The following is a guest post from Indian Tripper Anuja M. She shares her favorite spots on her India travel expeditions.
The city of Agra located in the central Indian state of Uttar Pradesh is best known for being the home of the iconic monument and world heritage site, the Taj Mahal. No visit to India could be considered complete without having experienced the grandeur of the Taj.
Built by Emperor Shah Jahan to commemorate his eternal love for his wife, this Moghul monument rests on the banks of the Yamuna river and the most breathtaking views of this symbol of love are afforded from a boat ride on the Yamuna taken either early in the morning or late in the evening (sunrise or sunset). If you have the luxury of a flexible schedule, try and visit it on a full moon night to be truly bedazzled. Other notable attractions in & around Agra include Fatehpur Sikri and the Red fort, where Emperor Shah Jahan – once considered ruler of the world – was held captive for the final few year of his life.
There is no such thing as a bad time to visit the Taj. But if you aren’t too crazy about experiencing the particularly warm north-Indian summers, October to March would be the best time to beat the heat and plan a visit. There are direct flights to Agra from most major Indian cities. It is also extremely easily accessible by road from Delhi, which being the nation’s capital city, is connected by air to almost any town in India with an airport.
Check out this Agra accommodation with a lovely garden.
Udaipur – the City of Lakes – is one of the prime tourist destinations in India. Located in the north-western Indian state of Rajasthan, Udaipur is best known for its multitude of royal heritage structures, a legacy of the rich cultural history of the state.
The largest of the many lakes strewn across the city are Lake Pichola and the Fateh Sagar Lake. Lake Pichola in particular has three of the biggest attractions on or around it. The Lake Palace is a gorgeous marble structure perched in the middle of the lake and accessible only by boat. Originally built as the Royal Summer Palace, it is now a 5-star hotel and shot to fame in the 80’s when it featured in the James Bond movie “Octupussy”. The Jag Mandir, an island restaurant known for its garden courtyard, can also be found on the lake. On the banks of Lake Pichola is the City Palace, an imposing flamboyant structure, considered the largest of its type in Rajasthan. Other noteworthy attractions in Udaipur include the Monsoon Palace, a mountain-top erstwhile retreat of the Royals with a bird’s eye view of the city and its many lakes; and the Fatehgarh Palace Hotel with its fleet of Vintage cars and luxurious accommodations.
You can fly into Udaipur from all major Indian cities.
If you’re looking to stay like one of the royals in Rajasthan, this Jodhpur accommodation is set right next to a fort.
Goa, is a coastal town in Western India, flanked by the Arabian Sea to the left. It also holds the unique distinction of being a state by itself, thus making it the smallest state in the country. The Portuguese ruled Goa for a number of centuries prior to Indian independence and their influence can still be seen in the architecture and lifestyles in many parts of Goa.
Goa is renowned for its beaches, churches and convents that are now world heritage sites as well as its rich flora and fauna. But perhaps what it is best known for is its night life. Over Christmas and New Year’s, Goa becomes the hottest party destination in India. Over the past few years it has gained repute as being one of the world’s top destinations to spend New Year’s Eve. It is visited by a large number of both foreign and domestic tourists each year. The local cuisine holds some exquisite flavors to entice the taste buds… especially those of sea-fool lovers. One can also partake in various water-sports and adventure sports activities at many locations across Goa.
One of the main tourist attractions is The Basilica De Bom Jesus, which houses the tomb and mortal remains of St. Francis Xavier, the patron saint of Goa. The remains are still in very good condition after 400 years and are put on public display once a decade. The church and convent of St. Francis of Assisi is another popular tourist attraction. Anjuna, Baga, Calangute, Dona Paula and Vagator are some of the best beaches in Goa. It also has an ever-increasing list of casinos, pubs and party locales.
Goa is connected by air to all major cities of India. It is also easily accessible by road from the cities of Mumbai & Pune to the north and from the southern state of Karnataka.
If you’re looking to stay on a beach, these tents are a fun Goa accommodation option!
Ladakh is a region in the northern-most state of Jammu & Kashmir. With its breathtaking views and serene atmosphere, it has steadily gained popularity as one of the hidden gems in the country. While Ladakh itself spans two countries, the Indian portion consists of two districts namely Leh & Kargil. Sandwiched between the Himalayas and the Karakoram Mountain ranges of India, Ladakh consists of a mountainous terrain, pristine glacial pools, gorgeous blue skies and noticeably fresh mountain air. It is very aptly called home by a number of Buddhist monasteries which in turn impart a peaceful zen-like quality to the region. Ladakh is one of the most popular adventure sports destinations in India. A haven for backpackers and mountaineers, in recent years it has also become a kind of pilgrimage for biking enthusiasts. The region also offers river rafting, archery and safari rides. Areas of tourist interest in Ladakh include Leh, Drass Valley, Nubra Valley, Kargil, Rangdum, Sani Monastery and about a dozen other places.
The only way to get to Ladakh is by road from Srinagar in Jammu & Kashmir or an alternate route from Manali in the state of Himachal Pradesh. However the route from Manali is motorable only for part of the year due to heavy snowfall during the rest of the period, making the former route your best bet. Srinagar is connected by air to various parts of India and is best connected to Delhi.
You can experience a Kashmir & Jammu accommodation in the place often called “Heaven on Earth” right from your very own houseboat!
Kerala lies in the southernmost part of the country. It is one of few states where waterways are still used as an important means of transportation. Its beautiful and calm backwaters, beaches and tropical greenery make it a popular retreat with tourists. Spending a couple of nights on a houseboat cruising down the numerous waterways is one of the best ways to see large parts of Kerala. The state is famous for the still prevalent practice of Ayurveda – the ancient medical science native to India. This had led to the opening of numerous Ayurvedic spas and resorts across the state where tourists go for treatments or rest and relaxation – now popularly known as Ayurvedic Tourism. Most frequented tourist destinations in Kerala are Alappuzha (also known as Allepy), Munnar, Thekkady, and Kovalam.
The state has a number of airports, two of which are international airports. Internal travel is easy with a good network of roads and waterways are commonly used for leisurely travel.
Have a look at this gorgeous Kerala accommodation.
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