For the Beach Lovers
Good for: Beach, Parties, Sunburn Festival, Seafood, Cheap booze, Carnivals
With the cheap booze and beach shacks every few metres, Goa is an ideal place for a vacation around New Years. If that’s not enough, Goa is also blessed with a wide range of biodiversity from sea-eagles to water buffaloes. Add the luxurious hotels, the umpteen food choices and the numerous party places to the list – you now have the best places to celebrate New year 2016, or any New year for that matter.
Good for: Beach, French colony, Peaceful Ashrams, Cafes, Cheap booze
The Union Territory, lending cultural and architectural elements from its French lineage, is still very much Indian at heart. The quaint town, also host to the “Aurobindo Yoga Ashram”, is a good place for self reflection. The variety of restaurants, the steak and wine, just add to its natural alluring and create the perfect destination for a laid-back but fun New Year Celebration.
3) Gokarna, Karnataka
Good for: Beach, Secluded, Peaceful, Religious, Cheap accommodation
Situated on the coasts of Karnataka, Gokarna lives a dual life. Famous for being a Hindu pilgrimage centre, home to Lord Mahabhaleshwara, it is a also a beach-lover’s paradise. This place is highly recommended if you want to celebrate the New year with a group of close friends without much interference. Given the lack of commercialization, early booking is advised.To know more you may read this Gokarna Travelogue.
4. Andaman and Nicobar Islands
Andaman and Nicobar Islands, India
Good for: Beaches, Resorts, Peaceful
The Andaman and Nicobar islands are easily one of the best new year destinations in India. The otherwise really peaceful, serene and calm atmosphere of the place is transformed into one which includes crazy parties on yachts, resorts and beaches. Add to it the pristine white sand beaches and the clean natural surrounding areas, this place becomes the ideal new year getaway for everyone. Apart from the usual beaches and water sports activities, there are other tourist spots too one can visit while here. However, due to the increased popularity of this place, early reservations are definitely recommended.
Good for: Beaches, Serene, Romantic, Coral reefs
Not as commercialized as the Andamans and a shade too beautiful as well, Lakshwadeep is emerging as one of the new year destinations in India. Only 10 out of the 36 islands are habited and that too the population not being a lot. This makes it a perfect place to spend the new year with your significant other. The major attraction are the coral reefs which are an underwater paradise for people interested in scuba diving and snorkelling.
For the Cool Minded
6. Gangtok, Sikkim
Lake Tsongmo, Gangtok
Good for: Hills, Trekking, Natural Beauty, Buddhism
Situated at an altitude of 5410 feet, Gangtok (meaning “Hill Top”) is aptly named so. Coupled with its beautiful sunset and dawn views and its clean surroundings, this small town is also called the “Switzerland of the East”. Trekkers and mountain lovers, do look out for Kanchenjunga, the 3rd highest peak in the world. Now, imagine spending the eve of New Year in a place with such beauty.
7. McLeodganj, Himachal Pradesh
An ariel view of McLeodganj
Good for: Hills, Trekking, Religious
The headquarters of the Tibetan government in exile, McLeodganj boasts some amazing sightseeing places, food cafés and unique Tibetan souvenirs. A mix of cultures, Mcleodganj is the residence of the 14th Dalai Lama and famous of the Bhagsunath temple. Shiva cafe, a small trek near the temple is recommended. Mcleodganj is one of the best new year destinations in India if you are looking to welcome the New Year in a peaceful place with a different culture and amazing scenery all around.
8. Manali, Himachal Pradesh
Graffiti wall in Old Manali
Good for: Hills, Adventure Sports, Hippies
Manali is the Indian favorite for witnessing snowfalls and skiing. Full of pine trees, fruit orchids and hippies, it’s an ideal place to celebrate new year in India for those who want to end their year on a high, both literally and figuratively. Take a ride on the Manali-Leh highway or visit the choicest little winter destinations nearby. The natural beauty of this place is sure to liven up your spirits as the year ends.
9. Kasol, Himachal Pradesh
Scenic Beauty at Kasol
Good for: Hills, Hippiness, Trekking
A small, quaint and cosy escapade in the scenic hills of the Himachal, Kasol gives you the best of both worlds. Parvati Valley, located here is one of the most beautiful destinations not only in India, but in the world. It would obviously be very cold here during New Year, but the great time you’ll spend here partying and breathing in the fresh mountain air and enjoying the scenic beauty, is bound to make you forget about the chill. With its crazy party scenes and beautiful natural scenery, this is the place to be during New Year’s eve.
