Forget the same-old. Try the new!
A holiday is always a good idea. This year, we suggest you cross out the touristy spots and tick on the offbeat destinations our travel experts suggest... Basically, veer off the beaten tracks and spread your wings. Set out on fresh adventures; explore new places; meet people you wouldn’t normally; and make fabulous memories! No, no visa hassles either – it’s all possible within the country. And while you refresh - mind, body & soul - create some envy among your friends with your fab posts on Instagram and Face Book. Don’t forget the selfies with panoramic views as the backdrop!
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All Quiet Up There - Kanatal, Uttarakhand
If in search of quietude and romance – laced with fresh air – head for this sleepy town, between Mussoorie and Chamba. Draped in lush mountain greenery and located at a height of 2,590 m, you can take off on easy treks from here. Or, simply sit back and catch up on conversation and romance…
Stay options: Apple Country Kanatal Resort; farm-stay at The Goat Village
Best time to visit: Summer
How to get there: Drive from Delhi; 320 km approx; 8-9 hours
The Waves & You - Harnai-Anjarle, Maharashtra
Dirt, crowd, noise, vendors – that's what beaches seem to be all about. Not the Harnai-Anjarle beach. Situated on the Konkan coast, Anjarle’s unspoiled white sands and swaying palms make it a great weekend getaway from Mumbai. Enjoy the clear waters, frolicking dolphins, migratory winter birds and the delicious food, especially the raw mango preparations and the kokum sharbat.
Stay options: Shrikrupa Homestay; Sagar Shrushti Cottage
Best time to visit: November to March; monsoons, if you like the sea in the rains
How to get there: Drive from Mumbai; 220 km approx; 5-6 hours
A Scenic Climb - Kalpetta, Kerala
Enjoy a hill-station holiday minus the cacophony of vacationers in this Kerala destination. Meander down quiet roads overlooking tea and coffee plantations and breathe in the refreshing air that's bound to whip up an appetite – a must to enjoy all the delicious Malabari food on offer!
Stay options: Sunrise Homestay; Marmalade Springs Resort
Best time to visit: September to April
How to get there: Drive from Bangalore; 300 km approx; 6-7 hours.
STILL UNTOUCHED: THE NORTH-EAST
Mawlynnong in Meghalaya was declared the cleanest village in Asia in 2003. Drive up from Guwahati to reach this quaint Khasi village, known for the Mawlynnong waterfalls and the Living Root Bridges handmade from aerial tree roots, and declared by UNESCO as a World Heritage Site.
Majuli in Assam is the largest river island in the world, where the 15th century reformer Shankardev preached his liberal Vaishnavite dharma. The island’s religious and cultural centres called Satras which house historical relics, the mighty Brahmaputra, paddy fields and lush greenery create a breathtaking natural canvas.
How to get there: Fly to Guwahati and drive up to Mawlynnong; for Majuli, the nearest airport is at Jorhat.