While you may not realize it at first glance, India is one of the richest, most energetic and spectacular places in the world. It’s so “not to be missed” that it has become one of the top destinations for today’s international traveler. However, given its massive size and huge scope—it’s the seventh largest country in the world, to be precise—there is so much to see and do that it’s impossible to be satisfied with a single visit.
But never fear, you can still get an excellent experience in a single visit if you know where to go… and when. Don’t forget to add the following spectacular destinations to your bucket list, and to your calendar, in order to experience the best that India has on offer.
September to February go to… Bangalore
India is a developing country that is quickly winning in many sectors of the modern digital race. It’s largely headquartered in Bangalore, a technology hub that also shines as one of the most important cities to the country’s economy.
The loud bustling city is the pulsating and urbanized heart of India; the country’s equivalent of Tokyo or San Francisco. Bangalore is filled with luxury retail shopping, international restaurants adapted to local tastes, and countless attractions.
Do not miss the elaborate Bangalore Palace or the lush gardens of Cubbon Park in the city center.
November to February go to… Hyderabad
If you want to experience the Hollywood essence of India, Hyderabad is your destination. It’s filled with economic contrasts, curry vendors, masala dosa and chai tea, ancient mosques and the iconic Charminar. The visually delicious architecture and intoxicating culture is comparable to what you’d in find in New Delhi, but you can experience it without the latter’s throngs of people.
November to February go to… Jaipur, the “Pink City”
In the center of Jaipur lies City Palace, home of the ancient Indian royal family. If Jaipur’s own sumptuousness doesn’t reveal their influence, the visit to the water palace Jal Mahal will do the trick. You’ll also find Govind Dev Ji, a legendary shrine to the powerful feats of the god Krishna. If you’re feeling adventurous, go directly to the downtown bazaar where you’ll find wandering merchants, shops of all kinds, and the mesmerizing urban chaos that’s typical of India.
To cap of your Jaipur holiday, visit Jantar Mantar, India’s astronomical observatory which was named a World Heritage Site thanks to its exquisitely sublime architecture.
September to January go to… Mysore
Spanning 10 days during September and October in the beautiful city of Mysore, the Dasara Festival cannot be missed. Celebrated in the name of the Hindu god Rama, the festival marks the end of the Ramlila and serves as a commemoration of the mythical victory of the god against King Ravana. Expect to see Mysore’s colorful streets and rivers filled with statues of different Hindu gods, while large effigies of the Ravana are burned, symbolizing the end of evil in the world.
Meanwhile, Mysore’s destinations are draw on any day, festival or not. Mysore Palace’s impressive engineering and architecture also earned it a World Heritage Site designation. You can also have a traditional, British-style tea at Lalit Mahal Palace, where you can have a British-style tea, and visit the famous Sand Sculpture Museum to admire 16 intricate artworks.
August to January go to… Udaipur
Udaipur is famous for the New Green Moon Festival, which descends over the city’s lakes during August. Filled with lavish palaces and royal residences, it’s also ideal for a romantic trip at any time with your partner. Alternatively, hold off until March in order to enjoy the multi-hued, celebratory chaos that is Holi, the Festival of Color.
For a taste of Udaipur’s visual splendor, you can see some of its most famous architectural marvels in the 1983 James Bond film, Octopussy.
We hope these destinations help you craft a unique travel itinerary to India or even just begin to fall in love with this country rich in architecture, culture and tradition.
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