Elephant Waterfalls Near Shillong, Meghalaya

Elephant waterfalls, one of the most famous waterfalls of Meghalaya, is located 12 km away from Shillong, the capital of Meghalaya. An elephant-shaped stone was present at its foot, and thus the falls were named after it. But gradually, the stone disintegrated and was swept away because of an earthquake in 1987.

Now only the waterfall remains, which is very popular among tourists. In the local Khasi language, the Elephant falls is known as “Ka Kshaid Lai Pateng Khohshiew”, which means ‘the three-step waterfall‘.

Elephant Waterfalls in Meghalaya

Attractions of Elephant Waterfalls

The waterfalls are famous for their unique scenic beauty. From the entry point, you have to descend around 150 steps to reach the 3rd step of the Elephant waterfall. The whole pathway is surrounded by lush greenery, and it is a treat to the eye.

pathway to elephant waterfalls

The first step of elephant waterfalls is wide and you can see it partially from the viewpoints.

steps of elephant waterfalls

The second step is hidden within the dense forests. There are benches around the first and second tiers of the waterfalls where one can sit and relax.

stream of elephant waterfalls through forest

The third step is the main attraction area of Elephant waterfalls. In this spectacular place, crystal-clear water is falling over the rocks. Cascading flow of vertical water-drop makes this waterfall more beautiful.

cascading of water in elephant waterfalls

You can hear the sound of the water falling on the stones from a long distance. The closer you get, the louder the sound. And once you can reach the final step of the waterfalls, it will be fascinating.

third step of elephant waterfalls

When the sun settles, the golden rays on Elephant falls mesmerize the natural beauty. It is a very good place for photography. So, do not forget your camera to pack in the bag.

elephant waterfall photo with DSLR

The beautifully maintained elephant waterfall is connected to the Mattilang Amusement Park, surrounded by lush greenery and majestic landscapes. Though you can see the falls from the park, you cannot enter it through the park, as the two places are two different recreational centres.

Best time to visit Elephant Falls near Shillong

You can visit elephant waterfalls throughout the year. Even in winter, when the water level drops, the waterfall retains its charm. But monsoon is the best time to visit when you can witness the glorious waterfalls. The scenic beauty of the falls and the surrounding greenery will attract anyone.

How to get there?

To visit elephant waterfalls, first, you have to reach Shillong where you can easily travel from Guwahati rail station. Also, by road, Guwahati is well connected to Shillong. If you prefer air travel, fly to Shillong Airport. From there, hire a car to visit the elephant waterfalls, just twelve kilometres away.

Except for Sunday, everyday tourists can visit the waterfalls from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.

Places to visit near Elephant waterfalls, Meghalaya

Elephant falls is one of the best places to visit in Meghalaya. On a day trip, you can visit other exciting places like Don Bosco Museum, Mawphlang Sacred Forest, and Ward’s Lake near elephant waterfalls.

  • Don Bosco Museum, the largest cultural museum in Asia, is 12 km away from elephant falls. The museum introduces the multicultural lifestyle of the indigenous peoples of the North East to the tourists. In addition to that, the newly added skywalk at the museum’s top gives you a 360-degree beautiful view of Shillong town.
  • Mawphlang sacred forest is nestled in the East Khasi Hills and is just 15 km away from elephant waterfalls. The Khasi tribe protects the untouched forest. No one is allowed to take anything out of this forest. The lush green Mawphlang sacred forest is rich in various trees, some of which are over 1000 years old. The monoliths in the forest are exciting attractions.
  • Ward’s lake, one of the famous attractions of Shillong, is situated very close to elephant waterfalls.

To cover these places together, leave your hotel as early as possible.

Tips for an exciting experience at the falls

  • There is a ticket counter at the entry point charging 20 INR per person at the time of writing this article. For a video camera, an extra charge is applied. So, be prepared for it.
  • To visit elephant waterfalls, you have to walk down around 150 stairs. So seniors or anyone who has difficulty in walking are recommended not to visit.
  • During the monsoon, the stairs get slippery. So it is better to wear waterproof shoes with good grip.
  • Take enough water with you while visiting the waterfalls.
  • There are also some stalls near the parking area to get tea, coffee, corn, momo, etc.

If you love visiting waterfalls, check out the highest waterfalls in India and plan your trip!

Photo of author


Author, NatureDiary
Koyeli is a travel blogger and photographer on NatureDiary. She has an enormous experience in travelling, trekking and hiking across India. Backed by an M.Sc. degree in environmental science, Koyeli writes travel content based on her experience at various tourist attractions and travel destinations.

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