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5 Places to Visit in India in 2012 – Part 2
As I promised earlier, I am back with the second list of 5 places to visit in India in 2012. This time, I have included some cities and places which are not necessarily metros or even cities per se. Nonetheless, these are places to be visited by every tourist who comes to India. I have also included states (not cities) which are a must visit. So, here are my list of 5 more places to visit in India in 2012.
Goa is a state in the South Western part of India. It was a former Portuguese colony and was still their colony after India attained their independence, till 1960. Apart from being a Portuguese colony, Goa has a very rich history since the age of Sumerians and Indo-Aryans. As a result, one can find a major population of Portuguese settlers here along with Indians. Naturally you can find a huge chunk of population speaking Portuguese. Goa is a major tourist attraction due to some of its world-class beaches and Portuguese style churches. Goa is also famous for its Saturday night markets and alcohol. If you need a perfect holiday by the beach in India, Goa is the place to be.
Shillong is the capital of Meghalaya, one of the smallest states in India and a part of the seven states in East India. The city is situated at an altitude of 4,908 feet above sea level. It is often said that the rolling hills around Shillong reminds a person of European Scottish settlers. Hence, the city has also been dubbed “Scotland of the East”. Shillong lies at the center of a plateau and is surrounded by hills. It is known to be the second largest hill station after Brasilia.
The major structure that comes to anyone's mind when someone talks about India is the famous Taj Mahal. Agra is home to this wonder of the world. Agra is located on the banks of River Yamuna. The city is thought to have existed since the times of Mahabharata epic (at least 5000 years) as it finds its mention in the epic. Agra also achieved a status of the capital of the Mughal emperors between 1526 and 1958. It was during this era, the Mughal emperor Shah Jahan built Taj Mahal (1653 A.D). Some of the other places to visit in Agra are the Agra fort and Fatehpur Sikri.
If you are in India, Kashmir is one place you have to visit, no matter what. Kashmir sits at the head of the Indian subcontinent. The Kashmir valley is considered nothing less than paradise on earth. The snow covered valley is extremely beautiful. Kashmir is famous for numerous things, from apples and boat houses to the famous kahwa (a special type of tea) and Ladakh valley. Kashmir was considered dangerous for a few years due to the extensive militant activity. However, militant activity here has reduced to a great extent and it is quite safe to visit this state. A trip to Kashmir for your honeymoon is something you will cherish for life.
Madurai is the third biggest city in Tamil Nadu, a state in the Southern part of India. Madurai is also called the city of temples. Madurai is one of the oldest cities in the world which has been inhabited continuously for more than two millenia. Madurai is famous for its Meenakshi temple which was built in the Dravidian style of architecture. Madurai is also referred to as the “City of Temples”, as the city is filled with temples and temple complexes. In fact this is one city in India that probably has the most number of temples. According to recorded history, the city has existed since 3rd century BCE and is mentioned in the book of Megasthenes, a Greek ambassador to Chandragupta Maurya’s empire.
This completes my second list of the 5 places to visit in India 2012. Do let me know which other places, you think, are must visit places in India.