The Beauty of Nohkalikai Falls: Meghalaya’s Spectacular Waterfall

Nohkalikai Falls: Meghalaya’s Enigmatic Waterfall


Tucked away in the northeastern part of India, amidst the breathtaking landscapes of Meghalaya, lies a natural wonder that has captivated travelers for generations—Nohkalikai Falls. Standing as one of the tallest waterfalls in India, Nohkalikai’s majestic beauty, geological origins, and haunting legends make it a must-visit destination. In this comprehensive article, we embark on a virtual journey to explore the wonders of Nohkalikai Falls, uncover its geological marvel, delve into local folklore, provide essential travel information, and share additional insights into this enchanting destination.

The Geological Marvel

Soaring Heights:

Nohkalikai Falls is celebrated not just for its beauty but also for its remarkable height. It plunges dramatically from a towering cliff, with a breathtaking drop of approximately 1,115 feet (340 meters). This makes it one of the tallest waterfalls in not only India but the entire Asian continent. The sheer force of water cascading down the cliff, framed by lush greenery, is a testament to nature’s raw power.

The Distinctive Plunge Pool:

At the base of Nohkalikai Falls lies a crystal-clear plunge pool, known as Nohkalikai Pool. This pool’s pristine blue waters create a striking contrast with the vibrant green surroundings. What adds to the allure of this pool is its changing depth with the seasons, creating an ever-evolving landscape that photographers and nature enthusiasts find irresistible.

Legends and Folklore

Nohkalikai Falls is not just a geological marvel; it’s steeped in local folklore and legends that lend it an air of mystery and intrigue. One legend, in particular, has bestowed the falls with its evocative name.

The Legend of Ka Likai:

The name “Nohkalikai” translates to “Jump of Ka Likai” in the local Khasi language. This nomenclature finds its origins in a haunting local legend—the story of Ka Likai. Ka Likai was a young woman residing in a Khasi village, a devoted mother to her infant daughter. However, her personal life was marred by tragedy. Following the death of her husband, she descended into a deep well of grief.

To provide for her child, Ka Likai took up work as a porter, carrying heavy loads for travelers. One fateful day, upon returning from work, she discovered a horrifying sight: her daughter had been killed, and her flesh cooked into a meal by her new husband. Overwhelmed by grief and horror, Ka Likai was driven to madness. In a state of blind despair, she ran to the edge of the cliff and leaped off, ending her life with the same precipice that now forms the remarkable Nohkalikai Falls.

A Haunting Presence:

The legend of Ka Likai continues to haunt the surroundings of Nohkalikai Falls. Travelers who visit the site are often reminded of the tragic tale, adding an air of melancholy and mystique to the already awe-inspiring natural beauty.

Visiting Nohkalikai Falls

Location and Accessibility:

Nohkalikai Falls is situated near the town of Cherrapunji in Meghalaya, known as one of the wettest places on Earth due to its heavy rainfall. Accessing the falls is convenient by road, and a short hike from the main road takes you to a viewing platform. The journey to Nohkalikai Falls also treats travelers to splendid views of the surrounding hills and valleys.

Best Time to Visit:

While Nohkalikai Falls is a sight to behold year-round, the best time to experience its grandeur is during the monsoon season, from June to September. During this period, heavy rainfall ensures a powerful flow of water, creating a mesmerizing cascade that draws visitors from far and wide.

Additional Attractions:

The Cherrapunji region, famous for Nohkalikai Falls, is a treasure trove of natural wonders. While visiting the falls, consider exploring other nearby attractions such as the Living Root Bridges of Meghalaya, Mawsmai Cave, and the Seven Sisters Falls. These sites contribute to the region’s reputation as a natural paradise and offer unique experiences for travelers.

FAQs about Nohkalikai Falls

Q. How do I reach Nohkalikai Falls?

Nohkalikai Falls is easily accessible by road. It’s located near Cherrapunji in Meghalaya, and you can reach it by taking a short hike from the main road to a viewing platform.

Q. When is the best time to visit Nohkalikai Falls?

The best time to witness the falls at their most spectacular is during the monsoon season, from June to September. Heavy rainfall during this period ensures a powerful flow of water.

Q. Are there any nearby attractions to explore in the Cherrapunji region?

Yes, there are several nearby attractions in the Cherrapunji region, including the Living Root Bridges of Meghalaya, Mawsmai Cave, and the Seven Sisters Falls. These sites offer additional natural wonders and cultural experiences.


Nohkalikai Falls, with its staggering height, pristine plunge pool, and haunting legends, stands as a testament to the captivating beauty and mystique of Meghalaya. Whether you’re a nature enthusiast, a photography buff, or simply a traveler seeking unique experiences, Nohkalikai Falls promises an unforgettable journey into the heart of India’s northeastern wonders. Visit this awe-inspiring marvel, and you’ll discover that nature’s beauty is often intertwined with stories that resonate through the ages.

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