With its breathtakingly beautiful coastline, lush forested interior, fantastic diving possibilities and far-flung location, the Andaman Islands are a perfect place to ramble around or simply chill out on sun-toasted beaches.Its shimmering turquoise waters are surrounded by primeval jungle and mangrove forest, and its sugar-white beaches melt under glorious flame-and-purple sunsets..The Nicobar Islands are strictly off limits to tourists, as are the various patches of tribal areas.
Port Blair, Surrounded by tropical forest and rugged coastline, lively Port Blair serves as the provincial capital of the Andamans. It’s a vibrant mix of Indian Ocean inhabitants – Bengalis, Tamils, Telugus, Nicobarese and Burmese. Most travellers don’t hang around any longer than necessary (usually one or two days while waiting to book onward travel in the islands, or returning for departure), but PB’s fascinating history warrants extended exploration.
Spread in ribbons over a steep mountain ridge, surrounded by emerald-green tea plantations and towered over by majestic Khangchendzonga (8598m), Darjeeling is the definitive Indian hill station and is arguably West Bengal’s premier attraction. When you aren’t gazing open-mouthed at Khangchendzonga, you can explore colonial-era architecture, visit Buddhist monasteries, and spot snow leopards and red pandas at the nearby zoo. The adventurous can arrange a trek to Singalila Ridge or hire a mountain bike for a guided ride around the hilltops.
Delhi is a city where time travel is feasible. Step aboard your time machine (the sleek and efficient metro) and you can go from Old Delhi, where labourers haul sacks of spices and jewellers weigh gold on dusty scales, to modern New Delhi, with its colonial-era parliament buildings and penchant for high tea. Delhi is a city that has been repeatedly ravaged and reborn, with vestiges of lost empires in almost every neighbourhood. There's so much to experience here, it's like a country in itself.
Kullu, The bustling administrative capital of the Kullu Valley is a return to Indian normality from the valley's hippie holiday resorts. Few travellers stop here for long but it's a likeable enough place, and in October it stages the area's biggest and most colourful festival, the Kullu Dussehra.The Beas River runs down the east side of Kullu, and its tributary the Sarvari River runs across the middle of town, dividing Kullu into southern and northern halves. The southern part (Dhalpur) has the taxi stand, tourist office, Dussehra grounds (two large, adjoining, open spaces) and most restaurants and hotels.
Shimla is the capital of the northern Indian state of Himachal Pradesh, in the Himalayan foothills. Once the summer capital of British India, it remains the terminus of the narrow-gauge Kalka-Shimla Railway, completed in 1903. It’s also known for the handicraft shops that line The Mall, a pedestrian avenue, as well as the Lakkar Bazaar, a market specializing in wooden toys and crafts.
Kerala is South India's most serenely beautiful state. A slender coastal strip is shaped by its layered landscape: almost 600km of glorious Arabian Sea coast and beaches; a languid network of glistening backwaters; and the spice and tea-covered hills of the Western Ghats. Just setting foot on this swath of soul-quenching, palm-shaded green will slow your subcontinental stride to a blissed-out amble.
Gangtok, Irreverent, cheerful and pleasantly boisterous, Sikkim’s modern capital is layered along a precipitous mountain ridge, descending the hillside in steep tiers. It's a confusing spaghetti of winding lanes flanked by tall, mostly concrete-block buildings that might appear to be two storeys high from one side but often have several more floors descending behind. As well as a handful of minor sights, there are countless viewpoints with panoramas that encompass plunging green valleys and, if you're lucky weather-wise, glimpses of Khangchendzonga on the distant skyline.
Goa is a small state on the western coast of India. Though the smallest Indian state, Goa has played an influential role in Indian history. Goa was one of the major trade centres in India, thus it had always been attracting the influential dynasties, seafarers, merchants, traders, monks and missionaries since its earliest known history. Throughout its history Goa has undergone continual transformation, leaving an indelible impression on various aspects of its cultural and socio-economic development.