Summing Up (With South Part of INDIA)

South India is the area including the five southern Indian states of Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka, Kerala, Tamil Nadu, and Telangana, as well as the three union territories of Andaman and Nicobar islands, Lakshadweep and Puducherry. South India is bounded by the Bay of Bengal in the east, the Arabian Sea in the west and the Indian Ocean in the south. The majority of the people in South India speak one of the four major Dravidian languages: Tamil, Telugu, Kannada, and Malayalam.

#1 Andhra Pradesh

  • Andhra Pradesh is the 4th largest State of India. The Capital of the state was Hyderabad which is also the largest city. However, due to the announcement of recently formed Telangana State, Hyderabad will be a part and capital of Telangana.
  • The native language “Telugu” is often associated with the Early Cholas.
  • The State of Andhra Pradesh is well promoted by their tourism department and is well known for its rich natural resources, temples, and rivers.
  • The state of Andhra also shares a part of the coastal areas of the Bay of Bengal. The rich cultural heritage, ancient architecture and historical importance have made Andhra Pradesh one of the the top tourist destinations in India.

#2 Karnataka

  • Originally known as the princely State of Mysore, Karnataka is located in the South-Western region of India.
  • Close to the Arabian Sea and the Laccadive Sea, Karnataka is known for its beautiful yet unpopulated beaches and rich cultures.
  • The land has also seen the region of the ancient Kingdoms of the south such as the Chola, Chera, Vijaynagar, Sathavahanas, Maurya, Hoysala and many more right upto the Mighty Tipu Sultan and subsequently the British.
  • Kannada is the amin language spoken here and picking up a few local words can often be very helpful while travelling.
  • The state is famous for its natural, cultural and architectural heritage and there are plenty of places one can visit on his/her trip to Karnataka.

#3 Kerala

  • Kerala is situated on the tropical Malabar Coast of southwestern India, is one of the most popular tourist destinations in the country.
  • Named as one of the ten paradises of the world by National Geographic Traveler, Kerala is famous especially for its ecotourism initiatives and beautiful backwaters.
  • Eastern Kerala consists of land encroached upon by the Western Ghats; the region thus includes high mountains, gorges, and deep-cut valleys. The wildest lands are covered with dense forests, while other regions lie under tea and coffee plantations.
  • It produces an immense number of spices, and has a large number of waterfalls and light houses.

#4 Tamil Nadu

  • Tamil is the oldest living language in the world. Tamil was declared a classical language by UNESCO. Tamil is the only language that is also personified as a god. Tamil Nadu has a temple for ‘Tamil Thai’ (‘Thai’ means mother) located at Karaikudi.
  • Tamil Nadu is also known for a wide variety of delicious food both for the vegetarians as well as the non-vegetarians. Traditional food of the State includes cripsy paper roast served with hot coconut chiteny and sambar, Uthappam with toppings, Paniyaram etc… Idly sambar is the most nutritious Indian breakfast.
  • Tamil Nadu is known for its magnificient festivals celebrated in great joy with family. Pongal – festival of farmers, bulls, animals and worshipping the ultimate deity, the Sun. Tamil New Year, Karthigai Deepam, Vinayakar Chathruthi etc are the other festivals celebrated in the State.
  • Tamil Nadu has a very rich history and several monuments from ancient time along with largest collection of heritage buildings in India. Some of the most famous historic buildings and national monuments of state also includes Vivekananda House,Madras War Cemetery, Kamarajar Mani Mantapa Monument,Freemasons Hall Chennai,Sittanavasal Cave,Kamaraj Memorial House and Thanjavur Palace.

#5 Telangana

  • The state of Telangana is to be a newly christened state of India on the 2nd of June 2014.
  • The region was a part of the Indian state of Andhra Pradesh. It contains 10 districts, many of which are important towns of Andhra Pradesh including its very own capital, Hyderabad.
  • The main language spoken is Telugu, and the word Telangana itself was meant to distinguish Telugu speaking region from the Marathawada region.
  • The state is rich with historic and cultural heritage and the climate is hot n dry.
  • The place has a majority of historic monuments and temples which were once a part of the State of Andhra Pradesh.

THREE UNION TERRITORIES

Andaman and Nicobar islands

Long fabled among travelers for its gorgeous beaches, underwater wonders and primeval location in the middle of nowhere, the Andaman and Nicobar Islands are still the ideal place to get away from it all. The archipelago has around 572 islands of which only 36 are open to tourists. The island population is an interesting mix of south Indian and Southeast Asian settlers, as well as Negrito ethnic groups on some islands whose arrival here still has anthropologists baffled.

  • The name Andaman is presumed to be derived from Hanuman, who was known to the Malays as Handuman. The name Nicobar seems to be a corruption of the South Indian term ‘Nakkavaram’ (Land of the Naked) as indicated in the great Tanjore inscription of AD 1050.
  • The most widely spoken language on the islands is Bengali followed by Hindi, Tamil, Telugu and Malayalam. Andaman Creole Hindi is also widely used as a trade language in the Andaman islands.
  • Andaman and Nicobar Islands have India’s best nesting beaches for three species of marine turtles – Hawksbill, Green turtle  and world’s largest sea turtle, the Leatherback (Dermocheleys Coriacea).  The nesting population of Leatherback turtles in Nicobar is one of the few colonies that exceeds 1,000 individuals in the Indo-Pacific, and is hence of global importance.
  • Commercial fishing has been banned around the Andaman Islands for more than 4 decades. It is believed that in these waters, fish now die of old age. The turquoise waters surrounding these emerald island teem with an abundance of dolphins, whales, dugongs, sea turtles, sailfish, sea anemones, and other marine life.

