North India is a delight for sore eyes. Home to the crowning glory, Himalayas, the source of several life-giving rivers and a rich biodiversity, a visit to North India will be extremely memorable. The untouched alpine beauty of Kashmir and Himachal, the swaying fields of Punjab, the majestic palaces and forts of Rajasthan, every nook and cranny in north India is blessed with cultural fascination. North India is also home to one of the 7 wonders of the world, age-old architectural masterpieces and numerous wildlife sanctuaries and national parks.
If you are planning on a visit to the northern half of India then these are some of the most beautiful places that should be visited:
Kashmir is enchantingly charming. Time and again it has been described as a piece of heaven on earth by travellers from across the globe. The hill station of Kashmir is cradled amidst the scenic lofty green hills of the Himalayas. Be it peacefully boating in the glistening dal lake or admiring the blossoming tulips of the tulips garden and hiking around in the expansive green hills of Pahalgam and Sonamarg. What makes the Kashmir tour package a favourite among tourists is the colourful bustling bazaars, Forts, Sufi shrines and delectable Kashmiri cuisines.
Settled on the banks of the holy Ganga River, is Varanasi, one of the oldest surviving ancient cities in the world. Varanasi is the hub of spirituality and religion that attracts devotees from across the globe. Lined with immaculate Ghats, dotted with ancient forts and palaces that carry an age old charm adds a vintage vibe to the place. The divinity of Varanasi beautifully encapsulates the heritage of India as a whole. Varanasi has always been the centre of culture and education. Every network of by lanes here is embedded in centuries old lingering, well preserved beauty.
Ever since its establishment in 1504 by Sikandar Lodi, Agra’s popularity has continued to grow. The city is located on the bank of the holy Yamuna River and offers some much needed peace and serenity to the nearby big cities. The city has seen many good and bad days but its dignity remains unharmed. The pride of the city, Taj Mahal, that is a part of the 7 wonders of the world, further amplifies its beauty. Home to relaxing gardens and iconic Mughal structures, Agra’s experience will remain close to your heart for a long time.
The hill station of Manali in Himachal Pradesh can be easily called as the perfect Himalayan love. Lovingly referred to as the valley of gods, Manali has always ruled the charts as one of the most preferred holiday destinations for people of all ages to celebrate any occasion. The lush greenery and snowcapped peaks dominate the region. The mystifying peaks, colourful age old culture and positive vibes makes it a perfectly beautiful holiday destination.
Mussoorie or the ‘queen of hills’, is known for its natural scenic beauty. The mystical charm of the hills can be easily felt here. The majestic views, evergreen hills, cascading waterfalls and a diverse range of flora and fauna. Taking a small hike up to Lal Tibba will lead you up to the highest point of the mountain that will offer sweeping and picturesque views of the surroundings. The lofty hills, deep valleys and an overall sense of peace that’s what Mussoorie is all about.
Driving just a few hours away from Manali will lead you to one of the most awe inspiring, high altitude, treeless, cold deserts of India, Spiti. Every feature of Spiti, be it the low ceiling mud houses, the treeless landscape and majestically crumbling rock formations, is as unique as it can get. Dotted with ancient monasteries and placed on the banks of the Chenab River, the raw and untouched beauty of Spiti will not fail to enchant you. From hiking to trekking, every step of the way in Spiti is an Adventure.
If you want to experience Switzerland in India, then make your way to Khajjiar. Blessed with lush and dense forests of pine, Khajjiar is perfectly described as ‘little Switzerland’. The lush grassy meadows are the main stunning feature of this place. Located in the already picturesque Chamba valley, this quiet and peaceful hill town beckons tourists visiting Chamba and Dalhousie. Not only beautiful, it is known for being the perfect family vacation destination for everyone.
The term Jaisalmer literally translates into ‘The Hill Fort of Jaisal’. It is nicknamed as the ‘golden city’ of India, Jaisalmer depicts the beautiful age of lavish palaces and iconic forts. When it comes to beauty, it is all due to the presence of golden colored monuments and structures that set perfectly with the golden backdrop of the entire city. The beauty of this royal city is due to the fact that it is the melting pot of various cultures and ethnicities.
The lake hill city of Nainital is settled all around the almond shaped Naini Lake. This charming little hill station will make for an unforgettable Himalayan holiday. The narrow lanes of this place are dotted with quirky little cafes and vintage shops that overlook the holy and iconic Naini Lake. Nainital is also a major part of any Uttarakhand tour package. There is so much to do in Nainital that not even a single day will go to waste. From hiking up the gentle hills to boating on the lake or just relaxing your day away, a holiday in Nainital is always a great idea.
The charming blue city of Jodhpur is a delightful blend of natural beauty, modernity and well preserved ethnicities. This 2nd largest city of Rajasthan is dotted everywhere with clusters of settlements, architectural marvels, forts, palaces, temples and havelis. Everywhere you look or any street you head on to will leave you enchanted and mesmerized. The city evolved around the Rathore clan that gives this place a personality of its own. Graced with the Mehrangarh Fort, Moti Mahal, Umaid Bhawan Palace etc. this city will never fail to charm its way into your heart.
