There’s no perfect age to explore the world and senior travellers are jet-setting off to several destinations to relax, enjoy adventures, learn more about cultures as well as take a leisure trip combined with spiritual tours. From experiencing the local culture to enjoying homestays, culinary adventures to jungle safaris; their choice of destinations and the preference of experiences are changing.
For those seeking adventure
Adventure tourism is increasing in popularity in India and senior citizens aren’t shying away from this trend. Some of the best senior citizen-friendly adventure places are:
The Sundarbans mangrove forest is among the largest of its kind, (spanning over 140,000 ha of land) and is lush with verdant greenery stretched as far as the eye can see. While gliding through the river, travellers catch a glimpse of animals like the Royal Bengal tiger, macaque, Indian grey mongoose, leopards and more. One can take a cruise down the river to enjoy the thrill.
Gir Forest is a treasure trove for adventure enthusiasts, offering activities such as thrilling safaris and visit to crocodile farms. There are serene lakes as well as beautifully preserved ancient temples. On a safari, look for majestic Asiatic lions, leopards, cobras, striped hyenas, and endangered Bonelli’s eagles.
Relaxation is a top priority for travellers to go on holiday across all age groups. India offers some of the most beautiful places for nature lovers where they can rejuvenate amidst the picturesque locales such as:
Lovingly known as ‘God’s Own Country’, Kerala is popular for its revitalising scenery, delicious cuisine and Ayurveda treatments. Senior citizen travellers can relax while exploring the backwaters in a houseboat or even travel to Munnar, and enjoy a strong cup of tea, while being surrounded by the lush tea plantations.
Andaman and Nicobar Islands
This collection of 300 islands is home to some of the most beautiful palm-lined, white-sand beaches, clear seas, coral reefs, mangroves and tropical rainforests. The travellers can unwind in this serene atmosphere by relaxing on the beach, or go for a leisurely boat ride while island hopping, or even catching the beautiful light and sound show at the historic cellular jail in Port Blair, for the perfect escape from the bustling cities.
For those who want to explore
India’s cultural history is rich and dynamic, and expresses the heritage of the nation. Some of the most popular destinations for senior citizens are:
The land of maharajas, perfectly-preserved forts, colourful festivals and palaces, Rajasthan is the perfect destination for sightseeing. Udaipur, Jodhpur, Ajmer and Jaipur are popular spots offering a variety of unique experiences for travellers. Most of the attractions here have wheelchair accessible features for the ease of every traveller.
The magnificent ruins of Hampi have cemented their spot as a World Heritage Site. The remains of the glorious Vijayanagara empire are a breath-taking sight with their display of monolithic sculptures and monuments made from excellent craftsmanship.
For those seeking a spiritual experience
Spirituality and pilgrimages are of great significance among senior citizen tourists in India. Some of the more favoured destinations are:
Char Dham is a set of four sites that hold immense value for Hindus who believe that visiting these sights will help them gain ‘Moksha’ or salvation. They comprise Yamunotri, Gangotri, Kedarnath, and Badrinath which are the sources of the four sacred rivers--Yamuna, the Ganges, the Mandakini and the Alaknanda. There are helicopter services available for travellers for their ease at this holy destination.
Read | Helicopter services to connect Mumbai, Pune and Shirdi
Madurai is the soul of Tamil Nadu and is one of the oldest cities in the country. Located on the banks of the Vaigai River, this destination is home to the revered Meenakshi Amman Temple which holds much regard among devotees all across the Hindu followers. Wheelchair and battery operated vehicles are kept at hand for senior travellers.
The writer is the president and country head, SOTC Travel