LAKSHADWEEP

  • Lakshadweep, in the Arabian Sea, is a part of the Indian subcontinent and is recognised as the smallest union territory of India. Lakshadweep means “hundred thousand islands” in Malayalam and Sanskrit.
  • The whole of Lakshadweep is nothing but a set of small islands situated near each other. It comprises a total of twelve coral atolls, five banks, three coral reefs, and several islets. The location is near the Kerala coast and falls under the jurisdiction of Kerala state and Kerala High Court.
  • The union territory was formed on November 1, 1956. The state animal is the butterfly fish, and the state bird is the sooty tern. The state tree is bread fruit. The languages spoken here are Malayalam, Hindi, Mahi and Tamil.
  • It is a famous tourist destination and has many state of the art hotels. Tall green coconut palms offer spectacular beauty and turn this land into a tropical paradise. The calm waters of the lagoons are home for an exotic underwater marine life that amazes viewers with a play of colors and underwater antics. 

Puducherry

Pondicherry are known for preserving the remnants of French heritage with Indian culture and offering a jolly good time to tourists. From its beaches to historical monuments and from its temples to churches, Pondicherry is an interesting tourist destination in India. The laid-back charm of Pondicherry is clearly visible when you visit the quaint French part of the town while tourists will also cherish the authentic Indian feel that the city brings through its culture and people.

Source:-https://www.britannica.com/place/Puducherry-union-territory-India

  • Auroville :- Coveted as the “City of Dawn”, Auroville Ashram is a futuristic township that is the brainchild of the Mother, the spiritual collaborator of Sri Aurobindo. Auroville aims to unite humans from all walks of life and from all parts of the world against barriers like caste, creed, status, and religion and to let them live in harmony with one another.
  • Rock Beach :- The Rock beach with golden sands in one of the topmost photogenic places to visit in Pondicherry with friends and family. The beach is well-kept and spectacular that you can spend hours gazing at the beautiful sight of the undulating waves touching the rocky shores.

References:

SIKKIM (“A Window of Himalaya”)

#1 A Nation Turned State!

India became independent in the year 1947. But till 1974, Sikkim was recognized as an independent nation. In 1975, the Prime Minister of Sikkim appealed to Indian Parliament to change the status of Sikkim so that it could become the State of India. Finally, on 16 May 1975, Sikkim officially became the 22nd State of India.

#2 Enjoy the Natural Spa!

The numerous natural hot springs of Sikkim acts as a natural spa. Some of the most famous natural hot springs are Yumthang Hot Spring, Yume Samdong hot spring, Taram hot spring, Reshi hot spring, Borong hot spring and Ralong hot spring.

#3 Green Lake

 Green Lake is still an unexplored and unhindered destination in Sikkim. It serves as a base to the those willing to climb Mount Kanchenjunga and Zemu glacier.

Starting from Thangu village, the trek to Green lake passes through the magnificent  Kanchenjunga National Park and also brings forth the scenery of the confluence of the Zemu Chu and Lachen Chu which are two very significant rivers of the region.

From Gangtok, if someone drive to Lachen via Mangan and then Thangu to start the trek that time keep your eyes open for wildlife, especially for the rarely found Red Panda in the region.

#4 Ravangla

Embark on a journey to explore a lesser-known quaint village amidst the high mountains of Eastern Himalayas in South Sikkim. Ravangla is a village at an elevation of around 8000 feet above sea level with breathtaking landscapes painted by  Kanchenjunga and its sister peaks of Kabru,  Pandim,  Siniolchu. 

Rayong sunrise viewpoint, Temi Tea Garden, Relang hot spring and Ralang monasteries are few local attractions that can interest a traveler. The winding roads which take you to these places and Ravangla are very scenic too.

#5 Zuluk

Perched atop a height of 10,000 feet, surrounded by rugged lower Himalayan mountains lies Zuluk, a small hamlet that redefines natural beauty. Situated close to to the Indo-Tibetan border is this picturesque village with a big troop of Military settled and guarding.

Zuluk serves as the base of places in the East Sikkim like Nathang Valley, Tsomgo lake, Kupup, etc., and used to be a former trade route between Tibet and Kalimpong via Jelep-la. 

Located around 91 kilometers from Gangtok, visiting Zuluk needs permission. From herds of yaks to deer, wild dogs, Himalayan bears to exotic birds like Monal Pheasant Kalij Pheasant, Blood Pheasant, and Snow Pheasant, etc.; Zuluk wildlife sanctuary is a wildlife enthusiast’s delight.

#6 Teesta River

Teesta river is the main river of the state of Sikkim and divides its region from that of the state of West Bengal. Covering a total course of 309 km before meeting the mighty Brahmaputra, the river passes through the cities of Rangpo, Jalpaiguri and Kalimpong, where it has a high importance as the main source of living.

Originating from a high altitude lake in the North Sikkim and the Teesta Kangse Glacier at the height of 7068m, the river is also a great source of adventure as there are a number of locations where you can enjoy rafting in the river.

#7 Taste Of Sikkim Restaurant, Ravangla

Restaurants aren’t often considered as tourist attractions, but, when it comes to places to visit in Sikkim, the Taste Of Sikkim Restaurant surely is one. It’s one of the best places to be in the market area when you are hungry. 

