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Top adventure travel destinations in India

Last updated on: May 18, 2011 16:42 IST

Top adventure travel destinations in India

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Simki Dutta

The holidays are here and after a year of slogging you deserve to treat yourself to a lovely getaway. Yes, we know how much you love relaxing on the beach and sipping on coconut water but why not try something different this time?

Have you ever thought of snorkelling in the crystal clear waters of the Andamans or skiing on the snow capped mountains at Auli? Well, then this is the time to try your hand at adventure sports and unleash your adventurous side!

When you're talking about adventure sports, there is no need to look beyond our own country because owing to India's vast diversity in landscape, it always has something or the other in store for all kinds of adventure lovers!

We bring you some of the most popular adventure tourist spots in India that are sure to get you high on adrenaline.

Click on NEXT to read on...

Want to share your travel story with us and others around the world? Simply write an email (with the subject line: 'My Travel Story') and send it to getahead@rediff.co.in! Also send us pictures of the place you're writing about. We will publish the best ones right here on rediff.com!



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Ladakh, Jammu & Kashmir

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Ladakh is a favourite with adventure lovers. Its breathtakingly beautiful landscape makes you fall in love with the place instantly.

Ladakh is famous for trekking and mountaineering. Some popular trekking areas include Ladakh Zanskar trek, Indus Valley and Markha Valley.

It also offers some challenging rafting journeys. You can raft through the gushing waters and appreciate the spectacular view all around you.

"If you go to Ladakh, white water rafting in the Zanskar River is something you cannot miss! It is one of the most exciting rafting expeditions and is very rightly called the Grand Canyon of Asia!" says Rana Sidhu, chief instructor of Go Adventure Sports, a company which aims at promoting adventure tours across the country.


Image: Ladakh's breathtakingly beautiful landscape makes you fall in love with the place instantly.
Photographs: Rediff Archives
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Kamshet, Maharashtra

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Kamshet is situated near Lonavla in Maharashtra. It is a popular destination for paragliding.

The crescent shaped hills and flat undulating fields provide perfect flying conditions. The pleasant weather and the lakes around too make it a favourite among paragliding enthusiasts.

"The thrill of feeling the wing become an extension of the body and the experience of being alone in the air with only the sound of the fluttering wing... pure bliss, pure freedom, pure peace," says Sanjay Rao, founder of Nirvana Adventures, a company that focuses on promoting paragliding in Kamshet.


Image: Sanjay Rao paragliding at Kamshet.
Photographs: Courtesy Sanjay Rao
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Meghalaya

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Meghalaya has recently started attracting tourists from all over owing to its scenic beauty.

This tiny state offers various adventure sports -- trekking on the beautiful slopes, rafting on the untamed rivers, para gliding in the hills in Shillong, angling in the serene lakes and what not!

Above all, Meghalaya is best known for its caves. Being home to some of the deepest caves in South Asia, many cavers have taken to exploring them.

Siju, Syndai, Mawsynram and Mawsmai are some popular caves you could visit while in Meghalaya.


Image: Meghalaya is best known for its caves.
Photographs: Rediff Archives
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Auli, Uttarakhand

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If you want to give skiing a shot, Auli is the place to be! It is situated within the Himalayan mountains in Uttarakhand.

Even though it offers other adventure sports like trekking, hand gliding and rafting, the vast stretches of 10-20 km of snow covered slopes make it a perfect place to get those skis out!

"The region is so vast that I don't think I will be able to exhaust it in one lifetime. I feel lucky that I have seen parts of it." says Mridula Dwivedi, the author of the award winning blog Travel Tales from India.

Image: Mridula Dwivedi on the ropeway to Auli.
Photographs: Courtesy Mridula Dwivedi
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Andaman Islands, Andaman and Nicobar Islands

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Don't let the sweltering heat ruin your holiday! Escape from the hustling city life and dive into the Andaman waters to explore its exotic under-water world.

Andaman Islands are marked with beautiful beaches with golden sands and crystal blue waters and for all those who love water sports, this place is your paradise. Scuba diving, snorkelling, wind surfing, para sailing, water skiing -- you have it all here!

When asked what his favourite adventure sport is, Abhik Dutta, director of The Wanderers, a travel company said, "I'm a water sport lover and there's nothing like scuba diving and snorkelling in the Andaman waters where you get to witness such stunning marine life. It's a unique experience."


Image: Explore the exotic underwater world of the Andaman Islands.
Photographs: Rediff Archives
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Rishikesh, Uttarakhand

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Rishikesh is synonymous with white water rafting.

Wade through the wild waters of river Ganga and experience rafting at its best! Those who've done it, swear by it and think it to be an experience that is one of a kind.

"Devprayag to Rishikesh is an excellent route, Devprayag to Kaudiyala is calm and Kaudiyala to Rishikesh is rapid filled and fun. They let you jump off a cliff in the mid route break which I have to say is an awesome experience," says Mridula who's hooked to rafting in Rishikesh.

Other sports in Rishikesh include camping, trekking and rock climbing.


Image: Mridula rafting in Rishikesh.
Photographs: Courtesy Mridula
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Sahyadri Hills, Maharashtra

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Sahyadri Hills near Mumbai serve as an excellent destination for trekking. Whether you're an expert or an amateur, if you love trekking, you ought to visit this place.

Though they aren't very high, they are quite challenging. You're likely to come across many ancient forts in the way.

While you're at it, remember to capture the picturesque beauty of Sahyadri. You will want to come back for more!


Image: Sahyadri Hills near Mumbai serve as an excellent destination for trekking.
Photographs: Bagheera2/CReative Commons
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Coorg, Karnataka

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Coorg, a beautiful hill station located in Karnataka is like heaven on earth! Nature lovers will love this place and it gets even better in the monsoon.

There are many jungles and mountains here that prove to be great for trekking. You can also explore this paradise while rafting, kayaking and canoeing on Rivers Kaveri and Barapole.

It doesn't stop there; Coorg has a lot for wildlife lovers too. You can go on wildlife tours and night safaris and witness its fascinating flora and fauna.

So, pack your bags and get ready to have an action-packed, fun holiday!

Want to share your travel story with us and others around the world? Simply write an email (with the subject line: 'My Travel Story') and send it to getahead@rediff.co.in! Also send us pictures of the place you're writing about. We will publish the best ones right here on rediff.com!


Image: Coorg is a nature lover's paradise
Photographs: Philanthropist 1/Creative Commons
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