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20 Weekend Getaways From Delhi

Discussion in 'Destination Guides' started by Debapriya Deb, Jan 11, 2016.

  1. Debapriya Deb

    Debapriya Deb Active Member

    The trend of enjoying a perfect weekend in an attractive place is on a steady rise in India and Delhi, being the national capital, is no exception. Delhiites are as fond of short weekend trips as the residents of some other metropolitan cities in India. The urge to get lost in the wilderness of a scenic place or to indulge in some sorts of adventure activities are the top prorities among the people who are tired of the fast-paced life at the national capital.

    If you belong to the same group of travel-loving Delhiites and wish to spend a few days relaxing and rejuvenating yourself in the company of your loved ones, friends and family members, then you have a number of exciting locations to explore near Delhi. Let's find out some of the top ranked weekend getaways from Delhi that can provide you the opportunity to spend some quality time with yourself, and your near-&-dear ones.

    Best Weekend Getaways from Delhi - The Top 20

    20. Vrindavan

    Distance: 164 KM
    Travel Time: 4 Hours
    Suggested Trip Duration: 1 - 2 Days
    Destination Category: Religious
    Best Suited For: Solo Trip, Trips with Family

    The transcendental home of the Lord Krishna, Vrindavan is one of the most visited religious attractions in India. Nestled on the holy banks of Yamuna River, Vrindavan reflects the liveliness of Lord Krishna and his playful tricks with the Gopis. Vrindavan hosts hundreds of Sri Krishna and Radha temples scattered throughout the length and breadth of the city. The vibrant surroundings and the benevolent atmosphere perfectly depicts the playful nature that Sri Krishna is portrayed as in many of the Indian mythological epics.

    Situated at a distance of 164 KM from Delhi, it takes around 4 hours' drive by road to reach at this sprightly city. Some of the famous temples that the travellers can visit here are the Madan-Mohan Temple, Radha Vallabh Temple, Banke-Bihari Temple and Shahji Temple. Vrindavan is the true representative of the 3000 years old culture and civilization of the country and it has an unvarying attraction to the people from all over the world and belonging to all religions.

    Tourist Attractions and Activities:

    1. Madan Mohan Temple
    2. Banke Bihari Temple
    3. Radha Vallabh Temple
    4. Shajhi Temple
    5. Kesi Ghat
    6. Jugal Kishore Temple
    7. Prem Mandir

    19. Nainital

    Distance: 298 KM
    Travel Time: 6.5 Hours
    Suggested Trip Duration: 2 - 3 Days
    Destination Category: Hills, Nature,
    Best Suited For: Couples, Trips with Family

    Named after the Goddess Naina Devi, this splendidly beautiful hill retreat is situated in the state of Uttarakhand at a distance of around 298 KM from the national capital. Nestled in the arms of the Kumaon Hills, Nainital is famous for its exotic riches of natural beauty. A complete honeymoon destination with lively landscapes, gorgeous lakes and a number of natural hot water springs, Nainital is regarded as one of the most visited hill stations in the Indian subcontinent. Rest assured, the picturesque charm and scenic ambiance of this pristine hill station will leave you with unforgettable memories to cherish for years to come.

    The focal point of all attractions in Nainital is the vibrant Naina Lake. Going for a romantic boat ride on its emerald-colored waters is a must do activity for the couples. There is a Yatch Club attached to the lake where you can experince luxury yatch sailing. Do pay a visit to the Naina Devi Temple, located on the shore of the lake, which does attract many tourists. The Snow View Point is the best spot for catching breathtaking views of the distant mountain ranges, while you can also head to Land's Eye View Point for getting a bird's-eye view of the Nainital town. Other tourist interested at Nainital include the Eco Cave Gardens, Hanuman Garhi temple, Tiffin Top view point and the Governor's House. Especially the Gothic style architecture of the Governor's House is a distinct feature which closely resembles the famous Castle of Scotland.

    Nainital and surrounding areas have something in store for the adventure seekers as well. Paragliding opportunities are available to the interested tourists. Although the flying may not be as exciting as the rides in Bir or Kamshet, it is worth giving a try. Trekking is the another option out there. There are a few popular short treks around the hill ranges besides the famous trail that leads to the Naina Devi Peak. Standing at an elevation of 2615 meters, the trek to Naina Devi can be challenging, but at the same time extremely rewarding with the majestic views that the peak offers.

    Tourist Attractions and Activities:

    1. Naina Lake and Naina Devi Temple
    2. Snow View Point
    3. Land's Eye View Point
    4. Eco Cave Gardens
    5. Hanuman Garhi Temple
    6. Governor's House
    7. Tiffin Top View Point
    8. Paragliding
    9. Trekking to Naina Devi Peak
    10. Shopping in the Mall Road

    18. Lansdowne

    Distance: 251 KM
    Travel Time: 6 Hours
    Suggested Trip Duration: 2 - 3 Days
    Destination Category: Hills, Nature, Adventure, Snow
    Best Suited For: Trips with Spouse, Kids and Friends

    Situated at a distance of 251 KM from Delhi, this quiant hill station on the lap of Himalayan mountains can be the ideal place to spend a family holiday amidst nature's serenity and a lot of fun.

    Nestled between the lofty peaks of Himalaya in the state of Uttarakhand, Lansdowne is blessed with picturesque meadows, pleasant weather and lots of adventure options. Snowfall is one of the many attractions that lures people into visiting this little paradise during the freezing winter season.

