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India is one of the most popular tourist destinations in the world. Many foreigners from across the country, as well as locals, love exploring popular destinations of the country. But over the years some of the destinations have managed to receive immense love from the tourists. This has surely led to them enjoying the maximum of limelight that is now managing to show its adverse side. There are many destinations across the corners of India that are absolutely magnificent to witness. But as not many people are aware of its presence, it has fallen in the neglected category. Following is a perfect substitute list for you that gives you better destination options that you can choose as your next holiday destination.

 

1. Mussoorie

Popularly adjudged as the ‘Queen of the Hills’, Mussoorie is visited by a large number of tourists throughout the year. The hill station is among the most popular destinations for all kinds of travellers. It is located at a distance of 35 kilometres away from another popular destination, Dehradun. The hill station of Mussoorie is located at a height of 2005 meters above the sea level and is surrounded by the Shivalik Himalayas. Mussoorie has become the go-to place for many tourists over the years, but sadly many people fail to notice that there isn’t much to witness here except the Kempty Falls.

 

Mussoorie

 

So instead of following the crowd to the hills of Mussoorie, head up to the picturesque town of Chakrata.

The not so popular hill station of Chakrata is located in the Dehradun District of Uttarakhand. It is etched at an altitude of 7000 feet above the sea level. The town is known among many trekkers and adventure seekers. Chakrata hosts many adventurous activities such as mountain climbing and skiing. The hill station was developed by the British rulers who visited it during the summer months. It is surrounded by the Kharamba peak, the highest mountain with an altitude of about 10,000 feet. Chakrata is abundant in flora and fauna which will surely make you fall in love with the place. Keep an eye open for panthers, spotted deers and wild fowls as they are frequently spotted strolling around the town.

 

Chakrata

 

2. Shimla

The capital of Himachal Pradesh, Shimla is known to many. The hill station over the years has gained immense popularity among tourists from across the country. This is the reason why now it has lost its tranquil charm. The former capital of British India now retains just a little of its yesteryear charm. The famous Mall road that hosts numerous shops, cafes, restaurants is the main point of attraction of Shimla. If you imagine yourself taking a relaxing walk down Mall road, then think again because you will be able to walk but in a crowd of tourists imagining the same like you. Hence, instead of a relaxing walk, it’ll be a walk with a crowd full of strangers. But there are many more hill stations in the northern region of India that deserve your attention. 

 

Shimla

 

If you plan to visit the hills of Northern India, ditch the usual Shimla and head a little further to the breathtaking Narkanda.

Narkanada is a small town in the district of Shimla. Many tourists visiting Shimla are unaware of the magnificent charm and beauty that Narkanda possesses. The town is situated at an altitude of 9000 feet and is surrounded by serene views and hilltops. Narkanda is also great for trekkers as there are many trekking routes which offer the greatest experiences and views. One of the most serene hills, the Hatu Nag is the perfect place to trek. The trekking conditions and the views on top of the peak are beyond perfect. If you wish to experience skiing in winters then Narkanada also offers skiing spots. Narkanda also houses the impressive Tannu Jubbar lake which is perfect to spend some tranquil time alone.

 

Narkanda

 

3. Goa

Goa is famously known as the party capital of India. Many tourists from around the world, as well as people residing in India, choose to flock to it during most times of the year. Goa is extremely popular for its beaches. Hence, you will be able to spot a massive herd of tourists sunbathing or surfing on the Arabian waters. Due to a large amount of the population choosing to visit here, the beaches are now left beyond dirty and filthy. Being the number one go-to spot for beach lovers and adventurous activities, Goa has surely begun to shed off its charm. Many tourists now have started looking for better beach options.

 

Goa

 

If you are bored of the usual Goa trip then head a little further to the pilgrimage town of Gokarna.

Located in the state of Karnataka, the town of Gokarna is a popular pilgrimage town. According to many mythological stories, it is the spot where Lord Shiva emerged from the crack of the Earth as a cow. The name Gokarna also translates into a ‘cow’s ear.’ The town is bestowed with numerous pilgrimage spots, temples and much more. It is the perfect replacement for Goa because it has various clean beach spots that for the past few years have been attracting many travellers especially from across the countries. One of its most popular beaches is the  Om Beach and the Half Moon Beach which have been named after their shapes. The scenic views of the ocean from the beach will surely leave you mesmerized. Gokarna also offers many adventurous water sport activities such as surfing, scuba diving, snorkelling, parasailing, and jet skiing.

