Find, in this article, some tips regarding the different leisure activities that you can enjoy during your stay in India.
There is no way you are going to get bored in India no matter where you have settled. During your stay, there is so much to do and discover that you will probably run out of time. The number of leisure activities that are available, including outings, hiking, shopping, etc, will simply take you aback. From time to time, you can also set out to discover the rest of the country which is rich not only in terms of history, art and culture, but in terms of nature as well, thanks to a wide and lush fauna and flora.
History, arts and culture
A trip to India can definitely be an opportunity to discover and learn more about its historical and cultural heritage thanks to its museums, fortresses and monuments having magnificent ancient architectures. The different Indian States also hosts thousands of temples which reflect the important of religion and traditions upon the society. As regards New Delhi, the capital city, it hosts several museums holding at least 5,000 years history, including an Independence museum and modern and contemporary art museums.
Mumbai, which is the biggest Indian city, hosts the Chitrapati Shivaji Maharaj Vastu Sangranhalaya, the Mahatma Gandhi Museum, etc. In Calcutta, you will find the Religion Museum while in Madras, you will find the Government Museum where ancient dynastic cultures and artifacts are exhibited.
In Orissa, you will be delighted by the Temple of the Sun in Konarak, as well as the temples of Bhubaneshwar. In Jodhpur, you can contemplate the Mehrangarh Fort while the Junagarh Fort in Rajasthan is simply mind-blowing.
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The Taj Mahal, located in Agra, Uttar Pradesh, is simply a must-see. Considered as a symbol of eternal love, it is known to be one of the world's seven wonders. The Taj Mahal was officially inaugurated in 1648. It was built as a sign of the emperor Shah Jahan's unconditional love in memory of his late wife Mumtaz.
Religion and traditions
It is almost impossible to talk about India without mentioning religion. Indeed, the importance of religion is portrayed by thousands of temples and other places of worship, palaces, as well as churches, etc. Varanasi, for instance, which is found in the heart of the country, is deemed to be a sacred city due to the presence of Ganges, the sacred river. In Tamil Nadu, which is found in the South of India, cities like Chennai, Madurai and Trichy are known to be highly religious and spiritual.
For a better glance of the Sikh religion, the Golden Temple of Amritsar will leave you breathless. In New Delhi, the Lotus Temple, is deemed to be a museum for Bahai culture, preaching peace and tolerance. You must have understood by now that India has an immense cultural and religious legacy.
Nature lovers, for their part, can enjoy some 80 natural parks, including national parks, as well as 440 nature reserves which shelter wild animals. Note, however, that these nature reserves are closed during the monsoon season, that is from July to August. Some of these even shelter endemic and endangered animal species.
The Jim Corbett National Park, which is found in Uttar Pradesh, near the Himalaya, shelters many species such as tigers, leopards, tigers, deers, elephants, crocodiles, etc. The Keoladeo Ghana National Park, for its part, welcomes several endemic and migrating bird species. Located in Maharashtra, the Naveogaon National Park is the home of tigers, panthers, as well as buffalo, bears and birds.
You can also visit other national parks such as the Bandipur National Park and the Nagarhole National Park in Karnataka, the Sariska National Park in Rajashthan and the Eravikulam National Park in Kerala.
Islands and beaches
If you wish to relax on a fine sand beach under a mild sun, it is best to head towards Goa. Indeed, Goa is above all a tourist region thanks to its multicultural environment and its architecture. You will also be able to attend several shows and cultural events in this region. Goa also hosts several churches, cathedrals and other places of worship.
India also has many islands populated and virgin islands, among which you have the Andaman Islands and the Lakshadweep archipelago which are located near Kerala coasts. Indeed, the Lakshadweep archipelago looks impressive with its heavenly turquoise waters and fine sand beaches that are surrounded by coconut and palm trees.
To discover Indian cuisine, you can choose from many local restaurants which you can find almost everywhere in major cities, as well as in hotels. You will definitely be delighted by exotic and spicy tastes through vegetarian and non-vegetarian curries, tandoori, pulses (lentils, daals, chickpeas), etc, traditional soft drinks such as the massala soda, lassi, and even chaay, which means tea served with milk and sugar, often with cardamon.
You cannot travel to India without some shopping. Indeed, India is world famous in terms of shopping. You can find not only huge shopping malls, boutiques and markets but also wholesale traders and folk fairs. This will be a unique occasion to buy souvenirs for your dear ones and to get yourself new clothes, accessories, shoes, jewelry, handicraft products, as well as teas, spices, and even electronic gadgets. Note, however, that shops and boutiques are generally open from 10 am to 6 pm on week days, including Saturday, and closed on Sunday.
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Feel free to bargain with merchants while shopping, even in shops, as prices often tend to double when it comes to foreigners.
In the city
Night clubs can be find in most cities, but you will probably not like these. In fact, Indian night clubs are not recommended to foreigners. However, you can enjoy a nice evening in bars, restaurants, coffee shops and pubs, etc. You can also enjoy other types of leisure activities such as cinema halls, concerts, cultural shows and hotels. Note that India is famous for its Bollywood which is a huge artist and film platform, similar to Hollywood. You can occasionally come across film shootings, whether in shopping malls or in the middle of the street.
In short, no matter where you are, you will definitely find something to keep you busy during your free time.