The traditional roots of the seventh largest country of the world, India, go back to the ancient times of the Indus Valley Civilization which flourished in the region from 3300 BCE to 1700 BCE. India is a correct symbolization of the term, Unity in Diversity, as it is a place where diverse religions, cultures, and traditions prevail.
Changing seasons and geography from the lush green hills of the North to the sandy beaches of the South, numerous tourist destinations are there for everyone to explore. From the historical monuments of the Mughal era to the modern skyscrapers of Mumbai, there is something for everyone to look for.
In this blog, we will take a look at the best tourist destinations in India that are must-sees. From the iconic Taj Mahal in Agra to the serene backwaters of Kerala, these destinations offer a glimpse into the rich history and culture of the country.
So, what is the wait for?
Let’s get started so that you can get ready to experience and create unforgettable memories while admiring these wonderful places.
The 40 Most Tourist Destinations in India Are Listed Here.
1. Taj Mahal, Agra
A white marble mausoleum, considered one of the most beautiful buildings in the world, is a UNESCO World Heritage site. The Mughal Emperor Shah Jahan built the Taj Mahal in memory of his beloved wife, Mumtaz Mahal, who died during childbirth in 1631.
The Taj Mahal, a blend of Indian, Persian, and Islamic styles, exemplifies Mughal architecture in Agra. The intricate carvings and precious stones inlaid, adorn the architecture beautifully. The most famous tourist destination is visited by millions of visitors annually.
2. Golden Temple, Amritsar
The Golden Temple, also known as Sri Harmandir Sahib, is a beautiful and highly revered Sikh temple in Amritsar, Punjab, India. Built on a platform in the middle of a sacred tank called the Amrit Sarovar, the gurudwara is surrounded by a marble walkway.
Well known for its stunning gold-plated dome, intricate carvings, and engravings, it is considered one of the holiest sites in Sikhism and attracts millions of devotees and tourists worldwide yearly.
The temple is home to Sri Guru Granth Sahib Ji, the holy scripture of Sikhism who is always present in the temple and is given the highest respect. The temple promotes the message of equality, as people from all religions and backgrounds are welcome here without any discrimination at all.
3. Red Fort, Delhi
The historic Red Fort in Delhi, also known as the “Lal Qila,” was built in the mid-17th century. It served as the primary residence of the Mughal emperors for nearly 2 centuries.
The fort is all decked up of red sandstone and is one of Delhi’s most popular tourist attractions. Many chambers, halls, mosques, and scenic gardens of the fort, are the great attractions for exploration for visitors. The Red Fort is also the site of India’s Independence Day celebrations, during which the Prime Minister of India hoists the Indian flag.
4. Hawa Mahal, Jaipur
The “Palace of the Winds,” a beautiful and iconic landmark in the heart of Jaipur, Rajasthan, is also known by other name of Hawa Mahal. It was initially made as a way for royal women to observe everyday life and festivals celebrated in the city without being seen by the public.
Having intricate and delicate honeycomb-like structures, the scripture is made of red and pink sandstone. To get a glance of the panoramic view of the city, visitors climb to the top of the palace. To learn about the history and culture of Rajasthan, it a place worth visiting for anyone travelling to Jaipur.
5. Meenakshi Temple, Madurai
The Meenakshi Temple is a historic Hindu temple in Madurai, Tamil Nadu, India. It is dedicated to the goddess Parvati, known as Meenakshi, and her consort, Shiva. The temple is known for its elaborate architecture, with numerous ornately carved pillars and statues. It is also a major cultural and religious center, attracting thousands of visitors annually.
The temple complex includes multiple shrines, a sacred tank, and a bazaar. Visitors can explore the various shrines and participate in the daily rituals and ceremonies that take place at the temple. The temple is also a popular destination for devotees and tourists alike, who experience this sacred site’s rich history and spiritual atmosphere.
6. Ajanta and Ellora Caves, Aurangabad
The Ajanta and Ellora Caves in Aurangabad are a must-see for any traveler visiting India. The Ajanta Caves are a series of ancient Buddhist temples carved into the rock, featuring stunning murals and sculptures. On the other hand, the Ellora Caves are a mixture of Buddhist, Hindu, and Jain temples carved into the rock.
Both sites are listed as UNESCO World Heritage sites and offer a unique glimpse into India’s rich cultural and religious history. The caves are located in Maharashtra, about 300 km from Mumbai. They can be easily accessed by air, rail, or road.
7. Gateway of India, Mumbai
The Gateway of India is a historical monument located in Mumbai, India. It was built in 1911 to commemorate the visit of King George V and Queen Mary to the city. The Gateway is a popular tourist attraction known for its Indo-Saracenic architecture.
It is located at the tip of Apollo Bunder, a popular waterfront area in Mumbai. Visitors can take a boat ride from the Gateway to nearby attractions such as the Elephanta Caves and Alibaug. The Gateway is also a popular spot for taking pictures and enjoying the views of the Arabian Sea.