 

Gokarna

 

4. Ooty

Surrounded by the hills of Nilgiri, is a popular hill station of the Southern part of India. If you have ever visited Tamil Nadu, there is a high chance that Ooty was on your itinerary. Many people love to visit Ooty at any time of the year. It was also once the summer headquarters of the East India Company. But sadly nowadays it has lost its charm due to the growing commercialization. The place, though still very beautiful, is now at the receiving end of pollution. Littered, overcrowded and jam-packed streets are certainly not ideal for a perfect vacation. Hence, if you are searching for a calm, peaceful, and not so crowded place to visit then you should surely skip Ooty. 

 

Ooty

 

While Ooty might hold a special place in the hearts of many, a glance at Wayanad will definitely make you rethink. 

Hidden in the picturesque Western Ghats, Wayanad is one of the greenest and vivid spots of the state of Kerala. It has one of the cleanest and pristine spots of the state that introduces one to not only some surreal naturistic spots but also a place full of historical and cultural sites. The hill station is also abundant in flora and fauna. The hills of Wayanad adjoin with the Mudumalai and Bandipur hills, hence forming a wide area for nature’s vivid phenomenons to flourish. Wayanad is surrounded by many other popular tourist spots such as Ooty, Mysore, Bangalore, Coorg and Kannur. The place is majorly known for its wildlife reserves that inhabit many elephants, leopards, and bears.

 

Wayanad

 

5. Ladakh

Located at an altitude of 9,800 feet, Ladakh is bestowed with abundant landscapes and ranges. Over the years many people choose to visit Ladakh during its peak months. The place is surrounded by numerous snowy mountains, valleys, rivers and much more. Considered as the perfect place to discover. Ladakh is also famous for its ancient monasteries, religious sites, palaces of the royalty, gompas and wildlife sanctuaries. Adventure seekers also look forward to discovering it, but many people choose to opt-out of visiting due to the heavy expenditures that come with it. 

 

Leh City

So don’t be disheartened if you do not have the budget for Ladakh. The phenomenal beauty of Spiti Valley will surely more than make up for it. 

Surrounded by the tall and mighty Himalayas, Spiti Valley is located at an altitude of 12,500 feet above sea level. The valley is covered in thick blankets of snow during most times of the year. It is only during a couple of months that the people of Spiti Valley get to rejoice the warmth of the sun. Therefore, Spiti Valley is marked as one of the chilliest places in the country. The thick fog also cuts off the place from the rest of the country for half the year. Spiti is majorly known as an adventurers heaven as it offers the perfect trails for you to go trekking. The main start point of these treks are in Spiti’s capital, Kaza. The treks of Spiti offer some of the most amazing views of the mighty peaks. Visit Spiti valley anytime between March to June.

 

Spiti Valley

 

6. Varanasi

Varanasi is marked as the oldest living city in India. Over the years it has gained the name of the spiritual capital too. Located on the banks of the holy river Ganga, Varanasi has become one of the most auspicious destinations to visit in India. A herd of foreigners and locals can be seen exploring the tiny galis of the holy city oftenly. Over the years Varanasi has become the sole place for gaining some spirituality. Many people aren’t aware of the other  Indian cities that serve much more enlightening than Varanasi. This is also the reason why Varanasi has become one of the priciest locations in India to visit.

 

Varanasi

 

If you think Varanasi is the only place to gain a holistic experience, then you should definitely consider the vibrant town of Ujjain.

Ujjain is considered as one of the holiest cities of India too. Sadly, over the years it has not received the acclaim and attention that it should have received from tourists and travellers. Ujjain is located on the Eastern banks of the Shipra River in the Indian state of Madhya Pradesh. The city is one of the four prestigious cities for the biggest and holiest fair in the world, the Kumbh Mela. The Mela is known to attract over millions around the world. Ujjain is also home to the Mahakaleshwar Jyotirlinga which is one of the twelve Jyotirlinga shrines of Lord Shiva. Many devotees visit Ujjain to get a glimpse of the auspicious Jyotirlinga. 

 

Ujjain

 

7. Darjeeling

Located in the Indian State of West Bengal, Darjeeling is a major favourite of tourists visiting the North-Eastern corner of the country. Darjeeling is majorly known for its culture and for being one of the highest tea exporters of tea. The city is popularly known as the Queen of Hills’ for its stunning landscapes and wonderful attractions that one gets to witness. It houses a plethora of Monasteries, offers toy train rides, and a wide land of tea plantations to discover. Many tourists love exploring Darjeeling as it offers some stunning trek trails to explore. However, over a long period of time, Darjeeling has also been subjected to overcrowding. There are many places around Darjeeling that deserve much more attention.

 

Darjeeling

 

Give a skip to the usual Darjeeling landscape and head to the splendid Assam for its well-known wildlife and culture.

