In the age of google.com and GPRS, none of the place on this globe goes unexplored. But whenever we wish to go on a break, we get the preferences like Lonavala, Dehradun, etc. but I am confident that once Garo Hills is explored, you will definitely love it. Tura with its beautiful landscapes, the virgin forest, with streams falling down, green valleys, twittering of birds and growling of animals like tiger, deer, leopards, elephants, etc. is no less than Khandala and Lonavala. But still, Garo Hills is unknown to many people may be its because what we see depends on what we are looking for. It’s a belief that Tura has a lot to offer for nature lovers.
Garo Hills is a home to Balphakram National Park, which the native pagans believe to be the home of souls and the region can boast to be one of those few places on Earth where pitcher plant is locally known as memang kokshi, grows. One of the many reasons a visit to this place is encouraged because here people live the life what it appears to be, rustic and devoid of any ostentatiousness.
Situated in the west of the state, is one of Meghalaya’s oldest town. The natural beauty of the region is its main attraction with good road connectivity, which makes it easier to move from one spot to another.
The crystal clear waterfalls, the cottony fog in winter, the special charm of the setting sun, the natural landscape, all these are the most amazing and beautiful natural things seen in Tura. Going along the curvy roads of Tura we can go to the Gandrak Falls.
Located 2 km away from the Tura Bazaar. On the way, we also find the beautiful Cenotaph (in Babupara), built in the memories of Garo labours, who sacrificed themselves in the first world war in France. To pay tribute to them every year, 16th July is celebrated as a Garo Labour Crops Day.
Visit to the water treatment plants at Edenbari and Spring Hills, near Bishop’s House is a must. To enjoy the fragrance of tea garden and the aroma of tea leaf processing, you must go to Rongram Tebronggre road. And if your luck favours you may find wild elephants crossing the road or holding their trunks out in the sky. Also on the way to Rongram Babadam road, a beautiful picnic spot, Chibragre is situated. While on the way to Tura from Chibragre, one must also have a visit to the institute that stands as a pride of Meghalaya, i.e., The Don Bosco College. Also renowned as the quality education hub of Tura.
The 19th century British-American Cemetery also stands as a tourist attraction. This cemetery was restored by the British Association for Cemetery in South Asia on 21st February 2007. The Roman Catholic Cathedral at Mohoripara and the Baptist Church in Chandmari are also the attractions of Tura.
Apart from these many more spots such as Pelga waterfalls, Nehru park, botanical garden where different types of orchids, rhododendrons, pitcher plants are grown. Different types of butterflies too, abound in the region and also not forgetting to mention the various types of tropical trees found.
The North-Eastern Hill University(NEHU)campus, the Meghalaya Board of Secondary Education(MBOSE)head office, the Doordarshan Kendra-Tura, the All India Radio(AIR)station and many more such are the attractions of this small town.
A visit to Garo Hills and not witnessing the 100 Drums Wangala Festival cannot be accepted.It is celebrated during the harvest season at Asanang (15 km from Tura).Here people from more than 10 villages perform soul stringing dances to the beat of more than a hundred drums. A few years back this Wangala festival acquired a national as well as an international status with the Garos from other states of the country and the Bangladesh participating in it.
One who stays here or have ever visited this small little town, can never restrict themselves from being impressed by the imposing Tura hills that stand sentinel over the town.An air of warmth and hospitality circulates in the whole of Tura and with awareness on the part of the outside people and effort on the part of the natives a booming tourism centre will be in place.