TOP 15 TOURISM ATTRACTION IN INDIA
India is a vibrant land of striking contrasts, where the modern world and ancient traditions intersect. It is the seventh largest country in the world and the second largest in terms of population.
It is not surprising that a rich historical heritage has been preserved here – the result of a centuries-old fusion of different cultures and religions.
Among the tourist advantages of the country, it is worth noting the opportunity to visit sacred places and participate in various spiritual meetings.
Nature lovers will not be disappointed either, as India has sunny beaches, lush national parks, and exciting wildlife sanctuaries.
Visitors to this exotic country will find a wealth of spiritual, cultural and historical treasures here, from the Taj Mahal in Agra to the Harmandir Sahib (former Golden Temple) in Amritsar and the Mecca Mosque in Hyderabad.
1. Taj Mahal Agra
The mausoleum is named after Mumtaz Mahal, the beloved wife of Emperor Shah Jahan.
The construction of the structure began immediately after her death in 1631. It took 22 years and 20,000 workers to complete.
The Taj Mahal brings together many elements of Islamic design, including arches, minarets, onion domes and black carvings around the entrance.
The main part of the building is constructed of white marble, decorated with beautiful floral ornaments and semi-precious stones, including jade, lapis lazuli, diamonds and mother-of-pearl.
Tip: the best time to visit the mausoleum is sunrise or sunset, when the surrounding atmosphere changes noticeably due to the play of light. If possible, try to catch the Taj Mahal’s reflection in the Yamuna River.
2. The Holy City Of Varanasi
The origins of the city date back to the 8th century BC, making it one of the oldest inhabited cities in the world. It is worth visiting Varanasi for various reasons.
Not the last among them is a walk through the Old Quarter, adjacent to the Ganges River. Here you will find the Kashi Vishwanath Temple, built in 1780 (the new temple complex with seven buildings is also worth seeing).
These places are called “ghats“, and there are more than 100 of them throughout the city. The largest Ghats are Dasashvamedh and Assi (the last Ghat, located at the confluence of the Ganges and the Assi River, is especially revered).
The Banaras Hindu University, opened in 1917, is also worthy of interest. It is notable for its huge library, which contains over a million books.
Also on the territory of the university is the Bharat Kala Bhavan Museum, where you can see not only an exhibition on the topic of local history, but also miniature paintings, sculptures and ancient manuscripts on palm leaves.
3. Harmandir Sahib: Golden Temple Amritsar
Amritsar, founded in 1577 by guru Ram Das, is an important center for Sikh history and culture. The main local attraction is the Harmandir Sahib Temple, built in 1604 and still called the “Golden Temple” for its rich decoration.
The style of the temple combines elements of Hinduism and Islam. The lower part of the building is made of marble and decorated with floral and animal motifs.
The upper part is a Golden Lotus Dome, which symbolizes purity among the Sikhs.
Tourists will be amazed not only by the stunning architecture of the temple, but also by its spiritual atmosphere, enhanced by the sounds of prayers, as believers constantly read lines from the Sikh holy book.
4. Jaisalmer The Golden City
The city was once a strategic outpost. Now, it is filled with magnificent old estates and majestic gates. The city is also home to the massive Jaisalmer Fort (known as the “Golden Fort“), towering over the surrounding buildings since the 12th century.
Inside the fortress, you can see palaces, temples and well-preserved old houses. There are also 99 bastions with heavy gates leading to the main courtyard of the fort, on which stands the seven-story Maharaja’s palace.
The construction of the palace began in the 1500s and continued by subsequent dynasties of rulers until the 19th century.
Several areas of the complex are open to visitors, including rooms decorated with magnificent tiles from Italy and China.
Here you can also see the most beautiful carved stone doors and several temples dating back to the XII and XVI centuries.
Each is decorated with marble and sandstone bas-reliefs, brightly colored ceilings and palm-leaf manuscripts.
Be sure to check out the library, which is over 1,000 years old. In it you can see many antiquities and look at the manuscripts of the 16th century.