    Lansdowne can be a perfect venue for outdoor enthusiasts. The evergreen forests and uneven terrains have many hidden trekking trails. Rowing, paddling and bird-watching at the Bhulla Tal lake can be equally memorable. The War Memorial, Saint Mary's Church, Tiffin Top Viewpoint are a few of the must visit attractions at this place. If you are a religious travellers, then do make sure to pay a visit to the sacred and ancient temples of Lansdowne. Some of the notable religious places are the Santoshi Mata Temple, the Tarkeshwar Mahadev temple and the Bhairav Garhi temple.

    Tourist Attractions and Activities:

    1. Bhulla Tal Lake
    2. Garwhal Rifles War Memorial
    3. Saint Mary's Church
    4. Santoshi Mata Temple
    5. Tarkeshwar Mahadev temple
    6. Trekking to the Tiffin Top View Point
    7. Lansdowne-Hawagarh trek through the high altitude Khyber Pass.

    17. Pangot

    Distance: 305 KM
    Travel Time: 7 Hours
    Suggested Trip Duration: 2 - 3 Days
    Destination Category: Hills, Nature, Wildlife
    Best Suited For: Solo Trip, Trips with Friends and Family

    A picturesque hill station in the Kumaon region of Uttarakhand, Pangot is situated at a distance of 305 KM from Delhi. The place is known for its pristine landscapes and verdant forests. Pangot is home to over 250 species of birds, making it a paradise for the bird lovers. Roosted at an altitude of around 6500 feet above the sea level, Pangot is known to offer out of the world views of the Himalayan mountain ranges. Pangot has a quiet and laidback charm - which sets it apart from the other popular hill stations of Uttarakhand.

    Set amidst a thick canopy of Oak, Rhododendron and Deodar forests, Pangot is an ideal weekend getaway for those who seek tranquility and wilderness. You will be bowled over by the stunning lakes and beautiful waterfalls. Overnight camping on the shore of the Saat Taal lake can be a fascinating experience for the nature lovers. Pangot has also become a popular weekend retreat for the amateur trekkers from the Northern parts of India.

    Tourist Attractions and Activities:

    1. Saat Tal Lake
    2. Naukuchia Tal Lake
    3. Forest Trekking
    4. Overnight outdoor camping
    5. Wildlife Safari at the Corbett National Park

    16. Tehri Garhwal

    Distance: 352 KM
    Travel Time: 8 Hours
    Suggested Trip Duration: 2 Days
    Destination Category: Hills, Nature, Adventure
    Best Suited For: Trips with Friends

    Situated at a distance of 352 KM from Delhi, Tehri Garwal is a place that finds its mention in many Indian mythological stories. Unsurprisingly, the place is dotted with a number of important Hindu shrines. But what is more surprising is its recognition as more of an adventure hub than a religious abode - especially in the last few years.

    Situated at an altitude of 1950 meters above the main sea level, the place seves as a base to several famous treks. Tehri's rocky hilly terrains, interspersed with many streams and rivers, tend to be a favorite hunting ground for many mountaineers and hikers. Some of the popular places for trekking in this region include Nagtibba, Khatling Glacier, Sem-Mukhem, Pawanli Kantha, Sahastratal and Masartal. The place has also made a name for itself when it comes to river rafting. White Water Rafting on the Alakananda River has quite a few takers and Tehri Garhwal sees an influx of adventure tourists during the peak season time. You may also try your hands at Rock Climbing during your stay at Tehri.

    Another place of interest here is the Tehri Dam - which is one of the largest as well as highest hydro electric projects in the world. The Tehri Dam, constructed on two large Himalayan rivers - Bhagirathi and Bhilangana, offers an astounding sight with its mountain surrounded landscapes, which makes it a must visit attraction of Tehri.

    Tourist Attractions and Activities:

    1. Tehri Dam
    2. Trekking to Nagtibba and Khatling Glacier
    3. Tehri - Sahastratal and Tehri - Masartal trek.
    4. White Water Rafting on the Alakananda River.
    5. Rappelling and Rock Climbing.

    15. Jaipur

    Distance: 269 KM
    Travel Time: 4.5 Hours
    Suggested Trip Duration: 2 - 3 Days
    Destination Category: History & Heritage
    Best Suited For: Couples, Family and Educational Trips

    The 'Pink City' is not only the state capital of Rajasthan, but also one of the most attractive tourist destinations in India. Clubbed with Delhi and Agra, Jaipur forms the famous tourist circuit fondly called as the 'Golden Triangle' of Indian tourism. Jaipur is famous for its glorious royal heritage, magnificent forts and palaces, and ofcourse its colorful ambience and vibrant crowd. Situated at a distance of just 269 KM from the Indian Capital city, Jaipur has always been one of the faces of tourism in India and its love affair with Delhiites continue till this vary day.

    Jaipur is a beautiful city with a diverse range of shades. The Amber region is decorated with beautiful hills and lovely lakes, while the Old Jaipur has a different appeal altogether with the famous monuments like Hawa Mahal, City Palace and the famous Jantar Mantar. And the 'New' Jaipur sports a cosmopolitan outlook with colorful streets, modern architecture, high-rise buildings and shopping malls.

