Travelling in India is like an elaborately laid out thali that has so much to offer that you’re constantly fighting the need to eat it all, though you know that you may not be able to finish it. India is such a vast country that it packs a whole array of such rich experiences that can leave you addicted. That should be reason enough for you to skip the usual hill stations and beaches and instead head to these places.
Taj Mahal at night
This is something you would not want to miss. Picture this – the silver beams of a full moon illuminate the Taj Mahal when it is completely dark except for the single lamp hanging in its central chamber, the white marble monument to love turns magical. Every month, on full moon day and two days before and after, the Taj Mahal is open for viewing at night for a select few. For dates in October visit the ASI website.
Safaris in Madhya Pradesh
Though Kanha National Park and Bandhavgarh National Park are popular there are two more to choose from – Panna National Park and Pench Tiger Reserve. If you want to go for a safari in the popular zones, book at least a month in advance. Besides the usual animals there are high chances of spotting a tiger in the first three, but in Pench the chances are slim. Hotels around these parks may be a bit expensive, but it’s the experience that counts.
Tipu Sultan’s summer palace in Srirangapatna
The fact that this entire river island was once the fortress of Tipu Sultan is probably one of the best kept travel secrets. Situated 15 km from Mysore, Srirangapatna is home to several heritage monuments and while there, you’re bound to come across plenty of gates and ramparts dating back to that era. A walk down to Tipu’s summer palace will surely have your interest piqued. This was where the British breached the Gumbaz, the fort that became the Tiger of Mysore’s final resting place.
Road trip to Spiti
October marks the end of season, which means Spiti can be all yours. The best way to reach Kaza, the capital of Spiti is to start from Manali. You’ll cross Kunzum Pass and Chander Taal on the way to Kaza. While the ride to Spiti can be bumpy, the arid landscape and pristine blue skies more than make up for it. Before making travel plans check on weather updates and if Kunzum Pass is open.
Chalukya temple trail
Start with Aihole, Badami and the Unesco Heritage Site of Pattadakal, and end at Belur and Hallibedu. The rock-cut caves of Badami and the temple complex of Pattadakal and Aihole strewn with over 120 temples make for a three day-long immersion in south India’s most captivating temple architecture. These temples are referred to as the cradle of Indian temple architecture. It makes for a good road trip from Bengaluru.