India is one of the most populous and large countries of India. Just to give some numbers and understand the size of this country often rightly called Indian subcontinent, we are talking about a population of 21 times the population of Italy over a territory that is about 11 times Italy. Both geographically and ethnographically it is very diverse and its culture and artistic wealth are expressions of this variety.
Tourist Places to Visit in India
A question you often hear is what are the most beautiful places to visit in India, monuments or places that you should not miss if you want to travel to India. A difficult and very subjective question also linked to the interests of the traveler. There are those who may prefer the naturalistic aspect, the religious one, so it is difficult to arrive at a common answer.
We will also try to indicate the 10 best places to visit in a hypothetical trip to India. Those places, sites, monuments or places that in our opinion deserve to be visited Alphabetically without ranking because it would be too difficult. The only condition that we have set ourselves is to take places and places of different states of India to try as much as possible to cover as many parts of this country as possible.
1. Backwaters of Kerala
In a land as beautiful as Kerala, the backwater is a fluvial network of about 900 kilometers between canals, lakes, lagoons, and rivers that makeup one of the most striking and unique landscapes of India. Allepey or Alappuzha the “Venice of the East” is the ideal starting point for sailing in the backwater on “houseboats” or kettuvalam houseboats, ancient boats used for the transport of goods mainly rice and spices, now converted into passenger transport. A navigation in the backwater between lagoons, fluvial forest, palm groves, spices, fishermen who throw nets, split of everyday life in the midst of the sounds of nature in peace and serenity.
2. Calcutta or Kolkata
Kolkata once Calcutta is the capital of ancient Bengal, India’s cultural and historical center of India. It is a welcoming city, perhaps the Indian metropolis par excellence where to find the truest India among a smiling and welcoming people, crossing the last rickshaw pulled by men nicknamed “horsemen”. But it is also a place of history of colonial palaces, libraries, markets, cradle of Indian literature. A unique city that continues to attract and welcome millions of Indians and visitors
In the heart of Karnataka lies the remote village of Hampi, the ancient capital of Vijayanagar. Difficult to reach it is one of the most important and extensive archaeological sites in the world. UNESCO World Heritage Site is a site that includes fortifications, temples, statues, palaces, etc.
Founded by the Vijayanagar dynasty in the fourteenth century Hampi literally “the city of victory” was for two hundred years the capital and heart of India in the south. Now Hampi is not only an archaeological site to visit for history lovers, but it is also a pleasant and peaceful place.
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In the heart of Rajasthan, in the land of the maharaja of colorful and gaudy turbans and saris, it is hard to say which city is the best. We chose Jodhpur the “blue city” here, but others might like Jaisalmer, Udaipur or Jaipur more. In our opinion Jodhpur with its impressive Mehrangarh Fort – the most beautiful fort in Rajasthan, its colorful bazaar, its blue houses, its geographical position in the heart of the Marwar kingdom near the Thar desert and with beautiful accommodations, has perhaps something more than the others.
In the state of Gujarat in Palitana lies the hill of Shatrunjaya and on top of this hill is the largest number of temples in the world. A sacred place of the Jainist religion , to access the site you have to climb 3,745 steps but when you reach the summit you will find 863 white marble temples all carved and about 7,000 statues, all surrounded by walls that give the idea of a fortress outside. It is instead a sacred place, and the yatra (pilgrimage) to the hill is considered an opportunity to reach nirvana (salvation).
6. Taj Mahal
It does not need many presentations. It is perhaps the most famous monument of India, one of the most visited places in the world that is the symbol of India in the world. The Taj Mahal is located in Agra and it is a Muslim mausoleum built by the Mughal emperor Shah Jahah in memory of his favorite wife Mumtaz Mahal. The true mausoleum is precisely a structure about seventy meters high entirely covered with white marble topped by 4 minor domes plus a larger dome.
7. Golden Temple
In Amritsar in the state of Punjab is the Golden Temple or Sri Harmandir Sahib. The Sikh temple is the most important center for Sikh worshipers. In addition to an important pilgrimage destination, it is a place of extraordinary architecture, but also a place of peace and serenity.
8. Temple of Meenakshi Amman
In Madurai , Tamil Nadu, in what is called the “village of temples” , is what we believe to be the most evocative Hinduist temple, the most beautiful and one of the most important for Hindu faithful. The Meenakshi Amman Temple is the maximum expression of the Dravidian, impressive culture with its gopuram would take days to visit.
9. Thiksey Gompa
At the foot of the Himalayas in the state of Ladakh cradle of the Buddhist religion there are many Buddhist monasteries called “gompas” that characterize the territory and that have always been the center of the village around which daily life takes place. Each village therefore has its own gompa. Also difficult in this case to say which one is the most deserving. Here we suggest the Thiksey Gompa , belonging to the order of the gelukpa, one of the biggest gompas of Ladakh that recalls the Potala Palace of Lhasa. It houses about 120 lamas with 40 novices and the entire structure occupies a hill. We suggest that you arrive early in the morning to witness the morning prayers in silence.
10. Varanasi or Benares
Varanasi is the holiest of the sacred cities of India, located between the Varana and Asi rivers . Also known as Benares or Banaras during the British colonial empire, it returned to its original name in 1947. Hindu spirituality center, Varanasi is the place to die, where all the Hindus want to be cremated in a wooden pyre set up on the banks of the Ganges , and then the ashes are slipped into the sacred Ganges. A public ritual but also intimate and powerful, sometimes sad and melancholy but rich in spirituality and religion.
As you have seen there are only 10 seats, but many others could be included or selected. Without thinking too much, Mumbai, Cochin, Jaisalmer, Udaipur, Khajuraho, Mysore, Goa, Darjeeling, Hemis, Srinagar, Jaipur, Bandhavgarh National Park, Shimla, etc. also come to mind at the time of India tour.