Meghalaya is a very distinctive state where you can find the raw and untouched beauty of nature along with the quaint traditions and cultures. It seems to be a perfect blend of sorts for people who love to travel, and the more you move in the hills of Meghalaya, the more you are likely to discover the enthusiasm of the people residing here. It is a melange of happiness and childish curiosity.  

One aspect of Meghalaya which you are bound to like is the festivals. Yes, the locals and tribals celebrate the festivities with great enthusiasm. And one such festival of Meghalaya or perhaps a ritual that is quite popular here is the Nongkrem Dance Festival. Interestingly, the word Nongkrem in itself means the goat-killing ceremony. Basically, a religious dance form of Meghalaya, it looks very delightful when performed by the dancers.

Background of Nongkrem Festival

Celebrated during the autumn season, Nongkrem comes across as a grand carnival that essentially involves a flow of wealth and an environment depicting the religious beliefs of the people. Yes, this festival is greatly associated with the religious beliefs of the Khasi people. Majorly, the Nongkrem festival is performed to appease the supremely powerful Goddess Ka Blei Synchar, who is responsible for an enriching bumper harvest as well as the prosperity of the people. 

Major attractions of Nongkrem Dance

Dance, which is the major highlight of the festival is performed by the young Khasi girls who are unmarried as well as the men of the tribe. The female performers usually wear bright yellow costumes known as Jainsem that has intricate embroidered panels and tassels with a silver crown headgear consisting of various flowers. 

The dance which is performed by the men is known as Ka Shad Mastieh. During this dance, the men hold a sword in their right hand and a chaur kind of a ceremonial fan in their left one. The sword which they carry symbolizes a man’s defense for himself and the people he loves the most. The attire for men includes dhotis, full-sleeved shirts, embroidered sleeveless coats, and even turbans. 

The festival usually takes place in May or November which depends on the lunar position determining the exact time of the festival.

How to Reach

Meghalaya is quite an interesting travel getaway to explore. From Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata, and Bengaluru it is located at an approximate distance of around 2,004, 2,828, 1,102, and 3,092 km respectively. Let's discuss how you can visit Meghalaya via the following routes.

By Air. Shillong Airport and the Lokpriya Gopinath Bordoloi International Airport are two good options to reach Meghalaya via air route. Both of these airports are located at an approximate distance of around 124 and 158 km from Meghalaya and depending upon your location you can choose either of the two.

However, the Lokpriya Gopinath Bordoloi International Airport (also known as the Guwahati Airport) is generally considered more popular to visit not just Meghalaya but all the North-Eastern states of India. Due to its hectic schedule, it is placed at the 8th rank of the busiest airports in India. Many airlines like Vistara, Air India, AirAsia, and SpiceJet operate to and fro this airport. One can easily travel here from other Indian cities like Delhi, Mumbai, Lucknow, and many others easily.

By Train. Guwahati Junction is your best bet to visit Meghalaya via train. What’s really interesting to know about this station is that it is the first solar-operated train station in India. From New Delhi, you can board the DBRT Rajdhani via New Delhi Railway station or North-East Express via Anand Vihar Terminal. From Mumbai, you can board the Guwahati Express via Kalyan Junction. From Lucknow, you can take Awadh Assam Express via Lucknow Railway Station.

By Road. Meghalaya is well connected with other Indian cities via the road network. From Delhi, you will need to cover an approximate distance of 2,004 km via NH27, from Lucknow you will need to cover an approximate distance of 1,451 km via NH27, from Ranchi you will need to cover a total distance of 1,171 km via NH17 or NH27. Apart from this, you can always rely on interstate buses for traveling via road.

You can plan your trip and create your own route to the city with Adotrip’s technically driven circuit planner. Click here.

PLEASE NOTE : Dates can vary due to cancellation or last-minute changes.

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