In India, winter befalls from December until March. The year’s chilled months are December and January when temperatures average around 10–15 °C in the northwest; temperatures rise as one gain towards the equator, peaking around 20–25 °C in mainland India’s southeast. With a series of holidays and a list of festivals and fairs, winters in India are headed by vacations to plan your trip around, a dreamy beach holiday, hill stations sceneries and its southern tips and desserts greeting all its visitors their overflowing humidity and temperatures. Below is my list of Top 10 most Stunning Places to Visit in India During Winters.
Ladakh is one of the best places to see snow in India. Traveling to this place during winter will give you the best snowfall experience, the sheer mountains, and the snow-covered routes which will mesmerize your mood. Most of the hotels in Leh Ladakh are closed during winters, so, you have to stay homestays or you can say traditional Ladakhi houses. You can participate and enjoy ice-hockey, trekking in Ladakh during December and January. Trekking in Ladakh is considered to be a unique and exciting trek. The Chadar trek is the best place to explore. During your Chadar trek, you will be able to cover many places like Tilat sumdo, Shrina koma, Tibb, Nerak, Gyalpo, Dibyokma and Lingshed. It is important to note that in case of heavy snowfall, there are chances of the road being blocked for a day or two and might hamper your plans. So I would advise keeping a day or two extra as heavy snowfall at Khardung La and Chang La may cause the roads to be shut for vehicular traffic.
Kashmir is beautiful no matter whenever you be there. I would recommend going in winters because you will see the snow-covered sceneries of Kashmir during winters, and only when you see the snow-covered sceneries you will get to know why it is called heaven on earth. The Shikara ride in the Dall lake is one of the topmost recommended places to visit in Kashmir. I would also recommend you to stay in a boathouse there. Whether you are a professional photographer or not, if you travel to Kashmir in Winter season it will be one of the best decisions taken in regard to your passion for photography. You can capture photographs of the beautiful nature with almost no editing required. And yes, don’t miss the Kashmiri food which will keep your body warm during your stay.
As the winter arrives, the natural glory of Kerala reaches its peak. It’s one of the most popular tourist destinations in India. National Geographic’s “Traveller” magazine has named Kerala as one of the “ten paradises of the world”. In 2012, it overtook the Taj Mahal to be the number one travel destination in Google’s search trends for India. Kerala’s beaches, backwaters, lakes, hill ranges, watercourses, ancient ports, mansions, religious institutions and wildlife sanctuaries are major attractions for both domestic and international tourists. Many advertisements branded Kerala with the tagline Kerala, God’s Own Country.
To witness the charm of a desert, it’s best to visit Jaisalmer during the winter season. Jaisalmer, or the Golden City, is located the Thar Desert area led by the massive Jaisalmer Fort. The Desert Festival in Jaisalmer is among the most-awaited events of Rajasthan and is organized in the month of January. The festival is celebrated amidst the beautiful dunes of the Thar Desert in the Sam Sand Dunes (42 kilometers from Jaisalmer). In 2018, Desert Festival, Jaisalmer is to be celebrated from 29th January to 31st January. The three-day celebrations is a fantasy of sights, smells, tastes and unique delights of the desert city.
Hampi is a UNESCO WORLD HERITAGE SITE located in the state of Karnataka. UNESCO described Hampi as an “austere, grandiose site” of more than 1,600 surviving remains of the last great Hindu kingdom in South India that includes “forts, Riverside features, royal and sacred complexes, shrines, pillared halls, temples, mandapas, water structures, memorial structures, and others. The best time to visit Hampi is from September to December and in the months of February, where the minimum temperature falls to 15 degree Celsius in the evenings.
6. Himachal Pradesh
Himachal Pradesh is a North-Indian state in the Himalayas. It is home to scenic mountains and wonderful resorts. Winters in the hill stations of Himachal Pradesh such as Kullu, Manali, Shimla, Dharamshala, and McLeodganj are perfect for adventure lovers, winter honeymoon couples, and vacationers. If you love trekking, repelling and skiing, this is the best place for you. Enjoy river rafting in the Beas river at Kullu, night camping at McLeodgnj, paragliding, and skiing in Solang Valley near Manali, and walk down the mall road in Shimla.
Auli, located at an elevation of 2,500 meters to 3,050 meters above sea level, is a ski destination in Chamoli district in the Himalayan mountains of Uttarakhand, India. Along with skiing, one can indulge in various other activities such as chair car ride, and trekking during their trip to Auli. It is surrounded by deciduous and oak forests, with a panoramic view of the heights of the Himalayas.
Kutch is a district of Gujarat state in western India. It covers an area of 45,674 km², and it is the largest district in India. Kutch District is surrounded by the Gulf of Kutch and the Arabian Sea in south and west, while northern and eastern parts are surrounded by the seasonal wetlands of Kutch. It is a center of celebration, festivity, arts, and culture in December as it hosts its grand Rann Mahotsav. Visit this moon-like desert of India in December for an extraordinary experience.
Goa, India’s smallest state by area and the fourth smallest by population, is bounded by Maharashtra to the north and Karnataka to the east and south, with the Arabian sea forming its Western coast. It was ranked the best-placed state by the “Eleventh Finance Commission” for its infrastructure and was ranked on top for the best quality of living in India. With the Christmas and New Year parties, Sunburn, and Goa Film Festival during the winter months, the high spirits of Goa make it the most stunning place to visit in India during winters.
Lakshadweep, situated off the coast of Kerala, India is one of the world’s most spectacular tropical island system. The islands offer a valuable heritage of ecology and culture. The unique feature of the Islands is its coral sandbar, making it a pristine leisure spot and rich in marine wealth, is spread over 36 islands in an area of 32 sq. kms. Although it is a year-round travel destination, what makes it the most stunning place to visit in India during winters is its pleasing weather particularly in this season.