It might sound strange, but the Taste of Sikkim Restaurant becomes even more wonderful when there’s no electricity and you eat in the candlelit tables. The experience of the always-smiling staff serving you the best momos, soup, and noodles is really soothing. It also has an open door policy for local musicians.

#8 Let’s have a local kick!

Chaang is a fermented cereal based mild alcoholic beverage. It is the most famous drink of Sikkim and is consumed during social activities. The most interesting part of this drink is the way in which it is served. It is served in a long cylindrical vessel made of bamboo which is known as tongba. When consumed in its most potent form, this drink gives a mild kick to its drinker.

#9 Baba Harbhajan Singh temple

There are many temples which have been dedicated to various Gods and Goddesses. But rarely is any temple erected in honor of a human being. This honor has been preferred upon the Indian army soldier Major “Baba” Harbhajan Singh who is hailed as the “Hero of Nathula.” It is believed that his spirit protects all the soldiers who serve their country while serving at the inhospitable high altitude terrain of Eastern Himalayas.

#10 Rumtek Monastery

Rumtek Monastery is located in Rumtek which is 23 kilometers from Gangtok. The Rumtek Monastery is the seat of Gyalwa Karmapa which is the head of 900 – year old Karma Kagyu lineage. The most interesting art object in this monastery is the ‘Black Hat’ which is studded with rubies, golds, diamonds and other precious stones.

Sources:-

Jammu and Kashmir

Jammu and Kashmir (J&K) is the northern-most state of India and shares its borders with Himachal Pradesh and Punjab, and the neighbouring countries of Pakistan, China and Afghanistan. The state consists of three regions – Jammu, the Kashmir valley and Ladakh. The natural beauty and picturesque locations have made it a favoured destination for tourists across the world. Jammu is famous for its temples, while the Kashmir Valley is known for its lakes and gardens.

Here are some beautiful places to visit in jammu and kashmir:-

#1. Srinagar…Redefines Beauty

Srinagar is the capital of jammu and kashmir. It is undoubtedly one of the most beautiful and famous places to visit in Kashmir as well as in India. From boating to trekking, bird watching to water skiing, Srinagar place has it all. Locally this place is known as the mirror to the mountains, Srinagar is a first stopover for every traveler and there are a long list of places to visit in Srinagar, Kashmir. The largest city of Kashmir, this place is enclosed by the green mountains and the main highlight being the Dal Lake which is the gem of the city. This place gives a close outlook to the Kashmiri cuisine and the state’s culture.

#2. Leh…Land of Queer Beauty and Sheer Adventure

Leh is one of the best and safe places to visit in Kashmir in summers. The lofty mountains, the alpine lakes, and the quaint settings enable Leh one of the best places to visit. This place is every biker’s dreamland. Clad in the beauty and love of nature, Leh offers breathtaking views, leaving no visitor disappointed. It is also very affordable. Along with that, Ladakh is often called Small Tibet because of Tibet’s cultural and religious influence on the city and people living here. The valley is surprisingly greener than most of us would have imagined, having driven through parched landscapes for hundreds of miles. It is like a small oasis in the middle of the desert.

#3. FLOATING VEGETABLE MARKET

Dal Lake is famed for its floating vegetable market. The unique floating gardens in the natural wetlands of Srinagar are the prime source of vegetables cultivation and these fresh vegetable are then sold on the floating Shikaras on the lake. One can easily get a glimpse of this floating market early in the morning. The pretty picture it proffers makes it one of the best Srinagar tourist places to visit.

#4. Gulmarg…Entailing Adventure and Excitement

Famously known as the ‘Meadow of Flowers’, Gulmarg is a treat to the eyes with its spread of vibrant flowers against snow capped mountains as backgrounds. This region of Kashmir is also known as the adventurer’s paradise because of its vast options of skiing in the snow while enjoying the views around. This is considered to be one of the best places to visit in Kashmir for all right reasons.

#5. Hemis…Live the Spirit of Ladakh

The Hemis festival is one of the biggest and the most famous religious festivals of Ladakh and is an attraction for both the tourist and the local people. The festival of Hemis is a colorful two-day affair that falls on the 10th day (called Tse-Chu in the local language) of the Tibetan lunar month. This festival is a celebration of the birth anniversary of spiritual leader Padmasambhava, the founder of Tibet Tantric Buddhism. The main venue and stage for this festival is the courtyard of Hemis Gompa-the biggest Buddhist monastery in Ladakh.

Source:- https://www.holidify.com/state/jammu-and-kashmir/

MUMBAI

Marine drive, Mumbai Overview

Marine Drive is the most easily identifiable landmark associated with Mumbai and is indicative of the glamor and glitter of the city. It is essentially 3.6 km long, arc-shaped boulevard along the South Mumbai coast that starts at the southern end of Nariman Point and ends at Girgaum Chowpatty, popularly known as Chowpatty Beach. The coast wraps the Arabian sea and is the best place in Mumbai to watch the sunset or even to just take a leisurely stroll by the sea any time of the day or night. At night, when the whole coastline lights up, it justifies its other moniker i.e. Queen’s Necklace.

The whole curve of the coastline, shielded with palm trees makes for a spectacular view at night – you can go to either end of Marine Drive after sunset and see the lights glowing in a perfect arc all along the coast. People come to walk here in the evening to experience the brilliant sunset. It is also one of the places people visit late at night, and you will find vendors selling chai and cigarettes at all hours. The sound of the waves, a view of the Mumbai skyline and the starry sky easily make Marine Drive one of the most romantic spots in the city.

