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iXiGOers Dec 09 2012

Which are the popular religious sites in Shillong?

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Answer: Nature is often understood as god's greatest gift to mankind. So now that you've thoroughly enjoyed the beauty and bounty of nature, what better way to pay a tribute to its creator than visiting the temples and churches in his honour? Being primarily a Christian population, the city has more churches than any other religious structures, owing to the British rule in the region. But there are other sacred spots as well for you to visit and explore. Discover the devotee in you and offer pious prayers at the following popular religious sites in Shillong:

  • Shillong Baptist Church

    A beautiful building, housing the community spirit of Christianity in Shillong. This church not only is a site for offering prayers, but also operates various youth programmes and Sunday School, etc projects. The church is very popular for its Sunday Mass and a hotspot venue for Christian weddings in the town. Experience the comfort of religion at the beautiful altar and take home a wealth of knowledge from the regular sermons.

    Mass timings: Every Sunday, 7am onwards
    Address: Ebenezer Lower Lachaumiere
    Official Website:

  • Shillong Catholic Cathedral

    The seat of the bishop in the city, this cathedral falls under the 3,00,000-member strong Shillong Archdiocese. Built by missionaries from Germany, it was the first in the series of churches built in Assam (the part of which now falls in Meghalaya). The existing structure is about 50 years old, standing tall as an evidence of the rich history of the town and surrounding regions. This popular church is also known as the Church of Mary Help of Christians.

    Mass timings: Every Sunday, 5.30am onwards
    Address: Cathedral of Mary Help of Christians
    Telephone: +91-364-2226542 / +91-94361-19352
    Official Website:

  • Mahadev Khola Dham

    Surrounded by vivid legends and folklore, this cave temple is a sight to behold. It is believed, that some 150 years ago, a sage named Lakhiya Baba came to meditate at this spot. It is also believed that the Subedar Major of the 2nd Battalion of the 8th Gurkha Rifles was guided in a dream to carry out an excavation, where he found a Shiva Lingam, which is now the site of the present temple. The surrounding caves are also dedicated to different deities and saints and contribution to the general devotional air here. Dedicated primarily to Lord Shiva, the temple caves celebrate Mahashivratri with great enthusiasm and grandeur every year.
    The caves are located about 5 kms from the main city centre of Shillong. You can park your car at a nearby spot, from where you would need to climb steep stairs for about 10 minutes to reach the main shrine.

    Timings: 5.30am to 8pm
    Telephone: +91-364-2505411

  • Buddhist Temple

    Buddhism aims to spread the message of human compassion and its universal appeal makes it a popular religion across countries and cultures. In Shillong too, which was and is primarily a Christian town, Buddhism has made its mark over the year. Located on a picture-perfect hillock, the Buddhist Temple here stands as a symbol of the entry of Buddhism into Shillong. The archway of the temple is modelled along the lines of the famous Sanchi Stupa, paying a tribute to the Buddhist tradition worldwide. Visit this temple during the sacred Buddha Purnima and be a part of the grand and joyous celebrations.

Let both nature and divinity nurture your soul, while you experience a trance-like calm at these quaint old religious sites. Whatever you do, you're sure to be going back home with a transformed soul and a heart full of memories!

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