Best Places to Visit in India

India is a vast and diverse country. With seven different countries bordering it, not to mention the Arabian Sea and the Bay of Bengal, the country has many different faces. Within India’s borders, there are more than 20 official languages, numerous religions, and a wide range of cuisines. Travel is essential for truly experiencing the breadth of Indian culture and history.

Some of the best places to visit in India

Goa

goa

Goa, a former Portuguese colony on India’s western coast, combines Indian culture with colonial influences and plenty of international tourism. Goa’s popularity stems primarily from its beautiful beaches. Candolim Beach is the busiest, with visitors from all over the world flocking to soak up the rays. Anjuna Beach, on the other hand, is much less crowded. It’s also a great place to walk to Chapora Fort and see the sandy coastline from a different angle. Palolem is regarded as one of Goa’s most beautiful beaches, with its natural bay surrounded by lofty headlands on either side.

Places to Visit in Goa: Palolem Beach, Dudhsagar Falls, Basilica of Bom Jesus, Aguada Fort, Baga Beach, Anjuna Beach, Calangute Beach, Shree Mangesha Temple, Immaculate Conception Church

Best Time to Visit: November to February

How to Reach

  • Nearest Airport: Dabolim International Airport
  • Nearest Train Station: Vasco-Da-Gama Railway Station (North Goa); Madgaon Junction (South Goa)

Agra

agra

Agra is known for one thing, the iconic and ultimately impressive Taj Mahal. Set on the south bank of the Yamuna River, the Taj draws millions of tourists a year. Built by an emperor as an extravagant memorial to his wife, the mausoleum’s porcelain white marble is an emblem of romance and adventure. Agra itself sits in the shadow of its imposing monument but is a small and welcoming city. The ancient Mughal-era Agra Fort is an attractive spot to visit, peer over the walls here and catch your first hypnotizing glimpse of the Taj.

Best Time to Visit: October to March

Places to Visit in Agra: Agra Fort, Jama Masjid, Abkar’s Tomb, Itimad-ud-Daulah’s Tomb, Mehtab Bagh, Gurudwara Guru Ka Taal, Dolphin Water Park, Wildlife Conservation and Care Centre

How to Reach

  • Nearest Airport: Agra Airport; New Delhi’s Indira Gandhi International Airport
  • Nearest Train Station: Agra Cantonment Railway Station

Amritsar

Amritsar

Amritsar, a city steeped in history and spirituality, is one of the most visited cities in the state of Punjab. It is home to the famous Golden Temple, also known as the Sri Harmandir Sahib, and is visited by devout Sikhs and tourists from all over the world. With sites like Jallianwala Bagh and Wagah Border, the city also appeals to your patriotic side.

Tourists return to Amritsar time and again to pay their respects at the Golden Temple and to witness the mesmerizing Wagah-Attari Border ceremony held at the India-Pakistan border.

Best Time to Visit: November to March

Places to Visit in Amritsar: Akal Takht, Mata Lal Devi Mandir, Partition Museum, Gobindgarh Fort, Central Sikh Museum, War Memorial and Museum, ISKCON Temple, Gurudwara Shaheed Ganj Sahib

How to Reach

  • Nearest Airport: Sri Guru Ram Dass Jee International Airport
  • Nearest Train Station: Amritsar Junction

Also read: Best Places to Visit in Hyderabad

Udaipur

Udaipur

Udaipur, Rajasthan’s city of lakes, glistens romantically on the outskirts of the desert.

The city is surrounded by lush hills and is home to the mesmerizing Lake Palace, which sits in the middle of a tranquil lake.

Another fascinating sight is the imposing but graceful City Palace, as well as the Monsoon Palace, which has walls made of gleaming white marble.

Explore ancient temples, wander the winding streets of this enchanting corner of India, and step back in time inside its ancient bazaars.

The Venice of the East is one of Rajasthan’s most spectacular cities and maybe India’s best destination for admiring the bygone-era palatial architecture.

Udaipur will surely mesmerize you with its regal past, grand edifices, vibrant bazaars, and absolute serenity.

Best Time to Visit: October to March

Ladakh

leh

Ladakh is a mountainous destination in northernmost India, in the Kashmir region. This is a large region with a low population density and nomadic residents. The area’s breathtaking, pristine scenery is a major draw, but almost all visitors will also spend time in the town of Leh. The town is located at a high elevation and is home to the 17th-century Palace of Ladakh’s King. Buddhist culture is also prevalent in Leh, and you may want to visit some of the numerous Buddhist monasteries and temples.

