How about doing something different this new year’s eve? Fun, fervour and memories–all under your budget. From booking cabs online to making prior hotel reservations, we give you a low down on pocket-friendly travels. Plan a trip to these new year destinations for less than 10k and welcome 2016 with friends and family.
A favourite weekend retreat from Mumbai, the hill station of Lonavala is about majestic Western Ghats, scenic spots, adventure sports, rugged hills and some “me time” amidst all this. Dotted with beautiful lakes and lush greenery, this pretty hill station is worth taking a trip to on new year’s eve.
Commute Fare: Round trip (1 day): INR 5,000 for taxi; bus fare starts from INR 400 (AC/Sleeper). There are local trains as well with AC fares for INR 250-300 and non-AC coaches at around INR 50-60.
Accommodation Options: There is no dearth of good budget hotels in Lonavala and normally the tariff starts from INR 1,200 per night for pocket-friendly accommodation options.
A pretty hill station by the banks of the Pravara River, close to Mt. Kalsubai, Bhandardara (5,400 ft) is the highest peak in the Sahyadris. About 185 km from Mumbai, this could be your best pick if you want to start your year away from maddening city life.
Commute Fare: The nearest railhead from Bhandardara is Igatpuri and you can opt for taxis from here (INR 800 to INR 1,000) Regular bus fare is around INR 50 from Igatpuri to Bhandardara. Taxi from Mumbai to Bhandardara will cost you around INR 3500.
Accommodation Options: MTDC Resort (Telephone: +91-2424- 257171), dorms and Yash Resort (+91-2424-257031) are good budget stays in the hill town.
A lovely town wrapped with interesting historical tales, Gwalior is also one of the most favourite winter destinations in India. There is not much to explore here except the magnificent Gwalior Fort and the Old City which makes for an interesting walk.
Commute Fare: The best way to visit Gwalior from Delhi is to board the Bhopal Shatabdi which departs at 6 AM and reaches Gwalior by 9:45 AM (just about 4 hours journey). Fare is INR 600 for chair car.
Accommodation Options: Throw all your accommodation worries to the wind as there is a world of budget hotels in Gwalior which promise a comfortable stay experience. Normal tariffs start from INR 700.
Like many of India’s classic hill stations, Nainital is criticised for tourists, traffic and commercialisation, and yet manages to take your breath away at the odd moment. One of the most famous weekend retreats from Delhi, the hill station is the perfect place to sit back, relax and start your year with some snowy memories.
Commute Fare: Buses ply on a regular basis from Delhi to Nainital with tariffs starting from INR 500 (non-AC buses) and there are trains to Kathgodam as well. Some famous train options are Ranikhet Express, Uttaranchal Sampark Kranti Express and Anand Vihar-Kathgodam Express. From Kathgodam, it is a one hour drive with taxis charging around INR 1,000.
Accommodation Options: Nainital has pretty decent budget options including Alka-the Lake Side Hotel, KMVN Snow View and Mount n Mist (near Sherwood College).
How about starting off your new year on a spiritual note? Well, we suggest you to take a trip to Amritsar to have a hatke experience this year. Don’t miss visiting the Golden Temple, Jallianwala Bagh and tasting the local delicacies.
Commute Fare: Take Punjab Roadways bus (around INR 300) or you can also opt for various trains between Delhi to Amritsar which commute on a regular basis.
Accommodation Options: The city has some nice budget stay options like Geostays Platinum, Hotel Blue Moon, Hotel PR Residency and Hotel Sanjog International. The tariffs for budget properties start from INR 1,500.
About 6 hours’ drive from Chennai, a trip to Tranquebar is nothing short of spectacular. Nothing quite prepares you for the dramatic first sight. You drive in through a huge archway, into a street lined by aged buildings. Then the road widens out and there in front of you is the blindingly blue sea and the fort.
Commute Fare: The nearest railway station is Mayiladuthurai (40 km from Tranquebar) which is connected to Chennai. Taxi charges come at around INR 700.
Accommodation Options: Tranquebar has limited stay options so it is recommended to have prior bookings.
Tiny Yercaud, a very affordable hill station, is rich in natural charm. There are coffee plantations and orange groves as you approach and the town itself is comfortably small and rewardingly pretty.
Commute Fare: Salem is the nearest railhead and you can take local buses or private taxis from there. Taxi charge would be around INR 700 to 1,000 from Salem.
Accommodation Options: Check out the budget hotels in Yercaud and you will be saving a lot of cash for shopping and sightseeing.
Secret mountain paths, mist and mountains, hedges full of wildflowers, gardens full of roses, placid lakes — this pretty hill town is rich with discoveries. Head to Kodai to celebrate a quiet new year with your loved ones.
Commute Fare: Take Rajahamsa bus service from Bengaluru which will cost you around INR 400 per person for Kodaikanal.
Accommodation Options: Kodaikanal has lovely cottages which won’t be too heavy on your pocket, offering you a memorable experience.
Wayanad destinations offer an experience of wilderness with the comforts of a modern holiday. You can trek mountains, bathe under waterfalls, chat with plantation owners who trade coffee, spices, vanilla, and listen to legends by the campfire. Wayand treks are an unforgettable experience and are must do for adventure enthusiasts.
Commute Fare: The place is well-connected from Bangalore with regular bus and cab services. You can also opt for shared cabs as they will come cheaper.
Accommodation Options: There are a number of budget hotels in Wayanad which offer comfortable accommodation and a plethora of services amidst lush greenery.
Darjeeling is a town made for long walks, situated over a ridge and spilling down the hillside in a complicated series of interconnecting roads. You’ll come across a lot of colonial architecture — English cottages with antiquated windows, magnificent school buildings and churches.
Commute Fare: Nearest railhead: New Jalpaiguri (88 km/ 4 hours). Taxi costs INR 2,500 to Darjeeling. Toy Train runs daily from New Jalpaiguri to Darjeeling (8-9 hours). From Kolkata, it’s a long 18-hour drive and can be done only with a night halt. ITDC deluxe and AC buses and ‘Rocket’ buses from Dharmatala in Kolkata will take you as far as Siliguri. From here catch a Trekker (fare INR 150 per person) or a Maruti Van (INR 1,500) to Darjeeling.
Accommodation Options: Some of the recommended budget options are Planters Club, Hotel Club, Hotel Seven Seventeen, the Darjeeling Bellevue Hotel and Raph Khang.
1. Daman and Diu
A place with a vast and turbulent history, Daman has a lot to explore. Right from beautiful sparkling blue beaches to ancient forts and groves of exotic and indigenous trees, Diu offers a wide variety of places of interest to suit your moods and desires.
Commute Fare: Located about 290 km from Ahmedabad, Daman is well-connected via train, buses and cabs.
Accommodation Options: Pocket-friendly options in Daman include Hotel Marina, Hotel Gurukripa, Hotel Dariya Darshan and Hotel Shilton.
2. Mount Abu
Mount Abu’s reputation as a “honeymooners’ paradise” does not do full justice to the charms of this lovely hillscape. It actually has much more to offer to all kinds of visitors, especially in winters when the sun is a friendly daytime star and at night you can lovingly drape yourself in woollens.
Commute Fare: Ahmedabad is about 220 km and the taxi will charge you around INR 2,500. There are private and RSRTC buses between these two cities
Accommodation Options: Budget hotels in Mount Abu promise a great stay experience for the guests.
Jigyasha loves to read and travel!