Friday, July 19, 2024

10 Unique Places To Visit This Summer: Explore These Hidden Spots Of Unparalleled Beauty! 

Tired of the same old touristy haunts? Well, India's got a bag full of surprises beyond the cliche Shimla, Manali, and Mussoorie. Get ready to explore 10 offbeat destinations that'll jazz up your summer itinerary and leave you with memories to cherish!

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This year, Summer has ( almost) arrived before you could even wear all of your pretty winter ensembles and get ready for the ‘gram’! But don’t be sad! What if I tell you, there is a whole new world of offbeat travel locations waiting to be discovered by you?

Yes, choose among 10 unique places to visit this summer and be the subject of envy for all those who like your pictures eating the same old Maggie in Manali 😉

1. Chail, Himachal Pradesh

Chail, Himachal Pradesh

Getting There: Chail is a hop, skip, and jump away from Shimla, just about 45 kilometers. It is one of the best ones among unique places to visit this summer. Either take a direct flight to Shimla and then, reach Chail by road in just 60 minutes. Or, take a direct bus from Delhi or Chandigarh to Kandaghat and then reach Chail by cab in just 30 minutes. 

Top Things to Do: Trek into the Deodar forests, camp under the Turquoise sky, and enjoy horse riding in the Chail Wildlife Sanctuary. Enjoy the luxurious breakfast buffet at Welcomhotel Chail by ITC and have lunch at Soni ka Dhaaba. Nothing in the world like its Meethi ‘Gur ki roti’! 

Must-visit spots: One of the best sites is the Palace of the HH Maharaja of Patiala, called the Chail Palace, Cricket Ground located at Rashtriya Military School, and  Kali Ka Tibba, which is the oldest temple in Chail located at a hilltop.

Where to stay: Some of the best accommodations include Ekant Hotel, the Chail Palace Hotel Chail Residency, and Maple Resorts

PS: MES IB( Inspection Bungalow) in Chail was constructed by HH Maharaja of Patiala after he was exiled from Shimla for running away with Lord Kitchner’s daughter, the Commander-in-chief of the British Army. Locals believe that the Maharaja’s wife’s spirits plays the piano at night in MES IB and visitors have felt her presence in the Suite room. 1

2. Ladakh

Ladakh

Getting There: Leh, the heart of Ladakh, is just a flight away from Delhi and Srinagar, definitely the most loved and unique places to visit this summer! If taking your Royal Enfield for a long ride has been on your bucket list, this is the chance! Hit the road from Manali or Srinagar, but make a plan from April to June because it snows heavily otherwise, and the roads close down. 

Top Things to Do: Go for river rafting in the Indus and Zanskar rivers. Immerse yourself in history and spirituality in ancient monasteries like Hemis, Thikse, and Diskit. And for the ultimate nature fix, go for a soul-stirring trek to Pangong Lake or Nubra Valley. Don’t forget to spend a night camping under the star-studded Ladakhi sky – it’s truly magical! 

Must-Visit Spots: The breathtaking Pangong Lake, the gravity-defying Magnetic Hill, the Shanti Stupa, Leh Palace, and the enchanting Hemis Monastery must be on your itinerary.

Where to Stay: To suit every traveler’s taste and budget, we’ve handpicked the best options- the Dolkhar Boutique Hotel, Grand Dragon Ladakh, The Zen Ladakh, and Hotel Ladakh Palace

3. Chatpal, Shangus District (Kashmir Valley) 

Chatpal

Getting there: Chatpal is one of the most picturesque location in Kashmir, another top favourite in our list of 10 unique places to visit this summer. Take a flight to Srinagar and then, reach Chatpal by road. It is located in the Anantnag district of Jammu and Kashmir and is around 90 kilometers away from Srinagar. 

Best Activities to Do: Walk among the pine forests and apple orchards. Visit the beautiful Kousarnag Lake and take a dip in its pristine waters. The warm hospitality of the locals is a big plus, along with the traditional Kashmiri cuisine and Kahwa tea they serve with love! 

Must-visit: Kousarnag Lake, Chatpal Forest, Dachigam National Park, Achabal Gardens.

Where to Stay: There are lots of guesthouses and homestays in Chatpal. Some great options are Chatpal Tourist Complex and private homestays.

