Sightseeing in India

Essential cities and the wonders within

Sightseeing in India

India is a diverse country, probably one of the most diverse countries you can find in the world.

On one hand, it has regions like Kashmir, a place with has the highest rainfall in the world. On the other, the hottest place - the Thar Desert. Add to that more than half of the Indian coastline is home to beautiful beaches and the northern part of India hosts the Himalayan Range’s snow capped mountains.


Agra city is world famous for its Taj Mahal, which is the mausoleum of Mumtaz Mahal, wife of Emperor Shah Jahan. Agra also has many other places to see, one of them is Agra Fort, built by Emperor Akbar between 1565-1573. The Tomb of Akbar is 12 km from Agra city.


Founded in 1488. A timeless desert city ringed by a 7 km long wall and famed for its sandstone architecture which stands in stark contrast to surrounding desert wilderness. You can see Junagarh Fort, Lallgarh Palace covered in red sandstone, Ganga Golden Jubilee Museum and a Camel breeding farm.


The capital of India, Delhi is divided into two main parts, Old Delhi and New Delhi. It has many world class facilities and sights.

  • Red Fort - Built by Shah Jahan in 1648
  • Purana Quila - A light and sound show every evening.
  • India Gate - which was built in honour of Indian Soldiers.
  • Rashtrapati Bhawan - The residence of the President of India.
  • Parliament House
  • Qutab Minar built in 1199


Founded 1459. A startling fortress city and shopper’s paradise for rare artifacts not found elsewhere. Apart from the grandeur of the imposing palace and fort, the city itself is a piece of remarkable history.


Founded 1599, the glory, the chivalry and valour of the rajputs is displayed at its finest by the grandeur of this lovely, lake-side city. The city is a constant procession of palces, temples and lakes each outdoing the other in its beauty. The bazaar offers fine crafts especially vividly colored paintings. The places you can see are City Palace, Lake Palace, Shiv Niwas Palace, Saheliyon ki Bari, Jagdish Temple, Lake Fateh Sagar.


Records of Varanasi date back over 3000 years, making it India's oldest town and one of the most ancient in the world. As one wanders the twisting back alleys it is easy to forget that you are in the 20th century. It is the “religious capital” of Hinduism and attracts thousands of pilgrims. You can enjoy a river cruise on the River Ganges. Ghats-the daily devotions of the righteous are an exhilarating sight. Kashi-Vishwanath Temple, 18th century, also known as the Golden Temple, the most sacred shrine of Lord Shiva, patron god of Varanasi, Durga Kund, Sankat Mochan-shrine of Hanuman (Monkey God),


In the state of West Bengal, Darjeeling is full of tea estates and hill stations with the Himalayan snow capped mountains in the background. In fact, nearby Kanchenjunga Mountain has the world's third largest peak. The region has lush tea gardens as well as a variety of flora to entice visitors as well as Ghoom Monastery, Dhirdham Temple, Tiger Hills, Zoological Garden, a natural history museum and Observatory Hill.


Mumbai was formerly called Bombay. With 20 million people, Mumbai is India's financial capital and the home of Bollywood, the country's film industry. Historically, the city boasts the Elephanta Caves, about 6 miles from the city, the Gateway of India and many Victorian buildings. Another famous landmark in Mumbai is the Taj Mahal Palace and Tower Hotel, one of the original grand hotels of the world.


Situated on a hilltop at the southern tip of the state, is Kerala's capital. For most visitors the capital is simply a transit point on their way to Kovalam, the popular beach resort a few miles to the south. However it is worth lingering for a day in this easy going city to explore the narrow backstreets, old gabled houses and parks that break up the modern center.

The most fascinating part of Trivandrum is the Fort area, around the Shri Padmanabhaswamy temple and Puthenmalika palace, seat of the Travancore rajas. Some of the palace has been turned into a museum and displays a collection of heirlooms and artifacts, however the highlight is the typically understated, elegant Keralan architecture. Beneath sloping red-tiled roofs, hundreds of wooden pillars carved into the forms of horses prop up the eaves, with airy verandas projecting onto the surrounding lawns.

When it gets too hot at sea level, Ponmudi makes a welcome excursion. This enchanting hill station, tucked away in the Western Ghats, forty miles to the north of the capital, offers a lot to travelers with a passion for trekking or those who'd prefer a gentle wander along narrow, winding pathways. The hill resort is surrounded by tea-estates and mist covered valleys, peppered with stone cottages painted violet, pink and white. Another easy excursion from Trivandrum is Padmanabhapuram, the site of a magnificent palace.


Goa has been declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site and today is the state´s main cultural attraction. Tourists take a break from the beach resort to come and admire the massive facades and beautiful interiors of the city's well preserved churches.

The Tuscan St. Catherine´s Cathedral is the largest church in India and took eighty years to build, finally being consecrated in 1640. The scale and detail of the Corinthian-style interior is overwhelming; huge pillars divide the central nave from the side aisles, and no less than fifteen altars are arranged around the walls. An altar to St.Anne treasures the relics of the Blessed Martyrs of Cuncolim, whose failed mission to convert the Moghul emperor Akbar culminated in their murder.

 A chapel behind a highly detailed screen holds the Miraculous Cross, which stood in a Goan village until a vision of Christ appeared on it. Said to heal the sick, it is now kept in a box;a small opening on the side allows devotees to touch it.

Other sights worth seeing include the Arch of the Viceroys, built in 1597 to commemorate Vasco da Gama's arrival in India, and the distinctive domed Church of St Cajetan (1651), modeled on St.Peter's in Rome. Old Goa is a major draw for Christian pilgrims from all over India who come to visit the tomb of St. Francis Xavier, the renowned 16th century missionary whose remains are enshrined in the Basilica of Bom Jesus.


Also known as the City of Joy, Kolkata is home to the Victoria Memorial. This astounding marble building is probably the most impressive colonial structure in India. It was built to commemorate Queen Victoria and completed after 20 years of work in 1921. Inside is a fascinating museum of Indian history including some wonderful sculptures.

The monument is situated on 64 acres of land including lakes, gardens and walking paths. With 60 galleries of art and archaeology this is India’s largest museum and possibly its most attractive, housed in a stunning colonnaded palace. The natural history collection is one of the world´s finest.

A visit here is mandatory for those wanting a snapshot view of India's past. Plus it’s an ideal all day excursion in rainy season. Five guided tours are available each day.
Then there is Mother Teresa's house to see.

This humble and touching temple to Mother Teresa's life and work within the city of Kolkata is worth a visit. Upstairs is a small museum and her bedroom is preserved as it was when she lived here in remarkable simplicity.

Further reading

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