Best Time to Visit: April to June

Shimla

Shimla

Shimla, located in Himachal Pradesh at a height of 2276 meters above sea level, has long drawn honeymooners and families. As the summer capital of British India, the stunning colonial architecture and old-world charm of this hill station are unmissable. Shimla also enchants nature lovers with its snow-capped mountains, rolling valleys, and stunning lakes. The Kalka-Shimla train route, which offers dramatic views of the surrounding hills and villages, is also a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Shimla also has cozy restaurants, cafes, and hotels where you can enjoy adventurous activities and local delicacies.

Best Time to Visit: March to June

Places to Visit in Shimla: Mall Road, Kufri, Green Valley, Jakhu Temple, Chail, The Ridge, Shimla Christ Church, Narkanda, Himalayan Bird Park, Annandale, Himachal State Museum, Theog, Kali Bari Temple

How to Reach

  • Nearest Airport: Shimla’s Jubbarhatti Airport; Chandigarh International Airport
  • Nearest Train Station: Kalka Railway Station; Chandigarh Railway Station

Delhi

delhi

If you spend any time in Northern India, you will almost certainly visit Delhi, the capital city.

The massive sprawling destination is home to several districts and is regarded as one of the world’s oldest cities.

There is something for everyone in Delhi that is dotted with iconic Mughal monuments, temples, heritage sites, performing arts venues, colorful bazaars, shopping malls, planetariums, museums, and restaurants.

Chandni Chowk, the country’s oldest and busiest market, is located in Delhi.

Rashtrapati Bhawan, Parliament of India, and India Gate are one of the city’s many political landmarks.

Best Time to Visit: October to March

Places to Visit in Delhi: Red Fort, Humayun’s Tomb, Qutub Minar, Lotus Temple, Akshardham Temple, Purana Qila, Jantar Mantar, Gurudwara Bangla Sahib Ji, Nehru Park, Janpath Market

Ellora and Ajanta Caves

Ellora cave
Ellora cave
Ajanta caves
Ajanta caves

You can visit the Ellora and Ajanta caves in Maharashtra. Ellora has a massive complex of shrines carved out of the rocky landscape. These 34 cave shrines are up to 1,500 years old and belong to three different religions: Buddhism, Jainism, and Hinduism. Ajanta is two hours away and has 29 caves. The Ajanta caves are covered in murals and paintings, the majority of which depict Buddhist stories. While the two cave complexes are two hours apart, it is well worth visiting both to compare these incredible attractions.

Best Time to Visit: June to March

Varanasi

Varanasi

Varanasi, or Banaras, is one of India’s most sacred cities, located on the banks of the Ganga River in Uttar Pradesh. The city is well-known for having some of the most revered temples and Ghats in the country, and it attracts devotees and tourists from all over the world. Varanasi, one of the world’s oldest cities, is also known as the home of Lord Shiva and Goddess Parvati. It is believed that bathing in the Ganges will wash away all your sins. The bustling city is well-known for its museums, authentic Banarasi cuisine, Banarasi sarees, and handicrafts.

Best Time to Visit: November to February

Places to Visit in Varanasi: Shri Kashi Vishwanath Temple, Dashashwamedh Ghat, Manikarnika Ghat, Ramnagar Fort, Shri Durga Temple, Kaal Bhairav Temple, Sarnath Museum, Sankatmochan Temple

How to Reach

  • Nearest Airport: Varanasi’s Lal Bahadur Shastri International Airport
  • Nearest Train Station: Varanasi Junction

Kerala

kerala

The southwestern state of India known as Kerala is a place of tropical beauty. Palm trees, white sand beaches, and eco-tourism are all big reasons to explore the region. Besides its famous backwaters, elegant houseboats, and temple festivals, Kerala is also home to the Thekkady Tiger preserve. The hub of Kerala is the city of Kochi, where you can see the local fishing industry thriving along with modern high-rises and colonial architecture.

Best time to visit Kerala

Winter, from September to March, is the best time to visit Kerala. This is the time of year when Kerala has a pleasant climate and low humidity. Winter is the ideal time to visit Kerala’s amazing cities, with their enchanting lagoons, tranquil canals, and spicy plantations. Hill stations in Kerala, such as Munnar and Wayanad, are popular with visitors during the summer months of April and May. People seeking ayurvedic treatments prefer the Monsoon season, which runs from June to August.

