Hosting the wonders like Pampore, the ‘Saffron Town of Kashmir’, and Sonmarg, ‘The Meadow of Gold’, Kashmir Valley deserves to be called the paradise on earth. The region’s profile turns even more pristine with Srinagar’s Tulip Garden where thousands of blooms in many dazzling colours leave one absolutely bowled over. Nature has indeed spent extravagantly on this special piece of land.
Nearest Airport: Srinagar
Best Time: March-October
Tips: The valley experiences heavy snowfall during winters. Tulip Festival in April is worth attending. Rely hugely on weather forecasts and news for information before planning a trip.
Aptly called the ‘Pink City’ of Rajasthan, the city literally has its monuments and structures painted crimson. Decide to watch the sprawling city from a rampart of one of the hilltop forts during sunset and you will never find anything else so enthralling ever in life. Adding to the pink are the colourful bazaars bustling with textiles and handicrafts in unbelievable shades.
Nearest Airport: Jaipur
Best Time: October-March
Tips: Don’t miss the vivacious celebrations of Holi, the festival of colours, in March. Beware of touts and take precautions before enjoying the irresistible food high on spices.
Jaipur has a competitor not very far away in the form of the ‘Blue City’ Jodhpur. One of the most colourful cities in India, it is the gateway to the Great Thar Desert in Rajasthan. Watch the blue-coloured houses from Mehrangarh Fort, a feast rarely found anywhere else. The blues of the city are only broken by the bright red turbans of men and ethnic women clothes in a variety of reds.
Nearest Airport: Jodhpur
Best Time: October-March
Tips: Avoid venturing out late and alone at night. Wake up early to witness that ‘golden’ sunrise that adds to your colourful expedition. Do carry sun protection.
Valley of Flowers National Park
A multi-coloured carpet hand-woven by nature itself is what this pristine valley in Uttarakhand dons. Marigolds, orchids, daisies, poppies, rhododendrons, primulas and many other alpines and sub-alpine flowers blossom here to confirm our belief that heavens do exist. And as you feel magnetised with the beauty around, the spell gets broken with the presence of something like a snow leopard or a Himalayan musk deer.
Nearest Airport: Dehradun (about 304 km.)
Best Time: July-September
Tips: The valley is accessible via a trek of about 17 km. from Govindghat. There is no accommodation inside the park (available at Ghangaria, about 3 km. before the park). Entry fee is INR 150/600 for Indians/foreigners. Last entry is allowed at 02:00 p.m. The visitors must eave the park by 05:00 p.m.
The colourful India tours take one to West Bengal’s highest peak Sandakphu. Comes spring and the entire region is blessed with rhododendrons and primulas that create the fascinating contrast with lush green foliage and the snow-capped Himalayas in the backdrop. A trekking adventure is a must to explore this exotic profile of nature from close.
Nearest Airport: Bagdogra (about 118 km.)
Best Time: April-June
Tips: The trek route is about 30 km. long. Don’t plan to trek during monsoons (July-September) due to heavy rainfall and during winters (January-March) when the roads shut down due to heavy snowfall. The place offers the magnificent views of the world’s four tallest mountain peaks including Mount Everest.
Hindus designate it as their holiest city. Varanasi on the bank of River Ganga has vivid culture running in its veins like narrow alleys. Easily one of the best-coloured cities India has, its glorious persons is best visible as you join an early morning boat ride on Ganga and watch the entire city waking up to welcome another beautiful day. Don’t miss exploring the sacred ghats and evening Ganga aarti to watch some more colours disclosed.
Nearest Airport: Varanasi
Best Time: October-March
Tips: Don’t fall for the priests convincing you to perform religious rituals. Dress up modestly as it is a pilgrimage destination. Alcohol and non-vegetarian food are not allowed at the religious sites.
The crystal clear salt-laden flatlands of Kutch Desert suddenly turn multi-coloured with the arrival of the annual 3-month long Rann Mahotsav. Beautiful tents mushroom up over the pure white sheet and the culturally-inclined people of Kutch assemble to showcase their heart-warming arts, dances and handicrafts. Kites in all possible shades fill the sky and you are thrilled to watch the spectrum so amazingly revealed to your eyes.
Nearest Airport: Bhuj
Best Time: December-March
Tips: Book the tent accommodations in advance as you may not find one on the spot. Don’t miss the night camel safari. Carry adequate sun protection.
A fitting reply to Valley of Flowers in the north, Kaas Plateau in the West Indian state of Maharashtra is one of the best ideas for colourful vacations India. It bears over 850 different species of flowers during and after the monsoons, imitating a huge canvas painted in spectacular colours. The fact that it is now a no-vehicle zone adds to its exquisiteness quotient.
Nearest Airport: Pune (about 143 km.)
Best Time: Late-August to October
Tips: There is no accommodation facility. Prefer to stay at the beautiful hill station of Mahabaleshwar nearby. It opens from 09:00 a.m. to 06:00 p.m. Entry fee is INR 10.
So, now you know what makes India incredible and how it never fails to add colours to diverse holiday moods. You may plan adventure trips, honeymoon dates, leisure tours and heritage expeditions to these places and claim an unforgettable rendezvous with the truly colourful India.