Monsoons are a time in India, when the rains are ready to drench the Indian subcontinent fully. The countryside becomes beautiful with lush greenery, dark clouds and cold winds, which you must visit during monsoons. Families enjoy hot cups of tea with fritters while watching the rain. The rains are especially nostalgic for me as it reminds of small towns, dancing in the rain on the terrace, going for long drives on a bike while getting drenched, all these lovely memories surface with the onset of rains. If you want to enjoy monsoons at a leisurely pace then do take a vacation. Here are some places to visit during monsoons in India.
Vagamon hills, Kerala
Nestled in Kerala are the lush and beautiful Vagamon Hills. A few minutes away from Kottayam, Vagamon comes alive with small waterfalls in the rains. Take a scenic drive up the hills and you can spot so many waterfalls coming out. This is because there is so much water in the hills that instead of being soaked up, it falls out. Pick up a picnic basket and pack hot snacks with tea and stop at any place to enjoy the soft falling rain. The lush green countryside will make you fall in love with it. The coffee plantations covered with mist make it one of the best monsoon travel places in India.
The backwaters aren’t talked about as a monsoon travel destination in India. But the backwaters do make an excellent destination. Overcast skies and the gentle movement of the backwaters make it a pleasant trip. Moreover, the houseboats aren’t as expensive because the number of tourists are few. So, you can get the same experience at a lower cost. Enjoy the rains asthe boat cruises through the waterways and sample duck fry, lobster and fish fry oryam fry. These local delicacies are yummy and you can get them on the houseboat or one of the islands which may have a small restaurant or shack.
Located in the south of India, this place is well known for spices, tea and coffee. It is a great place to catch the monsoons. It is a hill station so you need to be careful when you drive there, but once you have reached, you can enjoy getting up close with the clouds. Try putting up higher in the hills or the outskirts as the main city is way too crowded. One of the coolest places to visit during monsoons, Ooty has some of the most amazing spots like Doddabetta peak. There is a tea and spices factory nearby from where you can buy some local produce. Lakes, churches and gardens are also places that you can enjoy in the cloudy weather.
Kottayam is one of my favourite spots as a monsoon travel destination in India. I discovered it by chance when I visited a friend’s house. The food in Kerala is mind blowingly good – appam, puttu, gram curry, mutton fry, chicken stew and fish curry, the list goes on. Anne’s bakery is a popular outlet for baked goods and you must try something from there. The coolest memories are just hanging out in the lush garden watching the rain fall or trying to swim in one of the streams that were born due to the rains. The water is clear and cool to touch and believe me you will enjoy a dip in them.
Mangalore on the coast of Karnataka is a cool place for enjoying monsoons from a beach. But you mustn’t try sitting on the beach while it is raining, that could be dangerous. But do taste an ice cream or two from Pabba’s or something from Mangla’s. The food is good or you could also enjoy something while lounging in one of those restaurants near the beach from where you can watch the sky and waves.
Udaipur and Jaipur have been on my solo trip list for the monsoon. It should be one of the places to visit during monsoons for you. Enjoy the palaces at cheap rates because again due to the season the prices are low. Enjoy meals and watch the rain from your room terrace. At low prices you could also get one of those palace hotels on the lake. There is something so calming about watching raindrops that too from a luxurious room while being surrounded by a large lake.
Pondicherry has some of the cleanest beaches in India which in itself makes it a big deal. The French quarters and the cafes in the area face the sea. If you want to enjoy a hot meal or a cup of coffee while watching the waves crash below, then this is a good option to try.
One of the best monsoon travel places in India, Ganeshgudi or Dandeli is a perfect natural spot for it. There is a government guest house at the top of the hill and although not luxurious, it would be best to see the rains. You can see the mountains, mist and rainclouds. Or you could also stay on one of the lodges near the Kali river. Either way the area is really beautiful for watching rains during monsoons.
Darjeeling, West Bengal
Another hill station on the list, Darjeeling is one of the best monsoon travel places to watch out for. Stay in a tea estate high above in the hills and watch the clouds roll by. The misty mountains will keep you enchanted each day and you could even see rain-clouds up close if you are lucky. Get ready with a hot cup of soup or tea and watch the raindrops make music.
Shimoga and Chikmagalur are one of those off the trail places that are not advertised much. But the place is really pretty and you can find affordable home stays in ancient houses. The hospitality is good and food is home cooked. The little streams and wooded areas can be explored as it drizzles. There is a famous temple nearby too which is fully made of stone. Huge catfish crowd the nearby river and you can feed them too. The countryside blooms with monsoons and which best place than a forest area to see it making it one of the best places to visit during monsoons.