    When it comes to the heritage sites of Jaipur, the City Palace secures the pole position in terms of popularity. The imposing structure is one of the most well-maintained historical attractions in the city which draws the visitors attention to its neatly crafted design elements. The Hawa Mahal is a must visit attraction as you won't find a second one like this anywhere in the world. Can you imagine that this magnificent five storey building consists of 953 windows (or Jharokas)! Thanks to the royal wishes and whims, today we are seeing such gem of an architectural marvels. Amber Fort, built on the outskirts of the city, is a fort-cum-palace structure that you blow you away with its sheer size and magnificent art work. It exhibits an authentic blend of Rajput and Hindu styles in the architecture of Diwan-e-Aam, Diwan-e-Khas and the Sheesh Mahal.

    That's not all though. The Nahargarh Fort, Jaigarh Fort, Jantar Mantar, Jal Mahal and a host of other historical gems are waiting here to take you to the glorious Rajputana state of the yesteryears. If you have not been to Jaipur yet, then it's the time to pack your bags!

    Tourist Attractions and Activities:

    1.City Palace
    2. Hawa Mahal
    3. Amber Fort
    4. Nahargarh Fort
    5. Jantar Mantar
    6. Jaigarh Fort
    7. Jal Mahal
    8. Chand Pol
    9. Albert Hall Museum
    10. Lakshmi Narayana Temple (Birla Temple)

    14. Mussoorie

    Distance: 282 KM
    Travel Time: 6.5 Hours
    Suggested Trip Duration: 3 Days
    Destination Category: Hills, Nature, Adventure
    Best Suited For: Couples, Trips with Friends and Family

    Mussoorie, located in Dehradun district of Uttarakhand, is arguably one of the best places to enjoy an engrossing weekend near Delhi. Like many other places in Uttarakhand state, Mussoorie can best be accessed by road from Delhi. A 6.5 hours drive is enough to settle the distance of 282 KM between New Delhi and Mussoorie. Fondly referred to as the 'Queen of Hill Stations', you will be amazed by the serenty and ambience of this popular weekend getaway perched at a staggering altitude of over 7000 feet above the sea level. THe hill station is especially known to offer spectacular views of the snow-capped Himalayan mountain ranges towards the Northern side and the verdant Doon Valley towards its South.

    This charming hill station adorned with many tourist attractions. The perennial Kempty Falls finds itself on the top of the tourists' lists visiting Mussoorie. Although it often gets crowded by the mad rush of tourists, it still is a wonderful sight to see the milky white waters gushing down from a height of 40 feet. Jharipani Falls and Bhatta Falls are two other notable waterfalls situated at close proximity. Head to the Gun Hill view point to experience a thrilling Ropeway ride. Walk little over a KM to reach the Cloud's End view point that offers splendid views of the Aglar River Valley. Lake Mist is another very scenic location famous for trout fishing and angling activities.

    Laal Tibba is the highest point in Mussorie and a popular trekking site. Camel's Back is a 4 KM stretch that resembles a camel's hump and it is also a popular trekking spot. Here you can ride on a horse if you haven't experienced it already. Wildlife lovers would definitely enjoy taking a jungle safari in the Benog Wildlife Sanctuary. Famous for housing the nearly-extinct Mountain Quails and the Clouded Leopards, you can spot a variety of Himalayan flora and fauna during the safari ride.

    Mussoorie is also famous for adventure sports. Paragliding takes the cake for being the most popular adventure activity, but you can also try your hands at rock climbing and mountain biking.

    Tourist Attractions and Activities:

    1. Kempty Falls
    2. Jharipani Falls
    3. Bhatta Falls
    4. Gun Hill for Ropeway ride.
    5. Lake Mist for trout fishing.
    6. Laal Tibba and Camel's Back for trekking.
    7. Wildlife Safari at Benog Sanctuary.
    8. Adventure activities such as Paragliding, Rock Climbing and Mountain Biking.

    13. Chopta

    Distance: 398 KM
    Travel Time: 9 Hours
    Suggested Trip Duration: 2 - 3 Days
    Destination Category: Hills, Nature, Snow, Adventure
    Best Suited For: Honeymoon, Couples, Trips with Family and Friends

    Fondly referred to as the 'Little Switzerland of Uttarakhand', Chopta is a picturesque little hamlet located at an altitude of over 2700 meters in the Rudraprayag district, around 398 KM away from the national capital New Delhi. Chopta's lush green meadows dominated by Pine, Rhododendron and Deodar trees offer unparalleled views of the Panchchuli, Nanda Devi, Nilkanth and Kedarnath peaks.

    Besides its scenic brilliance, the Chopta valley is a great place for the trekking enthusiasts as well. Chandrashila and Tungnath temple trek can be easily covered from Chopta as the base. Ukhimath Temple, which is winter seat of Lord Kedarnath when the original Kedarnath temple becomes inaccessible due to heavy snow fall, must be on your list of important places to visit at Chopta. Chopta to Deori Tal route is equally popular among the trekkers. Another place of interest is the Kanchula Korak Sanctuary, which attracts wildlife enthusiasts who are interested in exploring rare Himalayan species of animals and birds including the elusive musk deers. Chopta also receives snowfall during the winter months, which is another reason behind its increasing popularity among the nature lovers.

