The 11 Best Places for a Road Trip in India

~Zainab Sariya

Writing an article on travel seems like writing a fictional story nowadays. Feels like ages since we went out on a tour. All the excitement, planning, bonfire, feels like a dream now. But no! A traveller never loses hope.

Undoubtedly, this lockdown, the deadly COVID-19, it will be over soon. We will fight it, unitedly. And then, we can travel again, set out on a new adventure, once again!

For the Road Trip Lovers

Ever been on a road trip? Those long, tedious, tiring, journeys. So much to plan and so much to bear! Why not just take a flight instead? If you ask yourselves these questions when you hear about road trips, most certainly, you haven’t been on one.

But if you are a road trip lover, and looking for the best places for a road trip in India, buddy, you are in the right place.

Road tripping is not just about reaching the destination. It is more about enjoying the journey. Looking at it from a different perspective, these trips are just like our life! Our life is a journey to a destination that we don’t know. So, why not just enjoy the journey?

That being said, here are the 11 best places in India for a road trip.

1.  Manali – Leh (473 km)

Road trips are one thing. But road-trips from Manali to Leh is a different level of fun and adventure. This 473 km of exquisite travel on the road is a feast to the eyes and peace to the soul.

The roads are filled with snow-capped mountains and a number of passes, museums and monasteries.This stretch is covered in almost 20-30 ft of snow in the winter hence is not always open.

Ladakh

In this breathtaking journey, you will come across many iconic passes; the Rohtang Pass, Keylong, Jispa, Baralacha La, and many more. These places are sure to blow you away with their picturesque beauty and aura, thus making it the first destination in this list.

2.  Guwahati – Tawang (457 km)

The second destination in this list is the mystic and beautiful Guwahati to Tawang road. Once you enter Arunachal Pradesh, you get to see the scenic mountains and rugged terrains.

You get to travel on the winding roads and witness the Himalayan Ranges and rivers gushing on the side.

Guwahati

There are many ways to travel through here, the most convenient using SUVs. There are several lodges, food stops and many historical places to visit along the way.

The best time to visit is March-October. Most importantly, plan the tour before leaving so that you don’t miss a spot.

3.  Chennai – Puducherry (165 km)

Puducherry, also known as the gem of South India is one of the top vacation spots and is well known for a weekend getaway from Chennai.

The whole road trip to Puducherry or Pondicherry is a stretch of the East Coast Road and is the one road trip destination in India which you cannot afford to miss.

Auroville

On reaching Puducherry one can visit the French Colony, Auroville, and take photo walks. The route to Puducherry is refreshing and perfect for a summer weekend getaway!

4.  Kolkata – Digha (187 km)

Pack a bag full of snacks and mishti (sweets) (don’t forget to buy roshogolla) from Kolkata and leave for Digha. A perfect road trip for a family or friends reunion.

 The whole road is a bliss as it is filled with greenery. The moist winds rejuvenate your soul and calm your mind.

Kolkata to Digha - One of the best road trips

There is no stopping once you reach Digha. Digha is filled with beaches and is one of the top beach destinations in India. Not to mention that one of the best parts of this road trip is that you get to eat authentic seafood along the way.

5.  The Golden Triangle (Delhi-Agra-Jaipur) (720 km – 1000 km)

The king of all road trips, the Golden Triangle of India which comprises the three historical cities Delhi, Agra, and Jaipur.

If you are looking for a road trip to explore the great cultural heritage of India, then this is your top choice!

Tajmahal

Delhi – the national capital of India. This city is very much history’s child. With the lively streets and markets, the numerous fast food centers of Old Delhi, and the historical monuments all around, this trip will fill your soul.

Visit Agra. Relish yourself in the aur of the Taj Mahal. Once you’ve finished your magical journey in Agra, you enter Jaipur – the Pink City This place has a royal aura and brings to life the Indian history!

6. Pamban – Rameshwaram (10.1 km)

This is one of the most thrilling road routes in the world. And the reason is that the journey is on a bridge right over the Palk Strait for 20 minutes.

Pamban-Bridge

This bridge connects Rameshwaram to India and also has another line till Dhanushkodi. These twenty minutes of your life will be one which you will never forget. Undoubtedly, this is a must-try road trip destination.

7. Delhi – Nepal (1012 km)

Why go only on ‘national’ road trips when you can make it ‘international’?  Exciting! Isn’t it? The best part about it is that you don’t even need a visa to visit Nepal. Don’t have a passport either? No problem. You don’t need that either!

As Nepal is just a border away from India, there are many locations to enter Nepal! One of the most famous locations is Sunauli from Delhi. Moreover, you get to visit Varanasi on the way!

Nepal

Everyone knows that you can easily take a flight to Kathmandu. But for the road trip lovers out there, there is there is never another option. This trip by road will be a long one. But who cares? The longer the better.

And at last, once you reach Nepal you will feel it was all worth it.

8. Bhutan (2000 km)

Bhutan oh! Bhutan! You can call it one of the most serene places on earth. To feel this eavenly serenity and peace you have to go there. This is another famous road trip route, especially for bikers.

With the snow capped Himalayas on one side and the rugged, sharp turns all along, this one of a kind  journey is just perfect to keep you on the edge of your seat.

Bhutan

Unlike Nepal, travelling to Bhutan requires you to carry your passport, IDs and all other necessary travel documents! There are two main borders, Phuentsholing and Samdrup from where you can enter Bhutan.

9. Mumbai – Pune (150 km)

All Mumbaikar must have taken this short stress-busting road trip to Pune at least once in their lifetime. The onset of winter is the best time to take a trip on this route.

Pune

The misty breeze and the elaichi infused kadak chai at the local shops. Ah! A sip of delight. This trip has various parts that will compel you to stop and gawk at the beauty of nature.

Away from the hustle and chaos of Mumbai, the city that never sleeps.

10. Vizag – Araku Valley (115 km)

A 2-3 hours drive away from Vishakapatnam is this beautiful hill station called the Araku Valley. This comes in the top South Indian destinations to visit in winter.

Vizag

This beautiful valley is filled with waterfalls, farms, and beautiful hills. This is a short road trip and a perfect weekend getaway for anyone living anywhere near Vishakapatnam.

And if you are planning on this trip, the ideal time to visit would of course be the winters.

11. Chennai – Munnar (620 km)

We all know how beautiful Munnar is. Don’t we? Guess what? The road trip from Chennai to Munnar is as beautiful as this hill station.

Munnar is famous for its plantations, especially tea and for its beautiful green covered hills which make it more scenic.

If you start your road trip from Chennai you get to see these beautiful places like Villupuram, Trichy, Dindigul, Udumalaipettai till you reach Munnar in Kerala. This is a perfect example of how to enjoy the journey as well as the destination.

Conclusion

Road trips to all these destinations in India are proof that the journey can also be as beautiful as the destination sometimes even more!

Grooving on the beats, in a convertible car, beer in one hand, going on a road trip with your best friends. Feels like a classic scene from Zindagi Na Milegi Dobara or  Dil Chahta Hai. Doesn’t it?

Life would have been so perfect, only if such things happened in real. Yes they don’t. But why not give them a try? For once in life, why not gather those old buddies, use some of those savings and plan a road trip. Afterall, we live only once!

So which road trip route are you taking?

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