If you ask me the truest interpretation of rains as an Indian, I would shout out “Monsoons in India means freshly-made hot pakoras with a cup of garam masala chai sitting in the balcony, relishing mesmerizing falling rain drops along with breathing in the fragrance of the wet soil.”
Yay or Nay?
Along with this, monsoon is also considered the best time to travel – to witness and to be a part of the magic that unfolds with the rains and soak you in the divine lap of the nature.
Monsoon is an ideal excuse to plan an escape from the everyday realities of life and just to immerse in the beauty of mother Earth. But where would you want to Wish- Cover?
How about the Indian hills? Or the serene backwaters of Kerala?
Down below is the list of my most recommended places in India to visit this monsoon…….
RISHIKESH AND MUSSOORIE, UTTARAKHAND
Uttarakhand literally translates to ‘Devo Ki Bhumi’ i.e. ‘the Land of Gods’. Carved out of Northern Uttar Pradesh, lord also chose their land away from chaos, with a mystic serene view, in between the Himalayas.
Rishikesh is renowned for all sorts of adventure sports – River rafting with natural tidal spine-chilling waves splashing on your body with every row, bungy jumping etc. It’s also widely appreciated for meditation and yoga leisure trips for a relaxing vacation alleviating the luxury of mind and soul.
The queen of hill stations Mussoorie with ceaseless overwhelming view will leave you awe-struck and you will never want to move your eyes away. This delightful vacation during monsoon to Uttarakhand will be the perfect blend of adventure and peace for your mental rejuvenation.
HOW TO REACH – Nearest airport to reach Uttarakhand is Jolly Grant Airport, Dehradun which is about 15 kms from Uttarakhand. You can also choose to travel by train and reach the Uttarakhand station directly. If you are interested in a road trip, the best option would be to book a car from Delhi and cover the drive in about 7 hours.
Kodagu or Coorg as popularly known is a mesmerizing hill station and a natural gem located in the state of Karnataka. The intertwining bond of lush green nature and lush blue streams will make you fall in love with the ‘Scotland of India’!
A few local attractions such as Abbey, Iruppu waterfalls right in the middle of green hills is a pleasure to the eyes as well as mind. Omkasershwar Temple is a must-visit destination in Coorg because although it houses a Hindu God, the architecture is a classic mix of Gothic and Islamic styles. A rare combination you wouldn’t find anywhere actually but in this place.
Nisargadhma, an island famous for elephant rides, also houses a few deers. One can see the happy peacocks dancing their heart in the melody of rain. Hence, to beat the city stress, why not simmer down your soul in the streets of Coorg with the romantic rains adding charm to your well-deserved vacation.
HOW TO REACH – Coorg does not have an airport, so if you wish you travel through air – the nearest airport with good connectivity is Mangalore Airport which is around 160Km from Coorg. As it’s a hill station, railway connectivity is also not readily available but you can reach the nearest destinations – Mysore, Mangalore or Hassan and commute from there.
SOUTH GOA, GOA
Goa (and this ones my all-time favorite in rains!!), the city of sea, sun sand and tan, blooms in the rainy season. The architectural blend of Portuguese and Indian culture, with exhilarating beaches, is a mini paradise to visit during monsoon.
The enthralling waterfalls in southern Goa called Dudhsagar waterfall offers a divine view in the rainy weather. With thriving tides (be watchful as the sea is rough & not advised for swimming at all), shacks that offer great food and party scenes, Goan food splurges like the goan fish & prawn curry and lobsters to delight your taste buds on the beaches are a perfect definition of feastful monsoon weekend.
“Eat. Chill. Goa. Repeat” is the perfect mantra when you visit Goa.
HOW TO REACH – The nearest airport which takes you to Goa is Dabolim Airport. You can also travel through train and discover the cleanest and scenically beautiful Konkan railways to reach Mudgaon, Goa’s busiest and biggest railway junction. If you wish to travel by road, Goa is well-connected to many cities through National Highway 66.
The Sanskrit translation of the state Meghalaya is ‘Abode of clouds’. The state is an astounding beauty in the rainy season. Mawsynram and Cherrapunji, which receive the highest rainfall in the world, will entice your soul and you will never want to go back to where you have come from.