5. Red Fort New Delhi
This magnificent crescent-shaped fort was named for the specific color of the sandstone on which it was built. The total area of the fortress is more than 2 square kilometers.
At the same time, the structure is surrounded by a moat along the entire perimeter.
Among the attractions of the fort, two beautiful gates occupy a special place: the impressive Lahori Gate (the main entrance to the territory) and the magnificently decorated Delhi Gate (used for ceremonial processions).
An interesting addition to the visit will be a visit to the 17th century covered market called Chatta Chowk. Here you will find everything from jewelry to silk clothing, from souvenirs to food.
You can explore the territory of the fort yourself, but it is better to use an escorted tour. With the help of a guide, you can dive deeper into the peculiarities of life during the time of the Shah.
In addition, you will be shown the dazzling marble Public Audience Hall, where the Shah received his visitors.
Tip: Try to linger at the fort for a while – every evening there is a light and audio show dedicated to important events in the history of the fort.
6. Gateway Of India Mumbai
For some time, by the way, it was the tallest building in the city. The structure was built on a base of yellow basalt and concrete, clearly influenced by Indian and Saracenic styles.
In 1948, the Gate became the site of a less solemn event, and it was through them that a column of British soldiers left India after the country’s independence.
Today, the huge arched structure is a popular backdrop with both locals and tourists.
7. Mecca Mosque Hyderabad
This beautiful mosque – large enough to hold 10,000 worshipers – has 15 huge arches and columns made of solid black granite.
To bring the material to the construction site, it was necessary to use the draft force of 1,400 bulls. The mosque got its name thanks to the brick placed above the entrance, as it was brought directly from Mecca.
The mosque complex has many notable elements, including: the main entrance, a huge inner square, a large artificial pond, and the room where the Prophet Muhammad’s hair is kept.
Other interesting features of the building include Koranic lines carved above the arches and doors, the exquisite roof of the main hall, the cornice that surrounds the entire building, and floral motifs in the decorative design of the arches.
8. Amer Fort Jaipur
Literally carved out of stone at the top of the hill, the fort is accessible by walking up stairs or using special vehicles.
However, for a complete immersion in the atmosphere, it is recommended to take an elephant ride.
Pay attention to the first courtyard of the fort, where you can see a mass of decorated elephants, as well as the Shila Devi Temple, dedicated to the goddess of war.
Also noteworthy is the Public Audience Hall, with its richly decorated walls and terraces, on which monkeys scurry.
Also check out the Hall of Pleasures, where magnificent flower beds are laid out and a channel created to deliver cool water to the inside of the fort flows.
Nearby is the Temple of Victory, notable for its decorative panels, bright ceilings and excellent views of the palace and the palace lake.
We advise you to take some time to stroll through the streets of the old district of Jaipur, where you can see the reconstructed city gates and an excellent market square.
There is also the city palace, which is a large-scale complex of buildings, courtyards and gardens.
9. Goa Beach
Goa has long been popular with beach lovers. However, the west coast of Goa, overlooking the Arabian Sea, began to gain popularity among tourists relatively recently.
The local coastline, which is more than 95 km long, has some of the Best Beaches In The World. And almost everyone has their own special features.
If you are looking for Luxury Resorts, Yoga Courses and Spa Treatments, then you need to head towards the beaches: Mandrem, Morjim and Ashvem.
It is they who are now in the can of wealthy Indians and Western Tourists. Palolem Beach is another popular option with an excellent location in a picturesque area.
When in Goa, be sure to visit the Bhagwan Mahavir Wildlife Sanctuary, whose dense forests are home to a wide variety of animals, such as deer, monkeys, elephants, leopards, tigers, black panthers and the famous king cobras.
Here is the village of Piedade, which is a typical local settlement. The village has a church of Our Lady of Compassion with interesting stucco and plaster decorations in the Baroque style.
In addition, the church offers breathtaking views of the surrounding countryside.
10. Periyar National Park Madurai
This park is one of the most popular attractions in southern India. It is located around a lake created by British engineers in 1895 for the purpose of irrigating agricultural land and supplying water to the city of Madurai.
