We all know what a disaster 2016 has been in terms of long-weekends. But fear not, 2017 is here to give us back all our extended weekends.
Check out the list of long weekends you can take in 2017:
1. Republic Day Weekend
26 January, Thursday: Republic Day (National Holiday)
27 January, Friday: Take the day off
28 January, Saturday: Losar (Sikkim, Ladakh and Dharamshala only)
29 January, Sunday: Weekend
Where to go: Take a skiing vacation on the slopes of Auli, which turns into a winter wonderland in January. Check out Auli, the winding road and a twist at every turn by Shipra Dubey for more.
The Dubai Shopping Festival is a world renowned gathering of Asia's best markets. The festival starts on December 26 and ends on January 28, a trip you can definitely plan over the long weekend. Check out Things To Do In Dubai In The Midst Of Colossal High-Rises And Sand Dunes for a complete itinerary for Dubai.
2. Mahashivrati Weekend
24 February, Friday: Maha Shivratri (Gazetted Holiday)
25 February, Saturday: Weekend
26 February, Sunday: Weekend
Where to go: The Goa Carnival, a festival started by the Portuguese in 1510, is an annual Mardi Gras type procession that starts on February 25 and ends within three days. Once you are there, do check out 13 Hidden Places in Goa that Tourists Don't Even Know Exist.
February is an excellent time to go snow boarding and skiing in the snow-clad meadows of Gulmarg. This season also promises surreal landscapes and a clear night sky for those who want a peaceful vacation. Check out Snow-Covered Gulmarg In Photos by Ayandrali Dutta.
3. Holi Weekend
11 March, Saturday: Weekend
12 March, Sunday: Weekend
13 March, Monday: Holi (Restricted Holiday)
Where to go: Celebrate the festival of colours, Holi, in the city that was once the playground of Krishna himself. Vrindavan and its surrounding towns make for one of the best heritage tours in India. Check out On the streets of Vrindavan by Deepti Asthana.
During the Velas Turtle Festival, hundreds of Olive Ridley Turtles come to Velas Beach for breeding. The festival, which was first organised in 2006, is put together by locals with the help of an NGO, Sahyadri Nisarga Mitra. Read Velas - the final journey home by Kush for more.
4. Telugu and Kannada New Year Weekend
March 25, Saturday: Weekend
March 26, Sunday: Weekend
March 27, Monday: Take the day off
March 28, Tuesday: Ugadi (Maharashtra, Uttar Pradesh and Andhra Pradesh only)
March 29, Wednesday: Telugu New Year (Tamil Nadu only)
Where to go: Visit the yoga capital of India, Rishikesh for the Yoga International Festival (March 1 to 7), where you will find several gurus eager to guide budding or professional yoga enthusiasts. Read If peace is your goal, then Rishikesh needs to be your destination by Ramesh Thampi for more.
March is the best month to learn surfing in Sri Lanka. Sure you can spend a month or three doing that, but a short visit might be enough to get you hooked to the waves. Read how Tenzin Ramjor backpacked across Sri Lanka for 13 days under $200.
5. Ram Navami Weekend
April 1, Saturday: Weekend
April 2, Sunday: Weekend
April 3, Monday: Take the day off.
April 4, Tuesday: Ram Navami
Where to go: Northern Nagaland's Konyak tribe celebrates the Aoleang festival during the first week of April. Marking the beginning of a new year, it is celebrated through indigenous dance performances, music talent shows, songs and games. Read about the journey to Mon in The King's Naga-Landing! by Kaveri Mayra.
The Tulip Festival held at Siraj Bagh Chesmahsahi (Indira Gandhi Memorial Garden) in Srinagar makes this month the best time to witness the flowers in full bloom. Read People of Kashmir Showed Me That Srinagar Is More Than Just Dal Lake and Shikaras by Disha Kapkoti.
6. Hat-trick Weekend
April 13, Thursday: Vaisakhi (Restricted Holiday)
April 14, Friday: Dr Ambedkar Jayanti, Good Friday (Gazetted Holiday)
April 15, Saturday: Weekend
April 16, Sunday: Easter/Weekend
Where to go: The Phuket Biking Week is taking place from April 11-17. The event is a large gathering of over 10,000 motorcyclists from 30 countries in the city of Phuket. From April 11 to 13, they will be seen on the Patong beach and in Phuket Town after that.
Continuing the fourth instalment of the Mapro Strawberry Festival, Mahabaleshwar will be seen loving and eating strawberry over the Easter weekend. The festival is supported by the All India Strawberry Growers Association (AISGA), to promote strawberry cultivation in the country.
7. May Day Weekend
April 29, Saturday: Weekend
April 30, Sunday: Weekend
May 1, Monday: May Day
Where to go: Head to Shillong, walk to Shillong Peak for a 360° panoramic view of the city and let the photographer in you run wild. From Shillong you can head to Mawlynnong, the cleanest village in Asia, which is only two hours away. Read Experience eco-tourism in the abode of clouds and sound of waterfalls in Shillong by Sattanurupa Saha for more.
May is the ideal month to visit the capital of Nilgiri Hills, Ooty, where two mountain ranges meet. Botanical Gardens on the slopes of the Doddabetta peak and the small tea factory and museum in Ooty are definitely must-see spots. Read Ooty, a ride into the heavenly Nilgiris by Rahul Arora for more.
