While the fast city life is exhilarating and exciting, we do need to get away from the hustle and bustle of regular life every now and then. SC made a list of mini getaways around 5 major cities – Mumbai, Delhi, Jaipur, Pune and Kolkata – that you can spend your weekends relaxing and unwinding at.
Alibaug (about 100 km south of Mumbai) – Alibaug is a coastal town and a municipal council in Raigad District in the Konkan region of Maharashtra, India. Just an hour’s ferry ride away from the Gateway of India, Alibaug has a series of beaches separated by just a few minutes drive from each other is a perfect destination for a short break. Fresh sea food prepared in typical konkani style is the highlight of a holiday in Alibaug apart from the sand and surf. Though quite commercialized Alibaug has a rustic charm going for it even now! Alibaug Beach is the main beach of Alibaug town with the Colaba fort about a kilometer from its shores. During low tides Colaba fort is accessible via a narrow strip of land which goes underwater during high tide. Akshi and Nagaon located towards Murud Janjira and is about 7 kms from Alibaug bus stand. Kihim and Mandwa are located towards the northern side and are the most convenient beaches to reach if you are traveling by the ferry.
Neemrana (122 km from Delhi) – Neemrana is an ancient historical town in Alwar district of Rajasthan, India, on the Delhi-Jaipur highway in Behror tehsil. While most heritage resorts near Delhi come with the beauty and treasures of history, Neemrana offers a vibrant site for magical weekend getaways. This 15th century heritage hotel is among the most popular resorts near Delhi for mini unwinding breaks. Seven palace wings built over 14 layers tiered into a hill across 2.5 hectares/ 6 acres of garden-palace, make Neemrana Fort-Palace one of the most unique resorts near Delhi! Hanging gardens, pools to swim out to the horizon, an Ayurvedic spa, and India’s first zip-line is what this getaway offers.
Bharatpur (187 km from Jaipur) – Located in the Brij region, Bharatpur was once considered to be an impregnable city and was the capital of the Jat kingdom. There is a forest called ‘GHANA’ means dense forest within a distance of about 5 Km. from District Head Quarter which remains green during the rainy season. Bharatpur Ghana’s plan was prepared in 1896 by the State Engineer for driving and confining the wild cattle in the dense forest with 250 species of migratory birds during the monsoon season and ‘winter’ season, which is famous all over India and world for being a great sanctuary of birds.
Lonavala (64 km from Pune) – Lonavla or Lonavala is a town and a hill station Municipal Council in Pune district in the Indian state of Maharashtra. The twin hill resorts of Khandala and Lonavala have a special attraction for the Mumbai and Pune crowd seeking a convenient weekend holiday in the hills. Beautifully landscaped Lonavala and Khandala are famous for their seemingly innumerable varieties of chikki. But they also offer many sites worth visiting. Trekking is a good way to get around, but having a vehicle (even a bicycle) is still better, as some points of interest are quite some distance from the main towns.
Sunderbans (109 km from Kolkata) – The Sundarbans is a natural region in Bengal. It is the largest single block of tidal halophytic mangrove forest in the world. Where the land meets the sea at the southern tip of West Bengal lies the Indian Sunderbans, a stretch of impenetrable mangrove forest of great size and bio-diversity. A UNESCO World Heritage Site, the Sunderbans is a vast area covering 4264 square km in India alone. The Indian Sunderbans forms the largest Tiger Reserve and National Park in India. A paradise for birdwatchers, the list includes such rarities as the Masked Finfoot, Mangrove Pitta and the Mangrove Whistler.