( Don’t forget to pick up Saffron, and dry fruits from Anantnag and Srinagar. ) 

4. Askot, Uttrakhand

Askot, Uttrakhand

Getting there: Reach Askot easily by road from Delhi and Dehradun as it is located near Pithoragarh in Uttarakhand. Other options are a train to Kathgodam and a flight to Pantnagar.

Best Activities to Do: Explore the Askot Wildlife Sanctuary to spot rare Himalayan species like snow leopards and musk deer. Visit the historic Askot Fort and soak in the panoramic views of the Himalayas. 

Must-visit: Askot Fort, Askot Wildlife Sanctuary, Chiplakot Valley, Pithoragarh Fort.

Where to Stay: Askot is a very offbeat location, so you’ll find limited accommodation options. But, basic guesthouses and homestays are decent choices. 

5. Shoja, Himachal Pradesh

Shoja, Himachal Pradesh

The regular hustle-and-bustle of life can really take a toll on your mind and health, too! To refresh your mind, body and soul, visit Shoja for a complete soul-transformative experience, a rare gem among 10 unique places to visit this summer.

Getting there: Shoja is a unique gem in Himachal with next to no tourists. Reach Shoja by road from Delhi, Chandigarh, and Shimla, or take a train to the railway station Joginder Nagar.

Top Activities: Walk through the dense oak and pine tree forests and meet a variety of Himalayan bird species, a must-do for birdwatchers! Then, visit the Jalori Pass to capture the stunning vistas to cherish forever.

Must-See Sites: The enchanting Jalori Pass and Serolsar Lake are so peaceful, that you’ll feel you can meditate there forever! History buffs would love the ancient Raghupur Fort. 

Where to Stay: Most accommodations are cozy guesthouses and homestays. Choose from places like Banjara Retreat, The Himalayan Village Resort, and Shoja Jungle Livinn for a comfortable stay. 

6. Munisiyari, Uttrakhand (The Little Kashmir) 

Munisiyari, Uttrakhand

Getting there: Munsiyari is situated in the Pithoragarh district of Uttarakhand and can be easily accessed by road from Delhi, Dehradun, and Kathgodam. There’s also an option of the train to Kathgodam, and then, a road trip to the Kumaon hills to reach this charming destination! 

Top Activities: Oh, this one is full of adventure! The Khaliya Top, Betulidhar, and Nanda Devi Temple are a must-visit. Peace lovers will love the pristine beauty of the Milam Glacier, while thrill-seekers must go for river rafting in the Gori Ganga River.

Must-See Sites: Visit the Birthi Falls, Thamri Kund, and Darkot Village, they’re so culturally rich places here. History buffs must go to Darkot Village.

Where to Stay: From budget guesthouses to fancy resorts, Munsiyari has many options to choose from! We love the Ojaswi Resort, Milam Inn, and Wayfarer 

7. Nelliyampathy, Kerala

Nelliyampathy, Kerala

If you loved Munnar but want to explore a similar experience ( even better) but at a different location, Nelliyampathy is calling you! 

Getting there: It’s located in the Palakkad district of Kerala, so plan a road trip from Kochi, Coimbatore, and Thrissur, or take a train to enjoy the train to the Palakkad Junction. 

Top Activities: Start with the thrilling jeep safari to enjoy the panoramic views of the Western Ghats. Trekkers, you’ll love the Seetharkundu and Kesavan Para. Don’t miss the Nelliyampathy Tea Gardens, and please, learn to make some tea! 🙂 

Must-See Sites: The Seetharkundu Viewpoint, Kesavan Para Waterfalls, and Palagapandi Estate are top scenic spots. 

Where to Stay: You’ll have lots of cozy resorts, welcoming homestays, and charming guesthouses to choose from! There’s the Nelliyampathy Heights Resort, Misty Valley Resort, and Greenberg Resorts, their food is top-notch, with best-in-class hospitality! 

( Pack some fresh spices, aromatic teas, homemade chocolates, and authentic Kerala handicrafts on your way back home. ) 

8. Mawlynnong, Meghalaya (The cleanest village in Asia)

Mawlynnong, Meghalaya

Getting there: Located in the East Khasi Hills district of Meghalaya, reach Mawlynnong by road from either Shillong or Guwahati. Other options are a flight to Shillong Airport or a train to Guwahati Railway Station, followed by a short road trip to Mawlynnong.

