Double Decker living root bridge, a man-made cum natural wonders of the living root bridges. Created by the people of the Khasi tribe, 150+ year old man-made natural wonder that’s not only unique but astounding these roots grow from the ancient rubber trees, seen only in the northeast region. These roots are trained by the Khasis to grow in such a manner as be in the form of bridges on the top of a river.Located in the thick tropical forest of Meghalaya these bridges are the sustainable alternative to wooden bridges that diminish due to heavy rainfall in the region. These double decker living root bridges are 2 bridges that are stacked one on the other, made because of the entanglement of roots. The second level of the bridge was created after an unprecedented wet monsoon season caused water to reach the first level.
A new root bridge takes about 15 years to get strong enough so that it can bear the weight of people who would be crossing it. Over a span of next few years, the roots become even stronger. It is believed that some of the root bridges are over five hundred years old. The most popular one is Umshiang Double-Decker Root Bridge. Not built but grown, these living root bridges are like an astonishment and are absolutely unique.
Following are some of the popular root bridge of Cherrapunjee :
- Umshiang Double Decker Root Bridge– The most popular root bridge, a double-decker living-root bridge, it is 3 km long and begins from Village Tyrna Village. The bridge stands at a height of 2400 feet. Reaching the upper bridge, which is 20 meter long is a tough but a worth -it task.
- Ummunoi Root Bridges– A very popular attraction, this is known to be the oldest living bridge of the region. Place at a height of 1400 feet, this bridge is 74 m long.
- Ritymmen Root Bridge– Settled in Nongthymmai village, this bridge is 30 m long.
- Umkar Root Bridge– Beginning from Village Siej, this is a short bridge. It takes just half an hour to walk to and fro on it. Local floods a few years ago had washed away a portion of bridge that is being re-built by the locals.
- Mawsaw Root Bridge– Walking past Umshiang for around 20 – 30 minutes, arrives the Mawsaw Bridge. The natural swimming pool is the star attraction of this bridge.