Gateway of India, Mumbai Overview

The Gateway of India is, without doubt, one of the most popular tourist hotspots of Mumbai. Sitting proudly on the Apollo Bunder, it overlooks the Arabian Sea. It is one of the defining monuments of the city of Mumbai and was built in the year 1924. The construction was undertaken by the famous architect George Wittet, to commemorate the visit of King George V and Queen Mary to Mumbai. The imposing structure of the monument is a beautiful confluence of Indian, Arabic and Western architecture and has become a popular tourist hub in the city. It is also the starting point of a number of ferry services that ply to the historic Elephanta Caves.

Nicknamed ‘Mumbai’s Taj Mahal’, the foundation of this landmark was laid in 1911 and it was inaugurated 13 years later in 1924. The structure in itself is a made of yellow basalt and solid concrete and is embellished with numerous Muslim and Hindu motifs as well. The basalt arch of the Gateway served as the entry and exit access to India through waterways before independence and was the exit point from where the last British ship left India for England. There are statues of Swami Vivekananda and Chhatrapati Shivaji that have been installed near the Gateway as well. The view from the sea of the Gateway complex, especially at night is quite ethereal and beautiful. The Gateway of India is thus, not only a historic artefact but an example of marvellous architecture in itself!

Colaba Causeway, Mumbai Overview

One of the most exciting and eclectic places to visit in Mumbai is the Colaba Causeway, famous for being a shopper’s paradise. If someone ask to any Mumbaikar they will tell that the Causeway is pretty much the heart of Mumbai. Even after the terror attack, this shopping street stood up on its feet in no time. Apart from gorgeous clothes and accessories, especially earrings, you can also find great bargains on home decor stuff such as lampshades, curios and antiques. If designer stuff is your calling, there are a number of options for that as well. If you do feel like catching a bite and a beer, there are a number of restaurants that offer great food and booze at very affordable prices and Cafe Leopold and Cafe Mondegar are pretty much the best!

Siddhivinayak Temple, Mumbai Overview

The Siddhivinayak Temple in the Prabhadevi area is a revered shrine dedicated to Lord Ganesha and is one of the most significant and frequented temples in Mumbai. This temple was built in the year 1801 by Laxman Vithu and Deubai Patil. The couple did not have any children of their own and decided to build the Siddhivinayak temple so as to fulfil the wishes of other infertile women. Interestingly, the statue of Lord Ganesha here is believed to be self-manifested and grants wishes.

The Temple has a small sanctum housing the idol of Shri Ganesha, which is about two and a half feet wide and made out of a single piece of black stone. The temple has attained a popular status not only because it is believed that the Ganesha in the temple is especially revered, but also because of its popularity with Film stars and the bigwigs of the industry. It is also the richest temple in Mumbai as it begets INR 100 Million in donations each year from devotees across the world.

Bandra Worli Sea Link, Mumbai Overview

Officially known as Rajiv Gandhi Sea Link, this eight-lane cable-stayed bridge in Mumbai is the first project initiated by Maharashtra Government that commences West Island Freeway System. Bandra Worli Sea Link is one of the few bridges that is a cable-stayed with pre-stressed concrete-steel viaducts to hold it in place. Spanning across the arc of Mumbai’s coastline, this sea link is a civil engineering wonder that reflects the modern infrastructure of the city of Mumbai. The bridge is designed to cater around 37,500 vehicles per day while reducing the time travel between Bandra and Worli by a big margin. The beauty of the Bandra Worli Sea Link is in its engineering genius which compliments the sea that it is built over.

Overlooking the magnificent blue waters of Mahim Bay, this splendid architecture is a mighty sight to behold. Undeniably, the Bandra Worli Sea Link is an amalgamation of natural beauty and man-made marvel. Roll your windows down as you whizz past the bridge and let the salty sea breeze run through your hair. The spectacle of Mumbai is especially appealing from the elevation of the bridge and makes it the perfect destination to capture a few candid shots of the city in all its glory. Bandra Worli Sea Link also overlooks the Worli Bridge and has a small park located nearby. The beauty of this attraction is enhanced during the night when twinkling lights adorn the bridge.

Film City, Mumbai Overview

Spread across a vast area of 520 acres, the Film City is comprised of about twenty indoor studios and is located in Aarey Colony, Mumbai, Film City is often regarded as a home of Bollywood. The place is so vast that about 1000 film sets can be erected here simultaneously. Over the years, it has been the locations for a number of Bollywood films. Almost over 900 movies and many more television shows have also been shot here. Today, Film City has grown to be one of the best film studios, well-equipped with all the essential amenities and world-class facilities. Not only is it a great place for film shoots, but it is also filled with verdant greenery and refreshing expanses.

Built on the lines of the Film City of California, today it is considered as synonymous to Bollywood. There is no denying the enigma that film-making holds on every one of us, and Film City gives a chance to live out our dream with its various tours. Some excursions are organised in the premises of the Film City which are aimed at the different aspects of movie – making, which are open to all who wish to experience it. You can visit sets that depict foreign locations right here in Mumbai, or learn the nuances of acting at the live movie shoot tours. A land where it is difficult to differentiate between reality and dreams, Film City is a must visit for all movie buffs.

