The cultural side of India is so diverse that you will have a hard time to decide where to visit. From the Golden Temple in the north to the City of Palaces in the south, there are innumerable options.
Indians speak 22 major languages and boasts of a vast variety of cuisines. Even the lifestyles differ from one part of the country to another. But the people are bound by rich culture and heritage.
Most culturally prominent places in India
Embark on this experience as we take you through some of the culturally significant places in the Asian country. It might just give you the right cues to plan your next trip!
1. Varanasi – Uttar Pradesh
India is famous for pilgrimages and the best place to experience Hinduism is Varanasi. Popularly called Benaras, the city of Varanasi is full of traditions, customs, and colors.
Benaras is a potpourri of cultures takes you deep into religious India. The most interesting part is the harmonious blend of Hinduism with Jainism and Buddhism. The city exhibits the culture and heritage of these three religions really well.
From taking the holy dip in the river Ganga to experiencing the evening Aarti (worship time), there’s so much to do in here. You must visit a few of the many temples, busy markets, riverside area, and ashrams too.
Don’t miss out on picking up a famous Benarasi saree and do taste the local Indian Chaat.
2. Jaipur – Rajasthan
If the stories of kings and queens and their majestic palaces intrigue you, Rajasthan will be a dream come true. The capital city of Jaipur is known for its royalty and is filled with architectural beauty.
The city retains forts and palaces that were built centuries ago and speaks of the glorious past of Rajputs. The city is also famous for having innumerable houses painted in pink, which is also why it got the name, The Pink City.
Rajasthan is known for its amazing vegetarian cuisine, colorful markets, and fairs. If you want to explore a mini version of the state, you must visit Chokhi Dhani in Jaipur. It hosts musical shows, offers camel rides, and lets you taste the best of their cuisine.
3. Kolkata – West Bengal
The significance of the former capital city of India is much known for their richness in literature and art. Kolkata is famous for its books as much as it is for its food. From cultural festivals to the famous Durga Puja, Kolkata rightly deserves the name The City of Joy.
If you’re a foodie and you love street food, Kolkata is a must add for your trip to India. Make sure you visit the oldest Indian museum and take a carriage ride after visiting the Victoria Memorial.
4. Bhubaneswar – Orissa
Pretty close to Kolkata, this destination also opens you up to rich art and culture. You must visit the 10th-century Mukteshwar Temple and the 11th-century Lingraj Temple, which are two famous ones among almost 700 more temples.
Around 60 km away from the capital city of Orissa, you’d find the famous pilgrimage site of Puri. It is close to the clear beach waters of the Bay of Bengal where you must taste freshly fried seafood. Also, visit the Konark Sun Temple that was meticulously built to never leave a shadow behind!
5. Mysore – Karnataka
Mysore is called the City of Palaces and is as significant in terms of royalty as Jaipur is. It boasts of a rich cultural heritage left behind by the Wodeyar dynasty and their magnificent architectural contribution.
Mysore is famous for forts, festivals, and food. You must visit the temples here and taste the delicacy of Mysore Pak. For things to shop, turn to the authentic silk sarees from the city.
6. Mahabalipuram – Tamil Nadu
Mahabalipuram features two jaw-dropping monolithic sculptures and rock carvings. It attracts visitors from all across the globe, all year round.
You must stop by the local shops to buy tiny crafted stonework. This tourist’s town is famous for handicrafts, sculptures, and paintings as well.
7. Khajuraho – Madhya Pradesh
Khajuraho is a group of temples that list under the prestigious UNESCO World Heritage Sites. It reflects a progressive side of the history of India that gave birth to the erotic text of Kamasutra.
There are plenty of carvings around the temples that exhibit sexual relationships between partners and emphasize sexual divinity. You must take a day out to visit this place if you want to go about all the temples within the premises.
8. Amritsar – Punjab
Amritsar is the Cultural Hub of Punjab and is famous for Punjabi literature and folk. The city is an intriguing repository of India’s spiritual heritage and is home to a lot of virtues.
You must visit the holy Golden Temple which is of primary importance to the Punjabi culture. The temple name relates to the enormous dome made of real gold.
From fairs to festivals, from food to fancy markets, Amritsar has a lot to offer too. Make sure you have Parantha and Lassi and take back pure clarified butter back home.
Goa is an extremely distinct part of India that takes you into an Indo-Portuguese culture. The state had Portuguese influences for years and that has shaped the local culture.
Goa is the liveliest place for cultural exuberance and gives you the perfect beach-life. From the diverse cuisine to the vibrant carnivals, from unmatchable watersports to beautiful churches, this state has it all.
Delhi is the capital city of India and gives you a blend of every possible culture. While the Old Delhi is rich in heritage retained from the Mughal era, the New Delhi exhibits modern India.
It beautifully blends majestic forts, tombs, palaces, to the bustling metro-city vibe. Delhi is famous for its street food, shopping experiences, and nightlife.
To understand the best of cultural significance and to learn varied lifestyles, you must visit this Asian country. Everyone must try and visit India once in their life to broaden their perspectives and know cultures better.