    Tourist Attractions and Activities:

    1. Tungnath Temple
    2. Ukhimath Temple
    3. Deori Tal Lake
    4. Hiking to the Chandrashila Peak
    5. Trekking to Chukhumba Peak
    6. Forest Safari at Kanchula Korak Sanctuary

    12. Ranikhet

    Distance: 353 KM
    Travel Time: 8 Hours
    Suggested Trip Duration: 2 - 3 Days
    Destination Category: Hills, Nature, History
    Best Suited For: Trips with Friends and Family

    A highly revered hill station right from the days of the British regime, Ranikhet is another fabulous weekend getaway from Delhi. Situated at a distance of 353 KM, it takes around 8 hours for the Delhiites to arrive at this picturesque location. Famous for offering panoramic views of the Nanda Devi ranges, the place also has several trekking trails, mountainous climbs, lovely meadows, dancing streams and lushy orchards to keep the tourists enthralled. With its all-year pleasant climate and scenic natural views, Ranikhet has the ability to freshen up your senses like no other.

    A boat-ride on the Rani Jheel can be the perfect element to start a memorable weekend. Do pay a visit to the Kumaon Regimental Centre Museum which houses weapons and various war artificats of historical importance. The Mankameshwar Temple and Jhula Devi Temple are the most well-known religious places of interested in the Ranikhet region. If you are interested to spend some quiet time in the lap of nature, make sure to pay a visit to the famous Chaubatia Orchards. Famous for its apples, plums, peaches and apricots orchards, the scenic natural landscapes at this place will leave you bemused. It also offers panaromic views of the peaks of Nanda Devi, Nilkanth, Nandaghunti and Trishul belonging to the Greater Himalayan ranges. The 9-hole Golf Course at Ranikhet is another place that must be on your itinerary for being the second largest golf course in India. History enthusiasts can pay a visit to Dwarahat, 14 KM away from Ranikhet. The place is an archeological and historical hamlet situated on the banks of Ram Ganga River.

    The Bhalu Dam is a perfect spot for a day long outing. Surrounded by idyllic forests from all sides, the place also serves as a camping site for the trekkers. It requires a steady trek of around 3 KM for accessing the Dam. Trekking enthusiasts can set out on a hike to Majhkhali en-route to Almora. The place is endowed with scenic beauty and offers lovely views of the snow-capped Himalayan peaks.

    Tourist Attractions and Activities:

    1. Rani Jheel
    2. Kumaon Regimental Centre Museum
    3. Mankameshwar Temple and Jhula Devi Temple
    4. Chaubatia Orchards
    5. Ranikhet Golf Course
    6. Dwarahat
    7. Bhalu Dam for trekking, picnic and camping.
    8. Trek to Majhkhali.

    11. Sonapani

    Distance: 353 KM
    Travel Time: 8 Hours
    Suggested Trip Duration: 1 - 2 Days
    Destination Category: Hills, Nature
    Best Suited For: Honeymoon, Family Trips

    Located at a distance of 353 KM from Delhi and 27 KM from Mukteshwar in the Nainital district of Uttarakhand, the remote Himalayan village of Sonapani is a secluded, blissful heaven set amidst nature’s bountiful treasures. Perched at a height of 1800 meters above the main sea level, Sonapani offers exceptionally beautiful views of the snow-clad Himalayan peaks. Covered by the lush greenery of oak, rhododendron and pine groves, the virgin beauty of Sonapani would surely blow your minds off.

    For those who are seeking adventure and thrills, there are a number of forest trails to explore. You can go for a hike from Sonapani to Mukteshwar through a reserved forest area. Equally popular is the trek from Sonapani to the 10th century Kapileshwar temple.

    Tourist Attractions and Activities:

    1. Sonapani View Point
    2. Kapileshwar temple
    3. Visiting the scenic fruit orchards
    4. Forest camping
    5. Sonapani to Mukteshwar trek through reserved forest areas.

    10. Nahan

    Distance: 264 KM
    Travel Time: 4.5 Hours
    Suggested Trip Duration: 2 - 3 Days
    Destination Category: Hills, Nature
    Best Suited For: Honeymoon, Trips with Family and Friends

    Just a four and another half hours' drive from Delhi, Nahan is your typical offbeat destination that remains off the radar for most of the tourists. Situated in Himachal Pradesh 74 KM away from Shimla, Nahan is a perfect romantic weekend getaway from Delhi - far from the buzzing crowd of the city. Nestled between lofty peaks of Shivalik ranges, a trip to Nahan can give you a breath of fresh air and an ideal environment to unwind.

    Renuka lake is a popular tourist attraction at Nahan to enjoy the scenic nature and go for a romantic boat ride. This beautiful emerald colored lake is the largest natural lake in the state of Himachal Pradesh. Rani Tal is a place bounded by lush green surroundings that deserves to be included in your trip planner. With its calm and serene surroundings, which used to be a retreat for the royal family once upon a time, the place is ideal for picnic while enjoying a boat ride in its blue-hued waters. Dhaula Kuan is another place where you can enjoy a romatic shikara ride. Nahan is home to a number of water bodies that offer angling and trout fishing opportunity. So try your hand at fishing and see if you are lucky to catch a mighty Mahaseer or a big Rainbow Trout.

    Simbalwada Wildlife Sanctuary, home to various migratory birds and wild animals, is a popular tourist hotspot at Nahan. Renuka National Park is yet another place for enjoying the Himalayan wildlife. Trekkers can set out on an excursion to the Jamu Peak which offers mindblowing hawk-eye view of the town. Nahan to Churdhar Peak is another popular trekking route that attracts adventure tourists. Last but not the least, do pay a visit to the historical Jaitak Fort. Built by the famous Gurkha King Ranjor Singh Thapa in the year 1810, the citadel is located on top of the picturesque Jaitak Hills.