8. Eid Weekend
June 23, Friday: Jumat-ul-Wida, last Friday of Ramadan (many states)
June 24, Saturday: Weekend
June 25, Sunday: Weekend
June 26, Monday: Id-ul-Fitr (many states)
Where to go: Travel to either Lucknow or Hyderabad to truly experience the feast of Ramadan Eid. Visit the areas near Old Masjid to get a real taste of festive Mughlai food.
The arrival of summers is also an invitation to travellers from across the world to visit Ladakh. Leh Palace, Shey Palace, Thiksey Monastery, Pangong Tso and Tso Moriri are at their scenic best during this time of the year. Read Ladakh Diaries, Your Checklist to Manali-Leh by Srishti Jugran for more.
9. Longest-Ever Weekend
August 12, Saturday: Weekend
August 13, Sunday: Weekend
August 14, Monday: Janmashtami (Restricted Holiday)
August 15, Tuesday: Independence Day (National Holiday)
August 16, Wednesday: Take the day off.
August 17, Thursday: Parsi New Year (Mumbai only)
August 18, Friday: Take the day off.
August 19, Saturday: Weekend
August 20, Sunday: Weekend
Where to go: The legendary Salzburg Festival in Austria, starts July 21 and ends August 30. It is a world-famous cultural festival renowned for hosting the best of music, art and drama.
Take a five-day trek to Har ki Dun, a valley dotted with ancient villages that witnessed the ascent of the Pandavas to heaven. Dating back to 3,000 years, the valley has many stories to tell and even more to witness. Read Har Ki Dun Winter Trek by Harsh Singh for more.
10. Ganesh Chaturthi Weekend
August 25, Friday: Ganesh Chaturthi (Restricted Holiday)
August 26, Saturday: Weekend
August 27, Sunday: Weekend
Where to go: Karjat is one of the best places to visit around Mumbai during the rainy month of August. The exciting trekking locations around Karjat include Chanderi Fort, Matheran and Peth Fort. Read Journey filled with fireflies at Kothaligad, Karjat by Kristine Rathod for more.
Munnar is an erstwhile British tea plantation location ideal for travellers in and around India. Eravikulam National Park, Mattupetty, waterfalls of Chinnakanal and Anayirangal are some great locations to checkout in Munnar. Read A visit to God's own country-Allepey, Munnar by Soumili Chandra for more.
11. Gandhi Jayanti Weekend
September 30, Saturday: Weekend
October 1, Sunday: Weekend
October 2, Monday: Gandhi Jayanti (Gazetted Holiday)
Where to go: Visit the land of the paddy fields, Wayanad, which is best experienced through hiking trails to Sahibkkunnu, Kurisumala Peak and Chembra Peak. Read Wayanad- The Land of Collective Beauty in Kerala by Purnima Manhas for more.
Head to the Andamans to visit Corbyn's Cove Beach, North Bay Island and Ross Island. Watch the majestic sunset at Radhanagar Beach and enjoy snorkelling at the Elephant Beach on Havelock Island. Read Offbeat India, Andaman and Nicobar Islands by Aashna Jain for more.
12. Diwali Weekend
October 14, Saturday: Weekend
October 15, Sunday: Weekend
October 16, Monday: Dhanteras/take the day off.
October 17, Tuesday: Take the day off.
October 18, Wednesday: Diwali (Gazetted Holiday)
October 19, Thursday: Balipratipada/take the day off.
October 20, Friday: Bhaidooj/take the day off.
October 21, Saturday: Weekend
October 22, Sunday: Weekend
Where to go: With these many days free, you can actually plan a complete itinerary around the Kangra Valley. Check out this day-wise travel guide for the trip: The complete itinerary to explore Kangra Valley in Himachal Pradesh.
October serves as the best time to visit Pushkar, the Hindu pilgrimage centre that has lately emerged as the new hippie hub in the state of Rajasthan. You can also try to visit the city near the epic Pushkar Mela. Read 8 Things To Do in Ajmer and Pushkar for more.
13. Id-e-Milad Weekend
December 1, Friday: Id-e-Milad (Gazetted Holiday)
December 2, Saturday: Weekend
December 3, Sunday: Weekend
Where to go: These are the dates when the Hornbill Festival in Nagaland starts. And if you are anywhere close to being a music buff, then this festival should be on you must-visit list. Read Nagaland: Hornbill festival by Onkar Tendulkar for the 2015 experience.
Peak of winter is also when bird sanctuaries in mainlands are flooded with rare and beautiful migratory birds. Keoladeo National Park in Bharatpur is a great place to observe this phenomenon. Read Keoladeo National Park Bharatpur by Vinod Sharma for more.
14. Christmas Weekend
December 23, Saturday: Weekend
December 24, Sunday: Weekend
December 25, Monday: Christmas
Visit Lakshadweep for the ultimate beach vacation. Among the best things to do in Lakshadweep, some are scuba diving in Kalpeni Island and canoeing in Minicoy Island. Read Lakshwadeep - Value for Money Travel by Rutavi Mehta for more.
End the year with a trip to the most happening spot in India during December. Visit Goa for the beach parties, the celebration during Christmas and adventure sports on the stunning beaches of Goa. Read What happens in Goa, stays in Goa by Sachin Goel for more.