Now is the time to soak in the misty environs and enjoy the festivities that come with them, adding to the magical experience that is winter!

The sun decides to play hide-and-seek, people gather around the crackling blaze of well-lit fires, and the crisp air makes you snuggle deeper in your bed. Yes, after a long struggle with the heat, winter’s arrived in its full glory. This time of the year offers a refreshing reprieve, with fun, holidays and celebrations taking centre stage! So, bid adieu to the hot and humid climate and come out and enjoy India in this time of celebration and festivity.

The winter season is a great excuse to catch up on the adventure enthusiast in you with family vacations planned around adventure sports like skiing, mountaineering, rock climbing and trekking. The snow-clad valleys and breathtaking beauty of the Himalayas in northern India rush through the mind with the first hint of chill in the air.

The destinations in India that compel most people to give in and opt for a winter holiday include places like Manali, Darjeeling and Mussoorie, among others. So, here’s a low-down on the delightful attractions and fun activities to indulge in at these evergreen holiday destinations.


Darjeeling Hills

This photo, “Darjeeling View” @Flickr from
Matt Murf made available under an Attribution license

Huddled among the rolling mountains and revered by tea connoisseurs across the globe, Darjeeling is a traveller’s paradise and the perfect getaway for those with a love for Mother Nature. You can experience white water rafting at its best at the Teesta and Rangeet rivers, which invite you to one of the finest rafting stretches in India for beginners and advanced rafters alike. Another activity not to be missed is trekking through the mountains of Darjeeling, with one of the most popular treks being the Darjeeling-Maneybhanjang-Tonglu- Sandakphu route that offers trekkers a splendid view of the Kanchenjunga and the Everest family. Ensure a visit to the Lloyd Botanical Garden that features the native flora of the Sikkim Himalayas as well as exotic plants from all over the world. A walk along the Happy Valley Tea Estate allows you to witness the process of picking, manufacturing and processing the well-renowned Darjeeling tea.


Manali is a visitor’s delight with its spectacular views of snow-capped peaks, woody slopes, the beautiful Beas river and enchanting forests. Here, one can enjoy the incredible range of outdoor sports such as river rafting, paragliding, zorbing, skiing and trekking. Adding to the magic of Manali are the popular excursions through Solang Valley, the elevated road to Rohtang Pass and the scenic valleys of Lahaul and Spiti. The hot springs of Manikaran and the ancient Tibetan monasteries are also definitely worth visiting.


Mussoorie Bear Hills

This photo, “Bear Hill” @Flickr from paulhami made available
under a Share Alike, Attribution license

Mussoorie is a charming hill station that commands a wonderful view of the extensive range of Himalayan mountains. It has found presence in movies and literature alike, its charm escaping no one. But besides inducing a sense of dreaminess, this tourist haven also presents visitors with a variety of entertaining options like a mini Appu Ghar for children, the Benog Wildlife Sanctuary for nature lovers, and adventurous activities like trekking and horse riding through the forest terrains. You can also take away exciting Tibetan goodies like prayer wheels, antiques, embroidered wall hangings and pashmina shawls from here.