Dollar and euro on the heights and the search for more economical destinations – and, why not, to escape the basics. In that context, how about putting India on your travel radar? India is one of the most impressive and unforgettable trips you can make. There’s a list of places that prove that point:

1. Varanasi

Varanasi is one of the oldest cities in the world and consecrated to Shiva, the main Hindu god. Bathing in the Ganges River is the most sacred moment as this is where millions of Indians would like to die and countless of them do so, migrating to Varanasi as the time of the last trip approaches. Do not expect to find a postcard beauty, but you can be sure that Varanasi deeply marks all travelers passing by.

2. Udaipur

Few Indian cities are nicer than Udaipur. The lakes, palaces, and temples prove this – no wonder this corner of India is called Venice of the East. There, the tourist’s commitment is to rest: choose a terrace to watch the sunset, visit religious sites and watch life pass by the shore of Lake Pichola. In two days you can see everything, but Udaipur is the kind of place where you feel like staying much more.

3. McLeod Ganj

McLeod Ganj is an unusual village. Lost in the midst of the Himalayas, this village is proof that India goes far beyond that stereotype of desert, camels, and Maharajas: over there, lots of snow in the winter, houses in the clouds and a place of refuge and contemplation. So much so that McLeod Ganj is the home of the Dalai Lama and the seat of government in exile from Tibet.

4. Amritsar

On the border with Pakistan, Amritsar is a city that is often left out of the script of that tourist who passes through the country. And that is a shame; after all there is the Golden Temple Amritsar, a sacred site for Sikhism, the fifth largest religion in the world in number of adherents. A scene of important episodes in Indian history – and many of them not at all peaceful – the Golden Temple delights in religiosity. Amritsar is the center of the Sikh world.

5. Rishikesh

Another city on the banks of the Ganges, but at a point well above it, closer to the source and the Himalayas. In Rishikesh the Ganges is clean – you can swim and even do adventure sports, such as rafting. Beautiful and relatively quiet, Rishikesh became famous outside India from the 1960s. Blame the Beatles, who lived one of their most creative stages in an Ashram there. And they have put India on the world tourist map.

6. Agra

The house of Taj Mahal – One of the seven wonders of the world and the main Tour attraction of India. It is a mausoleum that the emperor Shah Jahan had built for Mumtaz Mahal. The Taj is in Agra which is about a three-hour train ride from New Delhi. As the capital of the Mughal Empire in India, Agra also has other important constructions such as forts, gardens and more mausoleums.

7. Goa

The past that India and Brazil share is in Goa (and also in Kerala, further south). It was there that the Portuguese landed, after the “discovery” of Brazil. Filled with houses and churches in the Lusitanian style and with streets and surnames that still retain good old Portuguese, Goa is a unique place. The beaches, which attract thousands of foreigners every year, from Russians to Australians, also help. Beaches, Museums, Temples, Adventure Sports are the top attractions to enjoy in Goa.

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