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5 Destinations For A Family Winter Vacation In India

5 Destinations For A Family Winter Vacation In India

access_time July 31, 2017 chat_bubble_outline 0 comments 856 views

For most children, winters are synonymous with holidays, picnics, and family meets. And since it is about family bonding, there is nothing like going on a vacation together. Here are 7 family vacation destinations in India to choose from.

Admire the breath-taking snowy landscape of Kashmir to enjoy winter in all its glory

Admire the breath-taking snowy landscape of Kashmir to enjoy winter in all its glory

In fact, the run up to the actual vacation–the deciding on a place, choosing activities to do there, and the entire planning is half the fun. There are plenty of places in India that offer a different vacation experience in every season. Here are our picks of the best places to visit in India during the winter:

#1 Kashmir

Things to do: Ride a shikara on Dal Lake, ski and gondola ride in Gulmarg

If you are still to make your maiden visit to this paradise, a winter vacation is as good a time as any. While Kashmir is spectacular at all times, visiting in the winter months it lets you enjoy the snow and winter-related outdoor activities.

Complete your Kashmir trip with a Shikara ride on the famous Dal Lake

Complete your Kashmir trip with a shikara ride on the famous Dal Lake

Whether you want to try your hand at skiing on the slopes or prefer to enjoy the views from a gondola, Gulmarg is the destination to head to. Do not miss out on a snowball fight with the family. A trip to the Dal Lake is also an unmissable part of any Kashmir visit. The Mughal Gardens in Srinagar is another attraction where you can feast your eyes on the region’s beauty.

Kashmir Fact File:

Location: In northern India, mostly in the Himalayas
How to Reach: Srinagar airport has daily flights from Delhi and other cities. Private and state buses connect the state to nearby places. Jammu Tawi Railway Station is the nearest railhead
Official Language: Urdu
Currency: INR
Time Zone: UTC+05:30
Climate: Temperate
Food & Drink: Must-try dishes of the Kashmiri cuisine include Qabargaah, Shab Deg, and Rogan Josh. Noon chai is a popular tea in the state.

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#2. Auli

Things to do: Skiing

Known for being among the top ski destinations in the country, Auli, located in Uttarakhand, is the perfect place for a memorable winter vacation. Kids and adults alike will enjoy learning the ropes of skiing from professional instructors. In fact, if you wish you can also attend the annual National Championship of Skiing, held in Auli every January.

Adventure and outdoor lovers will love skiing in Auli

Adventure and outdoor lovers will love skiing in Auli

December in Auli also means snow-clad peaks like the Mana Parbat and Neelkant, providing soothing scenic views for travellers who just want to enjoy breath-taking mountain scenery with a steaming cuppa. The region also wears a festive look around the time of Christmas, if you were planning to make a short trip to Auli during the vacations. Spend some time at the Auli artificial lake. It not only makes a pretty sight, but is also an excellent backdrop for clicking vacation pictures.

Uttarakhand Fact File

Location: In northern India, bordering Uttar Pradesh, Himachal Pradesh, Tibet, and Nepal.
How to Reach: Air connectivity available to Dehradun’s Jolly Grant Airport and Pantnagar Airport close to Nainital. There is good rail connectivity to places within Uttarakhand and other cities in India. Buses are available to Auli from different places.
Official Language: Hindi, Sanskrit
Currency: INR
Time Zone: UTC+05:30
Climate: Pleasant to hot summers depending on the place, while winters are typically chilly.
Food & Drink: Mostly cooked over wood or charcoal, Uttarakhand’s popular dishes include chapatis, kafuli, dubuk, and Garhwal ka fannah. Jhangor ki kheer is the dessert to try.

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#3. Konark

Things to do: Attend the Konark Dance Festival, visit the Sun Temple and beach.

The mere mention of Konark brings the stunning Sun Temple to mind. This is no doubt a must-visit attraction not only for history and architecture lovers but for all travellers; but there is a lot more to enjoy in this Odisha town. If you are travelling in December, add the Konark Dance Festival to your itinerary.