Astonishing valley view from Lialtum canons and breathtaking panoramic view at Khasi hills will get imprinted in your mind and heart and of course social media handles! Meghalaya is also known for rich bio-diversity, high rainfall, subtropical forests, hills, and lush green valleys making it difficult for you to bid goodbye to such a serene place.
HOW TO REACH – Guwahati airport is the nearest airport and railway station to reach Cherrapunji. Taxis are readily available to take you from Guwahati to Cherrapunji and back.
In the southwestern Malabar coat of India falls the indigenous home to backwater destinations, Kerala. Famously known as ‘God’s Own Country’, it is the best tropical destination for monsoon If you are a rain lover.
Under the palm tree in the Kovalam beach or high on the peak of mountains in Munnar, the tranquility will never leave you. Witness the auspicious cultural festival ‘Onam’, the famous ‘snake boat race’ on Pamba river is a treat to the eyes as you enjoy the local culture.
Oh! Not to forget the incredible and surreal experience of living in a tree house in Wayanad with a never-ending marvelous view to bustling streets or to the tea gardens.
HOW TO REACH – Aluva and Ernakulum are the nearest railway junctions to reach Munnar which is connected through all the major cities. Driving to Munnar by road will offer you a stunning view of the tea gardens. As you begin your journey towards the hills, the ride gets a bit windy and bumpy. Thus, satisfying the adventure junkie in you.
It was the idea of Pandit Jawahar Lal Nehru to build a first planned city in the young India symbolizing the new age India. He invited Swiss-French architect Le Corbusier to build this new city which break all the shackles of the past history and thus, Chandigarh was born.
Being the capital of two states – Punjab and Haryana and being a Union Territory itself Chandigarh embraces the culture of its own. City with maximum lakes and gardens, Chandigarh is a mesmerizing place to visit during monsoons because at that point of time Chandigarh is in its full bloom state which visually satisfies more than the expectations.
The divine experience that the garden of fragrance offers takes you away from the reality and calms the soul. The unparalleled architecture nestled in the lush green surrounding makes it challenging for the traveller to leave the city.
HOW TO REACH – Being a well-planned city, Chandigarh is well connected via air, rail as well as roads. Various flights and trains are available to Chandigarh.
The city of lakes, Udaipur is titled as ‘Venice of the East’. The city receives just the right amount of rains to enjoy the Udaipur lakes in the monsoon season.
Surrounded by Aravalli hills, the city has Monsoon palace aka Sajjan Garh, which is on a peak, giving the tourist a vision of dreamlike serenity in a state known for royalt, culture and heritage. The ferry ride to Jagmandir (which is not a temple) in the Pichola Lake, water rides in Fateh Sagar Lake, and sipping hot chai by the lake during the rainy weather will make your visit in the city untimely.
The city local sightseeing and the natural scenic view will submerge your time in the city like no other.
HOW TO REACH – Being one of the major cities of Rajasthan, Udaipur is well facilitated. Trains and flights from all the corners of India are available to Udaipur. Also, if you plan to hit the road lane, Udaipur is connected well via NH 4 & 6.
DALHOUSIE, HIMACHAL PRADESH
Amidst the valleys covered in pine trees in Dhauladhar range of Himalayas, Dalhousie gracefully cushions in between the lush green ambience and snow-covered humongous mountain views.
Khajjiar in Dalhousie, radiates the beauty in monsoon which gives direct rivalry to the Switzerland and thus it is also called as ‘Switzerland of India’. Home to wildlife reserves, grand mountains and profound rivers, beautiful architectures and mesmerizing art – Dalhousie in Himachal Pradesh doubles the visual treat in the monsoon and proves to be worth every day spent.
HOW TO REACH – The nearest railway station to reach Dalhousie is Pathankot which is 80Km away from the hill town. Finding taxis and cabs outside station to reach Dalhousie is not a difficult task. You can also travel by overnight luxury buses from Delhi.
Kangra Airport in Gaggal, Himachal Pradesh is the nearest means to reach Dalhousie by air. Other major airports that are near to Dalhousie include Chandigarh (255 km), Amritsar (208 km) and Jammu (200 km).