    Tourist Attractions and Activities:

    1. Renuka Lake and Rani Tal for romantic boating.
    2. Dhaula Kuan for a fascinating Shikara ride.
    3. Trout fishing and angling activities.
    4. Wildlife Spotting at Simbalwada Wildlife Sanctuary and Renuka National Park.
    5. Jaitak Fort
    6. Trekking activities around Jamu Peak and Churdhar Peak.

    9. Dhanaulti

    Distance: 307 KM
    Travel Time: 7.5 Hours
    Suggested Trip Duration: 2 - 3 Days
    Destination Category: Hills, Nature
    Best Suited For: Honeymoon, Family Trips

    Seating high at an altitude of 2286 meters above the sea level, Dhanaulti is a typical offbeat hill retreat. Located along the Mussoorie-Chamba highway in Tehri district of Uttarakhand, Dhanaulti boasts of a quiet and quaint environment covered with dense pine and oak groves, While Mussoorie gets the larger share of the holidaying crowd, Dhanaulti retains its pristine charm away from the swarms of tourists.

    Dhanolti is blessed with the nature's serene treasures, lush green meadows and lovely Himalayan landscapes. You can always add a little adventure to your trip with the flying fox, burma bridge and horse riding adventures at Camp Thangdhar. If you have not been on be night trek before, then make sure to go for an overnight excursion through the moonlit trail of Nag Tibba peak. Spend a night out in the open and catch the views of sunrise from the top. Words can't do justice to this unmatched experience. The views are exceptionally rewarding to put it mildly.

    Tourist Attractions and Activities:

    1. Dhanaulti Eco Park
    2. Camp Thangdhar for adventure activities
    3. Surkanda Devi Temple
    4. Trekking to Nag Tibba
    5. Trekking and Wildlife Sightings in Kaudiya forests.

    8. Kasauli

    Distance: 304 KM
    Travel Time: 5.5 Hours
    Suggested Trip Duration: 1 - 2 Days
    Destination Category: Hills, Nature, Religious
    Best Suited For: Honeymoon, Family Trips

    Decorated with rows of Deodar and Pine trees, lively apple and apricot orchards, lush green meadows and excuisite calmness in the atmosphere, Kasauli can be a memorable place to set out on a weekend trip. 304 KM away from Delhi, Kasauli is nestled in the Shivalik range of Himachal Pradesh amidst the undulating Himalayan mountain ranges. Be it a trip with your spouse, kids and other family members or with your friends and batchmates, it has the necessary elements to serve you well.

    Monkey Point is easily the best place to enjoy the serene landscapes and enchanting calmness that Kasauli provides. You can get a flattering panoramic view of the Sutlej River and Chandigarh city from this spot perched at an elevation of over 2000 meters from the sea level. Sunset Point is a spot wrapped in a blanket of tranquility where you can enjoy the sunset. Right beside the Sunset Point, there's a walkway known as the Lover's Lane which offers some of the best views of surrounding mountains and pine-clad valleys. Feel the thrill of a cable car ride at the Timber Trail valley. Two peaks of the Shivalik Range are connected by this cable car network and you will see some mindblowing views of the Timber Trail valley during your ride. Anglican Church, Shri Guru Nanakji Gurudwara and Sri Baba Balak Nath Temple are the main religious attractions at Kasauli.

    Tourist Attractions and Activities:

    1. Monkey Point
    2. Sunset Point
    3. Lover's Lane
    4. Timber Trail for Cable Car Ride
    5. Anglican Church
    6. Shri Guru Nanakji Gurudwara
    7. Sri Baba Balak Nath Temple

    7. Dehradun

    Distance: 248 KM
    Travel Time: 5 Hours
    Suggested Trip Duration: 2 - 3 Days
    Destination Category: Hills, Nature,
    Best Suited For: Honeymoon, Family Trips

    Situated in the foothills of the Shivalik ranges in the Garhwal region of Uttarakhand, Dehradun attracts quite a lot of weekend travellers from Delhi. Alongside its delightful natural landscapes, Dehradun offers a host of inviting terrains to the trekkers - a reason why it is a popular retreat among the casual holidayers as well as the nature lovers. Moreover, there are quite a few options for adventure activities, so it has a good number of admirers among the daredevil younger generation also.

    The largest Tibetan Buddhist establishment in India, the Mindrolling Monastery is situated in Dehradun and it attracts the tourists with its traditional Tibetan style of architecture. Other major religious interest here is the Tapkeshwar Temple and Ram Rai Gurudwara. Kalinga War Memorial and Zonal Museum are two interesting places that deserve to be visited.

    Malsi Deer Park is a zoological garden that always finds itself among the top tourist attractions at Dehradun. Wildlife lovers can also go for a jungle safari at the Rajaji National Park famous for tigers, Himalayan bears, leopards, Himalayan Yellow-Throated Martens and pythons to name a few.

    Among the nature's treasures, the beautiful as well as mysterious Robber's Cave deserves a special mention for offering a memorable trek up the mountains. The perennial Sahastradhara Waterfalls is a spectacular sight that can mesmerize the tourists. Lacchiwalla is famous for its lush greenery and it can be an excellent picnic spot. Trekking has been one of the main reasons why adventure lovers come to Dehradun. It offers a number of exciting short and long distance trails. Jwala Devi, George Everest, Shivalik ranges, Doon valley, Dakpather and Asan Barrage are some of the most prominent trekking destinations in and around Dehradun. Rest assured, you will be blown away by the richness of scenic beauty that the nature has bestowed upon this lovely Himalayan hill retreat.

