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Fly away home

Indian or international, we’ll be going places that have the comfort of familiarity – and a touch of surprise. Here is a list of the top destinations you can travel to in the coming year. Have a look.

india Updated: Dec 31, 2010 15:59 IST

Indian or international, we’ll be going places that have the comfort of familiarity – and a touch of surprise.

Top 3 Luxury Destinations

India
Whether it’s your first vacation or your 40th visit, Jodhpur is a classic mix of the historic grandeur of Umaid Bhawan Palace, exquisite handicrafts, folk dances, music and brightly attired people.

A luxury vacation in Delhi comprises the old and the new, the past and the present and the historical and political simultaneously, as Mughal structures provide the background for the Indian political arena.

Known for its backwaters, mountains, coconuts, spices and art forms like Kathakali and Mohini Attam, Kerala is a tropical paradise of waving palms and wide sandy beaches.

International
Tiny islands with soft, sandy beaches, sparkling turquoise lagoons and bungalows on the beaches – the Maldives are perfect for a luxurious beach holiday. Straddling the Bosphorus, its skyline studded with domes and minarets, Istanbul is one of the truly great romantic cities. Franschhoek is the food and wine capital of South Africa. It’s a great place to relax, with a spectacular atmosphere.

Top 3 Backpacking Destinations

India

Rishikesh promises tranquillity. Wash your sins away in the holy river or indulge in white-water rafting. Charming landscapes and monasteries greet those looking forward to adventure in Leh. Munnar is known for its scenic beauty, tea plantations and the Nilgiri Tahr (mountain goat).

International
Emerald landscapes, majestic stone castles and medieval towns. Ireland is a melting pot of the contemporary and the ancient. Utah offers skiing, snowboarding, water skiing, camping and rock climbing. A little known country with a tumultuous past, Laos still follows the rustic way of life.

Top 3 Offbeat Destinations

India
Lakshadweep and the Andaman and Nicobar islands are a fantasy of crystal waters, white sands, and emerald forests. Gangtok inspires you to challenge the River Teesta and conquer the Himalayas.

International
Petra is Jordan’s most valuable treasure. Stunning sights, beautiful beaches, fabulous food make Scotland a must-visit. Rainforests and tropical beaches make Ecuador the ultimate offbeat destination.

Top 3 Budget Destinations

India
North Goa is loved as a land of golden beaches, palm trees, paddy fields and hills. I love Udaipur for its whitewashed buildings, marble palaces, lakeside gardens, temples and havelis. The Vindhya Mountains and the temples make Khajuraho fascinating.

International

Faro in Portugal features streets paved with pretty mosaics. Baja California provides some of Mexico’s most dramatic sea and landscapes. There is lots you can do when you set off for Sri Lanka with its tropical beaches, waterfalls, rain forests and ancient monuments.

Top 3 Family Destinations

India
For a quiet family holiday, Darjeeling, a dreamy little town perched on a hill and surrounded by snow-capped peaks, feels like something out of a fairy tale. Mysteries, legends, tales of love and war, colourful festivals, desert safaris on camel back, warm hospitality. Jaipur always extends a warm welcome.

Vast stretches of pristine, palm-fringed beaches, the sound of waves rushing to the shores and picturesque fishing villages along the coast – South Goa is a haven for those looking for a holiday.

International
The white sand beaches can’t be missed at Langkawi and also not the water sports either. The elite neighbourhoods, museums, ethnic quarters, parks and exquisite shopping destinations of Los Angeles lure visitors, but Hollywood and the movie stars are looked forward to more often. Exquisite shopping malls, fine dining, lavish hotels... Dubai is opulence and grandeur personified, and best enjoyed with the family.

From HT Brunch, December 26

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