7 Alternatives to Popular, but Overcrowded Destinations

7 Alternatives to Popular, but Overcrowded Destinations
The stunning Key Monastery near Kaza in Himachal Pradesh , Photo Credit: Shutterstock

Don't want overcrowded holiday spots, but still want a break? Try these alternative destinations. In the age of physical distancing, these will do the trick for a #postlockdownbreak

Sayani Manna
July 13 , 2020
07 Min Read

Physical distancing is a constant on our travel itinerary, at least for a while. But that’s not all too bad if avoiding swarms of maddening crowds has always been on your travel agenda when choosing travel destinations. Here’s our handy list of alternative travel destinations you can go to in order to avoid the crowds.

Sittong Khasmahal, North Bengal

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A tiny hamlet of villages nestled in the foothills of the Himalayas, North Bengal’s Sittong plays hide-and-seek with travellers from behind the orange boughs. Often hailed as the orange village of Darjeeling, Sittong with its sparsely dotted homestays and orange orchards situates you in an idyllic rustic setting where you can reclaim peace and quiet in the lap of nature!

Barsey, Sikkim
Forget high lakes, orchids and bustling Sikkimese towns because its rhododendron garden of Barsey will leave you spellbound. High up at 10,000 feet, the tiny and remote Barsey can be reached only with a no-sweat 4km trek from Hilley, the nearest village. A paradise for nature lovers, Barsey’s rhododendron sanctuary paints it red in the spring and summer months with rhododendrons, which compliments the majestic views of the Sangalila Range. If luck is on your side, you can also spot the endangered red panda, Himalayan palm civet, khaleej, Himalayan yellow-throated martens, different pheasants and more.

Hope Island, Andhra Pradesh

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It’s a tadpole of an island that is shaped like a tadpole and floats on the Bay of Bengal without many knowing about it. Just off the coast of Kakinada, this 200-year-old naturally formed island offers the perfect mix of sandy beaches, lush greenery and a stunning view of the backwaters. It’s got offbeat and stunning written all over it.

Kaza, Himachal Pradesh
This cold desert perched at an altitude of 3,650 meters above sea level usually keeps tourist away because of its rough terrain. But if you’re in the hunt for adventure without the bustling crowd then Kaza is the place to head to. A sweet offbeat spot for mountaineers, adventure junkies and trekking enthusiasts, Kazo’s Buddhist town has Tangyud Monastery, Kibber Village and Key Gompa at its arms reach. Resting on the banks of Spiti River, the place is accessible both from Lahaul and Kinnaur.

Barot, Himachal Pradesh
If Himachal and offbeat seem like a mix of oil and water, then Barot will convince you otherwise. A remote and offbeat destination in the Mandi district of Himachal, the fishing village of Barot is an ideal destination for the outdoorsy folks. Keep calm and fish at one of the fishing farms or trek towards Kullu through the Nargu Wildlife Sanctuary to catch a glimpse of Himalayan wildlife like the Himalayan Gorals, Himalayan Black Bears and different pheasants.

Jagdalpur, Chattisgarh

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The name of the place itself says that it’s not an A-lister touristy spot. But what seals the deal is the presence of India’s Niagara Falls here. Chitrakote gushes down 95 feet across a width of 980 feet. Best visited during the monsoons, Jagdalpur has a slew of other waterfalls like Teerathgarh, Chitradhara, Tamda Ghumar, and Mendri Ghumar. ALso check out the Dalpat Sagar Lake, Kanger Valley National Park, Indravati National Park and Kotumsar Cave.

Mawlynnong, Meghalaya

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Known as the ‘cleanest village in Asia’, Mawlynnong in Meghalaya is a far cry from the ritzy or crowded touristy spots that are dotted with hotels and resorts. Nestled among the East Khasi Hills, there are bamboo huts to stay in and magnificent living root bridges to cross the gentle gurgling waterfalls. The 85ft bamboo-built Sky View tower is another thing of wonder.

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