    Tourist Attractions and Activities:

    1. Mindrolling Monastery
    2. Tapkeshwar Temple
    3. Sri Ram Rai Gurudwara
    4. Kalinga War Memorial
    5. Dehradun Zonal Museum
    6. Malsi Deer Park
    7. Rajaji National Park for Wildlife Safari
    8. Sahastradhara Waterfalls
    9. Robber's Cave
    10. Lacchiwalla for picnic
    11. Trekking to Jwala Devi, George Everest, Shivalik ranges, Doon valley, Dakpather and Asan Barrage.

    6. Gwalior

    Distance: 329 KM
    Travel Time: 7 Hours
    Suggested Trip Duration: 2 - 3 Days
    Destination Category: History, Heritage
    Best Suited For: Educational and Family Trips

    Gwalior, the capital of the Scindia dynasty is a mervelous place to witness India's glorious past. Situated at a distance of 329 KM from Delhi, it can be the perfect place for a royal weekend trip with a lot of historical monuments to explore. Gwalior is one of the finest examples of how to turn a traditional place into a modern city. There's a lot to explore at Gwalior right from the towering palaces, ancient temples, historic fortresses to interesting museums.

    The colossal Gwalior Fort, nestled on an enormous sandstone hills, is the most attractive historical marvel at Gwalior. Mughal Emperor Babar referred to the Gwalior Fort as "the pearl amongst fortresses in India" and there's no reason to doubt his assessment. The huge structure has 10 meters high outer walls, intimadating entrances and towering temples, tombs and palaces inside the premises. The Gujari Mahal, now converted into an Archaeological Museum, is worth paying a visit with its rich collection of rare and exquisite stone carvings. The Man Mandir Palace is another impressive structure showcasing intricate designs with extensive use of bright colours. Teli-ka-Mandir is exhibits a mix of Aryan and Dravidian styles of architecture. Memorial of Tansen and Tomb of Mohammad Ghaus are the other two must visit attractions at Gwalior. Last but not the least, don't forget paying a visit to the splendid Jai Vilas Palace and Museum which still houses the Scindia clan.

    Tourist Attractions and Activities:

    1. Gwalior Fort
    2. Gujari Mahal and Archaeological Museum
    3. Man Mandir Palace
    4. Teli-ka-Mandir
    5. Memorial of Tansen
    6. Tomb of Mohammad Ghaus
    7. Jai Vilas Palace and Museum

    5. Mashobra

    Distance: 369 KM
    Travel Time: 8 Hours
    Suggested Trip Duration: 2 - 3 Days
    Destination Category: Hills, Nature, Snow, Adventure
    Best Suited For: Honeymoon, Family Trips

    Situated at an elevation of over 7700 feet above the sea level, a trip to Mashorba is literally being close to the heaven. A lush green expanse in the state of Himachal Pradesh tucked away among the lofty Himalayan mountain ranges, Mashorba is famous for its scenic elements, snow-covered slopes, Himalayan birdlife and miles of tranquility and calmness. Just around a 8 hour drive away from Delhi, this picturesque location attracts a large number of weekend travellers from the national capital.

    Craignano is an extremely spectacular tourist destination at Mashobra flanked by streams of waters and covered by a thick canopy of oak and pine forests from all sides. The place is named after the Italian town of Craignano and the main tourist attractions here are the adventure activities. Craignano is Mashorba offers thrilling adventure srospects like rock climbing, rappelling and ice-skating making it one of the most popular winter retreats in the country.

    If you are a trekker by nature, then explore the vast expanses around the Mahasu Peak and experience the richness of tribal culture. If little known traditions and festivals attract you, then plan your trip in the month of May when the colorful Mahasu Festival and Fair is observed with great fanfare. The Mashorba Reserve Forest Sanctuary is a paradise for the bird watchers where you can spot a wide variety of exotic bird species confined to this part of the world. Do carry your pair of binoculars for a better view of the partridges and chikors going about their business in wilderness.

    Tourist Attractions & Activities:

    1. Craignano
    2. Ice-skating, rock climbing and rappelling.
    3. Mahasu Peak for trekking and tribal festival.
    4. Mashorba Reserve Forest Sanctuary for bird-watching.

    4. Auli

    Distance: 395 KM
    Travel Time: 9 Hours
    Suggested Trip Duration: 2 - 3 Days
    Destination Category: Hills, Nature, Snow, Adventure
    Best Suited For: Trips with Friends and Family

    Located in the Uttrakand State of Northern India, Auli is a Himalayan retreat famed for having Asia’s longest cable car route which connects Auli to Joshimath on a stretch of 4 KM. Being surrounded by the tallest peaks of Nanda Devi Mountain Range, Auli gets high volume of snowfall during winters. As a result, the valley gets overed in a thick blanket of snow, which serves as an exciting skiing arena. Although not as famous as Shimla or Gulmarg, Auli has made an identity for itself as one of the offbeat skiing destinations in India. Skiing enthusiasts can plan for attending the Auli Skiing Festival - which is organized every year in the month of February.

    For trekkers, Auli offers some interesting trails. The 3 KM long trail that leads to the beautiful Chandrakund Lake is the most popular among them. Auli to Gurso Bugyal trek is equally charming and it can be reached by covering a similar distance. An enchanting meadow embodied by thick vegetation of pine and Oak trees, the place offers spectacular wide-angle views of snow-clad Nanda Devi, Trishul and Drona Parvat peaks.

