Winters – A season when people take some time off from their busy schedule and go on vacations to de-stress and rejuvenate themselves. While people go on vacations around the year, many talked about destinations are cold. Although some hunt for hot spots in winters to keep themselves dry and warm, others prefer cold spots, waiting to experience their first snowfall or simply for their love for the season. And Indians do not need to travel far to experience either.
Spectacular, spiritual and sublime, India is diverse not only in its cultural heritage but even in the wealth of its landscape. From mountains and plateaus to seas and lakes, from deserts to evergreen forests, India has an astounding array of landscape.
We have every kind of holiday available in India; be it for adventure, relaxation or wild life spotting. Here are a few must visit places during this winter break. You could go on a solo-trip, backpack, travel with family and friends, the choice is yours, but you are sure to have the most amazing time in these holiday spots.
The Adventure Seekers
In recent times, India has become one of the hotspot for travellers looking for adventure. It is one of the best places in the world for traditional and adventure games.
- Gulmarg/ Kufri/ Auli – Gulmarg in Kashmir, Kufri in Shimla and Auli in Uttarakhand offer the best of winter adventure sports including skiing on the magnificent slopes and ice skating on the frozen lakes and rivers.
- Himachal – White water river Rafting on the gushing and ferocious waters of Chanderbhaga, Bhagirathi, Satluj and Ravi is an extreme sport which will have your adrenalin pumping up.
- Andamans – The islands set amidst the aquamarine waters of the Bay of Bengal have a rich wealth of coral reefs. Scuba diving, snorkelling and sea walking allows you to enter the beautiful underwater world where you will see rich coral reefs as well as an array of different kind of marine life forms.
- Kerala – Karala offers extreme adventure sports like mountaineering, valley crossing and trampoline. But the showstopper is the ‘Flying Fox’ where you will embark upon a fascinating journey from above the hills, rivers and valleys with ultra-strong steel zip lines and enjoy the breath-taking view of the rich landscapes of Kerala.
- Karnataka/ Uttaranchal/ Goa – Mysore in Karnataka, Rishikesh in Uttaranchal and Anjuna village in Goa offer the adventure seekers bunjee jumping. Rishikesh boasts of India’s Highest Bungee Jump Platform at 83 Meters. Arabian Sea beaches of Goa also have to offer some of the most popular water sports like jet skiing, parasailing, swimming, snorkelling and kayaking.
- Tamil Nadu and Rajasthan – These states offer the thrill of the traditional adventure sports of India. Celebrated during the harvest festival called Pongal in January, Jallikattu is one of the oldest living ancient sports which pits crowds of brave young men against angry bulls. It is similar to the Spanish running of the bulls. Pushkar, the oldest living city in India, has camel races which will get the adrenalin levels really high.
Wild Life Enthusiasts
If you are an animal lover and crave for the experience of witnessing wildlife in its raw, natural form, then India offers a perfect setting for that as well with several wild life sanctuaries where you may spot anything from a spotted deer to the mighty lion.
- Kerala – The Periyar National Park, set high in the Western Ghats, in Kerala, is a Tiger Reserve. You will also get to see wild elephants here apart from other wild animals like deer.
- Rajasthan – The Ranthambore National Park in Rajasthan has a rich wealth of wildlife. It is also a tiger reserve where the tigers are used to human presence and thus, it is very easy to photograph them. The lakes here are filled with crocodiles.
- Jharkhand- Located on the Chota Nagar plateau of Jharkhand, Betla National Park boasts of a variety of wild life including bison, elephant, tiger, leopard. In fact BETLA is an acronym for bison, elephant, tiger, leopard.
- Karnataka – Located about 15 km from Hampi, Daroji Bear Sanctuary is home to the Indian sloth bears. Apart from these star residents, the sanctuary also boasts of 90 species of birds, peafowl and pangolin, as well as leopards, hyena and jackals.
Mentioned above are just a few of the many options available for the wild life enthusiasts.
Relaxation and Rejuvenation
- Kerala – The backwaters at Alleppey with its ethnic houseboats and the gentle slopes of Wayanad where you can get the aroma of cardamom and coffee, are perfect spots to get away from all the hustle and bustle, to de-stress and rejuvenate. Add to it the world renowned Ayurvedic Kerala massage, and you are surely coming back home all pampered and spoilt.
- Kutch – Getaway to the Rann of Kutch where the vast expanse of white sands along with the celebrations galore during the Rann Mahotstav will mesmerise you and assail your senses. The experience here can be best described as extraordinary.
- Nagaland – Break the trend of joining the bandwagon and going to the same age-old holiday destinations in India. This time add Nagaland to your itinerary. It is one of the most picturesque as well as culturally rich states in India, where while you learn about the culture of the people living in this story-land, you can also relax.
A Must Visit Hill Station in India During Winter
Lachung is a town and hill station in northeast Sikkim at an elevation of 9,600 ft near the Tibet border. It is one of the most picturesque villages of India and leads to the Yamthang valley. Yamthang Valley at an elevation of 11,693 ft is a grazing pasture surrounded by the Himalayan mountains.
The valley of flowers during summer transforms into a valley of snow, from late December, that is, and the view is breathtaking.
It is time to stop procrastinating, pack your bags, confirm the itinerary and head out to have the holiday of your life in India this winter. Happy Holidays!!