Must-do activities: This village is unbelievably committed to cleanliness and sustainability. Visit the Living Root Bridges in the Riwai village, a true marvel crafted by generations of locals. 

Must-See Sites: Apart from the Living Root Bridges, visit the Sky View Point, Balancing Rock, and Dawki River. Take pictures at the elevated vantage points and enjoy the boat ride along the crystal-clear waters of the Dawki River. 

Where to Stay: From cozy homestays to cheap resorts, check out the Saimika Resort, Mawlynnong Guest House, and Mawlynnong Eco Resort. 

( Buy handmade bamboo products, Khasi handicrafts, woven baskets, and vibrant textiles as delightful souvenirs.) 

9. Khajjiar, Himachal (Mini Switzerland Of India)

Khajjiar, Himachal

Remember the soulful melody, ‘Chamba kitni duur hai’ by Harshdeep Kaur? Now is your chance to visit Chamba- an experience you’ll never forget! Khajjiar is truly the most loved and one of the most unique places to visit this summer.

Getting there: Located in the Chamba district in Himachal Pradesh, you can reach Khajjiar easily by road from Delhi, Chandigarh, or Shimla. Or, take a train to the Pathankot Railway Station or a flight to Kangra Airport in Dharamshala, followed by a short road trip to Khajjiar. 

Top Activities: Khajjiar has the best of both worlds, be it peace lovers or adventurous hearts! Go for paragliding, zorbing, and horse riding, and enjoy strolls around the serene Khajjiar Lake. 

Must-See Sites: Visits the Khajjiar Lake, Khajji Nag Temple, Kalatop Wildlife Sanctuary, and Panch Pandav Tree. The shimmering lake’s beauty will surprise you whereas the ancient temples and sacred groves will satisfy a historian’s heart! 

Where to Stay: From cozy guest houses to mid-range resorts and luxurious villas, there are so many options here. We recommend the Hotel Mini Swiss, Royal Residency, and Hritik Palace as some of the best picks. 

10. Coorg, Karnataka (The Scotland of India)

Coorg, Karnataka

Getting there: Coorg, also known as Kodagu, is located in Karnataka. Take a direct flight from Mangalore International Airport, or reach by car from Bangalore, Mysore, and Mangalore. You can also take the train from Mysore to enjoy the scenic view en route. 

Must-do Activities: Visit the lush coffee plantations and spice estates of Coorg on guided plantation tours. Trek to scenic spots like Tadiandamol Peak and Abbey Falls for breathtakingly serene surroundings. Indulge in authentic Kodava cuisine and savor the flavors of local delicacies like Pandi curry and bamboo shoot curry.

Must-visit: Abbey Falls, Namdroling Monastery, Raja’s Seat, Dubare Elephant Camp.

Where to Stay: Coorg offers a range of accommodations, including homestays, resorts, and luxury hotels. Some of the best options are Orange County Resorts, Taj Madikeri Resort & Spa, and The Tamara Coorg.

Conclusion

  • If you crave adventure, go to Ladakh, and Khajjiar. From trekking amidst the rugged terrain of Ladakh to paragliding and zorbing in Khajjiar, the experiences are unmatched! 
  • To experience tranquility and refresh your mind, visit Chail, Chatpal, Shoja, and Mawlynnong for a perfect escape; these hidden gems offer peace and solitude like no other! 
  • For cultural enthusiasts and history buffs, Munsiyari, Nelliyampathy, and Coorg will be the best! 

So pack your bags and get ready to uncover the secrets of India’s lesser-known treasures. Thank us later 🙂

Jyoti Sehrawat
Jyoti Sehrawat
Jyoti Sehrawat is a passionate writer and an English language educator who has been writing professionally for over 14 years. Her journey as a writer began as a personal endeavor, a way to express her thoughts, feelings, and imagination. Over the years, it evolved into a lifelong pursuit, a calling that she’s truly passionate about. When she’s not writing, she loves to paint, explore new DIYs and bake French-vanilla muffins!

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