India is a unique place to visit and honestly, I never thought I would make it there. I think everyone should experience this country at least once in their lifetime. It is like going on a journey through your wildest imagination. India is a massive country that is home to more than a billion people with huge cultural wealth, diverse religions, and a history that goes back thousands of years. India will surely leave a lasting impression on anyone.
Tourist Places in India!
There are so many famous places in India to visit. The magnificent architecture that’s spread all over the country is enough reason to include India on your travel bucket list. Moreover, a trip to the country is not like any other trips you will make. It overloads your senses with its vibrant colors, a cacophony of smells and sounds, and so many extreme contradictions. There are many tourist places in India, but I have put together my picks for my favorite tourist places in North India. All are definitely worthy of a visit.
Before you go, be sure and read this guide about how to get an Indian visa online as an American.
Amazing Tourist Places to Visit in India
✦ The Taj Mahal
Recognized as one of the Seven Wonders of the World, the Taj Mahal needs no introduction and is probably one of the most famous places in India. This iconic monument is located in Agra and is part of the popular Golden Triangle tourist circuit that includes the cities of Delhi, Agra, and Jaipur. A symbol of eternal love, it’s impossible not to include this majestic monument on your bucket list to visit some of the top tourist places in India.
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✦ Agra Fort
Aside from the Taj Mahal, here is another popular tourist attraction in Agra that’s definitely worth a visit. It is the Agra Fort. This palatial fortress is made entirely of red sandstones and the Taj Mahal is visible from one of its courtyards. The fort was built mainly as a military structure but was later transformed into a palace before it became Shah Jahan’s prison, the Mughal emperor who ordered the Taj Mahal to be built.
✦ Albert Hall Museum
Prince Albert of Britain was honored with his own delightful museum by the city of Jaipur. Other than the Central Museum, the Albert Hall Museum is one of the oldest museums in all of Jaipur. On display at this museum are clay wares, traditional dresses worn by previous kings, and many woodworks. They present you with a jewelry collection, as well as, metal artwork. Aside from the paintings and portraits, you can check out the courtyards and towers of the Albert Hall Museum. The grounds of the Albert Hall Museum were absolutely gorgeous and worth it for the photography alone. In my opinion, it is worth a stop. Plus,you can learn what it is like to live like a local.
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✦ Mehrangarh Fort
While you’re in Jodhpur, most people come here to go see the Mehrangarh Fort, a stunning fort that’s one of the most amazing tourist places in India. Rising beautifully from a rocky hill, about 400-meters above Jodhpur’s skyline, the Mehrangarh fort is packed with interesting history and legend. Originally built in the mid 15th century by the founder of Jodhpur, the fort was later expanded with various palaces and structures, and most of what you can find at the fort now dates back to the 17th century.
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✦ The Blue City of Jodhpur
If Jaipur is India’s pink city due to its terracotta pink buildings, there’s also a blue city in India and that is Jodhpur. Surrounded by a sea of indigo buildings that stretches to more than 6 miles, Jodhpur is absolutely stunning to see from afar. It’s no wonder why the place is hailed as one of the top tourist places in India.
Walking into the blue city’s tangle of winding medieval streets is truly a feast for the senses where you will be greeted by lots of blue houses, with the distinct smell of incense and Indian spices in the background, plus wet dog and piss. An interesting whiff combination! I took a wild tuk-tuk ride through the city and I have to admit it was the craziest ride I did while on my trip to India and I loved every minute of it.
✦ Jal Mahal (the Water Palace)
The Jal Mahal is an abandoned floating palace in the midst of Jaipur’s Man Sagar Lake. The origin of this magnificent palace is uncertain, although it’s said to be at least 300 years old and has been used as a summer retreat by royals for duck hunting parties. Before, visitors are not allowed to enter the palace, but it has been recently restored and tourists are now welcome to visit by taking one of the boat trips at the lake.
✦ Jaisalmer Fort
I absolutely loved this place! The Jaisalmer Fort is a 12th-century building that defiantly rises from flat desert lands in the city of Jaisalmer in the Rajasthan state. Overlooking the golden city of Jaisalmer, this UNESCO-listed world heritage site features enthralling carvings and spectacular sculptures that made it rank among the top tourist places in India. With a seamless blend of Islamic and Rajput styles, the architectural facade of the fort is truly mesmerizing.