Also Read: Places To Visit Near Sandhan Valley
Although not a regular but its high time Gangotri make its place in this list. Gangotri is a hill station and famous for the Gangotri Dham Temple which is also a part of the holy Char Dham Yatra. Gangotri marks the point of origin of the holy Ganga River and is blessed with some of the most enticing and charmingly scenic views of the pristine Himalayan surroundings. This small hill town is nestled in the Gangotri national park and is home to an incredible collection of wildlife and serene natural beauty.
Heading upwards and 2 hours away from the bustling famous hill station of Shimla, is a wonderful little town called Narkanda. This place offers some much needed respite away from the chaos of the city and the tourist’s crowd. Located right on the Indo-Tibetan border, within a fir forest, Narkanda is also famous as the perfect snowy vacation destination in India. The place is mainly known for its unbelievably beautiful scenic surroundings which people never seem to get enough of.
Kalpa is a small hill village just above Reckong Peo in Kinnaur district. Gracing the bank of Sutlej River, and headlined with the glorious omnipresent snowcapped Himalayas, Kalps is a destination just waiting to be properly explored. Home to luscious apple orchards and lofty jagged mountain peaks, this place is a melodious combination of 2 different geographical features. Home to the local Kinnauri tribe practising Buddhism and Hinduism offers a peaceful environment for everyone to relax and just soak up the serenity. It is the perfect place for people looking to unwind in a place free from tourists.
Ladakh or the ‘land of high passes’ is breathtakingly beautiful. From the series of barren mountain ranges to the meandering rivers and clear blue skies, Ladakh is a place like no other. These rugged mountains with a few patches of green lands, makes you feel like you are on some other planet. Ladakh is a favourite among nature lovers and people who love exploring the great outdoors. Be it the glimmering lake of Tsomoriri, the spiritual centre of Lingshed Monastery or sweeping landscapes of Zanskar and the iconic highest motorable road of Khardung La, Ladakh is a treat!
Amritsar is the largest and the most important city of Punjab. Known for its iconic landmark of the golden temple, Amritsar is a commercial as well as a cultural capital. People from far and wide male it a point to visit Amritsar if they intend on getting to know the Indian culture more personally. The delicious food spread in every corner, colourful and bustling bazaars against the backdrop of rich and dynamic history puts Amritsar on every traveller’s bucket list. The wide open fields of agricultural land where you can see majestic sunsets enveloped in a serene and peaceful vibe, that’s what Amritsar is all about.
16. New Delhi
New Delhi is one of those rare metropolitan cities where the high rise buildings are made keeping the greenery of the city alive. Home to some of the most iconic archaeological structures like the Jama Masjid and red fort, it is also known for its lip smacking street food. From the fragrant and culturally active lanes of Purani Dilli to the speeding up metros of New Delhi, this capital of India is sure a pandora box of memories and adventure. Many tourists also opt for a day trip to Taj Mahal from Delhi. No matter what you do, from clubbing your nights away to trying out the variety of foods, Delhi is a wholesome package of fun and love.
17. Haridwar and Rishikesh
The twin holy hill towns of Haridwar and Rishikesh offer some much needed respite from the city life. Located at a comfortable distance of just 20 minutes from each other, both these places are dotted with important temples, pilgrimage circuits and lined with immaculate Ghats where every day, the iconic and extremely holy Ganga Aarti takes place. Both these towns mark the point where the Ganga River finally touches the plains from the mountains. Both of these places are referred to as the gateway to Char Dham along with being the Yoga and spiritual centre of the world.
If you have read books by Rudyard Kipling and imagined yourself living in one of those mystical mountains with charming little cafes then Dalhousie is the place for you. The climate remains pleasant throughout the year and due to its elevation people can go there as a part of road trips or if you just need some time to yourself. It is one of the most famous hill stations in India that is nestled in the Dhauladhar range of mountains. Dalhousie’s natural beauty, colonial architecture, pure environment and rejuvenating walks in the dense forests.
19. Mathura and Vrindavan
If you are looking for some peace of mind or some spirituality during your holiday, then a trip to dev Bhoomi Mathura Vrindavan is just the thing you need. Situated at a very comfortable distance from each other, these twin holy towns hold a lot of importance in the life of devout Hindus. These are the places where Lord Krishna had spent most of his childhood. Dotted with enchanting little gardens, ancient temples and river banks, Mathura Vrindavan is probably one of the most refreshing places to go to if you need to get in touch with your deeper self.
Auli is undoubtedly the best winter vacation destination on the hills of Himalayas. This gem of Uttarakhand is one of the best skiing resort hill towns in India. The snowcapped Bugyals of Auli turn into the hub for skiing and snowboarding during the winter months. As the snow melts away, the lush green cover of Bugyal or meadows is a sight to behold. Surrounded with the overlooking Himalayan ranges offers a very peaceful and serene view that will make your heart skip a beat.