Tourist Attractions in India
India is a lively country full of surprising contrasts, where traditional and modern cultures collide. India, the world’s seventh biggest country by size and second-largest by people, has a rich legacy that has been shaped by centuries of diverse civilizations and faiths.
India offers visitors the chance to visit a variety of religious places and spiritual experiences, while environment enthusiasts will appreciate the country’s sun-drenched beaches, lush national parks, and fascinating animal sanctuaries.
Visitors to this unique nation will uncover a bounty of spiritual, cultural, and historical riches, from the beautiful Taj Mahal in Agra.
Refer to our list of the best tourist sites in India frequently to help you make the most of your time in this incredible nation.
1. The Taj Mahal, Agra:
The Taj Mahal, probably India’s most iconic structure, is also the world’s most famous testament to the power of love. This most exquisite of mausoleums, named after Mumtaz Mahal, King Shah Jahan’s favourite wife, was began in 1631 and took 20,000 workers until 1648 to finish.
The Taj Mahal is mostly made of white marble and has various Islamic design features such as arches, minarets, an onion-shaped dome, and black calligraphy inlaid around the entryway. Delicate inlaid floral designs and precious and semi-precious stones like as jade, lapis lazuli, diamonds, and mother of pearl add to its opulence.
The greatest time to visit is either at dawn or dusk, when the lighting transforms the ambiance dramatically. Try to capture a glimpse of the Taj Mahal’s reflection from the Yamuna River’s far bank—it makes for a great (and safe) selfie.
2. The Holy City of Varanasi:
Varanasi, which dates back to the eighth century BC, is one of the world’s oldest continuously inhabited cities. This sacred city, a significant Hindu pilgrimage destination, has long been linked to the great Ganges River, one of the faith’s most essential religious symbols.
Varanasi has a lot to offer, not least the ability to tour the Old Quarter, which is situated to the Ganges and has the 1780 Kashi Vishwanath Temple. The New Vishwanath Temple, which consists of seven different temples, is also worth visiting.
Hindus place a high value on bathing in the Ganges, and various “ghats” contain stairways leading to the river where the devout bathe before prayers. Dasashvamedh Ghat and Assi Ghat are the two biggest. The latter, located at the convergence of the Ganges and Asi rivers, is especially revered.
Banaras Hindu University, founded in 1917 and known for its large library with over a million volumes, and the magnificent Bharat Kala Bhavan museum, which houses exceptional collections of miniature paintings, sculptures, palm-leaf manuscripts, and local history displays, are well worth seeing.
3. Harmandir Sahib: The Golden Temple of Amritsar
Amritsar, founded in 1577 by Ram Das, is a significant centre of Sikh history and culture. The primary attraction here is Harmandir Sahib, which was built in 1604 and is still known as the Golden Temple because of its ornate gold decorations.
The temple was built in a combination of Hindu and Islamic designs, making it the holiest of India’s numerous Sikh temples (it also attracts many Hindus and people of other faiths). The bottom marble piece has complex inlaid floral and animal themes, while the huge golden dome is shaped like a lotus flower, which is a Sikh symbol of purity.
Visitors are similarly fascinated by the temple’s spiritual ambience, which is heightened by the constant chanting of prayers from the Sikh holy book, which is broadcast throughout the complex.
The ability to partake in one of the 50,000 free meals served by the attraction each day is part of the whole experience, and visitors are encouraged to do so.
4. The Golden City: Jaisalmer
The Golden City of Jaisalmer, called for the yellow sandstone used in most of its structures, is an oasis of magnificent ancient architecture rising from the Thar Desert’s sand dunes. The city is now packed with gorgeous ancient homes, majestic gates, and the gigantic Jaisalmer Fort, also known as the Golden Fort, a formidable 12th-century edifice that stands high above the town.
The stronghold has 99 bastions and large gates leading to its main courtyard, which houses the seven-story-tall Maharaja’s Palace, in addition to palaces, temples, and exquisite ancient dwellings.
The palace, which was begun in the early 1500s and expanded by successive kings until the nineteenth century, has portions available to the public, including spaces elegantly adorned with tiles from Italy and China and finely carved stone doors.