Lokhandwala Market, Mumbai Overview

A visit to Mumbai is, of course, incomplete without shopping for some nice clothes and accessories, and this is when the Lokhandwala Market comes to the rescue! This local market has gained much popularity over the past few years and is now the one-stop shop to ticking off all items from your shopping list on your next visit to Mumbai. Located in western Mumbai, near Andheri, the Lokhandwala Market is one of the most popular suburbs. The area is one of the poshest in Mumbai and also houses a large commercial and residential complex, but it is the long stretch of roadside stalls and shops that characterise the much loved Lokhandwala Market.

The market is located just 5 kilometres away from the Andheri Station and is famous not only for its convenient location and accessibility but also because it offers a variety of items at really affordable prices. One can find everything ranging from footwear to fruits, and from jewellery to electronic items in this single market, and the shopkeepers are willing to bargain too! This is perhaps why Lokhandwala is mainly famous amongst college goers, who can buy the latest fashion at affordable prices. From roadside Bhel and Panipuri to international chains such as McDonald’s and Dominoes, there are more than enough options to tantalise your tastebuds.

Jama Masjid, Mumbai Overview

Just a kilometre and a half away from Mumbai Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus, the Jama Masjid, popularly known as Friday Mosque, is the oldest mosque in the city of dreams – Mumbai. A popular place of pilgrimage, this mosque stands majestically on the renowned Sheikh Menon Street, near Crawford Market, in the southern part of Mumbai. The mosque boasts of beautiful and intricate carvings, breathtaking artworks and the fascinating marble stonework and has a fascinating history attached to it. A day trip to this mosque in blissful solitude will make you feel relaxed and peaceful to the core as tranquillity and peace will overpower your senses.

The original monument was originally located near Dongri but was destroyed at the commands of a Governor. After much delay, and after facing some hurdles and obstacles, the construction of the site was finally completed in 1802. Today, the place stands as a symbol of the rich culture and architecture that existed in those times and is an equally important place of religious importance as well. The place is exceptionally crowded on Fridays, which is the holy day of Namaz for the Islamic community.

Delhi – Capital of India

Delhi, the national capital of India, with its endless beauty to amaze its tourists and people. It happens to be the only State in the world with a unique distinction of having not one but three UNESCO World Heritage sites within its boundaries.

If you have the will and energy to explore Delhi, there is no end to the interesting site of this city along with its adventures activities, scenic beauty, local markets and streets food. In fact one of the largest shopping mall (Ambience Mall) is in Gurgaon situated in the out skirts of Delhi. The city is full of bars, cafes, bazaars and other fun places, which has already made Delhi a central hub for all cultures after Mumbai. Delhi acts like a Stakeholder who helps other better known cities of the world a run for their money.

Let’s explore the best things to do in Delhi:

1. Gawking at the Qutab Minar

Qutab Minar is one of Delhi’s top attraction and a renowned UNESCO world heritage site.

Standing 240 feet tall, this tower was established in the year 1192, by the very first ruler of Delhi – Qutb-ud-din Aibak. This minaret is named after its creator.

This five-storey tower is built purely from marble and red sandstone and has a spiral staircase which takes you to the top in 379 steps. However, this has been closed to public since 1974.

2. Find Inner Peace at Lotus Temple

Lotus Temple is an architectural delight. The whole complex from top to bottom is made of pure marble.

The universal symbol of peace, a lotus flower, gives the temple not only its name but shape as well.

Photography is restricted in the inner sanctum and there is a strict code of silence to be maintained at all times. Open to all castes and creeds, the temple is an ideal place for anyone who wishes to  meditate and pray. The temple is also known as the place of Baha’i faith.

3.  Take a walk to India Gate

Dedicated to the memory of the soldiers who lost their lives in the Afghan war, a visit to this 42 m high iconic and historic landmark of Delhi is not only an educational experience but also a photographer’s delight.

The walls bear the names of each of the 13,500 people who laid down their lives fighting on the Northwest Frontier.

India Gate is best visited in the evenings when the monument is brilliantly lit up and the beautiful fountains around it give the place a truly magical look.

4. Pay obeyence at the Akshardham temple

A place of worship, complete with exhibits, boat rides, water shows and lush gardens, the Akshardham temple situated in East Delhi is unlike any other, not only in India but the entire world.

Considered to be among some of the largest Hindu temples in the world, the architectural beauty and decoration of the area is sure to leave you spellbound.

Sadly, photography is strictly prohibited inside this temple.

5. Visit the Rashtrapati Bhavan

The official residence of the President of India, the Rashtrapati Bhavan, is a splendid palatial building having more than 400 rooms. Apart from the President, it houses the bodyguards, stables and other utility staff.

In size, it is second to only the residence of the President of Turkey. The palace doors are thrown open to visitors on weekends by a registration process which can be accessed online.

The pride of the presidential place here are the stunning Mughal Gardens, which attract a large number of visitors, both local and foreign.

6. Experience a different culture at Jama Masjid

The largest Islamic mosque in the city, Jama Masjid, was constructed way back in the 17th century. The imposing building is an iconic landmark of Old Delhi and an important place of worship.

The mosque can hold up to 25,000 people and the sight of such a number, especially during Friday prayers, is a scene to behold.

The main structure has multiple entry points, all of which eventually lead to the main deck. Entry is free and open to all nationalities, except that you need to cover up from head to toe. A nominal fee for photography is levied if one intends to take pictures

7. Party away at Connaught Place

The nightlife in Delhi may not be so vibrant, but it has its fair share of restobars, clubs and music outlets in Connaught Place, the commercial and party hub of Delhi.