    Tourist Attractions and Activities:

    1. Cable car ride
    2. Skking
    3. Chandrakund Lake
    4. Gurso Bugyal for trekking
    5. Joshimath Temple

    3. Rishikesh

    Distance: 232 KM
    Travel Time: 5 Hours
    Suggested Trip Duration: 2 - 3 Days
    Destination Category: Nature, Religious, Adventure
    Best Suited For: Religious Trips, Trips with Friends and Family

    Set on the foothills of the Shivalik range of Greater Himalayas, Rishikesh in Uttarakhand is a great choice as an adventure destination, besides its immense spiritual significance. It's a place where peace can be felt, spiritualism can be experienced, serenity can be relished, thrills can be enjoyed and memories can be cherished at the same time.

    The religious attractions at Rishikesh include the 450 meters long suspension bridge of Laxman Jhula, the famous Neelkantha Mahadev temple, Triveni Ghat and 12th Century built Bharat Mandir. All these spots see a huge influx of devotees month in and month out.

    For adventure enthusiasts, a plethora of exciting activities await you at Rishikesh. An ideal spot for white water rafting and camping on the riverside, Rishikesh is steadily becoming a preferred destination for adventure buffs from the Northern parts of India. It can be a tour of thrills and enjoyment amid the tranquility and gushing sounds of crystal clear waters. Rafting down the Grade 3 and Grade 4 rapids of Ganga can be tricky at times, but it would surely get your adrenaline pumping and make your rafting experience a memorable one.

    Kayaking in the rough waters of Ganga can be a real test of your physical stamina. It has attained wide-spread admiration among the adventure freaks from all over the globe. Cliff Jumping from a height of 20 to 35 feets into the river waters is another exciting prospect that can give you spine-chilling goose bumps. Rappelling is another fantastic action-packed adventure you can experience during your trip to Rishikesh.

    The mother of all adventure activities, however, is Bunjee Jumping. This is not for the faint-hearted souls as you need to dive from an altitude of over 120 to 150 feet. For those who want to fly high in the sky, there is Flying Fox to try your hands at. You can also savor the experience of Mountain Biking through the scenic and charming terrains around Rishikesh. In short, Rishikesh will provide you with a wholesome adventure experience to treasure for the rest of your life.

    Tourist Attractions and Activities:

    1. Laxman Jhula
    2. Neelkantha Mahadev temple
    3. Triveni Ghat
    4. Bharat Mandir
    5. White water rafting and kayaking at the Ganges
    6. Bunjee Jumping and Cliff Jumping
    7. Rappelling
    8. Flying Fox
    9. Mountain biking
    10. Trekking and hiking

    2. Agra

    Distance: 210 KM
    Travel Time: 3 Hours
    Suggested Trip Duration: 2 - 3 Days
    Destination Category: History, Heritage
    Best Suited For: Couples, Family and Educational Trips

    Home to one of the world's seven wonders, the Tajmahal, Agra is the most authentic sneak-peak into India's rich historical tradition and glorious past. Situated at a distance of just 210 KM from the national Capital, Agra is not only a wonderful weekend getaway but also the most popular tourist destination in India among the foreign tourists.

    Set on a curve of the holy Yamuna River, the magical allure of the Taj Mahal draws millions of tourists to Agra like a magnet, but that's not the only attraction at this place which has a rustic old-world charm. The legacy of the Mughals is evident in every corner of the town, where every aged monument has a rich historical story to tell. The magnificent Agra Fort or the architectural brilliance at Fatehpur-Sikri equally bemuse the tourists from all over the world. Moreover there are Akbar's Tomb, Jama Masjid and Itimad-Ud-Daula's Tomb to amaze your senses. Each of these architectural gems are UNESCO World Heritage Sites maintained by the Archeological Survey of India.

    Constructed over a period of 22 years by emperor Shah Jahan in the memory of his wife Mumtaz, the Taj Mahal is considered by many as the most decorated abode of love in the world. The Taj stands tall at an height of 213 feet raised on a square platform, forming an unequal octagon with its four truncated corners and a majestic central dome, where each design element seamlessly integrates with the rest to produce a marvel. It is flanked on four sides by smaller domed chambers on slender minarets rising to a height of 162.5 feet. Built with shite marbles, the entire structure is decorated with an inlaid design of finest calligraphy using precious gems like agate and jasper - making it the only of its kind in the entire world.

    Set up on the other bank of Yamuna, the Agra Fort is a massive palace cum citadel made of red sandstone. The fortress runs along a length of over 2.5 KM and is home to several exquisite palaces such as the Shah Jahani Mahal, Jahangiri Mahal, Khas Mahal, the Diwan-i-Am and the Diwan-i-Khas, a Fish Pavilion, the Nagina Masjid and the Pearl Mosque - each of which is a world heritage artifact by its own rights.

    Located at a distance of around 40 KM from Agra, Fatehpur is a place that deserves to be visited by all history lovers. Declared a World Heritage site by UNESCO, Fatehpur was the Mughal Capital from 1571 to 1585 during the rulings of its most acomplished emperor Akbar. The entire city of Fatehpur is guarded by an outer wall and the main royal enclosure houses several royal palaces, a harem, courts and a mosque. The site is considered to be one of the purest available expamples of the raved Persian architecture seemlessly blended with that of the Mughals, Hindu and Jain design elements.

