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Shikha Gautam Oct 21 2013

Which are the best places to visit in India this winter?

Debangana Sen Oct 21 2013
1 person found this answer useful Useful ?Yes

As the days get shorter and autumn gives way to the winter chill, it’s time to take out those woolens and gear up for the cold months ahead. If you are staying in the tropics, the chilly winter isn’t applicable to you, of course. But then with the Halloween just gone by, the festive mood and the feel-good spirit of Christmas and New Year is beginning to spread. The winter holidays are not far and it is time to plan a new vacation. But where? Ixigo brings you some shortlisted destinations for the 10 best places to visit in India this winter.



We decided to start from the south and gradually head northwards, because everybody usually gives you destinations from north to south or picked up randomly across the country, and we just felt like being contrary.



Lakshadweep Islands


A beach resort in Kadmat islands



Located in the south-west coast of India, Lakshadweep is counted amongst the seven union territories of India. Not all the islands are accessible to tourists (especially if you happen to be a foreign national). Bangaram is the most popular island in the archipelago as far as tourism is concerned, followed by Kadmat island. Full of swaying palm trees, pristine beaches, aquamarine to turquoise lagoons, adventure sports, coral reefs, warm island hospitality (you get the picture, right?), it’s no wonder why Lakshadweep has become a huge international tourist spot in the last few years.



Brahmagiri



This is a mountain range located in the western ghats on the border of Karnataka and Kerala. This time we are not talking about the heavenly ayurvedic massages, or the beautiful backwaters or the beaches. Brahmagiri is purely a trekking destination and a wildlife enthusiast’s paradise. Add to this the wonderful weather that makes Brahmagiri one of the best places to visit in India this winter. Set out on a fascinating journey deep into the rainforests of the southern India and explore its hidden gems.


The ancient Thirunelli temple in Brahmagiri



On the Kerala side of the hill you have the ancient Thirunelli temple. We are talking ancient with a capital A. The temple is around 3000 years old and locally referred to as “Kashi of South”. Then there is the Pakshipathalam bird sanctuary, that is home to numerous variety of birds. The sanctuary also has hidden caves and brooks. On the Karnataka side, You have ancient Munikal caves and Iruppu falls. There are a lot of different trekking options available here, but make sure you get permission from the Forest Range Officer first.



Goa


Basilica of Bom Jejus in Goa



Well, this was a no brainer. There is no ‘bad time’ to visit Goa, and with the Christmas and New Year celebrations just a few weeks away, you’d better book your tickets to the party capital right now. The late winters are a great time to visit Goa as the natives celebrate the birth of Christ and welcome the new year with great gusto. With it colonial legacy and a unique culture atypical of the rest of India, Goa is a surprise package in the crown of India. With stretches of beaches, wild nightlife, adventure sports, sumptuous seafood and historical architectures, Goa has something for everyone. Visit our Goa page for more information about places to visit and things to do in Goa. So, come visit Goa and begin your new year with tons of joie de vivre!



Pachmarhi


The verdant valley of Pachmarhi



Pachmarhi
is a beautiful hill station located in the valley of the Satpura forest range in the state of Madhya Pradesh. This is truly the state’s lushest and most verdant gem. Covered in groves of bamboos, dense sal forests and many other deciduous trees, this hill station offers a haven of tranquillity. Hidden amidst nature’s foliage, lie the incredible works of man. Pachmarhi is an archaeological treasure-house with ancient cave paintings (some as old as 10000 years old). There are a lot of waterfalls, brooks, heritage cottages and more. This place is perfect for a relaxing holiday.and effortless unwinding.



Kutch



The history of Kutch goes back 3000 years back and was a part of the Indus Valley civilisation. Even today you can find many nomadic tribes and artisan groups living in the area producing some of the finest textiles of India full of exquisite embroidery. Kutch refers to something that follows a cycle of wet and dry. The Rann of Kutch is famous for the wide arid and snow-white expanse of salt flats that remain dry until the monsoons and go underwater, behaving like a seasonal island. Even so, this seemingly barren wasteland is dotted with many villages.


The Rann of Kutch


You can stay with the local tribes, go on a camel safari or a jeep ride, visit the wild ass sanctuary and Kutch desert sanctuary, explore the Saurashtra village - there’s no dearth of things you can do at Kutch. And if you are coming here during December-January, you can experience the thrill of the Kutch festival, gaining access to remote desert area and watching the folk dances and musical performance of the desert tribes.