The park was opened in 1934. It is now home to a large number of different mammalian species, including a large population of Indian elephants, wild boars, otters and over 20 Bengal tigers.
Bird lovers will also find something to do in the park, with storks, kingfishers and other interesting species. In addition, a wide variety of butterflies awaits visitors.
Hiking in the jungle or cruising on the lake will help you appreciate all the beauty of the park’s mountain landscape.
The first option will give you the chance to meet face to face with an elephant herd, as well as observe various animals from special viewing platforms.
Tip: Take a look at one of the plantations located nearby. Spices, tea and coffee are grown here.
11. Agra Fort
The Agra fort was built as a military structure in 1565 by Emperor Akbar and later supplemented by Shah Jahan. Architecturally, the fort is an interesting mixture of Hindu and Muslim styles.
It is located just a couple of kilometers from the Taj Mahal. The entrance to the fort is through the gate of Omar Singh, which is distinguished by a special design that misleads a potential enemy.
Noteworthy is the octagonal tower, which was used as a prison for Shah Jahan until his death.
12. Ellora Caves Aurangabad
On the territory of the Ellora Cave complex, there are 34 monasteries and temples carved in stone: 12 Buddhist, 17 Hindu and 5 Jain.
The entire complex is included in the list of UNESCO World Heritage Sites. By the way, the buildings are close to each other, reflecting the religious tolerance that existed in India at that time.
In the Caves Of Buddhist Monasteries, you can see carved statuettes of Buddha and various saints dating from the 5th-7th centuries.
Nearby is the Carpenter’s Cave, considered the most beautiful in the country. Hindu caves are more complex. They are decorated with stone carvings.
The decoration was carried out from top to bottom, as the temples themselves were carved, so no scaffolding was used.
The best cave is considered to be the Kailash Temple, carved entirely into the rock, as a result of which about 200,000 tons of stone were removed.
13. Mehrangarh Fort Jodhpur
The massive fort literally looms over the old city of Jodhpur, making it one of the largest fortified structures in India.
By the way, the city got this nickname because of the characteristic color of the houses, which helped to reduce their heating in the sun.
Built on top of a hill, the fort is a delightful structure, and its walls look truly impenetrable. The entrance to the fortress is provided by seven magnificent gates.
Some of them even have traces of cannon shots. Within the fort, of particular interest is the impressive network of courtyards and palaces.
There is also a museum, which houses an impressive collection of items related to the history of the fort.
Be sure to walk the streets of the historic city center of Jodhpur, which is famous for its gates, an old clock tower and several market squares selling everything from vegetables to various handicrafts.
14. Mysore Palace
Those who like market trading will surely delight in the famous bazaars where a variety of silks and sandalwood products can be found.
However, the main attraction of the city is the Mysore Palace. Its beautiful building was completely rebuilt in 1897 after a devastating fire.
From an architectural point of view, the square towers of the palace and its domes are noteworthy.
Inside, you can see the numerous ornamental decoration of the ceiling and columns, for example, in the Durbar Hall or in the Wedding Pavilion.
The latter is also distinguished by magnificent floor tiles, colorful stained-glass windows and works of art (including jewelry) on display.
On special occasions, the Golden Throne is set up here. Every Sunday and on certain holidays, a light show is held outside the palace, during which the building is illuminated by over 90,000 lighting fixtures.
Tip: The best way to explore the palace and its gardens is through free movement inside, which can be done completely free of charge after paying for the entrance.
15. Mahabodhi Temple
Bodh Gaya is considered the most sacred Buddhist site in the world, attracting thousands of visitors every year. All of them can participate in the prayer and meditation of local monks.
Mahabodhi temple was built in the 6th century AD, after which it was rebuilt several times. The structure is crowned with a beautiful pyramidal spire and a sparkling Buddha Statue.
Also worthy of attention is a tree growing on the territory of the temple. It is believed to be a descendant of the very tree under which the Buddha Meditated for 7 days after attaining enlightenment.
This tree is one of the oldest and most revered in the world. You will recognize him by the red plate on the ground in front of the tree, which marks the place of Buddha’s Meditation.
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