This Summer, Ditch Your Friends and Travel with Your Family to These Places Instead!


A summer spent with family is a summer well spent

Photo of This Summer, Ditch Your Friends and Travel with Your Family to These Places Instead! by Anshul Sharma

"Family ke saath jaane mein woh fun nahin jo friends ke saath", quipped my youngest cousin while discussing his next getaway with me. I wasn't really pleased with his statement, but that got me thinking... don't most of us think this way?

The trend of holidaying with family is getting rarer given the way most of us travel nowadays. Wouldn't it be great to go old school and travel with your family this summer? I'm sure that a trip with your family will definitely redefine your relationship with them...or at least leave you with a few funny memories you can share with your friends. So make your movie like Dil Dhadakne Do by planning a trip with your family in summer 2019.

1. Auli

Auli is a hill station in Uttarakhand which is a famous ski resort known for winter sports, lush green forests, peaceful environment, and amazing views of towering Himalayan peaks. This is where you and your dear ones can take refuge when summer is at its peak.

Top things to see and do in Auli:

1. Enjoy a cable car ride from Auli to Joshimath

2. Hike up to Gurso Bugyal to enjoy views of Nanda Devi, Trishul and other famous Himalayan mountains.

3. For those who love trekking and want to take it to the next level, Kwani Bugyal is a great option.

4. The artificial lake about 2 km from Auli makes for a great picnic spot.

How to get there:

Auli is connected to Joshimath by road and cable car, which is 290 km from Haridwar. Railway station in Haridwar is connected with almost all major cities by rail and road.

Where to stay

Kuber Inn, Auli Nature Resort, The Sleeping Beauty Hotel

2. Munnar

Palm trees, beaches, and endless oceans are what most of you might think when Kerala comes to mind. Wait till you visit Munnar, a hill town situated around 1,530 metres above sea level. Located in Western Ghats, it is home to the highest peak in south India, Anaimudi Peak.

Top things to see and do in Munnar:

1. Jungle safari in Eravikulam National Park

2. Boating in Mattupetty Dam

3. Hiking in Anaimudi peak

4. Explore terraced tea, spice gardens, and numerous waterfalls.

How to get there:

Munnar is well connected by roads with nearby major cities of Kerala, Karnataka, and Tamil Nadu. However, the nearest major railway station in Aluva and the airport in Cochin are 110km away. Hiring a taxi or taking a local bus is the most common way to reach Munnar.

Where to stay:

Treebo Trend Le Celestium, Westwood Riverside, Grand Plaza

3. Gangtok

4. Udaipur

You might not always need to look towards mountains to enjoy summer holidays with family, especially when there's a place like Udaipur in Rajasthan. Also known as 'city of lakes', Udaipur is home to beautiful artificial lakes, grand palaces, historic forts, and luxurious hotels. The best part is that the city doesn't heat up like others in the state, thanks to its lakes!

Top things to see and do:

1. Visit City Palace's lakeside complex

2. Boat ride on Lake Pichola and its island palaces

3. Jagmandir, the 17th-century palace-turned-hotel

4. Saheliyon Ki Bari, a historical fountain garden and museum

How to get there:

There is an airport just 22 km from Udaipur city and the railway station is right in the city. Udaipur is also connected to almost all nearest cities by roads as well. So reaching Udaipur is as easy as it gets.

Where to stay:

1 BR Boutique, Bonjour Paradise Resort, Aram Mahal by Pachar Group

When it comes to best places to visit during summer, Gangtok—the capital city of Sikkim can't be left out. It is not only home to some of most picturesque viewpoints, lakes, and national parks, but also hosts historical Buddhist monasteries in India. Who wouldn't want to experience something like this ?

Top things to see and do:

1. Tsomgo Lake

2. Nathu La Pass

3. Baba Harbhajan Singh Memorial Temple

4. Namgyal Institute of Tibetology

5. Hanuman Tok

How to get there:

Ever since the Pakyong Airport became operational, travelling to Gangtok has become much easier and faster. New Jalpaiguri railway station, however, still remains the nearest major rail link to Gangtok. The most common way to reach Gangtok is by taking a taxi from Bagdogra Airport or NJP railway station.

Where to stay:

CHAS Narayani Continental, Hotel Soyang UVA, Powering Guest House

5. Kashmir

I'd saved the best for the last, but for many, Kashmir is the top summer destination for reasons too obvious. Come summer, and Kashmir tour packages start selling like hotcakes. Not only does Kashmir promise to save you from the scorching heat this summer but also gives you and your family a chance to enjoy a slice of 'paradise on earth'.

Top things to see and do:

1. Enjoy a shikara ride on Dal Lake

2. Visit Indira Gandhi Tulip Garden

3. Gondola ride in Gulmarg

4. Nature walks in Sonmarg

How to get there:

For those who want to travel by air, Srinagar airport serves the purpose quite well. Jammu Tawi Junction is the nearest railway station, about 198 km from Kashmir. Srinagar is connected well with the rest of Indian cities by roads. You can either travel in state-run buses or hire taxis.

Where to stay:

Fortune Resort Heevan, Srinagar, White House Group of Houseboats, Lemon Tree Hotel Srinagar

I have decided to make the summer of 2019 different from previous ones, even though I don't have the luxury of long summer vacations. What have you decided to do this summer?

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