Khajjiar, Hemis, Mawlynnong: Take the road less travelled with your besties for the trip of a lifetime
With destinations like Thailand, Bali and Goa becoming too touristy and overcrowded, the entire point of taking a holiday, which is to escape the busy life and city crowd, goes to trash. We all crave to take the road lesser travelled, to experience a new culture, food, locales, and to truly unwind when on vacation.
Travelling together is an experience that bonds people for life, and who better to bond with than your closest friends. So if you are planning a trip with your besties anytime soon, don’t give these lesser known, off the chartered route, destinations in India a miss.
Khajjiar, Himachal Pradesh
‘The hills’ are perpetually calling every young Indian, be it Dalhousie, Kasol, Tosh or Malana, but these parts are overcrowded with tourists from all around the world. If you truly want to experience the unexplored beauty of the hills, head to Khajjiar, also known as the mini Switzerland of India. The summers are breezy and the winters snowy. One can participate in adventure sports like paragliding, horse-riding and zorbing.
Ladakh in itself is every traveller’s fantasy, and no Bollywood movie can do justice to its beauty. But if you truly want to explore an unknown location, then head to Hemis in Ladakh. Hemis is surrounded by snow-capped ranges all around. You can visit the beauty Hemis Gompa monastery, hopefully see a snow leopard at Hemis National Park and spend the night stargazing.+ +
Mawlynnong, Meghalaya+ +
The north east of India is quite unexplored and untouched, and Mawlynnong is one such village in Meghalaya. In 2003, Mawlynnong, also known as God’s Own Garden, was dubbed as the cleanest Asian village. The village community is eco-friendly, they have achieved a near 100 percent literacy rate and the scenic beauty will make you stop and truly wonder. Thanks to a smoking ban, the air is pristine and the weather is pleasant all year round. Explore the caves, waterfalls, the Living Roots Bridge that have been made out of the roots of trees.
Ziro, Arunachal Pradesh
Ziro, a charming little town in Arunachal Pradesh, is far from the tourist trail and the perfect location for you to go and unwind with your best friends. Beautiful clouds touch the luxuriant green hills, the rice fields are abundant and if you love trekking, then look no further. Unlike in other secluded destinations, the local Apatani tribe are very friendly and will welcome you. Ziro is also home to the Ziro Music Festival.
Varkala, a quaint town in Kerala, is a beach lover’s paradise. Its pristine beaches and palm-covered red cliffs are nestled on the shores of the Arabian Sea. There are plenty of lighthouses and shrines in this beach town down south, and you will see sadhus performing holy rituals when you visit Papanasam beach. You can go swimming, boating, do yoga or learn Ayurveda, there’s something for everyone, but Varkala is not a sleepy town, you can take your bestie and do adventure sports like paragliding and parasailing, too.+ +