    Tourist Attractions and Activities:

    1. The Taj Mahal
    2. Agra Fort
    3. Fatehpur Sikri
    4. Itimad-Ud-Daula's Tomb
    5. Akbar's Tomb
    6. Jama Masjid

    1. Shimla

    Distance: 359 KM
    Travel Time: 7 Hours
    Suggested Trip Duration: 2 - 3 Days
    Destination Category: Hills, Nature, Adventure
    Best Suited For: Honeymoon Couples, Family Trips, Trips with Friends

    Arguably the most popular weekend retreat from Delhi, Shimla is a place that attracts both the nature lovers as well as the adventure seekers. While the scenic beauty of the place draws large number of honeymooning couples, it is equally a tempting prospect for every adventurists. The topography of Shimla, situated at an altitude of over 2200 meters, is just the perfect locale for you to indulge in some pulsating action-packed activities. This Himalayan retreat offers a host of adventure activities to suit all types of taste buds. During your Shimla trip, you can enjoy a diversified range of adventure sports - including River Rafting, Bungee Jumping, Mountain Biking, Horse Riding, Paragliding, Skating, Skking, Trekking, Wildlife Spotting, Yak Riding, Outdoor Camping and a lot more.

    Ice and roller skating in Shimla has a huge fan base. This fun filled exercise can be tried by one and all irrespective of your age. Shimla is not only the largest ice-skating rink in India, but also is the only natural open-air rink in the country. You may also enjoy skiing during your Shimla trip. The slopes of Kufri are equally favorite among the skiiers and the skiing arena attracts adrenaline junkies from all over the world. Don't forget to experience the ultimate high while paragliding at the Kangra Valley. Although it has been recently introduced in Shimla, paragliding is rapidly emerging as one of the most sought after adventure sports in Shimla.

    Tattapani, situated just 50 KM away from Shimla, is an amazing spot for a fun-filled and memorable river rafting activity. For the trekking enthusiasts, Shimla has a lot to offer. The alluring trekking trails through the pristine valley can lead you to beautiful lakes, gorgeous waterfalls and intimadating mountain peaks. Especially the trek to Chaupal via Narkanda deserves a special mention. Mountain bikers would love to explore the dart tracks around Kangra Valley. You may also try your hands at bunjee jumping, rock climbing and rappelling during your stay in Shimla. Make sure to include Himachal State Museum and Shimla Reserve Forest Sanctuary in your trip planner.

    Tourist Attractions and Activities:

    1. Paragliding
    2. Ice and Roller Skating
    3. Skiing
    4. White Water Rafting
    5. Bunjee Jumping
    6. Trekking & Hiking
    7. Mountain Biking
    8. Rock Climbing & Rappelling
    9. Himachal State Museum
    10. Shimla Reserve Forest Sanctuary

    Hope you have enjoyed going through this collection of 20 finest weekend getaways from Delhi. If you are to plan your next weekend trip to one of these 20 places, which one would be your top pick?

    Last edited: Mar 5, 2016

  2. tabby

    tabby Member

    In a previous thread, I mentioned that the very first thing that comes to my mind when it comes to India is the Taj Mahal and I definitely would want to visit it. But looking through the pictures, I'm amazed at how wonderful the places are. Honestly, you had me even at No. 20. I haven't seen such a beautiful structure in my life. Just look at the play of colors. Magnificent! There's no other word for it. I could only imagine that those without pictures are equally beautiful, and may even surpass it. That orange structure in Jaipur is even fantastic. Just by this guide alone, I can definitely say India is really a must-go place for me now. India is not all about curry, right? That's all that's putting me off (but really, it's my budget - haha!)

  3. Vinaya

    Vinaya Member

    You have listed some of the places that I wanted to see/visit in India. For instance, Simla, Taj Mahal, Jaipur and Rishikesh. I admit I had never heard about some of the places you have mentioned here. Rishikesh is also a Hindu Pilgrim site and my parents are talking about visiting Rishikesh soon.
  4. amelia88

    amelia88 Active Member

    I think the hardest thing about this list is trying to narrow down which on the list I'd like to see! I plan on using Delhi as a "base" for my Indian travels, and doing things from there. I love that there are so many options for short getaways that are relatively close by. Agra and Jaipur were already on my list, but Dhanaulti looks SO relaxing and tranquil. Might need a bit of that in my trip too, just to slow the pace down! :)
  5. paudu

    paudu Member

    Great list, and just what I needed for weekend planning. I've already added Landsdown and Mussoorie to my original itinerary of Jaipur and Agra. I just need more weekends so I can include more of these places.
  6. Andrew

    Andrew New Member

    Now this is just what I was looking for. I have bookmarked this page. I need to take a few hours to study all this information. I know my wife will want to see it all, but we just don't have the time. I want to take her to the nicest places so she will always remember this trip to India.
  7. grace

    grace New Member

    I like the idea of the whitewater rafting and camping. We've done whitewater rafting here at home and it's exhilarating and fun. Do they have tours that take you down the rivers over a few days?
  8. Debapriya Deb

    Debapriya Deb Active Member

    Unfortunately that's not an option over there. You can, however, visit Sundarbans in West Bengal for 3-5 days river cruising. Bhitarkanika mangroves in Odhisa is another option to experience such a river adventure.

  9. swalia

    swalia Guest

    Vrindavan is the closest and definitely the best for the people who are interested in religion and spirituality. Being in the land where Krishna spent his childhood is an experience in itself. The beautiful temples and the devotion of the local people is amazing!