Essentially, the winter season, which runs from September to March, is the best time to visit Kerala because it allows you to enjoy the beautiful surroundings in pleasant weather. November to February is the best time to visit Kerala’s backwaters.

Munnar

Munnar

Munnar, located in Kerala’s the Western Ghats, is considered one of the most serene and beautiful places in India. The natural beauty of the hill station is impeccable, with rolling hills, scenic valleys, virgin forests, waterfalls, streams, national parks, tea and spice plantations, and winding walkways. However, it is Munnar’s unmistakable colonial charm that draws many tourists year after year. The hill station was a popular British vacation destination, and there are many churches, English colonial bungalows and cottages, and other structures here.

Best Time to Visit: September to March

Places to Visit in Munnar: Echo Point, Top Station, Atukkad Waterfalls, Eravikulam National Park, Tata Tea Museum, Pallivasal Falls, Chinnar Wildlife Sanctuary, Rose Garden, Kolukkumalai Tea Estate

How to Reach

  • Nearest Airport: Cochin International Airport
  • Nearest Train Station: Aluva Railway Station

Coorg

Coorg

Coorg, or Kodagu, is another overhyped holiday destination surrounded by majestic mountain ranges and boasting a lush green landscape. This Karnataka hill station is a popular weekend getaway for nature lovers and those seeking peace and quiet. Coorg’s charm is unparalleled, from its lush green hills and sparkling streams to its quaint villages and vast expanses of coffee and spice plantations. Because Coorg has pleasant weather all year, it is a popular destination for Bangalore residents seeking to escape the city’s chaos.

Best Time to Visit: October to June

Places to Visit in Coorg: Abbey Falls, Raja’s Seat, Shri Omkareshwara Temple, Government Museum Madikeri, Raja’s Tomb, Talakaveri, Madikeri Fort, Honnamana Kere Lake, Namdroling Monastery

How to Reach

  • Nearest Airport: Mangalore International Airport
  • Nearest Train Station: Mysuru Junction

Manali

Manali

Manali, located in Himachal Pradesh’s Kullu Valley, attracts visitors with its natural beauty and tranquility. The hill station attracts visitors from all over the country, especially during the summer months when cities suffer from the sweltering heat. Snow-capped mountains, dense forests, riverine valleys, and sparkling streams enhance the beauty of the hill station, making it one of India’s most popular vacation destinations. Another appealing aspect of Manali is its beautiful blend of rich cultural heritage and modernization. Aside from relaxing and taking in the beauty of the surroundings, you can also engage in thrilling adventure activities for a memorable vacation.

Best Time to Visit: October to June

Places to Visit in Manali: Manu Temple, Hidimba Devi Temple, Museum of Himachal Culture and Folk Art, Jogini Falls, Himalayan Nyinmapa Tibetan Buddhist Temple, Nehru Kund, Mall Road

How to Reach

  • Nearest Airport: Bhuntar Airport
  • Nearest Train Station: Joginder Nagar Railway Station

Ooty

Ooty

Ooty is a popular holiday destination for visitors from Tamil Nadu, Kerala, and Karnataka. Given that the southern part of India gets extremely hot during the summer, a trip to Ooty provides much-needed relief from the heat. This beautiful and tranquil hill station is also a popular honeymoon destination for couples. Ooty provides breathtaking views of the Nilgiri Hills as well as lush green landscapes dotted with alpine woods, clear lakes, emerald green tea estates, and colorful blossoms. The popular Nilgiri Mountain Railway, which was designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2005, is also located in the hill station.

Best Time to Visit: October to June

Places to Visit in Ooty: Ooty Botanical Gardens, Dolphin’s Nose, Rose Garden, Avalanche Lake, Doddabetta Peak, St Stephan’s Church, Thread Garden, Kalhatti Falls, Annamalai Temple, Kamraj Sagar Lake, Catherine Falls

How to Reach

  • Nearest Airport: Coimbatore International Airport
  • Nearest Train Station: Udagamandalam Railway Station

Lonavala and Khandala

Lonavala
Lonavala, Maharashtra, India
Rajmachi Point, Khandala, Lonavla, Maharashtra
Rajmachi Point, Khandala, Lonavla, Maharashtra

Lonavala and Khandala are twin hill stations in Maharashtra that are 622 meters above sea level. The hill stations are popular with Mumbai and Pune residents all year due to their pleasant weather and proximity to the cities. During the monsoon season, both Lonavala and Khandala come alive with lush greenery, sparkling lakes, and milky-white waterfalls that add to the beauty of the landscape. Aside from being a paradise for nature lovers, hill stations are also popular with adventure seekers.

