India is a land full diversity which is blessed with different climatic conditions at different time of the year. January month marks the peak of winters making it one of the best seasons of the year to travel. While there are places where you experience endless pleasant sunshine during January, a few places receive ample snowfall.
Thus, January is a perfect month to head out with your family or friends to enjoy the perfect chilly weather. Be it walking the endless trails in Himachal, or enjoying a ski ride in Kashmir; sailing through the blue waters of Meghalaya or attending the festivities of Jaipur Lit Fest; India has some of the best holiday places to experience in January. Let us take a look at some of the best places to visit in January in India.
Best Place to Visit in January in North India
1. Gulmarg, Pahalgam and Srinagar, Jammu & Kashmir
The magnificent state of Jammu and Kashmir, popularly known as ‘Heaven on Earth’ is literally the best place to visit during winters. If you want to enjoy the fresh snowfall in India in January, Kashmir will certainly not disappoint you. The huge mountains and valleys, blanket of snow everywhere, old age charm accompanied by a cup of piping hot Kahwa are what Kashmir is all about. Visit the town of Gulmarg to enjoy the skiing adventure at one of the ski resorts here.
You can also go further to Pahalgam and enjoy the serene untouched beauty of Kashmir like never before. You will see the magnificent landscapes of snow-capped mountains with huge pine forests and a river flowing by everywhere. Also, indulge yourself into Gondola ride at famous Dal Lake to enjoy the breathtaking beauty of Kashmiri culture and beauty. Also, the locals here take good care of the tourists by offering cosy homestays and deliciously prepared home cooked food. They also serve you the fresh Kahwa which is a traditional Kashmiri drink similar to tea. Thus, Kashmir with its unending natural beauty and warm hospitality of locals is easily the best place to visit in India.
- Places to visit in Kashmir: Gulmarg, Pahalgam, Srinagar, Dal Lake.
- Things to do in Kashmir: try Kashmiri Kahwa, houseboat ride in Dal lake, Skiing, Hiking and trekking.
2. Auli, Uttarakhand
Popularly known as the skiing paradise of India, Auli is one of the best places to enjoy the true winters. Located in the state of Uttarakhand, Auli is a hill station which receives a great amount of snowfall in the months of January. The whole area is covered in the blanket of snow making it look like a wonderland during winters.
Auli is a perfect place to enjoy the skiing sport or just sit back and gaze at the huge Himalayas. Auli has a number of ski resorts offering the ski suits and also the training that is required for the novices. The whole town of Auli is surrounded by huge Himalayan Peaks of Nanda Devi and Badrinath temple. If you wish to experience the fresh snowfall in India in January, Auli is among the places you must visit.
- Places to visit in Auli: Trishul Peak, Rudraprayag, Joshimath, Badrinath.
- Things to do in Auli: Skiing at ski resort, hiking and trekking, riding a cable car(ropeway).
3. Corbett National Park, Uttarakhand
Though there are a number of national parks in India, a few among them really stand out. One such National Park is the Jim Corbett National Park in Uttarakhand. It is a perfect destination for you to visit in India in January with your family in the winters. The winters in Uttarakhand are quite chilly and cold, making it a different experience altogether.
Visit the Corbett National Park to enjoy the jeep safaris while exploring the wildlife. Also, there are a number of Elephant Safaris for you to explore the park at a slower pace. Corbett National Park also hosts a beautiful waterfall along with a historical monument at Garjiya Devi Temple which is a must see. Thus, Corbett National Park is easily among the best holiday places to visit in January.
- Places to visit in Corbett: Garjiya Devi Temple, Sitabani Wildlife Reserve, Kosi River.
- Things to do in Corbett: Jeep Safari, Elephant Safari, Jungle hikes.
4. Shimla and Manali, Himachal Pradesh
Known as the ‘Land of Gods’, Himachal Pradesh truly gives justice to the saying. With the huge mountains and valleys, tall pine forests, beautiful roads and some of the warmest people, Himachal truly feels like visiting. Also, if you want to enjoy the snowfall in India in January, Himachal is among the best places to do so. The capital city of Shimla receives ample amount of snowfall covering the whole town in the blanket of snow. The sight of Shimla covered in snow in winters is something you should experience at least once in your life.
Along with that, Manali in Himachal offers a great number of activities that you can enjoy in winters. Snow hiking, sledging, ice skating, skiing are some of them to mention. You must visit the Solang Valley during winters, which is around 11 km from Manali to enjoy snow and skiing. Also, Rohtang Pass is a famous mountain pass here which is a perfect place to enjoy fresh snowfall. Thus, Manali with its breathtaking beauty and magical snow makes it among the best holiday places in January.
