Planning a trip to India this vacation and
still not sure what really you should see and do? Looking for a place that
introduces you to the topmost tourist attractions of the country? Well, you
have just reached there. Here, you will find all that you are looking for -
a list of tourist hotspots in India. The attractions have been categorised
for your convenience.
If after going through the list, you feel the urge to know more about some
of them and what makes them so special, the text provided below will be of
great help. Have a look.
One of the most visited states in India,
Rajasthan is the abode of the erstwhile royal Maharajas (kings) and
Maharanis (queens). A number of magnificent forts, palaces, havelis,
museums, monuments and other legacies of royalty dot the land. What also
makes Rajasthan attractive is its desert area. A part of Rajasthan lies in
the great Thar desert. Traversing through the sandy regions on the back of a
camel or on aborad a jeep is a unique experience. Also camping on the sand
under the moonlit starry night is a huge attraction for the visitors.
Rajasthan is known more for its royal heritage.
In contrast, Kerala is more of nature lover's delight. The state is referred
to as called 'God's own country' .
The natural beauty of Kerala is refereshing, be it the
backwaters of Allepey and Kumarakom or the tea gardens of Munnar. The
wildlife sanctuaries - Periyar, Kumarakom and Wayanad - are abode to both
ferocious and beautiful flora and fauna. Also, the people of Kerala, their
lifestyle, cuisine, festivals are very different from what you will come
across in Rajasthan.
Goa - No other destination in India matches up with the
fun loving spirit of Goa. The beaches are the prime attraction here where
you can enjoy both leisurely walks and adveturous water sports. The churches
are not only attractive because of their architectural style but also
because they stand reminder to the centuries of Portuguese rule that Goa has
seen in the past. The New year celebration and the Goa Carnival in February
are the time when maximum number of tourists visit this state.
Uttaranchal - Carved out from the state of Uttar Pradesh,
Uttaranachal is a destination picked up those looking for a adventurous and
religious holiday. The mighty hills, rushing rivers, snowy peaks are just
perfect for an adventure activities like trekking, rafting and skiing. The
pilgrimage destinations, specially the Chardham offer your soul a peace that
you have been yearning for a long time now. Apart from this, Uttaranchal is
also quiet well known for its wildlife sanctuaries and ayurvedic therapies.
Himachal Pradesh - The north Indian state of Himachal
Pradesh boasts of a natural beauty that is awesome. Nestling in the arms of
the mighty Himalayas, the state has a number of valleys and passes with a
captivating beauty. Adventure options in Himachal is as vivid as it is in
Uttaranchal. You can go trekking, skiing, rafting, gliding, skating or
anyother form of adventure activities. Himachal is also a pilgrimage
destinations for Hindus, Buddhists and Sikhs. The culture of the state is
Jaipur - The capital of Rajasthan, Jaipur was founded by
Maharaja Jai Singh and is also known as the Pink City. The main drawers of
tourists in this city are the City Palace, Hawa Mahal, Jantar Mantar and
Amber Fort. The city is also a stop in the royal journey of the luxury
train, Palace on Wheels.
Agra - Taj Mahal, one of the wonders of the world is what
draws a major bulk of tourists to Agra. However, this city in Uttar Pradesh
has whole lot of other attractions to charm tourists after they have paid a
visit to the Taj. Prominent amongst them are the Agra Red Fort and
Itmad-Ud-Daulah's Tomb. A little distance away from the city, the remains of
Fatehpur Sikri is definitely not be missed out attraction. Shopping is also
high on the list of visitors here. Apart form the miniature models of Taj
Mahal, you can also pick up marble items from the government emporia.
Khajuraho - Khajuraho is a small place in Madhya Pradesh
and is known world over for its cave temples. There were originally 85
temples, however, today you will get to see the remains of only 20 temples.
Those of you interested in exploring the cultural heritage of India should
not miss out a trip to the Khajuraho.
