Contrary to what the cynics say, there’s more to Monsoon Tourism than just PR propaganda. The most unusual places in the country transform into dream destinations during the rains. Here are a few of our picks
Leh and Ladakh
June to August is monsoons in the rest of India but is the best time to travel to Ladakh, Lahaul and Spiti are some of the destinations you can target on your trip. It’s not all rugged and barren terrain, the colours of the sand and the river and the monasteries make it beautiful. Lahaul is also the gateway to Ladakh in the Himalayas. May to October is the best time to visit as its accessible by road and not blocked by snow
How to get there: Fly from Hyderabad to Delhi, proceed by road. Jet Airways and Alliance Air provide service from Delhi to Leh. There are no direct buses available from Delhi to Ladakh but one can take a bus up to Jammu or a cab.
Seeing this state’s name comes as a surprise to many as most think of Rajasthan as arid and dry, a place where no rain falls. On the contrary, it celebrates the end of the dry spell and welcomes the monsoons with a series of fairs and festivals. In fact, erstwhile maharajahs here had special palaces built to which they would retire to enjoy the rains. Visit Udaipur the city of lakes and watch yourself get spellbound by its vibrancy, Jaipur, the pink city with its palaces and forts, Puskhkar and Amber Fort. The rural Rajasthan is something that you can explore and leave mesmerised by the idyllic life out there. And if you are in the mood for some beautiful scenery head to Mt Abu, the state’s only hill station. A thorough soaking is even more predictable if you go to Rajasthan, but this is what makes the experience so enjoyable.
How to get there: Jet Airways and Air India IC offer services from Hyderabad.
During the monsoons Shillong, The Scotland of the East turns an even brighter shade of green. It’s a paradise for botanists once the rains grace the hills. Beautiful lakes, breathtaking waterfalls set in pine forests and rolling green hills make Shillong a popular hill station in the country. But what charms you most is the behaviour of the people here. While here do not forget to check out the Umiam Lake, Shillong Peak, The Crinoline Falls, The Gunner’s Falls, Elephant Gait and the Elephant Falls and The Ward Lake among a whole lot of other places.
How to get there: You have Jet Airways and Air India IC flights from Hyderabad. Jet Airways flies to Mumbai, then Kolkata and then Shillong. The nearest railway station to Shillong is the Guwahati station. The Secunderabad Guwahati Express is your best bet. Guwahati is 100km away from Shillong.
Athirapally Falls (Kerala)
The greyish azure sky above, the misty spray below which, along with the most beautiful greenery, encompasses you, the rush from the waterfalls that fills your ears drowning the sound of the continual drizzle… Welcome to Athirapally Falls. Few places can hold their charm during all times. The fall here at Athirapally village in Thrissur in Kerala is one of them. During summer the fall shrinks to two smaller ones that descend side by side. But during monsoon every aspect of Athirapally is accentuated. There is more water, of course, the green hue of the wilderness is richer and intoxicating. The 24-metre (80 ft) waterfall is located on the western-flowing Chalakudy river which originates from the Anamudi mountains of the Western Ghats. You may also visit Vazhachal Falls and the nearby areas which is an equally popular tourist haunt and picnic spot. The Athirapally-Vazhachal forest area is also famous for its fantastic trekking locales.
How to get there: From Hyderabad SpiceJet, Indigo, Jetlite and Jet Airlines provide services to Kochi. Sabari Express goes from Secunderabad to Thrissur. From here you may hire a taxi and go to the fall directly or go by road to Chalakudy, the nearest town from Athirapally and onwards.
Goa in the monsoon months of June to September is truly magical, a time of year when nature is at its best and bountiful. Many amazing festivals and events in Goa take place during the monsoon season, making it a particularly exciting time of year for visiting travellers looking to experience the local culture. Sao Jao festival, St. Peter Feast, Bonderam are some the festivals you could look out for. The ‘Rivera of the East’ really is at its romantic best in the rains.
How to get there: Driving down to Goa is the best option. Alternatively, JetLite, Kingfisher and Air India operate regular flights There are also buses available.
About the Author (Author Profile)
Am a dreamer, writer and traveller. Still trying to find my niche but what counts is being able to give wings to my imagination.