Nohkalikai Falls

Beautiful Waterfall

Cherrapunji, one of the wettest places on earth, is home to the stunning Nohkalikai Falls. The Nohkalikai Falls is the tallest plunge waterfall in India.

Nohkalikai Falls is a rain-fed falls so during the monsoon season, on a clear day, you will see the real beauty and will be able to feel the force of the waterfall even from a distance.

Whenever you search Meghalaya on the internet, more often than not, you will see pictures of Nohkalikai. The waterfall is iconic, it has become a symbol that many people associate with all things Meghalaya.

If you have visited Meghalaya, there’s a 90% chance that you have been to this waterfall. Did you happen to ask the locals about the legend associated with the waterfall? Well, I did, and let me tell you, it is gory and emotional at the same time. Not a combo we often look for in a story.

Once upon a time, there was a village called Rangjysteh, near the present-day waterfall. There lived a widow with her infant child. As a single mother, she was struggling to make ends meet and was unable to find time to work and raise her child at the same time.

Likai married for the second time to a man who was not too thrilled about the idea of having to take care of a child. Likai left for work one day and she left her child under the care of her husband. The husband, still sour about the infant, went into a jealous rage and ended up killing the infant. He then proceeded to cook the, now deceased, infant just to add that extra evil into the whole scenario. When Likai returned home from work, tired and hungry, she found the cooked food and ate, only to realise soon that what she had unknowingly consumed was her own child.

Overcome with unspeakable grief she ran towards the edge of the cliff and plunged to her death. The waterfall was named after her. Nohkalikai Falls, when translated from local Khasi dialect, means, Jump of Ka Likai ( Ka is a term used for women in Khasi culture).

While there is no way to do a fact-check on a local legend, it is just so interesting to listen to the stories behind these very popular attractions. One of the best things to do while travelling is to interact with the locals. Most of the time you come back home with loads of stories. Wait till you hear the story of Dainthlen Falls and cave.