Jodhpur



How could we forget the majestic Rajasthan? Jodhpur aka the Blue city has been one of the most visited cities in Rajasthan, probably only next to Jaipur and Jaisalmer. The first thing that catches your eye as you enter the city is the looming Mehrangarh fort. Visible from any part of the city, the Mehrangarh fort was the base from where the Rao Jodha ruled his kingdom of Marwar.There are a number of other architectural marvel to explore in the city (Mandore gardens and Jaswant Thada).


The Mehrangarh Fort overlooking the Blue city of Jodhpur



An awesome shopping destination, Jodhpur is one of the best places to buy, Rajasthani jewellery, Bandhani work, handicrafts and leather items. And please don’t leave the city without tasting the famous Mirchibada (stuffed chilly fritters) and Makhaniya Lassi. You can even plan a day trip to the Keechan village, where large number of Demoiselle cranes arrive every year post August and watch the local custom of feeding these birds. The warmth and kindness of the local folks will be etched in your heart forever. Visit the things to do in Jodhpur for more information



Delhi


The Red Fort



Winter is a great time to pay a visit to Delhi. From the temples to nightclubs, food and culture, parks and gardens, museums and historical monuments, Delhi has a lot on its platter. The national capital is undoubtedly the most multi-ethnic city in the country that has the right mix of traditionalism and modernity. Explore Old Delhi and its gourmet delights, ride a bike around the city, visit the Red Fort and Qutub Minar, shop to your heart’s content at Sarojini Nagar, hop on a HOHO tour bus and take in the local attractions, or shake some hip at the happening night clubs in the city. There is so much to see and do in Delhi. You would be amazed at the variety of options available for you!



Dooars



Dooars
are the foothills of the eastern Himalayas and act as a gateway to the North-East India and Bhutan. One of the best places to visit in India this winter, it is full of lush greenery the area acts as a welcome respite from the blinding city lights. The Jaldapara Wildlife Sanctuary is the most famous of all the wildlife sanctuaries in the area. You can spot the one-horned rhino, elephants, tigers and crocodiles very easily.


A sprawling tea estate in Dooars with the Himalayas in the background



Dooars is accessible only by road, which are cut through the thicket of forests. Driving through these roads surrounded by the dense greenery and calls of the jungle is truly a remarkable and unforgettable experience. There are also a number of sprawling tea estates in the area which are a major source of economy in these parts. You can also visit the tribal villages and study their local customs and rituals. This is a perfect spot to spend a wonderful vacation in the lap of nature.



Pangot


A White-browed Shrike Babbler seen on a trek in Pangot



Another breathtaking hill station close to Nainital, Pangot is still far from being consumed by commercialism as is the case with many other hill stations. You will still find the pristine beauty of nature reflected everywhere you go. From awe-inspiring mountains, scenic surroundings and the laidback charm make it an ideal place to visit at anytime. However winter attracts a good amount of footfall as tourist come to experience snowfall. Pangot also happens to be a bird-watcher’s paradise. You will be in for a bundle of surprises.



Auli


As we come to the end of the list, we couldn’t think of a better destination than Auli to spend your winter vacations in. Speaking of Auli in winters, the first thing that strikes the mind is skiing. The valley has some great ski slopes complete with ski lifts and chairs. This is the best way to enjoy the freezing winters and the snow. Not as popular as the well known Gulmarg, Shimla and Manali, Auli might appeal to those who are looking to be away from too crowded or ‘touristy’ destinations. Though this hill station is not long in becoming one of the best ski resorts in the world.


Auli covered under a carpet of snow in December



If you are not into skiing, the beauty of Auli will far from disappoint you. Take a ride on the gondola and enjoy the dreamy views of the landscape down below, or go on a trek and create your own adventures, bring out the inner child in you and indulge in a game of snow fight, build a snowman or just whizz down the snow slope on a snowboard. The best time to visit here is the last week of January to the first week of March.



We hope this answer was to your satisfaction. If you are keen of experiencing snow this vacation, check out our article on 10 places to see snowfall around Delhi for more such destinations. So, choose any one of our shortlisted best places to visit in India this winter and set forth on a new journey. Bon Voyage!

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