Joints like, Excuse Me Boss, Lord of the Drinks and Junkyard cafe have a large and energetic crowd following. Modeled like the Royal Crescent of Bath,England, Connaught Place is without doubt the number one night out destination of Delhi.

8. Go boating at the Old Fort

The Old Fort, or Purana Qila as called locally, has a quaint boating area set amidst the ruins of the Fort and the Delhi Zoo as a boundary.

A perfect place to unwind on all days, except Monday, among the backdrop of the historical fort. The construction of this imposing structure was started by Sher Shah Suri and completed by Humayun.

9. Take a rickshaw tour of Chandni Chowk

Chandni Chowk, translated as Moonlight street is the commercial heart of Old Delhi.

One of the oldest markets of India, its small narrow lanes are a beehive of activity from daybreak, offering on sale every product you can imagine of under the sun.

The best way to prevent getting carried away in the mass of humanity which assembles here is to take a leisurely tour by cycle rickshaw.

The rickshaw driver doubles up as a local guide and happily imparts vital inputs on everything, including places to eat, shop and visit. To see how the real Delhi survives, a visit to Chandni Chowk should be high on every tourist’s agenda.

10. Enjoy a meal at India Habitat Centre

This spectacle 9 acre complex, adjoining the Lodhi Gardens, is a venue for conferences, art galleries, auditorium and hospitality areas.

The top draw here are the number of restaurants serving finger-licking food from most corners of the world. Set among a stunning landscape full of gardens and fountains, adds to the ambiance of the this architectural marvel.

11. Savour the food at Paranthe Wali Gali

This narrow and famous street of Chandni Chowk, is home to some of the most lip-smacking paranthas, or fried bread. The recipes offered by some of the stalls are said to be generations old.

The alleys are packed with customers at most times of the day, with the smell of oil and food filling the atmosphere all around. Different types of pastes and chutneys do the rounds with the main course. The din of the shopkeepers, calling for customers, fills the air as people jostle with each other to refill their plates for more and more of the delicious offerings.

This can be quite a sight in itself even if you want to skip the oily stuffed Indian flat breads.

12. Pay homage at Raj Ghat

Raj Ghat is the memorial to Mahatma Gandhi, the Father of the Nation. The memorial is located on the banks of the river Yamuna, amidst beautiful landscaped gardens. An eternal flame burns at one end in perpetual homage to the great man who laid down his life for the freedom of India.

Memorials of other famous leaders surround this holy ground. A prayer meeting takes place here every Friday, while the teachings of Gandhi are portrayed through sound, light and sculpture narration between 1000 hrs – 1700 hrs  daily, except Monday.

13. Enjoy a heritage walk

The city of Delhi enjoys a long and chequered history, where several century old monuments mingle with towers of new buildings.

To make the locals and visitors aware of this rich heritage and culture and maintain a harmonious relation with them, a series of Heritage walks were envisaged, way back in 2005.

These now hugely popular walks are conducted every weekend by some extremely knowledgeable guides and tour leaders.

For a nominal fee of around 5 $ per person, one can cover several important areas of rich culture and architectural heritage which are far removed from the usual tourist itinerary.

14. Lose yourself at the Jantar Mantar

The Jantar Mantar, or Maze Puzzle, is a complex in the heart of Central Delhi. The area comprises of an open air observatory, having  thirteen different instruments, which involves the use of the different structures to observe the astronomic cycles.

The walls of the structure are designed for astronomical observations that resemble a maize where a visitor can get easily disorientated, hence the  name Jantar Mantar. A nominal entry fee is levied for all visitors.

15. Join the chanting at the ISKCON temple

Situated just a few kilometers away from the Lotus temple, this is the largest temple in Delhi devoted to ISKCON or International Society of Krishna Consciousness, as it is  commonly called.

It is an ideal place to walk around freely and participate in the constant drum and chant of Hare Krishna which resonates over the entire temple.

16. Relive your childhood days at the Children’s Park

Located in the backdrop of India Gate, the Children’s Park is a huge playground set in the sprawling lawns of Central Delhi. There are endless playing areas, rides, swings etc which can keep the young and old alike active the whole day.

The park and its environs, light up during the evening hours, enhancing the beauty of the place by giving an enchanting look. Entry is free and unrestricted from dawn to dusk.

17. Take a toy train ride at National Rail Museum

Spread over 10 acres of land in a sprawling open area, adjacent to the plush diplomatic enclave in New Delhi, the National Rail Museum displays the true heritage of the Indian Railways.

The museum is literally a treasure trove of rare steam engines, rail artifacts, photos and working models of trains which run the length and breadth of India.

The star attraction here is the toy train, which is enjoyed by one and all. The museum is a highly informative place and the souvenir shop an excellent place to take back a train model.

18. Watch a street play

In spite of  strong competition from television, cinema and other channels of entertainment, the street theatre scene in Delhi has established it’s roots firmly in the capital.The street theatre scheme has caught the fancy of most colleges too, with their numbers going up over the years.

Street play competitions are held throughout the year, which in turn has significantly improved the quality of the theatre. The Jana Natya Manch is one such amateur theatre company specializing in Delhi since 1973.

Delhi had rich theatre culture, with the street theatre scene bursting at the seams with activity. The various groups, perform regularly across Delhi on topics like Road safety, Clean India and other themes pertaining to welfare of the people.

