If mountains call your name and nirvana is what you seek, if different cultures fascinate you and you have an eye for art, then India should be on top of your travel bucket list. You can be a foodie or adventure enthusiast, this Asian paradise will welcome you with open arms. Here are the top 10 reasons that will convince you to discover what India has to offer. And even though it says ten reasons, let me tell you a secret – there is only one big reason you need to focus on – it’s incredible, mind-blowing diversity represented in each and every branch. So read on and you will understand what India has in store.
You must have heard the typical – “But Indian food is spicy” – dialogue already and I urge you not to believe a single word of it. From Kolkata’s famous Sandesh to Kanyakumari’s appam, India will take your taste buds on a ride with hundreds of sweet delicacies. And when it comes to spicy food, you will be presented with equally enticing choices. Be it Delhi’s chole-bhature, Hyderabad’s chicken biryani or Maharashtra’s pithala-bhakari, each corner of this vast country will have something scrumptious for you.
Being one of the biggest countries in the world, India has it all. Of course, the great Himalayan Mountains need no introduction. Looking for a good-old sun & sand vacay? Beaches of Goa are here. Want to stay in the heart of nature? Kerala’s backwaters are perfect for you. The one corner of India is known for the vast desert of Thar in Rajasthan whereas another is covered with the dense woods of Kaziranga National Park. These are the lands ruled by tigers, elephants, and leopards and these are the lands that have something for each type of traveler.
I always feel that India is a cozy, vibrant quilt stitched together with the richness of different cultures. Each state in India is known for a distinct culture. Attend traditional dance performances, be a part of local canvas during festivities, see how religious puja is performed, listen to the ancient chanting of Sanskrit mantras, let the echo of temples follow your heart, and you will slowly start realizing how diverse and yet how strongly weaved this country is around culture.
One visit to India and you will be fascinated by a plethora of monuments, each one from a different timeline donning an influence of several architectural styles with ease. The elegant miners of Taj Mahal are known to many. But, there are hundreds of years old ruins hidden in Hampi, UNESCO World Heritage site of ancient Ajanta-Ellora caves, the auspicious Golden Temple, and Basilica of Bom Jesus in Goa along with majestic palaces in Rajasthan. Do not forget the largest mosque in India – Jama Masjid and tiny monasteries in Northeast India. Then there is the newest Statue of Unity standing proudly on the banks of Narmada River. You can spend months here visiting different monuments!
5. Yoga and spirituality
Spirituality is steeped into the veins of India and its heart beats for peace. With the aim of introducing a simpler way of living and correct way of thinking, your spiritual trip to India will give you a whole new perspective towards pursuing life. With yoga schools in Goa and meditation retreats in Rishikesh, the country is passing on its traditions with a touch of modernity. If you are looking for a physical form, then head off to Uttarakhand as this ‘land of God’ has numerous sacred sites where you will get a glimpse of ancient knowledge.
This talented country is so going to steal a piece of your heart with its fine craftsmanship! Some of the best Indian souvenirs are in some way or the other related to art. Different fabrics, wooden puppets, block paintings accompanied by a vast array of contemporary art are a treat to art connoisseurs. Explore the local bazaars and you will definitely find a piece or two of local artworks to take back home.
India is home to several national parks where rare and endangered flora and fauna reside peacefully. You can take a jeep safari or decide to hike your way through forests and you are bound to witness a glimpse of a variety of wildlife India has kept safe through centuries. Tigers of Jim Corbett National Park, one-horned rhino of Kaziranga, elephants of Periyar, and a plethora of bird species in Kanha along with leopards, deer, wild dogs, bears, and bison herds should not be missed when in India.
8. Adventure activities
Tie your shoelaces, folks, as India is gearing up to be your next adventure destination. Rajasthan will get your heart pumping with hot air ballooning and desert safaris. Goa, being the cheapest scuba diving destination in India, will take you underwater to introduce rich marine life. And then there is Uttarakhand! From paragliding to bungee jumping and from skiing to river rafting this state is set to get your adrenaline rushing.
Bustling nightlife scenes completed by peppy parties where you start your night with a cold beer and end a party with a hot cup of coffee to fight that strong hangover are becoming common in India. From the beaches of Goa to the lanes of Delhi, you will always find an excuse to dance your night away. From international alcohol brands to local varieties, nightlife in India is shaped by different factors and you will love them all!
And last, but not least – cruise rides! Houseboats in Kerala are perfect for a romantic getaway and newly introduced Mumbai to Goa cruises are ideal when you want to soak in the luxurious flavor. When you are done partying, head off to Mandovi River houseboat in Goa by tripraja as you will get to see this tiny state from a different side. And have you ever seen postcard-perfect shikara floating on Dal Lake in Kashmir? Take a ride in those shikaras and you will never want to leave Kashmir! It will be an entirely different boating experience, the one that you will always cherish.