Best Time to Visit: December to February; July to September

Places to Visit in Lonavala and Khandala: Tiger’s Leap, Rajmachi Fort, Aamby Valley, Lohagad Fort, Bhushi Dam, Sunil’s Celebrity Wax Museum, Visapur Fort, Tikona Fort, Narayani Dham Temple

How to Reach

  • Nearest Airport: Pune International Airport; Mumbai’s Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj International Airport
  • Nearest Train Station: Lonavala Railway Station; Khandala Railway Station

Sikkim

Buddha Park, Ravangla, Sikkim, India
Buddha Park, Ravangla, Sikkim, India

Sikkim, a jewel in northern India, is one of the most beautiful and serene holiday destinations you will ever find. Although a vacation in Sikkim may sound clichéd, the hill station is a popular destination for nature lovers and peace seekers. There are so many things that add a distinct charm to this hill station, from snow-capped mountains and colorful meadows to thick woodlands and exotic flowers. Not only that, but the town also has some lovely monasteries, stupas, and Hindu shrines, making it a religiously significant location for Hindus and Buddhists.

Best Time to Visit: March to June; October to December

Places to Visit in Sikkim: Gangtok, Nathula Pass, Tsomgo Lake, Kanchenjunga Base Camp, Pelling, Zuluk, Gurudongmar Lake, Rumtek Monastery, Namchi, Jawaharlal Nehru Botanical Garden

How to Reach

  • Nearest Airport: Sikkim’s Pakyong Airport; Bagdogra International Airport
  • Nearest Train Station: New Jalpaiguri Railway Station

Shillong

Shillong, Meghalaya, India
Shillong, Meghalaya, India

Nested in Meghalaya, known for its pleasant weather and picturesque locations, is one of India’s most cliched yet popular tourist destinations. Because of the rolling hills, gushing waterfalls, and lovely landscape that reminded European colonists of stunning Scotland, the hill station is popularly known as Scotland of the East. It also has beautiful lakes, high mountain peaks, fantastic golf courses, museums, and cafes. Furthermore, the distinct culture, delectable local cuisines, and incredible shopping districts ensure a fun-filled vacation every time.

Best Time to Visit: September to May

Places to Visit : Umiam Lake, Elephant Waterfalls, Cathedral of Mary Help of Christians, Police Bazaar, Don Bosco Museum, Sweet Falls, Phan Nonglait Park, Spread Eagle Falls, Lady Hydari Park, Sohpetbneng

How to Reach

  • Nearest Airport: Shillong Airport; Guwahati International Airport
  • Nearest Train Station: Guwahati Railway Station

Bhutan

Taktsang Lhakhang, Bhutan
Taktsang Lhakhang, Bhutan

Bhutan, nestled among the mighty Himalayas, has a stunning natural landscape, surrounded by majestic monasteries, and a distinct culture and tradition. Learn about Buddhism, eat chilies, and spend some time in the Himalayas. Bhutan, the Land of the Thunder Dragon. Thimphu and Paro are two popular cities to visit while in Bhutan. Thimphu’s must-see attractions include the Thimphu Chorten, the National Institute for Zorig Chusum, Tashichho Dzong, Dochula Pass, Punakha Dzong, Changangkha Lhakhang, and the Phajoding Monastery and must-visit places in Paro is – Tiger’s Nest Monastery, Paro Valley.

Best Time to Visit

During the spring season (Mar-May)

How to Reach

Paro International Airport and there are direct flights from Delhi & Kolkata and the average time to travel is about 3 hrs.

Conclusion

These are some of India’s most popular tourist destinations, attracting a large number of visitors year after year due to their natural beauty and man-made splendors. Because most tourists flock to these locations during the peak season, plan ahead of time to book flights and hotels in Goa, Delhi, or any other destination. This allows you to take advantage of good deals and easy availability. If you prefer a more peaceful vacation, go during the off-season when these places are less crowded and hotel rates are lower. When you visit these locations, you will undoubtedly leave with wonderful memories.