5. The Red Fort, New Delhi:
The magnificent crescent-shaped Red Fort in New Delhi, named after the stunning red sandstone used in its development, was built by Shah Jahan in 1648 as the seat of Mughal power – a role it maintained until 1857. It covers a vast area of more than two square kilometres, all of which is surrounded by a large moat.
The fort’s two largest gates, the majestic Lahore Gate (the fort’s main entrance) and the ornately painted Delhi Gate, which was previously utilised by the emperor for ceremonial processions, are among the fort’s highlights.
Exploring Chatta Chowk, a 17th-century covered market offering everything from jewellery to silk clothes, as well as souvenirs and cuisine, is a highlight of each visit. While visitors are free to explore the fort on your own, guided tours are available that provide a fascinating insight into the Shah’s life and times, including a glimpse into the spectacular white marble Hall of Public Audiences (Diwan-i-Am), where he welcomed his subjects.
6. Mumbai: The Gateway of India
The magnificent Gateway of India, which stands 26 metres tall and overlooks the Arabian Sea, is a must-see in Mumbai. This spectacular piece of architecture was built to honour the arrival of King George V and his wife Queen Mary in 1911 and was, for a time, the city’s highest building. It was opened with great pomp and ceremony in 1924 and was, for a time, the city’s tallest structure.
The Gateway of India, made completely of yellow basalt and concrete and noteworthy for its Indo-Saracenic style, was also the site of a less joyous parade of British soldiers when India attained independence in 1948. The massive archway now serves as a gorgeous background that is popular with both residents and visitors.
7. Mecca Masjid, Hyderabad:
The Mecca Masjid in Hyderabad, one of the world’s largest mosques – and one of India’s oldest – began construction in 1614 during Mohammed Quli Qutub Shah’s reign and took nearly 80 years to complete.
The 15 colossal arches and pillars of this stunning mosque, which can seat 10,000 worshipers, were individually carved from single slabs of black granite brought to the site by huge cattle trains reportedly including up to 1,400 bulls.
This spectacular structure, which gets its name from the bricks above the central entrance that were carried here from Mecca, has attractions including its main entryway, a wide plaza, and a vast constructed pond.
8. Amer Fort, Jaipur:
Maharaja Man Singh I erected Amer Fort (sometimes spelled “Amber”) as a fortified palace in 1592, and it has long functioned as Jaipur’s capital. The fort, which is carved high into the mountain, may be reached on foot by a difficult hike or by shuttle trips from the village below (better still, let an elephant do the work).
The first courtyard, Jaleb Chowk, with its numerous painted elephants, and the Shila Devi Temple, devoted to the goddess of battle, are also highlights. The nearby Hall of Public Audience (Diwan-i-Am), with its magnificently adorned walls and monkey-infested terraces, is also worth mentioning.
9. The Beaches of Goa:
Goa’s magnificent western coastline, which overlooks the Arabian Sea, has only lately been discovered by tourists from abroad. It has long been renowned inside India as the “go-to” location for anyone wanting a nice beach holiday. Goa’s 60-mile coastline is home to some of the world’s most beautiful beaches, each with its own distinct attraction.
Agonda Beach is a fantastic alternative for people seeking peace and quiet, whereas Calangute Beach is by far the most commercialised and busy.
10. The Ellora Caves, Aurangabad:
The famed Ellora Caves, created by Buddhist, Jain, and Hindu monks between the 5th and 10th centuries, are a great day trip from Mumbai, around 300 kilometres to the west.
This amazing collection of 34 carved monasteries, chapels, and temples – 12 Buddhist, 17 Hindu, and five Jain – was created in close proximity to one other, a reminder of the religious tolerance that prevailed throughout this period of Indian history, and is now a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
A variety of shrines with sculptures of Buddha and saints dating from the 5th to 7th century, as well as the beautiful Carpenter’s Cave, regarded one of India’s best, are among the Buddhist monastery caves’ features.
Scaffolding was not required since the Hindu caves are far more complicated and were carved from the top down. The Kailasa Temple, a massive rock-cut temple that represents Mount Kailasa and required the removal of 200,000 tonnes of rock, is the finest of these.