Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Crystalline Mawsmai Cave, Meghalaya, North East India

There is something about caves that appeals to me. May be its their weirdness or their complex forms inside or the sheer thrill of crouching on your stomach to move from one part of the cave to another.

The Mawsmai cave of Meghalaya is no different. In fact, it is a beautiful combination of all of the above. Situated close to Cherrapunji, the Mawsmai cave is one of the more popular tourist destinations of Meghalaya.

This limestone cave is in great shape as it has been preserved well by Meghalaya Tourism. The stalactites and stalagmites here very special as they are covered with bright crystals, which glitter in the artificial light. As I have said before on other caves, the various forms created by these stalactites and stalagmites are reason enough to let your imagination run wild.

The opportunities to see various shapes, forms and figurines are endless. The entire tourist corridor of the cave is well lit with eco-friendly lights making for a great exhibition for the traveller. One can even spot life forms that manage to live inside these caves. Meghalaya tourism has thoughtfully put up boards at the entrance helping the tourist understand the various plant, algae, moss and insect species that call this place their home.

Surprisingly, the Mawsmai cave has decent head clearance most of the way. In fact, if I remember right, I only crouched a couple of times, which is amazing given the bruises that I have endured during my visit to other caves across India.


The only sad part is that though the caves are long and winding, only a small portion is open for the tourists. But then, keeping safety in mind, I think it is a sensible option. This is a must visit if you happen to tour the North Eastern state of Meghalaya in India.

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