- Places to visit in Himachal: Shimla, Manali, Rohtang Pass, Solang Valley, Kufri.
- Things to do in Himachal: Skiing, Snowboarding, Hiking and trekking, Jeep rides.
Best place to visit in January in West India
5. Jaipur and Jaisalmer, Rajasthan
Undoubtedly one of the best places to visit in January in India is none other than the royal state of Rajasthan. Rajasthan, along with most of the other North Indian states experiences chilly weather and cold but is quite pleasant to enjoy. While there are places like Udaipur, Ajmer, Bikaner and Jodhpur which are a must visit during winters, it is Jaipur and Jaisalmer that stands out. Make a point to visit the Sam Sand Dunes in Jaisalmer to enjoy a cold night under the starry skies in the vast sand dunes. This experience is even more amazing with the bonfire put up by the locals and the folk dance and delicious food served along with it.
Also, Jaisalmer boasts beautiful architectured forts, alleys and Havelis which are a must see too. Jaipur on the other hand, hosts the yearly iconic Literature Festival which is a plethora of arts, culture and poetry. Attend the Jaipur Lit Fest to indulge yourself into a world you have never seen before. Rajasthan is thus, among the best places to visit in India in January with family or friends.
- Places to visit in Rajasthan: Jaipur, Sam Sand Dunes, Udaipur City Palace, Hawa Mahal, Amer Fort, etc.
- Things to do in Rajasthan : Jeep Safari, Hot Air Balloon Rides, Camel Safari, Camel Fair, etc.
6. Kutch, Gujarat
Kutch, located in Gujarat is easily among the best places to visit in India during winters. Along with the popular salt desert which is the main tourist attraction here, Kutch also has some of the forts and historical buildings worth seeing. Visit the Mandvi beach to enjoy the migratory birds here along with the Kachchh Museum. Also, make it a point to visit the popular Aaina Mahal and Praj Mahal to see the marvel of architecture and rich history.
Darbargadh is a palace near Kutch which is a must visit to experience the architecture and rich history. Kutch also hosts the International Kite Festival every year in the month of January making it a place you should visit. Thousands of colorful kites flying in the sky is a sight you will never forget. Also, Kutch is where the annual Rann Utsav is held in the month of December which is something you should not miss. Kutch is thus, among the best places to visit in India in January with family .
- Places to visit in Kutch: Desert of Kutch, Darbargadh, Kachchh Museum, Aaina Mahal.
- Things to do in Kutch: Attend Kite festival, watch the flamingos in Mandvi, visit the villages of Dhordo, Hodka, etc.
Best place to visit in January in South India
7. Kochi, Alleppey and Munnar, Kerala
Kerala, popularly known as the ‘God’s own country’ is among the best places to visit in January in South India. Kerala offers a perfect combination of natural beauty of forests and wildlife sanctuaries along with the endless stretches of beaches. Enjoy a day or two in the traditional houseboat which takes you through the canals and backwaters at a slow pace. Visit the tea gardens at Munnar to see them covered in mist. Also do not forget to visit the Eravikulam National Park here to spot some nilgiri Tahrs and the popular Mattupetty Dam.
Kerala, probably has some of the most beautiful backwaters in the country. Make it a point to visit Alleppey or Kumarakom to enjoy the serene backwaters. Finally, head down to one of the beaches like Varkala or Fort Kochi to have some quality time by the sea. And do not forget to get yourself an authentic Ayurvedic massage while you are here.
- Places to visit in Kerala: Varkala Beach, Alleppey, Munnar, Thekkady.
- Things to do in Kerala: Visit tea museums, houseboat ride, get an Ayurvedic massage.
Also See: 12 Best Places for Trekking in Kerala
8. Panaji and Mollem, Goa
While there are many other places to enjoy in the month of January, there is nothing quite like Goa. Filled with the festive air all over and the preparations for the Carnival, Goa is a perfect place to unwind yourself. Be it with your family or friends, Goa in the month of January is a different vibe altogether. Head down to any of the beaches to relax and enjoy the winter sun during the daytime. You can also opt for the dolphin rides that happen usually during this month.
Apart from lazing around the beaches, you must also visit the beautiful Mahavir Wildlife Sanctuary and Dudhsagar Waterfall to witness the marvel of nature at its best.
In the evening time, Goa is full of colourful atmosphere with the parties and festivals going around everywhere. There are a number of places in North Goa where live music gigs are arranged on the beach. Sitting on the beach listening to live music and having food and dinks to the sound of the sea is an experience you must take. The popular Feast of Three Kings festival is celebrated in Goa in the month of January. Indulge yourself into a feast of local culinary along with the Goans. Thus, Goa is undoubtedly among the best places to visit in January in South India.
