Be it a long honeymoon in India or a mini-moon before your romantic vacation abroad, these domestic winter destinations are sure to set the stage for your happily-ever-after!
There’s no dearth of romance or romantic places in India. From popping the big question, to the D-day when you finally marry the love of your life, there’s a place in India for every grand gesture or occasion. Especially when it comes to finding your dream honeymoon destination, you’ll be spoilt for choice. From misty hill stations to architectural marvels to secluded romantic beaches, options are plenty. As the wedding season arrives, we give you a quick rundown of winter destinations across the country that make the perfect honeymoon getaways!
Soak in the untouched beauty of Pahalgam
If freezing temperatures, skiing trips, and gondola rides up the snow-clad mountains seem like your idea of a romantic getaway, pick Pahalgam. The Shepherd’s Valley of Kashmir is a poetic wonderland in the true sense — the glacial river of Lidder cutting through its hills, misty meadows laden with pines and cottages, and a peaceful silence lingering in the crisp mountain air. Stay at the ITC’s Welcom Pine N Peak, a luxury resort perched atop the tip of the stunning Rajwas Plateau, and book yourself one of its cosy, centrally-heated suites perfect for winter snuggles. Ask the staff to pack you a picnic basket for a visit to the Aru Valley, take pony rides together down the valley, ice-skate on the frozen lake, enjoy Kashmiri wazwan or the unique hokhsyun meal, take a snow trek or skiing tour to Betaab Valley, and sip on some hot kahwa as you two take in the alpine vistas.
Live the island life in Lakshadweep
With sublime white sand beaches lapped by pristine waters in awe-inspiring shades of blue, and lush mangroves and tropical rainforests stretching afar, all 36 islands and hundreds of cays of Lakshadweep together make the perfect island escape for your winter honeymoon. Ditch the crowded Andamans. Arrive here to enjoy unending views of the Indian Ocean and the Arabian Sea in peace, as you two get plenty of interrupted time and space to be together. Explore the lesser-known dead coral island of Pitti as you dive into the unknown to see some of the most innate marine life, go angling or kayaking on the Kadmat Island, or visit the Amini Beach to spend your day at leisure sipping cocktails and enjoying gorgeous sunsets. Book your stay at the Bangaram Island Resort near Agatti Island to enjoy a decent staycation away from the crowds.
Be lost together in the wilderness of Wayanad
Unlike rest of Kerala, Wayanad isn’t really an all-time crowd-puller. Arrive here in winter when the crowd is lean and the weather balmy. Base yourself at the Vythiri Resort — a jungle getaway that promises you the company of birds, deer, butterflies, reptiles, and exotic flora. Its duplex Honeymoon Pool Villa is complete with a temperature-controlled pool, a sun deck, glass-floored bedroom, living space, and verandas with splendid views of the surrounding forests and coffee estates. What’s more? If the two of you are feeling a tad too adventurous, rent a caravan and drive to Goa! Expect the 13-hour drive to be long, romantic, and brimming with breathtaking views of the Western Ghats, and when you get to live the susegad life at the end, it’s going to be all the more worth it.
Marvel at the ancient architecture of Khajuraho temples
Madhya Pradesh’s Khajuraho may be the most popular in the list, but is so worth all the hype. Take a morning walk in the beautifully quiet Sevagram, see the UNESCO-listed amorous sculptures depicting love, passion, and debauchery from the bygone eras, and watch a classical dance performance in the temple complex that lits up in the golden twilight rays. The Maharajas’ Express isn’t operational till January 23, 2022, but if you are planning a Khajuraho trip towards the end of January, do catch the luxury train! For its romantic Indian Panorama journey starts in Delhi and covers Jaipur, Ranthambore, Agra, Orchha before finally reaching Khajuraho, while you both enjoy a stay in one of its private luxury cabin or suite. The fare is inclusive of bed tea, delicious meals, your choice of alcohol, sightseeing tours, safaris, and even a Champagne breakfast overlooking the Taj Mahal!
Watch a dreamy sunset in Udaipur
With the Aravallis running along its length, Lake Pichola located in its heart, and ancient palaces narrating regal stories, Rajasthan’s Udaipur makes for a perfect winter honeymoon destination. Only a few cities in India can get as romantic as this one — courtesy its endless unforgettable experiences like taking idle strolls through serpentine lanes lined with old havelis, watching the history of Mewar unfold on the ochre-tinted City Palace at night, or driving up to the forlorn Monsoon Palace and enjoying uninterrupted city views. But if you wish to make an indelible memory that lasts a lifetime, take your better-half on a sunset boat ride in Lake Pichola. Glide together on the shimmering waters as you leave behind the banks lined with marbled mansions, and watch as the blue waters change to liquid gold and the sky takes up a thousand shades above! Taj Lake Palace rises from the lake like a marble dream, where personal butlers treat you like a royalty and the Jiva’s floating spa session on a boat leaves you both relaxed and pampered.
Get tipsy in the lush vineyards of Nashik
So what if you aren’t in the south of France for your honeymoon? Closer home, the vineyards of Nashik in Maharashtra aren’t any less dreamy. Take long, leisurely tours of a vineyard as you stroll hand-in-hand, have fun grape-stomping sessions, sample delicious wines all day long paired with a variety of gourmet cheese, and unwind as you guys spend some well-deserved alone time in the quiet of the lush orchards. Beyond by Sula has luxury suites, infinity pools, and views of the Gangapur Lake dotted by the Western Ghats. Stay at its three-bedroom Sky Villa to enjoy lazy dips in your private pool as you sip on their Sauvignon Blanc or Rieslin, gazing at the far-stretched vineyards and green hills behind.