An Odissi dancer strikes a pose at Konark’s Sun Temple

An Odissi dancer strikes a pose at Konark’s Sun Temple

This is not your average dance performance in an air-conditioned auditorium. Rather, this annual festival treats attendees to the finest of live performances by participants from all over the country, performed to the decked-up backdrop of the Sun Temple. The sound of ghungroos and musical instruments added with the magnificent view is a true feast for the senses.

Spending time at the pristine Konark Beach with its golden sands is the perfect way to wind up a visit to this fascinating little town.

Odisha Fact File:

Location: India’s eastern coast, bordering West Bengal.
How to Reach: Bhubaneshwar’s Biju Patnaik Airport has regular flights from many Indian cities; the city is also well-connected by rail. A good road network connects Konark and other parts of Odisha to major Indian cities.
Official Language: Odia
Currency: INR
Time Zone: UTC+05:30
Climate: Tropical
Food & Drink: Rice is a staple; Pakhala, a dish made from soaked cooked rice, is popular. Pahala Rasgulla and Chhena Poda are must-try sweet dishes.

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#4. Meghalaya

Things to do: Visit the Umngot River, explore Shillong and Cherrapunjee

If you are looking for a holiday that completely destresses you while also maintaining the fun factor, Meghalaya is the place to be. Starting from the Umiam Lake and Elephant Falls to charming churches and a vibrant music scene, this north-eastern state has it all. Cherrapunjee’s Mawsmai Cave and Nohkalikai Falls are some of the top attractions in one of the wettest places on earth.

But the Umngot River deserves special mention. Something of a hidden gem of the region, this river is known for having water so clear that a person on a boat can see right to the river bed.

 Hop onto a boat on the Dawki River for a serene experience

Hop onto a boat on the Dawki River for a serene experience

For a truly unique experience, go for a hike on the Double Decker Living Root Bridge – a natural wonder that has marvelled visitors since many years. When not exploring the mesmerising outdoors, you can tuck into Khasi delights in Shillong, watch a football game in progress, or simply soak in the sights from one of the many cafés.

Meghalaya Fact File:

Location: Close to Assam, Meghalaya is also bounded by Bangladesh. The capital city of Shillong lies 100kms away from Guwahati.
How to Reach: You can take a flight to Guwahati and travel to Meghalaya by road. A helicopter service from Guwahati to Shillong is also available. Guwahati also has good road connectivity to Meghalaya.
Official Language: English
Currency: INR
Time Zone: UTC+05:30
Climate: Meghalaya is the wettest place in the world with high rainfall and humidity.
Food & Drink: Non-vegetarian, with spicy meat and vegetables. Pumaloi (a rice dish) and Jadoh (pork and rice) are local favourites.

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#5. Rajasthan

Things to do: Visit forts and museums, shop in Jaisalmer, try Rajasthani cuisine

If you have always wanted to explore Rajasthan but the idea of travelling in the heat has kept you from doing so, plan a trip during the winter to experience the charm of the land without having to deal with the blistering desert heat.

 A camel decked with local decorations at the Pushkar Fair

A camel decked with local decorations at the Pushkar Fair

Riding the sand dunes on camel-back is a quintessential Rajasthan experience, as is visiting its famous forts and palaces, most of which have now been turned into hotels. The Amber Fort, Udaipur’s Lake Palace, and the Mehrangarh Fort will please architecture and history enthusiasts. Set some time aside for Mount Abu, the state’s only hill station.

November is when the famous Pushkar ka Mela takes place, which offers a fascinating insight into local trade and culture. If you are travelling with children, do remember to watch a puppet show while in Rajasthan.

Rajasthan Fact File:

Location: In India’s western part, bordering Pakistan.
How to Reach: Jaipur, Jodhpur, and Udaipur have domestic airports; and a good railway network provides regular connectivity from Rajasthan to different Indian cities. Bus services are available from several neighbouring states.
Official Language: Hindi
Currency: INR
Time Zone: UTC+05:30
Climate: Tropical desert
Food & Drink: Mostly vegetarian; dishes to taste are Dal-Baati-Churma, kachori, mawa, and ghevar.

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Cox & Kings

Cox & Kings is the longest established tours and travels company in the world. Established in 1758, we are headquartered in Mumbai with a presence in over 13 countries worldwide. Our services include destination management, domestic and international holiday packages, luxury travel, business and MICE, NRI and foreign exchange solutions, as well as insurance.

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