Travel

5 Gorgeous Offbeat Winter Destinations in India to Explore

offbeat winter destination in India

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Are you spending winter without visiting the mountains or beaches?!

Sure about skipping the best time of the year and spending it in your dorm or the corner of your apartment, binging Netflix?

Honestly, these few months, especially from October to March, are a sigh of relief from the scorching heat and overbearing humidity, for winters are the best time for a quick vacation!

If you are almost convinced and started imagining yourself (even slightly) surrounded by the sweetness of nature, I will drop here the five best offbeat winter destinations in India for you to decide where to hop next! But first, let’s look at some compelling reasons and statistics, which might help you in your journey.

Why Winter Season is the Perfect Time for Travelling in India?

Travelling during the winter is always a bonus. Firstly, the weather is perfect, secondly, if you love mountains or beaches, it’s the best time to witness the elegance of nature, and thirdly, there are myriads of festivals and carnivals lined up in some of the offbeat winter destinations in India.

Both, international and local travellers look for places, lesser known to visit in India to immerse in the vast plains, snow-capped mountains, warm deserts, and beautiful plains. 

A recent survey mentions that one in three Indians are planning to travel during the upcoming holiday season. Among the surveyed, 70% and more are wanting to rejuvenate and enjoy the winter season with their family, partners, friends and colleagues.

So while you rest and enjoy your deep sleep, the travel enthusiasts will pack their bags and explore the offbeat winter destinations in India during the super favourable weather to soothe their souls.

Top Best Offbeat Winter Destinations in India

You have many options, either to visit a wintry place or to spend time in some less chilly destinations, whatever your choice is, I have compiled some destinations in India for beaches and mountain lovers.

1. Auli – To Witness the Snow-covered Beauty

During the winter, you can expect the temperature to cross -8 degrees Celsius. The beautiful landscape of the Auli hill station in Himachal Pradesh increases manifold in winter. Auli becomes a massive attraction for winter sports enthusiasts. One can go snow trekking, skiing, and snowboarding.

The first offbeat destination in India on our list, Auli is the best excuse to cuddle in the lap of nature.

Here are seven places to visit in Auli in winter:

  • Narsingh Temple
  • Nanda Devi Peak
  • Gorson Bugyal
  • Auli Artificial Lake
  • Joshimath
  • Chattrakund Lake
  • Auli Ropeway

2. Goa – For the Christmas and New Year Vibe

Offbeat destination and Goa? Is that what you are thinking? Well, let me explain.

The best decision I made last new year was to visit Goa. Believe it or not, winter holidays and Goa are the best companions. The sand, the beach, the ocean, and the good vibe, you cannot ask for more! Christmas and New Year are the best time to visit this strikingly amazing place. Whether with your colleagues, best friend, or partner, the blissful parties are simply unforgettable.

Carnivals mostly take place during January or February, and when visiting during these months, you can meet people from all over the globe. Make sure you see the street dancers, live band performances, and fire eaters.

The atmosphere in Goa is electrifying, and perfectly fits our offbeat winter destinations in India. The spirits are high, so relax, party, and groove a little on the beaches. There are some offbeat places too, like the spice plantations, striking sunsets, Goan caves, and pristine nature.

Note: Book your ticket well in advance.

3. Yuksom – Snow Blanketed in Layers

A magnificently breathtaking village, Yuksom in Sikkim becomes frosty and chilly. The snow-clad mountain is a must-visit during the winter months.

The charming town is located in the western part of Sikkim, surrounded by majestic mountains and forests. If you are looking forward to a fantastic holiday experience with rich culture, this picturesque town is just for you. Also called the Gateway to Kuchenjunga, nature and animal lovers are quite fond of this place.

The captivating views of the beautiful lake, forest, and monasteries will make you fall in love with this mesmerizing town. Some major attractions around Yuksom are:

  • Khecheopalri Lake
  • Tashiding Monastery
  • Dubdi Monastery
  • Kangchendzonga National Park
  • Norbugang Chorten

Did you know? Yuksom, the first capital of the Kingdom of Sikkim, was established in 1642 by the first Chogyal of Sikkim.

Situated at somewhat 8,500 ft above sea level, Rishyap or Rishop in West Bengal is a small Lepcha village on the Dooar’s hilltop. If you are an adventure freak, this is a must-visit hill station in India during the winter.

4. Rishyap – For Its Splendid Beauty

The charming village, far away from the hustle-bustle of city life, where the sun, forest, and mountain create a seemingly beautiful atmosphere. During the night, the sky fills up with twinkling stars. What’s more interesting is that Nathu La and Jalep La passes are almost visible on a distant horizon.

The colourful orchids and magnificent surroundings call out to every mountain lover out there! If you are searching for an offbeat destination in India that is a romantic, a quaint place located in the pristine valley, then Rishyap should definitely be on your list.

Tourists can witness Mt. Kanchenjunga, Mt. Kharg, Mt. Rathung, Mt. Kokthang, Mt. Pandim, Mt. Kabru, Mt. Narsingh and Mt. Simvo.

Surrounding Destinations: Rishi, Lolegaon, Lava, Pedong, Aritar

5. Alleppey – They Call It The Venice of East

Last but the best on our list of top 5 offbeat winter destinations in India is Alleppey in Kerela. The best time to visit Alleppey is between October to March when the temperature ranges between 18 to 30 degrees Celsius.

Famous for its backwaters, this small town will help you live the dream of staying in a houseboat. Explore the scenic charm, the local life, and the water adventure.

During the month of March, the town comes alive with an amazing 10-day religious festival full of celebration and pomp.

Things to do in Alleppey:

  • Stay in a houseboat
  • Go for a night walk
  • View gorgeous sunset
  • Bird watching
  • Explore beaches
  • Explore backwaters

So take advantage of the Indian winter season and book your tickets well in advance. Let yourself live what you cherish dreaming.

Banner Image by Tanmoy Sarkar from Pixabay

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Nitya Jain
Nitya Jain is an enthusiastic content writer and a life-long learner with an undying curiosity to explore new things. She loves fresh humour, just like her tea! When not writing, you’ll find her raiding book stores or hopping cafes in town.

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