8. Jammu and Kashmir, Srinagar
Jammu and Kashmir, located in the northernmost part of India, is a breathtakingly beautiful state known for its natural beauty and rich cultural heritage. The capital city of Srinagar, situated on the banks of the Jhelum River, is a popular tourist destination and offers a range of activities for visitors to enjoy.
From houseboat stays on Dal Lake to visiting the beautiful Mughal gardens, there is something for everyone in Srinagar. The city is also home to numerous temples and shrines, making it a paradise for religious tourists.
In addition, the surrounding region of Jammu and Kashmir is home to many picturesque mountain ranges, making it a popular destination for adventure sports such as trekking and skiing. Overall, a visit to Jammu and Kashmir and the city of Srinagar is an unforgettable experience that should not be missed.
9. Darjeeling Himalayan Railway, West Bengal
The Darjeeling Himalayan Railway, also known as the “Toy Train,” is a narrow gauge railway located in West Bengal, India. It is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and offers a beautiful and unique way to experience the region.
The train journey takes you through picturesque landscapes, including tea plantations and small villages, and offers breathtaking views of the Himalayas. The train runs from New Jalpaiguri to Darjeeling, passing through several stations along the way. The ride is a true delight for tourists and rail enthusiasts and is a must-do activity during a visit to West Bengal
10. Vaishno Devi Temple, Jammu
Vaishno Devi Temple, located in Jammu and Kashmir, is a famous Hindu pilgrimage destination. Pilgrims travel to the temple, located on top of a hill, to seek the blessings of the goddess Vaishno Devi. The temple can be reached by a steep 13-kilometre hike or by a pony or helicopter service.
The journey to the temple is considered spiritually fulfilling and said to bring good fortune to the devotees. The temple is open throughout the year and attracts many tourists and pilgrims from all over the country.
11. Rashtrapati Bhavan, Delhi
Rashtrapati Bhavan, also known as the Presidential Palace, is a must-see tourist attraction in Delhi. Located in the city’s heart, this grand building was originally the British Viceroy of India’s residence and is now the President of India’s official residence.
Visitors can tour the palace and see its impressive Durbar Hall, Ashoka Hall, and the Mughal Gardens, open to the public during certain times of the year. The palace is surrounded by lush greenery and is a beautiful sight. Traveling to Rashtrapati Bhavan is easy, as it is well-connected by public transportation and is a popular tourist destination
12. Lotus Temple, Delhi
The Lotus Temple, located in Delhi, India, is a beautiful and unique architectural structure that annually attracts millions of visitors worldwide. The temple is shaped like a lotus flower and is made entirely of white marble. The Lotus Temple is a Baha’i House of Worship and is open to people of all religions.
It is a peaceful and serene place, perfect for meditation and reflection. The temple’s surroundings are also beautifully landscaped, adding to the overall serene atmosphere. Visiting the Lotus Temple is a must-do for anyone traveling to Delhi, and it is a popular tourist attraction in the city.
13. Konark Sun Temple, Odisha
The Konark Sun Temple is a 13th-century Hindu temple in Konark, Odisha. It is a UNESCO World Heritage Site dedicated to the sun god Surya. The temple is known for its elaborate carvings and grand architecture. Visitors can marvel at the temple’s iconic chariot-shaped structure, adorned with intricate stone carvings depicting stories from Hindu mythology.
The temple complex also includes several smaller temples and shrines, making it a must-see destination for anyone interested in Indian culture and history. Traveling to Konark is easy, with the temple being well-connected by road and rail from major regional cities. As a result, it is a popular tourist destination and attracts thousands of visitors each year.
14. Hampi, Karnataka
Hampi, Karnataka Located in the southern Indian state of Karnataka, Hampi is a UNESCO World Heritage site known for its ancient Hindu temples and ruins. The city was once the capital of the Vijayanagara Empire and is now a popular tourist destination for its historical and cultural significance.
15. Mysore Palace, Karnataka
Mysore Palace, Karnataka: The Mysore Palace, also known as the Amba Vilas Palace, is a stunning architectural masterpiece in the city of Mysore in Karnataka. The palace is known for its intricate carvings and stunning ornamentation and is a popular tourist attraction in the city.
16. Goa Beaches
Goa is a popular beach destination in India, known for its sandy shores and picturesque landscapes. Some of the most popular beaches in Goa include Anjuna Beach, Baga Beach, and Calangute Beach, which are known for their lively atmosphere and water sports activities.
17. Periyar Tiger Reserve, Kerala
Periyar Tiger Reserve, Kerala Located in the southern Indian state of Kerala, the Periyar Tiger Reserve is a protected area known for its diverse wildlife and natural beauty. The reserve is home to a variety of species, including elephants, tigers, and various types of birds.
18. Kovalam Beach, Kerala
Kovalam Beach is a popular tourist destination in the southern Indian state of Kerala. The beach is known for its crystal clear waters and golden sands and is a popular spot for swimming, sunbathing, and water sports.
19. Cochin Fort, Kerala
The Cochin Fort, also known as the Fort Kochi, is a historic fortification located in Kochi in Kerala. The Portuguese built the fort in the 16th century, and it has been declared a protected monument by the Archaeological Survey of India.
