanliang and Namliang River.
The place where the river diverges, there is a beautiful sandy shore. The Phanliang river makes a pretty lake about 400 – 500 square metres adjacent to the sandy beach. The river before reaching a deep gorge forms a picturesque waterfall about 60 metres high that also form a pool of crystal clear water below. It is called the Langshaing fall. At the sandy beach, you can go camping and enjoy the serenity of the place.
The entry to the island is through a narrow bridge beside the Weinia Falls. You can take a detour from the bridge to witness the Weinia Falls gushing through rocks. The island itself is really beautiful and painted in shades of green. It is also the home of many species of butterflies, birds and flowers.
If you are visiting Shillong, extend a day of your stay to visit this beautiful river island. You will not be disappointed.
Experiences at Nongkhnum Island:
- Experience the beauty of the island and the serenity of the place. The road to Nongkhnum is long, but the rewards that you get after coming here is great. The stretches of sandy beach will welcome you like a friend and you can simply sit at the beach and stare at the blue waters of the lake and the reflections of the clouds on the lake.
- Take a boat ride around the island. The boats are small country boats and will not forget the experience of boating in the clear waters of the river.
- Hike up to the viewpoint. There is also a place from where you can see the waterfalls gushing down. Owing to the intensity of the waterfalls, the platforms made for viewing are often sprayed in mist, adding to its ethereal beauty.
- Play football or volleyball on the sandy beaches. Tired of sports? Then simply sit down and relax on the beach.
- Pitch your tent to stay overnight. You can make a campfire at the night and enjoy your stay to the full. But do remember to keep the place clean and pick up all your litters while coming back.
You can visit the nearby villages of Mawthar and Mawduh near Nongkhnum. You can also visit Nongstoin.
Mawphnalur, another offbeat destination in Meghalaya is also around 50 km from Nongkhnum Island.
Best Time to visit Nongkhnum Island:
You can visit Nongkhnum Island at any time of the year. The best time to visit Meghalaya is from November to April. You can make a week-long plan if you want to visit the important places of Meghalaya.
Nongkhnum also serves as a perfect weekend destination from Shillong.
How to Reach Nongkhnum Island:
The nearest International airport is the Umroi Airport in Shillong. The nearest railhead is Guwahati.
From Guwahati, the place is around 55 km and from Shillong, it is around 70 km. You can hire a car from Guwahati or Shillong to reach here.
Nongkhnum is around 110 km from Shillong. You can hire a car from Shillong to reach here. Alternatively, you can take shared jeeps to Nongstoin and from there; you have to take a car to Nongkhnum. The stretch from Nongstoin to Nongkhnum is in pretty bad condition. And if you want to be a little adventurous, then you can trek from Nongstoin to Nongkhnum Island. It is a two-and-a-half hours trek through the lovely villages of Lawse, Mawudh and Mawthar.
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