Located in the North-East region of India, Assam offers some of the most breathtaking landscapes. The state shares its borders with two neighbouring countries of India, Bangladesh and Bhutan. The waters of the grand river Bhramaputra flowing through the state, add numerous charms and zeal to the place. Assam is also known for its flourishing flora and fauna. It is widely known for inhabiting the one-horned rhinoceros that many tourists wish to get a glimpse of during their visit. Many other rare animals that are considered to be on the verge of extinction can also be spotted in Assam. Apart from this Assam is known for its unique preparation of tea and production of silk. Some of the best places to discover in Assam include the popular Kaziranga National Park, Manas Wildlife Sanctuary, Majuli Island, Kakochang Waterfall and many more. 

 

Assam

 

8. Jaipur

The vibrant ‘Pink City’ of Jaipur is one of the most popular places to visit in Rajasthan. The city showcases its ancient history and culture through its stunning monuments. The monuments here display the art and architecture of the former years vividly. Over the years it has become the hub for many backpackers and solo travellers that love witnessing the numerous forts and palaces, such as the Amer Fort, Nahargarh Fort, City Palace, Jaigarh Fort, Hawa Mahal, Jantar Mantar, Jal Mahal and many more. Though Jaipur is one of the most regal palaces to visit in Rajasthan that takes people back into the lifestyle of the Royalties. But there are many other places in the state of Rajasthan that are worthy of visiting. 

 

Jaipur

 

Though the Pink city has been a favourite of many for its royal footprints, but a visit to Bundi will surely not disappoint you.

Located at a distance of 210 kilometres in the Hadoti region of Rajasthan is Bundi. It is said that during the olden years Bundi was conquered by the local tribes. Earlier known as Bunda-Ka-Nal, the place was earlier governed by Rao Deva Hada. In 1342, he took over Bundi from Jaita Meena and established it as a princely state. The town is filled with numerous palaces, forts, baolis, temples and much more. These iconic spots here signify the many battles this town has witnessed. Apart from this, there is a diverseness in its flora and fauna too. Rich greenness and waterfalls descending act as the perfect sight for sore eyes. 

 

Bundi

 

9. Bangalore

The third-largest city of Bangalore is known for being the Silicon Valley of India. This IT hub of India is visited by many hopeful Indians in search of a brighter future. A pleasant climate encircles the city throughout the year. It is also known for its quirky cafes and mouth-watering street food. But sadly over the years, Bangalore has become a crowded metropolitan city. The lakes that once used to entertain a large crowd are now left polluted. One not so great thing about Bangalore is its congested routes. If you wish to reach a place that is hardly 15 minutes away, be sure to leave hours before because you are going to be stuck in traffic for the longest time.

 

Bangalore

 

Bangalore is now a place of the past, instead, visit Mysore for its incredible cultural lineage. 

Popularly known as the City of Places, Mysore is the third largest and second most populated city of Karnataka. It was formerly known as the Kingdom of Mysore. Mysore showcases a rich heritage and culture due to which it has been regarded as the cultural capital of Karnataka. Also known as Mysuru, Mysore witnesses numerous visitors from around the country. One of the most spectacular spots to witness is the Mysore Palace that displays the Indo-Saracenic form of architecture. Every section of the palace exhibits antiques, old paintings and remembrances from the yesteryears. The detailing on the walls and windows is beyond magnificent. Do not forget to gorge on some Mysore Pak and Mysore Masala Dosa while visiting Mysore.

Mysore city palace

 

10. Hyderabad

The city famous for its iconic Charminar, pearls and biryani has been a famous tourist spot for several years. The city houses many mosques and crowded markets selling everything from food, clothes to artificial jewellery. Many people visit Hyderabad especially to witness the iconic CharMinar around which over the years many shopkeepers have chosen to set up their shops and stalls. Due to which this area is mostly overcrowded during most days of the week. The other part of Hyderabad, Cyberabad is full of malls, complexes and restaurants that are always chirping with the hustle and bustle of people.

 

Hyderabad

 

It’s time to skip the usual Hyderabad and head to the impressive town of Warangal.

The former capital of the Kakatiya kingdom, Warangal is located in the Indian state of Telangana. Previously known as Orguguallu or Omtikonda, the town hosts numerous architectural wonders such as the beautiful Warangal Fort which was constructed by Prolaraja of the Kakatiya dynasty. Warangal gained major popularity when the famous Italian traveller, Marco Polo visited it between 1289–1293. Some of the popular places to visit in Warangal include the Pakhal Lake, Warangal Fort, the Thousand Pillared Temple, the Rock Garden, the Padmakshi Temple, Bhadrakali Temple and the Warangal Planetarium. The popular festival of Warangal, Sammakka-Sarakka Jatara is hosted once in every two years. The fair sees a crowd of ten million people. It has been regarded as the second largest fair (as per the number of people who visit) in Asia after the Kumbh Mela. 

 

Warangal