You name it and we have it on our land, India. Untouched beaches, wildlife and nature reserves, the magnificent Himalayan Range and the rugged deserts. India is a land full of adventure and romantic getaways. A few have been listed below that are highly recommended:
• RANN OF KUTCH, GUJARAT – The Great Rann of Kutch is a unique way to spend time with your loved one. The seasonal salt marsh is located in the Thar Desert, Kutch District of Gujarat and spreads upto The Sindh province of Pakistan. Since the area is extremely hot in the summer months, it is recommended to visit during the winters. It would be a great if you could plan your trip during the 3 month long festival called Rann Utsav. The festival would be a great opportunity to explore the culture, food and the local hospitality of the region. Kutch is extremely famous for its handicrafts and embroidered clothing. During the festivals, there are plenty of options to stay, it could be the traditional tents or one could just book a room as per their convenience.
The Rann festival is a beautiful festival which highlights on the diverse culture of India. Music is highly influenced and is a perfect blend of the Sufi and Folk songs. The Kutch embroidery is one of the most intense and beautiful work famous all over the world. Be it Cloth embroidery, Handwall paintings, Jewellery pieces, Wall paintings they are at par with any other handicraft found internationally. The food largely found here is vegetarian and an option of Jain food is also largely available.
The Rann of Kutch is located at just a distance of 100 kms from Bhuj City making is extremely convenient to get too. From Bhuj one could easily visit the various wildlife sanctuaries and nature reserves of Kutch namely – Indian Wild Ass Sanctuary, Banni Grasslands Reserve, Chari – Dand Wetland Conservation Reserve etc.
Travel Tip – One should visit the village of Nirona while travelling from Bhuj to the Rann where you would get an excellent opportunity to interact with the artisans who are the masters of Gujarati arts of lacquer work, copper bells, embroidery, leather work and more.
• NIMAJ, RAJASTHAN – Want to feel like a royal, there could be no other place then Rajasthan to explore. Located in the Pali District of Rajasthan, Nimaj is a small town which is a stopover on the Jodhpur – Ajmer – Jaipur Route. You would have an option to stay as a Rajput in the Nimaj Palace – one of the oldest heritage property converted into a 40 room heritage hotel or you may even choose to stay at the Luxury tents which have always been an integral part of the Rajput lifestyle.
The tents are built along the Chhatrasagar Lake and provide an excellent view to every tent built there. Each tent is provided with a sit out to enjoy the magnificent view of the lake especially during the sunrise. The Chhatrasagar camp have 13 tents out of which eleven face the dam and two are on top of the hill providing a lot of privacy and a 360 degree view. Regular tours to the farms and villages and bird watching are conducted by the camp.
Travel Tip – The bookings should be made in advance to avoid disappointment as the camp has only 13 tents to accommodate guests.
• POOVAR, KERALA – Imagine yourself sitting at a natural wonder where the lake, river and sea and beach meet the green land, located just outside 30 kms from Thiruvananthapuram lies the untouched beaches of Poovar Islands. Poovar is unexplored and is an extremely raw destination. The water sports are not developed here as Poovar is mainly a fishing village and the only way to reach here is through waterways. Nonetheless, Poovar provides opportunities to visit the neighbouring fishing village in less than 2 minutes and one could also visit the centuries old martial arts village.
Poovar Island Resort is the ultimate experience to enjoy the serenity of this place. The only way to reach the Island Resort is thorough the boat and they have an option to stay on the cosy land or water cottages. There is a wide variety of cuisine available along with an option of the unique Ayurveda speciality restaurant.
Travel Tip – Make sure that you have all your utilities packed for your trip to Thiruvananthapuram. There are no major malls or multiplexes in this town.
• AULI, UTTARAKHAND – One of the most important ski destinations in India, Auli. Surrounded by the oak forests, Auli is blessed by the presence of the huge Himalayas mountain range. Auli is surrounded by the high peaks of Nanda Devi, Mana and Kamet. The travel could be tiring, but once you reach the destination it would be all worth it. The peace, the quietness and the snow clad mountains will make it worth for all the trouble you may take to reach Auli. Auli boasts of the longest 4km Gondola cable car and also the very famous world’s highest man- made lake right next to Clifftop Club.
Apart from skiing, Auli has plenty of trekking paths for the adventure lovers. Some of them can also be completed within a day – Auli – Gorson (7kms), Gorson – Tali (6kms).
The nearest airport to Auli is in Dehradun (280 kms) and the option of hiring a taxi from Dehradun is also available.
Travel Tip – The weather conditions are pretty harsh and unpredictive. It could be sunny one minute and another minute it could start raining heavily.
• KAZIRANGA NATIONAL PARK, ASSAM – A World Heritage Site, lying partly between Golaghat District and Nagaon District of Assam, Kaziranga National Park is one of the oldest parks of India. Housing the famous one-horned rhinoceros and being voted as an Important Bird Area, Kaziranga National Park has a variety of animals and birds to suit one’s interest. To name a few there are Indian Rhinocerous, Wild Water Buffalo, Hog Deer, Palla’s fish eagles Asian elephants etc. Flanked between the Brahmaputra River in the North and Karbi Anglong hills in the south, this park has variety of tours to choose from.
Apart from bird watching, there are guided tours by elephant or jeep available at regular intervals. Though there are plenty of hotels and resorts at Kohora Tourist range which is extremely close to the Kaziranga Park, there are a few tourist lodges maintained by the Assam Government.
Travel Tip – The park remains closed from May to October due to heavy monsoon in the region.