India has always experienced extreme temperatures in summers and winters. Affording a vacation to other countries when the summer gets unbearable is not always possible. So, we shall be telling you about destinations in India where you can escape to! You must be thinking how crowded these places would be with everyone having the same idea. Well, we have brought you five summer destinations that are offbeat gems of India.
Tawang, Arunachal Pradesh
This misty mountain town can be described in three words – picturesque, beautiful, and serene.
Sitting at an elevation of 2669 meters above sea level, Tawang is home to magnificent monasteries and some of the most spectacular scenery in the North East. It is also the birthplace of the sixth Dalai Lama, Tsangyang Gyatso.
The waters of the popular lakes Banga Jang and Pangong Teng Tso are covered with mist and the sight of the lush greenery surrounding the place is breathtaking. The latter attracts various species of migratory birds during summer. The Jung Falls, with all its gloriousness, is sure to mesmerize you. You can also visit the beautiful Tipi Orchid Sanctuary to find solace.
Places to Visit
Apart from the monasteries, water bodies and sanctuaries, Tawang houses
Sela Pass – Lying some 80 kilometers from Tawang, Sela Pass offers an enchanting view of the surrounding areas. It is the sole path that connects this town district to other parts of India.
Gorichen Peak – Commonly referred to as the Sa-Nga Phu (meaning “Kingdom of Deity”) by the locals, it is the highest peak of Arunachal Pradesh.
Tawang War Memorial – If you are a history enthusiast, you should definitely head out to this memorial dedicated to the martyrs who laid their lives in the Sino-Indian War of 1962.
The nearest airport and railway station is at Tezpur. Once you reach Tezpur, you can reach Tawang by bus or car.
This summer, instead of following the crowd to Nainital, set out for the exquisite Naukuchiatal, meaning ‘lake of nine corners’. This small village in Uttarakhand is an ideal summer destination for those seeking peace in the lap of Mother Nature.
It is believed that if someone can see all nine corners of the Naukuchiatal Lake without raising their feet from the ground, they will disappear into thick, dense smoke to achieve Moksha. The splendid surroundings encompassed with hills covered in lush green shrubs and trees offer activities such as fishing, paddling, paragliding, parasailing, yachting and rowing.
The majestic hill station also holds the annual Escape Festival of Arts and Music in May, a grand celebration of various art forms to literally help you escape the boredom.
Places to Visit
Naukuchiatal is home to several unexplored beauties, including
Jungliagaon – If you are looking for a perfect spot for photography amidst rich wildlife, this is the place to be.
Mukteshwar – Established in 1893 by the British, this place, at present, is famous for the 350-year-old temple situated on top of a peak.
Sattal – Situated at a distance of 19 kilometers from the lake village, Sattal is a set of seven lakes and is a paradise to nature lovers.
The closest airport and railway station to Naukuchiatal are Pant Nagar and Kathgodam respectively. The place is also well-connected by both private and state buses leaving from Uttarakhand and the cities nearby.
Darjeeling, West Bengal
Darjeeling is an ideal place to escape to as soon as the mercury rises. Snow capped mountains of the Kanchenjunga overlooking this little town, mesmerizing sunrises, and rich scenic beauty characterize this hill station. And of course, it is home to the famous Darjeeling Tea.
A toy train goes through the whole of Darjeeling giving its passengers a breathtaking view of the place.
Places to Visit
Tiger Hill – There is no other place which offers you a better view of the sunrise in Darjeeling than this place. From here, you can see the exact moment the rays of the sun illuminating the snow-capped peaks of Kanchenjunga.
Japanese Peace Pagoda – Built under the unwavering guidance of Nichidatsu Fujii, this scintillating white structure is worth a visit.
Nightingale Park – Formerly known as “The Shrubbery”, this enchanting tourist attraction used to be a private courtyard. It houses a sizable statue of Lord Shiva and a charming musical fountain.
Darjeeling is accessible from Siliguri, lying at a distance of 80 kilometers, by the toy train, known as the Darjeeling Himalayan Railway. Its nearest railway station is at New Jalpaiguri. Bagdogra Airport is in close proximity to this place. Buses are also available from Siliguri, Kurseong and Kalimpong.
Kotagiri, Tamil Nadu
Away from the hustle and bustle of city life is Kotagiri. Being more interested in more popular hill stations nearby like Coonoor and Ooty, people usually overlook Kotagiri. Tucked away in the Nilgiris, this place is said to be the preferred summer haunt for the British.
There are several tea plantations peppered across this small town, and the fresh air and radiant greenery add to the charm of this place.
What’s more, it is dotted with numerous food joints which serve delicious food.
Places to Visit
Catherine Falls – The pristine water body, falling in a double cascade from a height of around 250 meters is devoid of the cacophony of people and is an exquisite place to visit with a group of friends or families.
Longwood Shola – Wander through the endless evergreen forests and explore the wilderness of the place in its purest form. If you are lucky, you can spot the Indian Bison or the Flying Fox.
John Sullivan Memorial – Built in memory of the British civil servant John Sullivan, this memorial was once his residence. At present, it contains several documents and other belongings of Sullivan and is a monument preserving the rich history of this town.
The closest railway station is in Coonoor, while the nearest airport is in Coimbatore. Regular buses are also available from the neighboring cities of Coimbatore, Tirupur, Trichy and Erode.
Rewalsar, Himachal Pradesh
Rewalsar, more commonly known as Trisangam among the locals, is a religious town encompassing Lake Rewalsar and is a significant place for Hindus, Buddhists and Sikhs.
According to Buddhist mythology, the Rewalsar Lake, locally known as the Tso Pema was created by Guru Padmasambhava, who had chosen this place to enlighten the King of Zohar’s daughter, Mandarava, on Buddhism.
Since this place is away from the crowds of the metropolitan cities, you will be able to spend your time in quietude, feeding the fish and reconnecting with your spiritual self while sitting by the pristine lake.
Places to Visit
Padmasambhava Caves – Housing several images of Dalai Lama and Buddhist deities in the main cave, the area around this tourist attraction emits a mystic aura.
Kunti Temple – The sole temple of Kunti in the entire world, this place of worship has a high religious value and is one of the rarest sights.
Rewalsar Zoo – Located adjacent to the Rewalsar Lake is a small zoo maintained by the forest department.
Rewalsar is well connected from Mandi. Buses are available from Manali which will take you to your destination. From New Delhi, it will take about 12 hours to reach Rewalsar by road.
It’s time to beat the heat, explore the offbeat! Need help? Reach out to us at [email protected]0