India is the land of variations, color, festivities, laughter and unsung glory. Its a great place to begin your wanderlust journey. A country of long legacy and history, India was colonized for a long time and you can definitely see remnants of the bygone British, French, Portuguese and Thai rule. It is varied in its geographical terrain – you can experience heat, snow, rains, all by being in the same time zone. India also boosts of amazing cuisines, religions, festivals and languages. Talk about languages and there are 22 recognized languages in India.
I was born and brought up in India and lived there until I decided to move to Canada in 2009.
Even if you have never been to India, I am sure you know something about it, like – the Taj Mahal, butter chicken, naan, sarees and may be some more. In this blog post, I have invited bloggers and Instagrammers from all across the globe to share their travel tales from India. They have visited big and small cities of India and they have some stories, photos and recommendations to share.
So without further ado, lets get started.
Munnar, Kerela (Southern India)
Natalia from mytriphack.com says, “I recommend visiting Munnar in Kerala for some surreal plantation looks, a huge variety of home-made chocolates and scenic nature. Here you can also learn & see the process of tea-making.”
Read her Blog-post on Munnar here
Jaisalmer, Rajasthan (Western India)
Joanna, from theworldinmypocket says, “Jaisalmer is a magical city! I recommend it for the beautiful golden colour that turns to at sunrise and sunset, for the detailed architecture of the fort, where life goes on as normal despite the tourists, and for the delicious Rajasthani food.”
Joanna shares her Jaisalmer Travel Story on her blog. Read it right here
Follow Joanna’s Adventures in Instagram @oana_roua
Pondicherry, Pondicherry (Southern India)
Located in the southern part of India, Pondicherry was a French colony. This city still has beautiful remnants of French settlements. This view is from one of the many beaches/water fronts that you can view and enjoy in Pondy (as its lovingly called)
Popular “Aurobindo Ashram” is located in Pondicherry.
Varanasi, Uttar Pradesh (Northern India)
Teresa from Broganabroad takes us to the holy city of Varanasi and she says, “Varanasi, the holiest of the holy cities in India is charged with strong energy and spirituality”
Jaipur, Rajasthan (Western India)
Liza from tripsget.com, visited India very recently and shares some of the amazing shots from Western India on her Instagram @lizatripsget
Liza says,” this is my first time in India and I’m genuinely impressed. India is really a country of contrasts, but what I loved the most is the architecture! Our first stop is Jaipur and its really hard to find a more photogenic city than Jaipur.”
Find out about Off beaten things to do in Jaipur.
Orchha, Madhya Pradesh (Central India)
Teresa from broganabroad.com takes us to Orcccha in Madhya Pradesh and says, “Incredibly rich in history, Orchha’s location is really picturesque with hills and lush greenery around, which makes it picture perfect.
Kochi, Kerela (Southern India)
Inma from A World of Travel shares this beautiful portrait from Kochi. She says, “If you are craving a Kerala gem with a rich history, try Kochi. According to history, explorers, traders and travelers have been coming Cochin, in Kerala, for the past 600 years. There you will be able to visit a 400-year old synagogue, mosque ruins, Portuguese dwellings as well as the iconic giant Chinese fishing nets. And while it may be full of history from other places, you still get the tropical Indian feeling from its accommodations. Enjoy!”
Read Nomadic Jony’s experience from Kashmir to Kanyakumari in 49 days
Pune, Maharashtra (Western India)
Jacky from nomadepicureans takes us to Pune and says, “Once the political center of India and the capital of the Maratha Empire, Pune is considered to be the cultural capital of the state of Maharashtra. With its long history and temples around every corner, Pune is the quintessential Indian destination. But what makes Pune stand out, is its growing foodie scene as well as the surrounding ghats. Whether you’re looking for culture, cuisine, shopping, or nature… Pune has it all.
Learn more about the beautiful city of Pune Click here
Follow her travel journeys on Instagram
Read why I love Pune
Spiti Valley, Himanchal Pradesh (Northern India)
This adorable shot of young kids was featured in Wahhindia – an Instagram collaborative that shares visuals and stories from India. Follow them on Instagram for more photos from India.
Shot by photograpgher, Vibhu_Grover, and shared on WahhIndia, Vibhu says, “This picture was clicked on the day we entered Spiti. After waking up early in Sangla to see the sunrise, stopping at Akpa bridge and Spiti bridge, where the Spiti river and the Sutlej meet (also known as the Sangam point), we reached Nako. Situated at what’s called Upper Kinnaur and just the very last of the Kinnaur Valley. The drive from the Spiti bridge to Nako is when you start to get the taste of Spiti and its landscapes and is also my favourite part of the trip from Kinnaur side………..Nako being my favorite, I remember all the times I have been there, all the small things experienced!”
Chennai, Tamil Nadu (Southern India)
Preethika from @passingports has wonderful things to say about the southern capital of Tamil Nadu, Chennai. She says, “Standing tall in the one of the world’s longest beaches, this lighthouse in Marina Beach is a place one cannot miss. Who would want to miss the opportunity of experiencing an aerial view of not just the city but of the beautiful Bay of Bengal all at once. Enjoy the breeze, watch the tiny humans and automobiles on the move, click those selfies and carry back home a gorgeous memory of the city of Chennai.”
