Independence Day: Weekend Getaways Near to Your City

This Independence Day (Tuesday, 15 August), as we gear up to pay homage to our brave freedom fighters, who gave their ‘all’ to ensure that the generations to come breathed free air, there’s one thing that we need to learn from them. And, that is to ‘not to’ hesitate from questioning the usual order of things. Because, only when we do so, we will be able to break free from the shackles of orthodoxy, and bring a change or a revolution. That’s what our freedom fighters did, and that’s how we got independence. Right?

And, guys questioning the usual order of things doesn’t necessarily mean that it has to be something as big as fighting for independence. It could be anything that affects our day-to-day life, or a thing that we can control. For instance, this Independence Day, if you are planning August weekend getaways, then break free from the run-of-the-mill trips that you have been taking to the same-old tourist destinations every year. Instead, plan a trip to some offbeat destination that is not spoilt by commercialisation.

To help, in this post, we list some of the offbeat destinations near your city that you can visit, to make the most of this long Independence Day weekend.

Lansdowne – The Land of Surreal Serenity

Image Credit : Google

There are very few untouched and unspoilt beautiful places left in India, and Lansdowne is one of those. Situated on Pauri-Kotdwar Road, Lansdowne is fast becoming a summer retreat for Delhiites. Surrounded by mighty peaks and covered with lush vegetation, Lansdowne looks like a place straight out of a fairytale. And, the best part is that it is not buzzing with people, which means you get a lot of lone time to reflect on life, gazing at the peaks. The calmness enveloping the area is sure to transport you to a different world, a world where you are no longer a prisoner of your own mind. As the serenity of the area sinks in, you will feel lighter, rising above the burden of expectations in life. Quick Tip – When in Lansdowne you must visit Mall Road, St. Mary’s Church, Bhulla Tal and Tip n Top. 

  • Distance From Delhi – 268 km
  • Travel Time – Around 6 hours 40 minutes NH 34 and NH 534

Bir, Himachal Pradesh – A Paragliders’ Paradise

Image Credit : Google

Far from the polluted city life, Bir is not just a place to get some fresh oxygen, but it is also one of the most popular places for paragliding in India. Bir is the landing site for paragliding, located an altitude of 1525 metres above sea level. The take-off site, Billing, is located at an altitude of 2400 metres above sea level, making it one of the highest paragliding take-off points around the globe. It is considered one of the best take-off points in the world. No wonder Billing was chosen as the destination for the world’s first Paragliding World Cup.

Besides paragliding, Bir is also a perfect tourist destination for those looking for a memorable camping experience with friends and family. And, though the option for a hotel stay is also available in the region, we advise you to ditch the regular hotel stay and opt for a camp to take back memories of a lifetime.

  • Distance From Delhi – 516 km
  • Travel Time – Around 10-11 hours via NH 44

Sandhan Valley – An Adventurer’s Abode

Image Credit : Google

Sometimes not saying anything is worth a thousand words. So, if, after reaching Sandhan Valley, you are lost for words, there’s nothing to worry about. You are absolutely hale and hearty, and like other visitors, the awe-inspiring sights of nature have swept you off your feet. Located less than 200 km from Mumbai, Sandhan Valley boasts lush vegetation and mesmerising landscapes. Witness clouds playing hide and seek with the sky-high peaks and experience the rush of feeling offbeat paths under your feet, as you go on a trek to the Sandhan Valley. The sights that you come across on your August weekend getaway trek are sure to reinvigorate your senses. 

  • Distance From Mumbai – 183.2 km
  • Travel Time – 4 hours via SH 44 and NH 160, and 6 hours 40 minutes via NH61

Kamshet – A Gift from Mother Nature

Image Credit : Google

Located in Pune district of Maharashtra, Kamshet is a beautiful hill station that is home to ancient temples, artificially created lakes and medieval caves. And, though the place does not have towering buildings that are symbolic of modern India, it exudes a unique charm because of its quaint, cute little mud thatched huts. Some of the popular tourist attractions in Kamshet are the Karla Caves, Bedse Caves, Wadeshwar Temple, Kondeshwar Temple and Vadivali Lake.

Kamshet is also popular among adventure sports enthusiasts owing to its paragliding opportunities. And, therefore, when in Kamshet, trying your hand at paragliding is a rule carved in stone. Besides paragliding, Kamshet is also a popular destination for trekking. If you have just been introduced to trekking, you can undertake the trek from Jamboli to Kondeshwar Temple. However, if you are an experienced hiker and want to test your limits, consider to the Western Ghats on foot. On your way, you will also get to explore caves, dating from between 2nd century BC and 5th century AD. 

  • Distance From Mumbai – 102 km
  • Travel Time – Around 2 hours via Mumbai-Pune Highway

Dandeli – The Best of All Worlds

Image Credit : Google

Dandeli, in North Karnataka, is an ideal tourist destination that has something to offer to everyone. For instance, if you have a penchant for adventure sports and you live to feel the adrenaline rush through your veins, you can partake in watersports such as kayaking, and white water rafting on the Kali River. And in case watersports do not excite you, you can visit Dandeli Wildlife Sanctuary (part of Anshi Dandeli Tiger Reserve along with Anshi National Park), where you will find diverse flora and fauna thriving in their natural habitat. Similarly, if you are on a quest to trace your spiritual roots, head straight to Sri Mallikarjuna Temple.

Love spending time by waterfalls, doing nothing but listening to the sound of water gushing against the rocks? You are in luck as Dandeli is home to a number of picturesque waterfalls where you can do exactly this. 

  • Distance From Bangalore – 461 km
  • Travel Time – Around 8 hours via NH 48

Honnemaradu – The Nectar of Life

Image Credit : Google

Situated on the banks of the Linganamakki Dam reservoir along the Sharavathi River, Honnemardu is a small village tucked away in the Western Ghats. The place is a haven for people who wish to break free from the mundane city life and re-establish their connection with nature. Here, you won’t find even the dimmest traces of modern civilisation, while what you will get in abundance is peace and tranquillity. Hop aboard a coracle, a traditional boat made of bamboo, to reach the small island, which is a popular camping spot in the Honnemardu Reservoir. If you love spending time in the water, indulge in watersports such as swimming and kayaking. Honnemardu is the place to plan August weekend getaways even if you get thrilled watching birds reach for the sky. Every year, a number of migratory bird species visit the village, painting it with their vivid colours. 

  • Distance From Bangalore – 425 km
  • Travel Time – 7 hours 25 minutes via NH 48

Warangal – A Slice of India’s Rich Heritage

Image Credit : Google

If you are a history buff with an insatiable appetite for discovering the stories behind monuments, the Warangal is a must-visit place. Warangal, with its ancient temples and forts, will transport you back to the eras gone by. If you are a student of Indian art and architecture forms, head to Thousand Pillars Temple that features elaborate rock carvings and decorated pillars. The next stop on your list must be Warangal Fort, home to a number of scriptures. If you want to take a break from city rush, Pakhal Lake, with its dense forests, is the place to be. 

  • Distance From Hyderabad – 144.9 km
  • Travel Time – 3 hours 18 minutes via NH163

Read also : Things to Do in Pune This Weekend with Updated Activity

Read also : Indian Destinations Safe for Solo Women

Leave a Comment