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Top 5 scenic drives in India

When it comes to scenic drives, India is a top destination. From the winding mountain roads of Kashmir to the serene backwaters of Kerala, India is home to some of the most memorable drives on the planet. Whether you are looking for a weekend road trip or an epic cross-country adventure, here are the top five scenic drives in India that you can’t miss.

1. Rameshwaram Pamban Bridge

The Pamban Bridge is the first sea bridge in India, constructed in the shape of an arch. Its construction was completed in 1912 and is also the second-largest bridge in the country. Pamban bridge is not just a connecting structure between the mainland and Rameshwaram, it is also a popular tourist attraction for its majestic architecture. The sight of the ships passing under the bridge and the train passing through the railway line is breathtaking.

2.Gangtok to Lake Tsomgo and Nathu-La Pass

Tsomgo Lake and Nathu-La Pass are some of the most popular attractions of Sikkim. A drive from Gangtok to these scenic places is a must if you want to escape the monotony of big city life. The weather can be quite erratic which is why the best time to travel is summer and autumn. Nathu-La Pass is at a distance of about 53 km from Sikkim. So, it should take you about 2 hours to reach Nathu-La pass. You should visit Tsomgo Lake on your way back.

3. Mumbai to Goa

When it comes to travel destinations, Goa hits all the right spots. If you are planning your next vacation, consider a road trip from Mumbai to Goa. The 600 km drive takes you through some of the most breathtaking sights in India. If you take Route NH48, you can even visit several other beautiful places like Panvel, Lonavla, Khandala, Belgaum, and Mollem en route. Another path to take is Route NH66 which will take you through Panvel, Khed, Kolad, Chiplun, and Sawantwadi on your way to Goa.

4. Manali to Leh

With jaw-dropping views, the Manali to Leh drive is an all-time favourite for bikers and adventurers. The highway, which is about 457 km long is only open from June to 15 September every year. However, the sights of deodar forests and the gorgeous valley below make the trip worthwhile. If you are looking forward to an adventurous road trip, the Manali Leh Highway gives you some of the most magnificent views of the Himalayas, making it a memorable trip.


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5. Bangalore to Ooty

A road trip from Bangalore, the City of Gardens, to Ooty, the Queen of Hills, must be on every travel enthusiast’s bucket list. You can take three routes, the Mysore-Masinagudi route, the Salem-Coonoor Route, and the Kanakapura-Kollegal route. The Mysore-Masinagudi route is quite popular because of stopovers like Mysore, Bandipur National Park, and Masinagudi that fall along the way.

Jay Kajaria is Founder of Bespoke India Holidays. Bespoke India Holidays is an award-winning company that specialises in creating luxury trips to India and the subcontinent.

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Jay Kajaria

Jay Kajaria is the Director of Erudite Travel Consultants LLP – the company that owns Bespoke India Holidays. The company specializes in offering high quality bespoke tours, offbeat experiences to guests traveling to India, Nepal, Bhutan, Maldives, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, Dubai and Southeast Asia region. The company has received National Tourism Award and has been nominated as a leading Luxury tour operator in Asia by World Travel Awards for year 2020, 2021 and 2022. Erudite Travel Consultants LLP is a responsible travel company focusing on community tourism, animal friendly tours, reducing carbon footprint and engaging in CSR initiatives.

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  1. When we last visited India we had a driver. It wasn’t hugely expensive and with his experience of local road conditions he was far more prepared for the vagaries of Indian traffic than I would have been. Moreover, it meant that I could enjoy the drive and make the most of the sights. He was also very good at answering our countless questions.

  2. It all depends on where you’re starting from in Mumbai. Traffic for the beginning could be sticky.

    It would be a worthwhile drive though once you get out of the city and on the road.

  3. As India is such a huge country there must be more road trips about than these five classics? Any one done any others that they can recommend?

  4. I like the long and short mix. Too many travel writers forget that most of us only have a limited number of days holiday. It’s great to read about 3 month treks through Latin America but that really ain’t going to happen in my world. It’s good that some of these Indian trips can be fine in half a day.

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