19.  Get inspired at Ghalib ki Haveli

Located in an obscure lane in a place known as Ballimaran, lies the home or haveli of one of the most noted Urdu poet Mirza Ghalib. A heritage site declared by the Archeological Survey of India, Mirza Ghalib penned all his poems in Persian and Urdu.

For people who are familiar with his couplets and work, a visit to this home will be a fulfilling experience. One of the frequently visited places for those seeking inspiration and knowledge from the great poet.

20. Go for a morning walk at Lodhi Gardens

Lodhi Gardens, in Central  Delhi, is a public garden on a very grand and impressive scale. Amidst the sprawling greens you will come across ancient 500 year’s old structures and tombs of the Mughal era.

The park is huge and one can easily spend the better part of the day exploring the ruins and wandering around. The garden is also a haven for birdwatchers, with almost 60 different species of birds being sighted here.

An excellent indoor and outdoor restaurant called the Lodhi, lies adjacent to the garden entrance. The place  serves delicious food, so make sure to make a reservation as there can be a long queue sometimes.

21. Attend a session of Parliament

The Parliament House, located in New Delhi, is the home of the Indian Parliament. Designed by the famous architect Edwin Lutyens, construction began in the year 1921 and the first session was held in 1927 by the then Viceroy of India, Lord Irwin.

One can register online to witness a session and decision making from the visitor’s gallery of this circular building. A must visit spot if you are interested in being a part of the history and politics of India.

22. Head to the Delhi Zoo

The Delhi Zoo, or the National Zoological Park, lies adjacent to the Old fort, with the ramparts forming a natural boundary at one end. These scenic environments are home to nearly 2000 different species of animals and birds.

The zoo is best visited on foot, though a battery operated car does regular rounds as well. A library, cafeteria and opportunities for nature lovers to do photography and birdwatching abound.

23. Partake in a Langar at Bangla Sahib

One of the most friendly and welcoming Sikh shrine in Delhi is undoubtedly Bangla Sahib, located in the heart of New Delhi. Unlike other temples like Jama Masjid, for example, where you are likely to be pestered, this temple is a revelation.

There is a continuous Sikh group playing music and religious songs which adds to the ambiance of this remarkable place. Every afternoon a massive free lunch (langar) is prepared for the devotees which is shared and enjoyed by everyone together.

24. Take out time for the National Science Centre

The National Science Centre, lies adjacent to Pragati Maidan, the Old Fort and the Delhi Zoo, making it a convenient stop over on your local itinerary.

Constructed over 8 floors this museum houses exhibits ranging from art, culture, heritage to prehistoric specimens in the Dinosaur gallery.

Though it is a paradise of learning for all age groups, children in particular, can spend a full day at the fun packed multimedia centre, the first of it’s kind in the country. A sea water as well as a fresh water aquarium is also on display to enhance the educative value.

The museum is high on the popularity list of students and visitors and gives total value for the time and is an excellent educational experience.

25. Family fun at Worlds of Wonder

This excellent theme park is located in Noida, another suburb of Delhi. Worlds of Wonder is a water cum entertainment park designed by the best consultants in the world. The park is conveniently located amidst shopping malls and other popular outlets, making it suitable for themed parties and social gatherings.

Apart from the many themed rides, there are plenty of eateries to delight your taste buds. This largest amusement park in North India also has a go-karting track. The park has an exclusive area to host private parties, seminars and even weddings. The park opens from 1230 pm to 9 pm on all days of the week.

26. Combine history with glamour at Hauz Khas

The Hauz Khas complex is situated in South Delhi. It is a collection of ancient ruins, which include tombs and mosques. A water tank, once a lifeline to this place, still stands in it’s original splendor with the ruins providing a spectacular backdrop.

Today the area surrounding the ruins has been merged into an upscale outdoor shopping and pub street. People throng here for high end boutiques, restaurants, cafes, pubs and clubs.

27. National gallery of Modern Art

The National Gallery of Modern Art, is situated in Jaipur House, near India Gate. This premier institution opened it’s doors to the public in 1954. The museum used to be the residence of the then Maharaja of Jaipur.

The museum has a splendid collection of paintings, some as old as 150 years, which include such renowned British  names like Thomas Daniell and his nephew William.The gallery today has an impressive collection of sculptures, paintings and photos of Indian and Internationally acclaimed modern artists.

28. Light and Sound Show at Red Fort

The Light and Sound show at the Red Fort, a UNESCO world heritage site combines artistic story telling with visual animation.This incredible experience, where expert musicians and artists portray historical events through narratives and music, is next to none.

The hour long extravaganza comes in English and Hindi at different times. During this period the ramparts of the fort come alive with colorful lights, music and perfectly synchronized narration. An ideal way to gain insight on the history of the capital through the wonders of technology.

Source:-> ” https://traveltriangle.com/blog/tourist-places-in-delhi/

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RAJASTHAN THE LAND OF KINGS

Rajasthan also known as “Land of Kings” and is a state in northern. The entire state is covered in 342,239 square kilometers. Or 10.4% of the entire geographical area of India. Rajasthan is the largest state in India by area and 7th largest state by population. The Great Indian Dessert is located in this state well known as “THAR dessert”. This state also shares borders with Pakistan.

Jaipur is also known as “Pink city”.

Pink City – JAIPUR

It’s a home for the 3 National tiger Reserves, the Ranthambore National Park in Sawai MadhopurSariska Tiger Reserve in Alwar and Mukundra Hill Tiger Reserve in Kota.

