Overview

This mecca for visitors offers an exhilarating and mesmerising potpourri of exciting sounds, irresistible flavours, intoxicating aromas and intense colours fully engage the senses. It is vibrant and timeless, a place where the wonders of the past are comfortable bedfellows with the contemporary - an enchanting land with compelling secrets.

The expression ‘a country of diverse contrasts’ could never be more apt in this exotic destination that never fails to seduce and charm. In this serene and hectic land, ancient culture and customs exist in tandem with a hotbed of entrepreneurialism and chic designer boutiques. The stark variation in ethnic backgrounds, cultures and religions simply adds to an already magical cocktail. In addition to its cultural and spiritual heritage, this beguiling destination also offers exciting wildlife, breathtaking scenery, snow-capped mountains and beautiful sun-drenched beaches.

Highlights

India has to be experienced to be believed. A teeming cocktail of people and religion, where old meets new. India's rich scenery, palaces, forts and wildlife make it a destination like no other and the beautiful beaches are an added bonus.

Tick the Taj Mahal off the bucket list...

The world famous Taj Mahal. It would be difficult to think of another building so synonymous with India. Started in 1631, the marble mausoleum is iconically recognised as one of the world's greatest monuments to love. A visit to the Taj at sunrise will not be easily forgotten, as the morning sun illuminates the glistening white marble. Surely one of the worlds great "bucket list" experiences.

Unique wildlife

The misty central Indian jungle at dawn: a langur cries out an alarm call, a predator is nearby then it appears, the majestic Bengal Tiger, silently padding its way from the dense vegetation into the grassy meadow. There are few experiences as exhilarating as witnessing this amazing animal in its natural habitat and fewer places that provide the opportunity to do so. The jungles of central India are home to a wide variety of wildlife, including tiger, leopard, wolf, jackal, sloth bear, wild boar and over 250 different bird species.

Beaches, beaches and more beaches

With over 7500km of coastline, India has plenty of beaches to choose between. Most famous, the former Portuguese colony of Goa has been hosting party goers and hippies alike for decades, yet the southern beaches still remain tranquil. Further south, Kerala is renowned for its coastline and rural backwaters, spices and tea. A short flight from the mainland, the Andaman Islands are waiting to be discovered, situated in the Bay of Bengal, offering a rich contrast to the mainland.

When to visit

Having such a wide disparity in topography and latitude means that there are many different seasons in India. The Golden Triangle of Delhi, Agra and Jaipur, along with neighbouring Rajasthan are best visited from October through to March. Goa is warm all year round, but the monsoon visits from June through to September. The Himalayan north is accessible all year round, but the coldest months are December and January, with heavy rains from June to September.