- Places to visit in Goa: Panaji, Mollem, Vagator Beach, Baga Beach, Dudhsagar falls.
- Things to do in Goa: Bike rides through paddy rice fields, beach-hopping, parasailing, water sports, clubbing.
Also Read : 10 Best Places For Trekking in Goa
9. Mahabalipuram and Madurai, Tamil Nadu
Tamil Nadu is the best during the months of January. The whole places offers colorful landscapes and variety of cultural festivals happening around during winters. The town of Mahabalipuram in Tamil Nadu hosts the Mamallapuram Dance Festival during the months of December and January. This festival full of colors and dance is a treat for art and culture lovers. Also, Pongal is largely celebrated during January in all of South India.
Visit Madurai which is an ancient city in Tamil Nadu and easily among the best places to visit in winters in South India. The Meenakshi Amman Temple is an absolute must visit to witness the architecture marvel of ancient times. Also, the Madurai Float Festival is celebrated here with huge processions starting from Meenakshi Temple. The whole atmosphere during this festival is something you should definitely experience. Tamil Nadu, is thus easily among the best places to visit in January in India .
- Places to visit in Tamilnadu: Mahabalipuram, Madurai, Meenakshi temple, Alagar Koyil.
- Things to do in Tamilnadu: Attend Pongal and Float festival, visit temples, beach camping.
10. Havelock Islands,Andaman And Nicobar
Much similar to the landscapes that you see in Goa, Andamans is among the best places to visit in January in India. With relatively mild temperatures and pleasant weather, Andaman offers the perfect escape into a world you will have never seen before.Turquoise waters, sandy beaches, and endless stretches of forests make it a perfect place to visit In India in January with your family or loved ones.
Andaman is home to the most popular Havelock Island which offers the perfect combination of peace and tranquility to all. Places like Radhanagar, Neil Islands, Elephant and Kalapathar beach are a must visit while you are here. Also, Andaman is among the best winter honeymoon destinations in all of India. Thus, visiting this tiny group of Islands in the winters is an experience that you should not miss.
- Places to visit in Andamans: Havelock Islands, Neil Islands, Radhanagar, Kalapathar Beach.
- Things to do in Andamans: Scuba Diving ,snorkelling, beach-hopping, hiking.
Also See: Top things to do in Andaman and Nicobar
Best place to visit in January in East India
11. Dawki, Meghalaya
Often overlooked by the most people, Meghalaya is a part which is truly unexplored with abundant natural beauty to offer. Dawki is one such place in Meghalaya which you must visit to witness the beauty of living root bridges. It has a pleasant warm weather in winters making it an ideal place to visit with your family of friends.
Must Read : 7 Dazzling Lakes in Sikkim
Dawki is a perfect place to experience and enjoy cold weather with a blend of mist, fluttering leaves. Also, the whole town teaches you the minimalist way of living.You can also take a boat and tow through the turquoise blue waters of here while overlooking the huge mountains and canyons. It is a different experience altogether being in Dawki as it is feels like time has stopped still. Other places to explore around Meghalaya are Elephant Falls, Nohkalikai Falls, Uniam Lake, Barapani and many more. Dawki is thus among the best offbeat places to visit in India during winters with your family or friends.
- Places to visit in Dawki: Jaflong zero point, dawki boating point, dawki lake
- Things to do in Dawki: Boating in the lake, Kayaking through the canals, hiking to waterfalls.
12. Bhubaneswar, Odisha
While Bhubaneswar experiences scorching heat during the summers, it is the winters which is the ideal season for exploring the city. With temperatures ranging from min 14 to maximum 30, January is a perfect month to explore this perfect amalgamation of history and modernity. Bhubaneshwar is a city in Odisha popular for a number of ancient temples that date back to 11th century. Head out in the month of January to Bhubaneshwar to experience this ancient city full of temples. Chilka lake is a popular spot to witness the migratory flamingos here.
Visit the Iskcon Temple, Tikarpada Wildlife Sanctuary, Rajarani temple and the Nandankanan Zoological Park. Apart from these popular spots to visit, Bhubaneshwar boasts the famous Lingaraj temple which is one of the oldest temples in the city. Visit this place to witness the marvel of ancient architecture. You can also visit the Puri beach which is around 62 km from the city of Bhubaneswar to have a great time during winters. Thus , Bhubaneshwar is easily among the best places to visit in January in India.
- Places to visit in Bhubaneswar – Puri Beach, Jagannath Temple, Lingaraj Temple.
- Things to do in Bhubaneshwar – Exploring beaches of Puri, Visiting temples.
India being a land of all seasons, has a different own charm of winters. With the above list of places, you can make the most out of your winter vacation and enjoy the beauty that India has to offer.
Further read: Places to visit in February in India