The ancient and mystic land of India which is eyeing to be a global superpower in the 21st century is one of the travellers' favourite destinations in the world.
What makes the country a unique experience for the tourists is its diversity and colourful life. Almost all the visiting guests leave the country with some of their finest memories. According to official statistics about 8.02 million foreign tourists arrived in India in 2015 recording a growth rate of 4.4 percent, compared to 7.68 million in 2014 with a growth rate of 10.2 percent over 2013.
On the occasion of World Tourism Day, we look at six popular tourist destinations in the country:
Once a tourist arrives in the country, his/her first effort is to have a glimpse of the The Taj Mahal--the ivory-white marble mausoleum on the south bank of the Yamuna river-- in Agra. One of the World Heritage Sites, Taj Mahal, is the famous mausoleaum built by Mughal emperor, Shah Jahan (reigned 1628-1658), to house the tomb of his favourite wife, Mumtaz Mahal.
Kashmir is aptly known as the heaven on earth. Jammu and Kashmir is one of India's most picturesque states nestled on the peaks of the Himalayan Ranges. The state has three main geographical regions--the lesser Himalayas or the Jhelum Valley (Kashmir), the inner Himalayas or the Indus Valley (Ladakh and Frontier areas) also called Trans-Himalayas, and the outer Himalayas or the Southern mountain range (Jammu). In the recent past, Kashmir has witnessed a sharp fall in tourists because of the ongoing turmoil triggered by the killing of Hizbul Mujahideen commander Burhan Wani in an encounter with security forces on July 8.
No tourist leaves India without paying a visit to Jaipur, the capital city of Rajasthan. The Pink City beckons tourists to enjoy its palaces, monuments and forts, reflecting its glorious past. Jaipur is also host to some of the best hotels in the world to provide luxurious holidays for tourists.
Goa is young, vibrant and full of energy. Once the home to India's hippie movement, Goa's pristine beaches are every travellers dream destinations. The state's economy is hugely dependent on millions of tourists that come to Goa every year. Goa's tourist calendar is divided into two seasons: winter and summer.
The heritage city, Mysuru, thrills visitors with its palaces and royal grandeur. Recognised as the country's cleanest city, Mysuru still retains its old-world charm. Mysuru receives highest numbers of tourists during the 10-day-long Dasara festival. The city delights visitors with its famous food like dosas and Mysore Pak sweets.
Known as the abode of clouds, the capital city of Meghalaya is famous for its churches, lakes, parks, falls and gold course. The hill station is also known as the Scotland of the East, as it reminded the erstwhile British officials of Scotland. Shillong is also the hub of rock music culture.