10. Kodaikanal, Tamil Nadu
Kodaikanal, Tamil Nadu
Good for: Hills, Natural Beauty, Coffee
Here’s one from the South! A charming hill station located in Tamil Nadu, Kodaikanal is often referred to as the “Princess of hill stations” and is a popular honeymoon and holiday destination in the South. The cool and misty climate, waterfalls, the lush green hills and forests make it look like something straight out of a fairy tale! One must definitely visit this place during New Year, be it with family or friends. I’m sure you’re in for an amazing time here! Psst, don’t forget to try some of their amazing coffee.
For the Lovers
11. Udaipur, Rajasthan
Fateh Prakash Palace
Good for: Lakes Palaces, Historical
Also known as the “City of Lakes”, Udaipur is famous for its Rajputana Palaces, handicraft market and diverse wildlife. A romantic heaven, the climate and surroundings of Udaipur have given it the informal title of the “Kashmir of Rajasthan”. Visit the place around new year’s eve if you want to be treated like royalty.
12. Coorg (Kodagu), Karnataka
Tea Gardens in Kodagu
Good for: Hills, Wildlife, Buddhism, Trekking
The Kodagu region, also known as Coorg, is famous because of its cool climate throughout the year and picturesque surroundings. The tea gardens and the coffee and spice plantations, just add to the beauty of the place. One of the best places to celebrate the new year against a scenic backdrop. A popular hangout spot for the Bangalore IT crowd, Kodagu is also famous amongst the birdwatchers and backpackers.
13. Allappuzha, Kerala
Alleppey Backwaters, Kerala
Good for: Backwaters, Beachers, Ayurveda
Allappuzha or Alleppey is called the “Venice of the East” and with its vast variety of canals, lagoons, beaches and backwaters, rightly so. If a serene getaway is on your mind this year end, look no further. A very traditional village life coupled with the best backwaters experience in India make Allappuzha ideal for those looking to greet the new year in peace.
14. Jaisalmer, Rajasthan
Desert Camps, Jaisalmer
Good for: Desert, Clear Skies
Famous for the Sonar Quila or the Jaisalmer Fort (A UNESCO World Heritage Site), the city of Jaisalmer is also known for its golden sand dunes and of course, the mystery of the Thar Desert itself. The hue of the desert has given it the name of the “Golden City” and it’s one of Rajasthan’s most well known tourist destinations. The clear, starry nights giving you a stunning view of the Milky Way, the slow and peaceful camel safari, the chill of the desert and of course, the local Rajasthani cuisine, make it one of the new year destinations in India where you can have the best time.
For the City Explorers
15. Mumbai, Maharashtra – The Maximum City
Good for: Beaches, Nightlife, Religious, Fine dining, Historic, Shopping
The city of dreams, which hosts everyone and everything, from rags to riches, from beaches to high rise, from slums to bunglaws, from street vada-pao to luxurious 7-stars, Mumbai is the amalgamation of Indian culture and people. With many beaches and historical places to explore and clubs ready to give you a dazzling start to your new year – Mumbai caters to you the way you would like it to.
16. New Delhi – The Centre of Everything in India
Hoobstank performing at Hard Rock Cafe, Delhi
Good for: Historic, Religious, Party, Food, Shopping
Being the nation’s capital, New Delhi is full of historical places and museums. With its amazing performing arts scene, it is an artistic heaven but if food or shopping is your idea of fun, Delhi should be at the top of you list as well. With Mughlai to South Indian to Continental food and from Rajasthani Handicraft to Madhubani paintings to cheap Chinese electronics, Delhi has it all. This city makes for a colorful new year celebration.
To explore more visit here: Best day trips from Delhi
17. Bangalore, Karnataka
MG Road, Bangalore
Good for: Nature, Wildlife, Historical, Shopping
The silicon valley of India, Bangalore, is not just the Mecca for the IT crowd but also a tourist magnet. Head here on the occasion of new year for a an eclectic celebration. The moderate climate, large green gardens and open spaces give it a positive and healthy aura all the year round. The youthful energy shows all around, especially if you you are into shopping. A stroll on MG road and partaking in the city’s restaurant culture is definitely recommended.