Backpacking is much more than a cheaper form of travel. It is a more immersive way of traveling. It involves traveling slowly and spending more time in each location. Mingling with locals and aunderstanding the local culture. Traveling the way the locals do and trying to live their kind of life albeit for a shorter duration. India with its vast and varied range of experiences offers unlimited and fascinating opportunities for backpackers. Also the availability of cheap and convenient public transportation within the country makes India an attractive destination for backpackers. The availability of low cost options makes it convenient and economical to book cheap Delhi to Mumbai flight tickets or train tickets. Buses, trains, and low cost airlines connect the four corners of the country. Some of the best destinations for backpackers to head to in India are listed below.
Goa-A Beach Paradise for Backpackers
Goa with its vast stretches of beaches and intriguing array of experiences lends itself naturally to a backpacker’s ultimate dream. A plethora of hostels that offer cheap accomodation without compromising on quality and convenience lends credence to the fact that Goa is indeed one of the best backpacking destinations. The music scene in Goa which ranges from full scale music festivals organized on a large scale to smaller events at local cafes is another bait that backpackers will find hard to resist. Moving around on your own free will without depending on public transportation was never so easy as it is in Goa. It is Oh so convenient to rent a bike and zoom around in the small state of Goa in complete freedom. One can choose to ride far away to some unknown cove or head to a night party on one of the more happening beaches. The tantalizing cuisine of Goa that blends the best of the Portuguese and local Konkani cuisines is another reason for backpacking to thrive in Goa. Goa is a small state situated on the edge of the Arabian Sea in the western part of India. Goa is well connected to all major centres of India by all modes of transport.
Dharamshala- A Tranquil Haven for Backpackers
Dharamshala is a picturesque city nestled atop the picturesque Kangra Valley in the northern Indian state of Himachal Pradesh. Dharamshala is famous now throughout the world for the august presence of the Dalai Lama. Dharamshala happens to be the centre of the Tibetan Government in exile in India. The atmosphere of spirituality and mysticism that surrounds Dharamshala and the towns in the vicinity acts like a magnet drawing backpackers in swarms. The environs of Dharamshala made up of undulating coniferous forests and the presence of quaint towns like McLeod Ganj make Dharamshala a destination that is much sought after by backpackers. An evening stroll followed by a stop for a snack at one of the small cafes could turn out to be a meeting with global citizens as you interact over delicious momos with people from around the world. Cheap and decent accommodation options are available at Mcleod Ganj at prices starting as low as INR 500. Dharamshala is about 491 kilometres away from Delhi and 244 kilometres from Chandigarh and can be easily reached by public bus.
Gokarna- A Coastal Getaway for Backpackers
Gokarna is fast emerging as a very enchanting and more secluded option to Goa for backpackers. The ocean on one side bounded by hills on the other, secluded beaches and long stretches of virgin land make Gokarna an attractive choice for backpackers. The temple town of Gokarna affords great trekking opportunities and beaches like the Om Beach, Paradise Beach and others are places where one can lose oneself. Beach shacks that provide the ethereal experience of living on the edge of the beach make backpacking in Gokarna an unforgettable experience. The simplicity of the small temple town combined with the warmth of its simple people all combine to make Gokarna a backpackers delight. Gokarna is about 484 kilometres from Bangalore and abou 143 kilometres from Goa.
Hampi- A Getaway among the Rocks for Backpackers
Hampi in the southern Indian state of Karnataka is known for the ancient ruins of the city of Vijayanagara that dates back to the 7th Century. It is a recognized UNESCO World Heritage Site. But Hampi also has another claim to fame. It is also a delightful little hangout for backpackers. The river Tungabhadra flows beside the timeless ruins of a historic city and on the other side of the river lies some of the cheapest and best backpacking hostels and eateries. Backpacking in Hampi offers many unique experiences. For one, the magnificent rock structures and ruins take you back in time to a glorious chapter in the history of the region. You can also camp out in the open amidst the rocks and indulge in some rocking as well. A coracle ride in the river completes the picture of a perfect heaven for backpackers. Hampi is situated about 350 kilometres from Bangalore and 316 kilometres from Goa.
Rishikesh- An Enchanting Retreat in the Foothills of the Himalayas
Rishikesh nestles on the foothills of the Himalayas with the famous and sacred river Ganga flowing down from the mountains and meandering its way through the town. The water of the river is at its purest and its crystal clear waters wash the rocks on the banks. Spirituality seems to pervade the atmosphere here as the evening lights up with a thousand lamps waving in the air to the accompaniment of sacred chants. The numerous Yoga and spiritual retreats that dot the vicinity of Rishikesh only add to the allure of Rishikesh as a backpacking destination. The presence of the dilapidated and abandoned Beatles Ashram where the Beatles once stayed is another factor that adds to the allure of Rishikesh as a unique backpacking destination. Rishikesh is situated about 232 kilometres from Delhi and well connected by public transport.
These are some of the top picks of backpacking destinations in India but there are many others, some known and some unknown which are as good if not better than these.