20. Varkala Beach, Kerala
Varkala Beach is a popular top tourist destination in the southern Indian state of Kerala. The beach is known for its picturesque setting, red cliffs, and golden sands, and is a popular spot for swimming, sunbathing, and water sports.
21. Andaman and Nicobar Islands
Located in the Bay of Bengal, the Andaman and Nicobar Islands are approximately 572 tropical islands. These islands are known for their beautiful beaches, clear blue waters, and diverse marine life. There are also several historical landmarks on the islands, including the Cellular Jail, which was used by the British to imprison Indian independence fighters.
22. Pangong Tso
Pangong Tso is a high-altitude lake located in the Himalayas in the Ladakh region of India. It is known for its stunning blue-green waters and the surrounding mountain ranges. The lake is situated at about 4,350 meters (14,270 feet) and is a popular top tourist destination, especially for photography and camping.
23. Nubra Valley
Nubra Valley is known for its picturesque landscapes and Buddhist monasteries in the Ladakh region of India. The valley is situated at about 10,000 feet and is home to the Nubra River, which flows through the region. The valley is also home to the Bactrian camels, which can be found in the sandy dunes of the region.
24. Leh Palace
The Leh Palace is a 17th-century palace located in Leh, Ladakh. It was built by King Sengge Namgyal in the 1600s and served as the royal residence of the Namgyal dynasty. The palace is known for its stunning architecture and the panoramic views of the surrounding mountain ranges.
Bikaner is a city located in the northwest region of Rajasthan, India. It is known for its historical landmarks, including the Junagarh Fort, built in the 15th century, and the Laxmi Niwas Palace, built in the early 20th century. The city is also known for handicrafts, particularly hand-woven carpets and silk textiles.
26. Jaisalmer Fort
Jaisalmer Fort, also known as the “Golden Fort,” is a UNESCO World Heritage Site located in Jaisalmer in Rajasthan. Built in 1156 AD, the fort is made of yellow sandstone and is one of the largest forts in the world. It is home to some palaces, temples, and Havelis and offers stunning views of the surrounding desert.
27. The Pushkar Camel Fair
The Pushkar Camel Fair is an annual event held in the town of Pushkar in Rajasthan. It is one of the largest livestock fairs in the world and attracts thousands of tourists annually. The fair is known for its camel trading and cultural events, such as camel races, folk dances, and religious ceremonies.
28. The City Palace in Udaipur
The City Palace in Udaipur is a magnificent palace complex located in the city’s heart. It was built by Maharana Udai Singh II in the 16th century and blended Rajasthani and Mughal architectural styles. The palace is home to several museums, galleries, and courtyards and offers breathtaking views of the surrounding city and lake.
29. Bandhavgarh National Park
Bandhavgarh National Park is a tiger reserve located in the Umaria district of Madhya Pradesh. It is known for its high density of Bengal tigers and is a popular top tourist destination for wildlife lovers. The park is home to several species, including leopards, deer, and birds.
30. Kanha National Park
Kanha National Park is another famous tiger reserve located in Madhya Pradesh. It is known for its beautiful landscape and is home to several endangered species, including the Bengal tiger, Indian wild dog, and barasingha deer. The park is an excellent place for wildlife safaris and is also home to several tribal villages.
31. Sanchi Stupa
Sanchi Stupa is a Buddhist monument located in Madhya Pradesh, India. It is a UNESCO World Heritage Site known for its well-preserved stupas, monasteries, and pillars dating back to the 3rd century BCE.
Bhopal is the capital city of Madhya Pradesh and is known for its natural beauty, historical landmarks, and cultural heritage. It is also home to several educational institutions and research centers.
Orchha is a small Madhya Pradesh town known for its historical palaces and temples. It was the capital of the Orchha State during the 16th and 17th centuries.
34. Ajmer Sharif Dargah
Ajmer Sharif Dargah is a Sufi shrine located in Ajmer, Rajasthan. It is a popular place of pilgrimage for both Hindus and Muslims and is known for its beautiful architecture and cultural significance.
35. Assam Kaziranga National Park
Assam Kaziranga National Park is a protected area in Assam known for its diverse range of flora and fauna, including the one-horned rhinoceros. It is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and is a popular top tourist destination in the region.
Dibrugarh is a city in the state of Assam, located in the northeastern region of India. It is known for its tea plantations and cultural diversity.
Guwahati is the largest city in Assam and serves as the Gateway to the rest of the Northeast. It is a central commercial and cultural hub known for its ancient temples and wildlife sanctuaries
Shillong is the capital of the state of Meghalaya and is located in the northeastern region of India. It is known for its picturesque hills and waterfalls and is a popular top tourist destination for adventure sports.
Mawlynnong is a small village in Meghalaya known for its cleanliness and eco-friendly practices. It has been awarded the title of “Asia’s Cleanest Village” and is a popular top tourist destination.
Cherrapunji is a town in Meghalaya known for its heavy rainfall and beautiful natural surroundings. It is a popular destination for tourists interested in experiencing the beauty of the Northeast.