If the thought of booking yet another holiday to Bangkok or celebrating an occasion in Phuket sends shivers down your spine, then it's time to reconsider your holiday destinations. There are dozens of exciting destinations that are just a short flight away from India. There is something for you whether you're a culture vulture, gourmand, history buff, or beach bum. Here are some of our favourites: -
The perfect marriage of tradition and modernity, Turkey offers a holiday like no other. It has played host to hundreds of poets, musicians, and artists over the centuries. They have left their marks on the walls of its dargahs, palaces, and forts. It is these memories that make the country endlessly fascinating for tourists. Run your fingers along the crumbling walls of monuments, share a shisha with locals, or just absorb Turkey's grandeur over endless cups of sweet Turkish tea--one this is for sure, you'll never want to leave.
Who doesn't want to explore the world's most picturesque temples on a weekend away? Cambodia is just a short flight away from India and its busiest city, Siem Reap, has everything you need for a short getaway. Spend your days exploring temples that comprise the Angkor Archaeological Complex. There are dozens of temples on offer but we love the root temples--Ta Prohm and Ta Som. Here roots intertwine with the concrete facades of the temples--you won't see architecture like this anywhere in the world! Don't forget to sample Cambodian street food or bargain your way through Siem Reap's local markets once you've had your fill of the temples.
If you, like us, have a serious soft spot for white powdery beaches then head to the island paradise that is Mauritius. Spend languorous days indulging in water sports, devouring finger-licking Mauritian grub, and unwinding with a massage or two. There is no dearth of decadent all-inclusive resorts to choose from but we love Lux* Belle Mare for its open-air cinema (on the beach, no less!) and its wide scenic beach. Make sure you request a romantic breakfast on their private beach if you're celebrating a special occasion--it's an experience that you won't forget for a really long time
4) The Islands of Malaysia
Malaysia is just a short flight away from India and its islands offer stunning scenery, watersports, and finger-licking food. We love Langkawi, an archipelago of 104 islands, just off the western coast of Malaysia. The main island is much quieter than its counterparts in Thailand and promises a relaxing getaway. It's easy to rent a yacht and spend your days island-hopping, exploring surreal mangroves, and marveling at jade-coloured waters.
Don't forget to try local delicacies such as Roti Canai, Laksa, and Mi Goreng. If you're in the mood for something special, drop by Casa Del Mar's cocktail bar La Sal for the best cocktails on the island. This al-fresco bar is the perfect place to view Langkawi's famous sunsets and is bound to leave you dreamy-eyed.
Vietnam might not be the most obvious choice but it's definitely our favourite of the five. The country has so much to offer--the fascinating chaos of Ho Chi Minh City, idyllic beaches of Phu Quoc Island, tiny fishing villages around Mui Ne, and romantic tea plantations in Da Lat. There's something to suit everyone. Don't leave Vietnam without taking a food tour in Ho Chi Minh City with Tiger Tours or sampling the spectacular sunsets in the Eastern part of the country.