Thousands of visitors including Indians attend Japan's Cherry Blossom Festival annually. Even megastar Mohanlal had travelled to Japan for it the last time. But, did you know that India has its own Cherry Blossom Festival, in the northeastern part of the country? The Shillong Cherry Blossom Festival has gone on floors and it is attracting tourists from far and wide as well. The fest is hosted at the RBDSA Sports Complex, Madan Kurkalang, Bhoirymbong, in the Ri Bhoi district of Meghalaya. The lanes and bylanes of Shillong are blanketed by pink cherry blooms, welcoming visitors
This year's festival is a convergence of nature, civilization, music, and art, according to organisers. Several pop stars and DJs compete for honours at this edition of the festival. Ronan Keating from the Boyzone pop group, Grammy-winning R&B (rhythms and blues) artist Ne-Yo, DJ music producer Jonas Blue, Indian band Sanam, and DJ Pink Panda take part in the programme this time. Additionally, the festival features a variety of events, including cross-play competitions, beauty contests, orchestras, graffiti, art installations, karaoke contests, a Ferris wheel and zipline rides.
Paul Lyngdoh, the Tourism Minister of Meghalaya, said that 30,000 visitors were expected to arrive daily this year. By the time the festival concludes on November 19, around 1 lakh persons will have visited the State. The majority of the visitors are expected to come from outside the State, the Minister said.