Varanasi - Varanasi, in the state of Uttar Pradesh, is
one of the holiest destinations for the Hindus. The ghats and temples of
Varanasi see a number of tourists coming in every day to pay their respect
to sacred river Ganges and prominent Hindu deities. A visit to Varanasi is
important for those desirous of knowing more about Hindu religion.
Cochin - A city in the south Indian state of Kerala,
Cochin attractions are multifold. Santa Cruz Basilica, Mattancherry Palace
and St. Francis Church showcase the cultural heritage of the city while the
Cherai Beach and the Cochin backwaters expose visitors to the natural beauty
of the area. Take a trip to it and unravel its other treasures.
Taj Mahal - Mughal Emperor Shah Jehan's greatest
contribution to the world - a magnificient masoleum built in the memory of
his beloved spouse Mumtaaz Mahal. An insignia of eternal love in white
marble, the Taj, appears amongst the seven architectural Wonders of the
World and accounts for over 3 million tourists per year. A trip to it
inevitabel once you come to India.
Red Fort - This red-sandstone multiplex was once the
palace of the erstwhile Mughal Maharajahs who ruled India for generations. A
plethora of other palaces in its campus and the antique Meena Bazaar where
the royality once shopped make it a day-long tourist jaunt. Indian Prime
Ministers till date deliver the Independence Day speech for the nation from
the Red Fort.
Jaisalmer Fort - Witness to generations of tired
merchants and travellers, caravans and camels, a 10th century fort still
stands proud and tall amidst endless expanse of deserts and sand-dunes. The
temples, intricately carved havelis and a feel of the life in the arid
desert make Jaisalmer a must-visit for tourists. Camel and jeep safaris add
to the excitement all the more.
Hawa Mahal -Jaipur's Hawa Mahal or the Palace of Winds is
an architectural marvel, befitting the appelaltion well with its abundance
of windows that circulate tranquil breeze and its look, that resembles more
a cascading screen than a building.
City Palace - A blend of Mughal and Rajasthani
architecture, the City Palace of Jaipur was once the emblem of power of the
mighty Rajputs that lorded the deserts. The palace complex is knitted with
lush lawns and a deluge of theme palaces making it one of the most visited
Top Religious Attractions
The Golden Temple - Adherents of the Sikh religion need
no introduction to their sacred pilgrimage seat. Sri Harmandir Sahib or the
Golden Temple, named so due to the quintessential golden hue that the
monument is bathed in, is laced by the equally sacred waters of the Amrit
Sarovar or the Pond of Nectar. On a jewel-studded platform is the Adi
Grantha or the sacred scripture of the Sikhs wherein are enshrined holy
inscriptions by the ten Sikh gurus and various Hindu and Moslem saints.
Meenakshi Temple -Lord Shiva and his consort Meenakshi or
the Fish-eyed one are the reigning deities here in this typical, yet classic
representative of Dravidian temple architecture with its gopurams (large
sclupted gateways) and mandapams (multi-pillared halls). Don't miss out a
regal safari on elephants embellished in bright clothes and the regal
Koark Sun Temple -The 13th Century Sun Temple or the
Black Pagoda at Konark is one of the World Heritage Sites built in the shape
of a magnanimous 24-wheeled chariot with 7 huge stallions - a classic
vehicle for the Sun God to soar the heavens. The fascinating beach flanking
it is ideal for holiday-makers.
Akshardham Temple -Flanking the banks of river Yamuna
across is this 2 billion architectural grandeur - an initiative of the
Bochasanvasi Aksharpurushottam Swaminarayan Sanstha (BAPS). A fine blend of
faith and technology, Akshardham Temple complex is replete with a majestic
11 ft statue of Lord Swaminarayan, 20,000 other statues, an IMAX theatre,
artificial lakes and an elaborate musical fountain.