Traditionally the Rajputs, Gurjars, Jats, Meenas, Bhils, Rajpurohits, Charans, Yadavs, Bishnois, Meghwals, Sermals, Rajput Malis  and other tribes made a great contribution in building the state of Rajasthan. All these tribes suffered great difficulties in protecting their culture and the land. Millions of them were killed trying to protect their land.

This state is all about Royalty, Culture, color, camel and celebration. This place is famous for its beautiful lakes, desserts , historical place and forts. Festivals of this state include; Rituals, Ethnicity, Traditional festivals and celebrations.

Here’s the list of top festivals and fairs in Rajasthan:

 1. Teej Festival, Rajasthan: This festival is celebrated in the entire Rajasthan. However, this festival is commercialized in Jaipur. The celebration involves all the women of native. Performing interesting rituals in the temples. Street procession of the goddess with thousands of devotees dancing around with chariot bands, music, antique palanquins and much more is the iconic element of this festival.

Teej Festival – Rajasthan

2. Rajasthan International Folk Festival (RIFF): In Jodhpur a City in Rajasthan This festival is celebrated, Entire festival is celebrated with traditional dance, music and art. Mehrangarh fort is famous for celebrating this festival. Over 200 artists of different genre come here to exhibit their talents in music industry. In this festival one can even find many different fairs, exhibition and shows of different styles.

Rajasthan International Folk Festival

3. Pushkar Camel Fair, Pushkar: Based on the banks of Pushkar Lake, this camel fair attracts tourists and merchants alike. The festival is celebrated for 5 days. In this Festival one can enjoy interesting events like camel racing, camel beauty contest, puppet shows, camel trading, music and dance performances. This place is the right place for buying camel souvenirs like camel leather articles, camel hair accessories and others.

Pushkar Camel Fair, Pushkar

4. Desert Festival, Rajasthan: one of my favorite festival this festival is celebrated in Sam sand dunes of Jaisalmer, a fully focused desert-based festival. People drive to the desert on camels to enjoy interesting events which take place here like camel races, belly dance, turban tying festival, moustache competition, gymnastic stunts and so on. This festival is celebrated for 3 days and in-fact people prefer night camping in the dessert in this festival. This festival has many stalls with unique handicrafts and souvenirs.

Desert Festival, Rajasthan

5. Nagaur Fair, Rajasthan: This is another fair which focuses on camels, oxen, cows and other animals. This festival is celebrated in Nagaur and is famous for animal races, cock fighting and much more. But this festival is not famous like Pushkar Camel Fair, but it is a delight to watch and enjoy.

Nagaur Fair, Rajasthan

Apart from festivals, Rajasthan is very famous for its adventurous activities like Camping, Jeep safaris, horse safaris, wildlife safaris, hot air ballooning and camel safaris

  1. Camping in Rajasthan

Camping in Rajasthan is available in proper tents or in magnificently envisioned and brought-to-life tree houses. The Tree House is located outside the city of Jaipur. Activities: The array of facilities and activities offered here are spa, swimming pool, lawn tennis, billiards, film screening, golf, camel safaris archery, volleyball, badminton, gym and birdwatching trips.

  • Rohetgarh Wilderness Camp

Wilderness camp Located outside the city of Jodhpur. It offers accommodation in six tents, set atop a sand dune. Activities: you can have alcoholic beverages in the open lounge, and avail Jeep safaris through the region. This camp also has a collection of horses, which it will readily give you rides on.

  • Wildlife Safaris in Rajasthan

Ranthambore National Park is the prime place for taking adventure tours in Rajasthan if you want a good round of wildlife spotting. Located in the far east of Rajasthan near its state border with Madhya Pradesh.

  •  Hot Air Ballooning in Rajasthan

Another exciting yet adventures thing in Rajasthan is Hot Air Balloon, you will have to come to Jaipur. Jaipur is located in the eastern part of the state, and flights and trains to it are readily available from cities like Delhi and Mumbai. The city has a semi arid climate, which means that though the weather here is generally hot and dry, Jaipur does get some rainfall. During the summer season, the maximum temperature often rises beyond 45 degree Celsius. Winters sometimes record minimum temperatures of as low as -2 degree Celsius. The city receives substantial amounts of rain during the monsoon months of July and August. Major Attractions are Jantar Mantar, Hawa Mahal, Amber Fort, City Palace, Nahargarh Fort, Jaigarh Fort and Jal Mahal are all admired tourist attractions here.

  •  Desert Safari in Rajasthan

Jodhpur, Jaisalmer and Bikaner are the perfect places to combine the joys of adventure tours in Rajasthan and camel safaris.

• Jodhpur: Situated near the banks of River Jojari in central Rajasthan, Jodhpur is a city replete with culture, history, architectural mastery and natural beauty. The winter season, which sees highs of 25 degree Celsius, is the perfect time to come here.

• Bikaner: Bikaner is a small town in the Thar Desert, located in north-western Rajasthan. Winters is the right time to experience maximum temperatures of 23 degree Celsius. It is also a remarkable place to see numerous types of scavenging birds like vultures, eagles and buzzards.

• Jaisalmer: The sand colored walls of the buildings in Jaisalmer perfectly complement the natural surroundings of the town. Located in the heart of the Thar Desert in Western Rajasthan, Jaisalmer experiences scorching summers and cool winters.

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