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Nine best places to wake up on New Year’s Day

Image courtesy: ©Shutterstock/Apisak Kanjanapusit

No matter how good, bad or worse the previous year was, you made through it all and it’s over! All you have in hand now is the coming year, which definitely should be made more interesting and adventurous. Why not start from day 1? Pick from the list below, your place of choice to wake up on the first day of 2019.

Srinagar, J&K

If you wish to experience serenity at its peak, Srinagar is the place. Ringed by an arc of green mountains, Srinagar’s greatest drawcard is mesmerizingly placid Dal Lake, on which a bright array of stationary houseboats form a colourful scene and a unique opportunity for romantic chill-outs. Famous Mughal gardens are strung out over several kilometres around the lake’s less urbanised eastern shore. Waking up on one of the house-boats on New Year’s Day, will be the best experience.

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Shillong, Meghalaya


Image courtesy: ©Meghalaya Tourism Board

A New Year in Shillong means that you can literally float in the abode of clouds – Meghalaya. Explore the destination for its crystal clear Umiam Lake, a reason that gets it a sobriquet of being the “Scotland of the East.” Try some waterfall hopping with Sweet falls and Elephant falls or just spend the last day of the year golfing at the Shilling Golf Course. Don’t miss the breath-taking view of the entire town from the Shillong Peak.

Gokarna, Karnataka

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With its stunning rocky beaches and a calm spiritual atmosphere, Gokarna is a great destination to bring in the New Year. Spend your last evening of 2018 watching the warm golden glow of sunset on the rocky Kudle and Om beaches, lie on the sandy shores beneath a clear star-studded night sky and wake up for a lovely beach trek through the hills of Gokarna. Remember to sample the amazing food at the fusion cafes here. If a daily yoga routine is one of your New Year resolutions, then there is no better place to start your first dawn of 2019 than the gorgeous beaches of Gokarna.

Pushkar, Rajasthan

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A night around a bonfire lit amid the sand dunes with a spectacular view of the sun rising far out in the dusty horizon is what you can expect in this destination. Add to this, the colourful Rajasthani dances, traditions and the delicious local cuisine that makes the party even more vibrant. Besides the desert experience, you can opt for a lovely trek to the Ratnagiri hill, visit the only Brahma temple in the town or discover the vibrant sounds and sights around the Pushkar bazaar and lake.

Poovar, Kerala

Image courtesy: ©Kerala Tourism Board

Usher in your year with a little sand and surf on the beaches of Poovar. Top up your experience with an authentic Kerala ayurveda massage on one of those gorgeous resorts on the beach. Adding more flavours literally, is the yummy local Kerala cuisine – from its fish curries to steaming appams and idiyappams. Of course a cruise on the backwaters is a great way to begin the New Year.


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Clear blue skies and equally clear water with its unspoiled beaches and diverse marine life – Lakshadweep is a destination that escapes most people. With its pristine landscape and quiet resort stays, this is an ideal place to start something different and new. Indulge in scuba diving or snorkelling to explore the colourful world underneath, pump up some adrenaline with skiing and kayaking or just experience the sea mist with some speed boating.

Udaipur, Rajasthan

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Experience how contemporary blends in with tradition and culture at the New Year’s celebrations held at the heritage resorts and hotels in Udaipur. Indulge in some Rajasthani folk performances while you sample the rich local food. If you are history buff, Udaipur with its rich monuments, forts and palaces is just the place that you need, to begin your first day of the year.

Rann of Kutch, Gujarat

Image courtesy: ©Gujarat Tourism Board

Experience the shimmering white salt lands of the Rann of Kutch – that shine as the moon reflects on it. Enjoy the annual Rann Utsav that treats you to the best of Gujarati culture, cuisine and camp out in the special tents set up to enjoy the white sands of Kutch. Try out dirt biking or take a day trip to the gorgeous Mandvi beach in Kutch.


Image courtesy: ©Shutterstock/Sun_Shine

The ‘French’ town of India, Pondicherry, is full of quiet, clean streets, lined with bougainvillea-draped colonial-style townhouses numbered in an almost logical manner. The landscape is peaceful, people friendly and food- a delicious French and Indian blend. Enjoy fabulous shopping, beer, and plenty of yoga and meditation.