Lotus Temple -A piquant lotus-shaped insignia of the
Bahai faith - the Lotus Temple - its quietitude a stark contrast to the
bustling purlieu of Kalkaji where it stands. The Lotus Temple is the
meditative refuge that draws people from across the globe irrespective of
creed and community.
Top Wild Attractions
Ranthambore National Park - One of Rajasthan's premier
wildlife sanctaury, Ranthambore National Park is well known for its Tiger
and also variety of floral variety. The Ranthambore Fort stands impressively
in the park.
Periyar Wildlife Sanctuary -The most famous sanctaury of
Kerala, Periyar is where the large herds of elephants, over 300 species of
birds and around 120 species of butterflies greet visitors. The park also
has a tiger population which you can look out for during your trip.
Jim Corbett National Park -The first National Park and
Tiger Reserve of India, Corbett National Park in Uttaranchal offers visitors
great opportunity to spot wild animals and birds. Spotting tigers, however,
requires bit of patience since the king of best doesn't gives frequent
Gir Wildlife Sanctuary -The last natural habitat of the
Asiatic Lions, Gir Wildlife Sanctuary in Gujarat makes for an interesting
visit. Apart from the Lions, the park is also home to 300 species of birds.
Kaziranga National Park -The Kaziranga National Park in
the Jorhat district of Assam is just the place if you wish to see the one
horned rhino. The park also houses a healthy population of tiger, wild
buffalos and elephants. Rare species of birds like hornbill are also a major
drawer of tourists.
Top Luxury Trains
Palace on Wheels - This is perhaps the most luxurious and
popular of all the luxury trains in India. The Palace on Wheels begins its
royal journey from the Indian capital city, Delhi and takes its visitors on
a memorable trip to Jaipur, Jaisalmer, Jodhpur, Ranthambore, Udaipur and
Agra before returning to Delhi. On board, for eight consecutive days, it is
the royalty of the erstwhile Rajasthani rulers that replaces the monotonous
lifetsyle of the passengers. A trip on the Palace on Wheels is a must for
those looking to enjoy a royal and luxurious lifestyle.
Deccan Odyssey -If the Palace on Wheels lets you explore
the regality of Rajasthan, then the Deccan Odyssey is no way behind in
unfurling before you the glorious past of Maharashtra. For a week, the
Deccan Odyssey takes its passengers on a tour to the heritage spots of
Maharashtra. Beginning from Mumbai, the train proceeds to Ratnagiri,
Sindhudurg, Goa, Kolhapur, Pune, Aurangabad (Ellora), Nasik (Ajanta) and
Mumbai. At the end of the tour, the experience is something that is
difficult to encapsualte in words.
Top Hill Stations
Munnar -This beautiful and serene hill station is located
in the south Indian state of Kerala. Prime attractions here are the green
tea gardens, breathtaking waterfalls and the Ervikulam National Park.
Shopping is Munnar means picking up items like tea, strawberries and spices.
A visit to Munnar is for those looking for a quiet but enjoyable time.
Shimla -One of the most famous hill stations in India
that draws tourists in large number, Shimla is the capital city of Himachal
Pradesh. The hill station has been benevolently blessed by mother nature and
offers its visitors a visual treat in form of pine clad hills, beautiful
valleys and waterfalls. The Mall is the prime attraction of Shimla.
Dal Lake, Kashmir -A pristine lake nestled in the
enchanting Kashmir Valley, amidst the lush Mughal gardens flanked with
multi-colored flora and avian metropolis, antique monuments and plummetted
orchards. Other than to feel nature-at-its-best tourist attraction is the
quiet boat ride in one of the thousand odd elongated and elegant shikaras or
houseboats that float on the Dal.
Kerala Backwaters -The Backwaters of Kerala are the place
meant for those in search of a peaceful moments amidst natural beauty. The
main backwater destinations in Kerala are Kumarakom, Allepey, Cochin,
Trivandrum and Kollam. Cruising along these backwaters on board the
houseboats or Kettuvallom is one experience that is forever cherished by
visitors to the state.