Everyone’s dreaming of the day the pandemic gets over, pack all bags and travel to their favourite destinations. However, travel won’t be the same as before. Tourists would still have to take precautions when they travel to places after Covid-19 (See, Guide to traveling during Covid). Worry not, because we have compiled a list of the 7 best places to travel to after Covid, keeping in mind all the precautions.
Nestled in the hills of Himachal, Bir is a small village that houses a Tibetan colony. Situated 5000 ft. above sea level, it has made its niche as the paragliding capital of India. It is a perfect retreat for adventurers and tranquillity-seekers alike. Snow-capped mountains, artistic temples, rich heritage, colourful handicrafts, flora, and fauna – Bir is a gift that keeps on giving. There’s also a toy train if you want to recreate a Bollywood Chaiyya-Chaiyya moment!
- Paragliding and hang gliding of course!
- Shopping at Bir road, followed by some food in artsy cafes to warm you up.
- Camp on top of the various hills to have a unique view of sunrise. Bir river is also a good spot for camping if you don’t want to trek too much.
- Chokling monastery is a tranquil place for self-discovery.
- Himalayan Film schools – one of the most prestigious film schools in India offers filmmaking and storytelling workshops.
Best time to go: April to June. Post-June the showers prevent paragliding.
What’s the best place to travel to if you love beaches, bar hopping, and some history? Most would think of Goa, but Pondicherry is what we’re crazy about. It’s one of the most romantic getaways in India. French influences can be seen everywhere, from quaint colourful cafes to churches. Its bougainvillaea draped houses and colourful streets are totally insta-worthy. The serene waters and rocky beaches add to the aesthetic appeal of both the city and your Instagram feed.
- Yoga retreat at the Auroville and Aurobindo Ashram. Your body deserves relaxation and exercise after dealing with the pandemic.
- Beach parties! Covid has been quite the party-pooper (yes, pun intended). But, the day will come when crowds will go wild dancing late into the night. And with the backdrop of beaches, Pondicherry makes for the perfect place.
- Take a walk on the rock beach and enjoy the sunset.
- Cycle through picturesque lanes and feel the French vibes. You might want to practice your posing skills; these artful buildings will compel you to do a photo shoot.
Best time to go: All year round.
Oh, to wake up to the aroma of the coffee, watching the sunrise over misty mountains! You can do exactly that in Coorg. Located in Madikeri, Karnataka, it is popularly known as the Scotland of India. It has a rich history, scenery, and cuisine. It’s not just a coffee land, it’s famous for its whitewater rafting, festivals, and hill safaris.
- Trek to see dazzling waterfalls – Abbey falls is the most famous.
- Immerse yourself in the festivals just like the locals. The major ones are- Keil Poldu (worship of weapons), Cauvery Shankaramana (return of the river goddess), and the Puthari (harvest).
- Experience the tribal culture by visiting one of their villages – the Kodavas especially. They perform their unique martial arts that you can watch (and even learn).
Best time to go: During the summer – March to June.
Kutch is a must-visit if you are a fan of culture and history. As Amitabh Bachchan rightly said, “Kutch nahi dekha to kuchh nahi dekha”. The beauty of Kutch is such that it immerses you into its rich heritage. From the food to the music and dance, Kutch leaves a lasting impression. The white Rann is perhaps the most famous landmark in India. Its massive salt deposits look ethereal and one of a kind. Rann Utsav is also celebrated during the winter months and attracts tourists from all over the world.
- Hot air balloon ride to get a bird’s eye view of the white rann.
- Tent stay in the desert. You will get to enjoy traditional food, music, and even dance along with the traditional Garba dancers.
- The Kutch desert wildlife sanctuary has varied species of animals and birds. The buried city Dholavira of Harappan civilization was excavated here.
- Indo-Pak border located in Vighakot, Kutch is also worth a visit. However, you will need to get prior permission from BSF (15 days in advance) to visit.
Best time to go: During the Rann Utsav. It takes place between November to February every year.
Meghalaya literally means “Abode of clouds”. Located in the northeast of India, Meghalaya is a paradise for nature lovers. Mystic, green, and alive, it truly makes you feel like you’re on cloud nine. You will be bringing back a bagful of handicrafts (and memories) for sure.
- Mawlynnong Village, also known as God’s Own Garden has root bridges. You will need to trek to reach these massive natural bridges.
- Nohkalikai Waterfalls – India’s Tallest Plunge Waterfall.
- Balpakram National Park has plenty of caves, flora – fauna, and waterfalls.
- Shillong – shopping, Ward’s lake.
Best time to go: all year round.
This small valley between the Himalayan range and the mountain range of Pir Panjal attracts people from all over the globe. It has such untouched beauty – Shalimar bagh which compares to Nirvana, ice-capped Himalayan peaks, lush green valleys with the scent of sandalwood, stunning vistas of Bhaderwah, and the blooming apple orchards in Pulwama. Kashmir also has such a rich cuisine to offer – from the different varieties of tea to the ceremonial Wazwan feast. Once disputed land, it’s totally safe to travel now. Even the Indian government has been promoting tourism to Kashmir and it’s booming.
- Ride a shikhara, duh! If you’re in Kashmir, and you don’t get on these colorful boats, then you’ve not truly experienced Kashmir.
- Vaishno Devi shrine – people travel from all corners of India as pilgrims.
- Ride a gondola in Gulmarg.
- Trekking or whitewater rafting in Sonamarg.
- Zanskar -has beautiful monasteries to get some peace of mind.
Best time to visit: May to October.
International places to travel to after covid still remains a question mark. But the Maldives, being quite close to India will attract flocks of tourists. It is a world-famous attraction, which lures honeymooners and leisure holidaymakers. Pristine white sandy beaches, blooming coral reefs, crystalline lagoons, palm-fringed islands, and lavish water villas make this a luxurious vacay.
- Scuba diving and snorkelling
- Visit Glowing Beach on Vaadhoo Island. Yes, these waters glow in the dark!
- Dolphin watching tour.
- Romantic undersea restaurant – Ithaa
Best time to go: all year round. Visa on arrival (for Indians) is an added perk.
Things are looking up for 2021, and many countries are opening their borders to tourists. Meanwhile, you should definitely start planning your itineraries for places to travel to after Covid-19 ends. We hope you liked our recommendations, and do tell us your fav!