Shillong, Meghalaya (Eastern India)
Ridhima shares her travel stories at littlejoysandmore and she shares this picture from Shillong. She shares, “Called as the Scotland of the East, Shillong has its own share of charm and beauty. From promising culinary journey to the extravagant markets, from a view of the stark villages to sheer valleys of joy, Shillong has all that one can ask for. The cafes here are welcoming and I really had a good time experimenting with bamboo shoots and my all-time favorite momos.”
Follow Ridhima’s travels at Instagram@littlejoysandmore
Odisha (Eastern India)
Shivani from TheWanderingCore shares a picture from the eastern state of Odisha and she says, ” A state seeking its way in the ever expanding Indian tourism industry is Odisha. Hearing about Odisha, handloom industry comes to mind. Sure, handlooms are their forte. But Odisha is much more than that. The famous Jagannath Temple of Puri with a coastline on the Bay of Bengal where sunrises and sunsets shouldn’t be missed. The renowned Sun Temple of Konark, the land of King Ashoka and the Shanti Stupa through which he preached the message of Peace. The unheard largest brackish waters of Chilika Lake which also hosts migratory birds from Asia and Oceania. And not forget Bhubaneshwar – also known as City of Temples with more then 600 temples and the architecture to be inspired from. I suggest never undermine the potential of a place until you have seen it all. Explore Odisha for its coastal vibe, unforgettable history and stunning architecture.
Kolkata, West Bengal (Eastern India)
Madhurima from Orange Wayfarer says, “Kolkata is the cultural capital of India. Situated in the eastern part of the country, the metropolis was the erstwhile capital of British era. Till date, the gothic architecture in the administrative block is very much evident. Home to the first noble laureate of Asia, Rabindranath Thakur, Kolkata is known for sumptuous choice of food (the Sondesh of the city is unique and not to be found anywhere else in the country, along with Fish curry and rice are staple of every household), a populace extremely vocal about politics and a nostalgia of days bygone. When in Kolkata, explore the promenade by the river Ganges, locally known as Hoogly. Explore the area of Chowrangee where history speaks volume. take back home some pure cotton sarees as souvenirs, weaved with artistic prowess”
Pushkar, Rajasthan (Western India)
Tamlyn from thetravelingtam is currently in India. The above picture was taken at Pushkar, Rajasthan and this is what Tamlyn says, ” As I walk through the streets of Pushkar, full of hippie clothing stores and special (bhang) lassi shops, I start to wonder what the town used to look like, before tourists came pouring in. Known as one of the holiest places in India, I wonder if religious people despise what the town has become. I reckon that the shop keepers are pretty happy with the influx of money that tourism has given them. People seem to live good lives in Pushkar from the now world famous barber to the shopkeepers lounging in their chairs, they seem to really enjoy life as it is today.”
Tourism does play an important role in India in driving its economy.
Hyderabad, Andhra Pradesh (Southern India)
Aneesha from omnomnirvana says, “Hyderabad’s old city area might be crowded, but it’s got amazing street eats amidst colossal architecture”
Captured here the hustle bustle of Hyderabad in the evenings. Read all about it here
Follow her on Instagram @omnomnirvana
Want to spend 3 days in Hyderabad Read here
Delhi, India (Northern India)
New Delhi is the capital of India. Delhi is a unique place to visit – where you will find Mughal gems and British architectural buildings!
Shivani from TheWanderingCore has similar things to say about Delhi. She says, “The capital of India, the main intersection of the famous Golden Triangle of India is a historical hub with an urban feel. Every nook and corner of Delhi is decorated with a history to learn from, the monuments are a photographer’s dream. Having a world known triumphal arch in India Gate, the tallest brick minaret in Asia, along with the Humayun and Safdarjung Tomb of Mughal empire, Delhi has everything for everyone. The foodie paradise, the narrow alleys of Chandni Chowk and a night-life to cater everyone. The capital city will not disappoint and will welcome you with open arms. Visit Delhi to know about India’s history at every stride which is slowly matching pace with modern era.”
Learn more about Delhi from Shivani’s blog
Mumbai, India (Western India)
Lastly, sharing this gorgeous sunset from Mumbai, India. One of my lovely Instagram buddy, Tanmaya says, “Mumbai, to me, was always a busy, noisy, bewildering, wonderful city. And then, earlier this month, I was lucky enough to watch the sun rise over the Gateway of India – an enchanting moment stolen while the city was still waking up. It gave me a glimpse of another side of Mumbai, one I did like to know a little bit better”
Follow Tanmaya’s Stories on Instagram @hertraveledit and more
To me, India will always be special. Having lived in Assam – in the lapse of nature, I am forever a nature and mountain lover. I moved and lived in Delhi for 3 years and visited the length and breadth of the capital city. Delhi’s history is so fascinating yet troublesome to certain extent. But if you visit and explore the architectural wonders from different dynasties and centuries, they will blow your mind – so much history and beauty!
I have also lived in Gujarat and Chennai for a brief period of time and explored those places too. These 2 places are relatively warmer then most areas I have lived in, but they have the amazing food and festivities. Chennai and Gujarat (Mehsana/Ahmedabad) both have rich cultures too.
If you ever get an opportunity to travel to India, please do so. You will not be disappointed. Of course, like with any destination, do your research, plan everything out and take insurance. But do visit and explore this wonderful country, it will definitely quench your wanderlust (or fuel for more)
Need more India itinerary inspiration