Women may not like to share taxis with men if the passengers are squeezed like sardines inside the vehicle. In the evenings, they may even feel unsafe taking such a taxi.
Unique Suggestions: Take a women's-only taxi driven by a women driver.
Fun Alternatives: This year (2011) on March 8th-International Women's Day will be celebrated in Shillong in a unique way. On that day 200 women-only taxis, driven by women drivers, will roll out onto the streets of Shillong. These will be very distinct as their colours will be white with pink and green tops. Of these, 100 taxis are meant for the outskirts while the remaining 100 will ply within the limits of Shillong city.
Tourists going to Cherrapunjee (Sohra) on Sundays are advised to carry their own food
items and other beverages with them. Most of the shops in and around Sohra are closed
on that day. You may get some scrappy items to eat, if you are lucky, that is, but better to be safe than sorry.
Unique Suggestions: On a Sunday, take your food along.
Fun Alternatives: Two options - Laitkynsew Sohra Tourist Resort, 17 kms away or Sa-I-Mika park, 5 kms away. Ring them up and beg for food or better still, ring them up from Shillong *before* proceeding on a Sunday to Cherrapunjee. (Denis P. Rayen, Laitkynsew - +91 9436115925) or +91 3637-264218. Dariliang, Sa-I-Mika Park - +919862888674).
If you wish to travel to faraway places like Silchar and Guwahati from Shillong, don't take
the Sumo Taxis (large taxis) from nearabouts Civil Hospital, Shillong. These fly-by-night
operators will cruise around Shillong picking up more and more passengers, sorely testing
your patience and wasting your time. Until the Sumo Taxi is overflowing with hapless
passengers, they will not leave Shillong. You are better off walking to the nearby (1/2 km)
licensed taxi stand opposite to the Legislative Assembly Secretariat near Khydailad
(nine-point junction), ie., Police Bazaar.
Unique Suggestions: See if the Tata Sumo is already full, then bargain for your seat and price. If it is empty, DON'T.
Fun Alternatives: Walk to the nearby (1/2 km) licensed taxi stand opposite to the Legislative Assembly Secretariat near Khydailad (nine-point junction), ie., Police Bazaar and bargain for a better seat and a better price to your destination. Only bargain out of earshot of the passengers who are already in the Tata Sumo ;-)
Don't allow the taxi driver to stop the moment you see the Bishop Beadon Falls and be told that is the best spot to view the falls. It isn't. From there, you can hardly make out the twin falls. Besides, there is a regular RCC Viewpoint constructed by the Government for the sole use of tourists to enjoy the view. This structure is roughly 200 yards further down the same road. Afternoons are a better time to take photos of the falls. Also, the dense vegetation may obstruct your view. So hunt around for the best spot.
If you want a superb view, go further down the road and request the security guard of the Mawlai Grid Sub-Station to allow you inside. Keep to the left of the sub-station, walk past the living quarters and the office till you come to a clearing. You'll get a fantastic view of the twin waterfalls.
Unique Suggestions: Walk down to the correct viewpoint. It's hardly 5-minutes away.
Fun Alternatives: Before you board the taxi to Bishop Beadon Falls (Sonapani), ask the driver whether he will take you to the RCC viewpoint or, better still, to the Mawlai Grid Sub-Station of the Electricity Board at the end of the road.
From Guwahati Railway Station, you can exit either towards the north side, ie., River Brahmaputra, which will take you towards Guwahati city side or you can exit from the south side, ie., towards Shillong side. For the Shillong side, get on to the pedestrian overbridge and ask for directions to Paltan Bazar Police Station. The moment you descend from the pedestrian overbridge, touts will offer shared taxis to take you to Shillong. Bargain hard and check the taxi before you commit yourself - if its nearly full with passengers, it'll leave early, if not you'll have to wait for the taxi to fill up. It should take you roughly 3 hrs. to reach Shillong, assuming of course, there are no traffic snarls on the way.
There are Meghalaya State Transport buses also that ply along this route. These are cheaper.
Unique Suggestions: Ask where your seat will be in the shared taxi and how many passengers the driver will take. Front seats are the best. Good view of the scenery and lesser nausea, if you are prone to it. If you don't like it, walk across to the State Transport Corporation depot and take a bus to Shillong.
Fun Alternatives: You can always walk across to the State Transport Corporation depot and take a bus to Shillong. It's cheaper.