India is one nation that is known for offering varied experiences to its visitors. Along with several layers of history, there are a very few countries like India that has diversity in culture, religion, landscape, wildlife etc. Vacations in this country are worth-cherishing for a lifetime. Here are 10 reasons why you need to travel to India:
1. TAJ MAHAL
Words fall short to describe the magnificence of the World Wonder of Taj Mahal. An epitome of love, this white-marble mausoleum is an Indo-Saracenic architecture. It was commissioned in 1653 by Mughal Emperor Shah Jahan in the memory of his beloved wife Mumtaz Mahal. The construction of this colossal structure took 22 years with a cost of around 32 million Indian rupees. Do not miss out on noticing the amazing lattice (jail) work, calligraphy writing, shining marble, and the use of precious stones. Also a UNESCO World Heritage Site, Taj is known to change colors with the changing position of the Sun.
2. RELIGION AND SPIRITUALITY
Photograph By Radha Swami
India has always been known as the ‘Land of Religion’. It has been the birthplace of religions like Hinduism, Sikhism, Jainism, and Buddhism. The innumerable places of worship and several religious festivals commemorate people’s believe in their almighty. Spirituality too has been a very important part of everyday lives of people. Rishikesh, Bodhgaya, Haridwar, and Varanasi are few of the places that have a spiritual connection. Yoga and meditation session in ashrams and centers is a way of life for many. Both flourish hand-in-hand.
3. AYURVEDA AND SPA
The world-renowned Ayurveda was founded in India, more than 5000 years ago and thus it is one of the 10 reasons why need to travel to India. It is an ancient system of traditional healing that focuses on eradicating the root cause of an ailment, sans any side effects. There is a plethora of therapies, treatments, and massages, which aim towards bringing a harmony between mind, body, and soul. It actually is the ‘way of life’. There are various Ayurveda resorts and centers all across the country’s landscape including Kerala, Shimla, Rishikesh etc. The age-old concepts of Ayurveda are clubbed with modern spa therapies.
With a coastline of over 7500 km, India is known to be one of the world’s most popular beach destinations. Beaches in India are picturesque, known for their serenity, scenic beauty as well as a range of beach activities. There are over 200 beaches, the country receives a huge footfall of tourists from all across the globe. While the beaches of Goa are world-renowned for all kinds of interesting activities, the beaches of south India are popular for their relaxed atmosphere. Andaman and Nicobar Islands have picturesque beaches with plethora of water sports. Soak-in the tranquility, savor local seafood delicacies, indulge in merry-making and so on.
5. ARCHITECTURAL HERITAGE
During the course of its history, India has been under the rule of several dynasties. Various popular rules constructed innumerable architectures in the form of forts, palaces, mosques, temples, step wells, and other monuments. Architectural heritage of India is worth-exploring. The country is home to around 32 UNESCO World Heritage Sites and each of them is wonderful. These structure are piece of craftsmanship of the artists of ancient times. Some of such wonders are Khajuraho temples, Hampi Group of monuments, palaces and forts in Rajasthan, Ajanta and Ellora caves etc.
From past few years, India has emerged as a popular adventure destination as it offers a variety of adventure sports activity. The rivers, the mountains, the forests, the deserts and the sea waters all are ideal for partaking in adventure activities. Popular adventure destinations include trekking, mountain biking, skiing, river rafting, scuba diving, snorkeling, heli skiing, paragliding, zip-lining, para-sailing, bunjee jumping, hot air ballooning etc. Uttarakhand, Jammu & Kashmir, Andaman Islands, Goa, Manali, and Rishikesh are the place for such activities. Adventure holidays in India are one of the most sought-after.
Photograph taken by Camera Maverick
The exotic wildlife of India is protected in its national parks and wildlife sanctuaries, sprinkled all around the country. There are various rare, endangered as well as endemic animal as well as bird species. A visit to the wildlife reserves includes of a number of experiences such as wildlife safari (jeep/elephant safari), boat rides, trekking, bamboo rafting, guided nature walks and so on. Some of the animal species that can be spotted here include Royal Bengal Tiger, Snow leopard, Yaks, Nilgiri Tahr, Indian Wild Ass, Striped hyenas, Nilgai, one-horned rhinoceros, Asiatic lion, blackbuck, various kinds of deer, the mighty elephants etc. The avifaunal wealth is wonderful too. Some of the popular wildlife reserves are Bandhavgarh, Kaziranga, Periyar, Ranthambore, Jim Corbett, and so on.
8. WONDERFUL RAILWAY JOURNEYS
Not many know that Indian Railways is one of the largest employers in the world. The train tracks are spread across the length and breadth of the country, connecting all the cities, towns and villages with each other. The trains offer wonderful railway journeys at affordable rates. There are three main classes of rails including first, second and third. Shatabdis and Rajdhanis are fastest trains. There is nothing as compared to the Indian Railways, the experience is exclusive. Luxury Trains and Toy Trains are worth-experiencing too.
With a vast variety of goods and products, India can rightly be called a shopper’s paradise. The markets of India have both modern and traditional products for all pocket-sizes. The variety of stuff available here includes various accessories, drinks like fenni, hand-embroidery pieces like phulkari, various kinds of fabrics like bandhani, puppets, mojaris, lehenga-choli, kurta pajama, saris, Pooja samagri, nuts, home décor pieces, spices, wall hangings, incense sticks, precious and semi-precious jewelry, leather items, handicrafts items and so on. Learn the art of bargaining and visit popular markets of Delhi, Agra, Punjab, Gujarat, Goa, Lucknow, Srinagar etc. Shopping is one of the best things to do in India.
10. FESTIVALS AND FAIRS
Fairs and festivals of India feature in the list of 10 reasons why you need to travel to India. Indian calendar is always full with such wonderful events, which are celebrated with zeal and enthusiasm. As people of all religions reside with complete harmony, festivals of all religions are celebrated here. From time to time, cattle fairs, kite fairs, music festival, dance festival etc. are also organized. Attending these celebrations offers a sneak-peek into the ancient culture of the country. Some of the popular festivals and fairs are Diwali, Holi, Kumbh Mela, Pushkar fair, Hemis Festival, kite Festival, Onam, Dusshera, Pongal and many more.
Author Bio: A soul bred in the mountains, Akansha Negi doles out travel inspiration from solo wandering, exploring heritage and culture, tasting local cuisine, adventures and experiences of her travels.