✦ Amer or Amber Fort
Amber Fort is no doubt, one of the most picturesque tourist spots in India. Built by Raja Man Singh in 1592 AD, the extensive palace complex is beautifully perched on top of a hill that overlooks the Maota Lake in Jaipur. The fort is known for its unique and interesting architectural features, which is a combination of Rajput and Islamic architecture. Likely it is one of Jaipur’s top tourist spots in India.
✦ Amer Fort Lunch
And just in case you get hungry, the Amer Fort has plenty of places for lunch. My group ate lunch here and dined like royalty at the restaurant overlooking the grounds. It was absolutely gorgeous and from here you could visit some sort of home above, as we marveled at the luxury upstairs living quarters within the palace walls.
✦ Jaigarh Fort
The Jaigarh Fort was built for the protection of the Amer Fort and is easily visible as the walls of this fort can be seen running down the nearby hills. This fort is old and has two temples, Ram Harihar (which was built in the 10th century) and Kal Bhairav (which was built in the 12th century!) And just so you know, there is a hidden underground passageway that connects the two forts together!! For a bit of trivia, Jaigarh is also home to the biggest cannon in the world!
✦ Hawa Mahal
Also located in Jaipur, the Hawa Mahal is one of the most visited tourist places in North India. Although I found it hard to visit, as it is located on a very busy street. I found it also difficult to photograph. It is considered Jaipur’s most distinctive landmark, the entire façade of Hawa Mahal’s five-story structure is astonishingly painted in pink.
If you get a chance to climb to the top of the structure, you get to enjoy a good glimpse of the stunning city views, especially the majestic City Palace. I instead opted to go across the street from the Hawa Mahal to the cafe and took a photo with it in the background. There were fewer crowds and got a shot of myself in one of the most visited tourist places in India! SCORE!
✦ City Palace
Aside from the Amber Fort and the Hawa Mahal, another famous place in Jaipur that’s included in the list of the top tourist places in India is the City Palace. Featuring a striking blend of Rajasthani and Mughal architecture, the City Palace is located right in the middle of Jaipur’s Old City and consists of a complex of historical buildings, courtyards, and gardens. It features various palace buildings that date back to different eras, with some palaces dating back to the early 20th century.
Chittorgarh is a massive fort complex in Rajasthan and is said to be the largest among all the Rajput forts. It’s where the legendary tale about Queen Rani Padmini’s act of self-immolation or Juhar took place, something that fascinates a lot of world historians. This fascinating place rises from the plains like a huge rock that’s about 3 miles long and surrounded by so many cliffs. With its fascinating history and interesting architecture, Chittorgarh is truly one of the most amazing tourist places in India that is worth a visit.
✦ Jaipur, the Pink City
The city of Jaipur is the capital and largest city in the region of Rajasthan, India. Jaipur is known as the “Pink City” due to the terracotta pink that has been painted all over the buildings in this region. The pink color of the city was done as a makeover in 1876 to celebrate the visit of the Prince of Wales.
In Indian culture, the color pink represents “hospitality”. The people of Jaipur wanted to honor the Prince by painting the town pink! Jaipur is even a UNESCO World Heritage site, named so in 2019. It is now officially named the “Pink City of India”. With opulent architecture and pastel-colored palaces, as well as pink-dotted bazaars or stores everywhere, you will certainly enjoy this pink paradise city. Jaipur is home to artisans, musicians, and many people who enrich the culture of the city.
✦ Jantar Mantar (Astronomical Observatory)
If you are like me and enjoy looking at celestial objects, then the Jantar Mantar is a must during your time in Jaipur. Guests of this observatory can look at fourteen different architectural astronomical instruments. Amazingly, these instruments measure time, track star location, and predict eclipses. The best time to visit this observatory is late afternoon so you can get a glimpse of the stars and other amazing astronomical wonders. This observatory is situated near the City Palace and Hawa Mahal, so you could do this as your last stop of the day.
✦ Nahargarh Fort
Located near the city of Jaipur, is the Nahargarh Fort. Once you step foot inside the Nahargarh Fort, you will find that there are 12 suites known as the Madhavendra Bhawan. These were used only by the royal women of Jaipur. A full tour of this fort can take up to 3 hours, so wear your comfortable shoes or take the quick tour. This fort is a mixture of European and Indian architecture.
✦ Panna Meena Ka Kund (Water Storage System)
One last recommendation is to visit the Panna Meena Ka Kund water storage system located in Jaipur. It was created in the 16th century and is an engineering marvel. This stepwell was created as a gathering place for the locals to swim or to stop and talk with each other. The crisscross shape of the water system is unique. It is basically a water storage facility. It is a great place to take photographs!
Home to the world’s oldest civilization, India is filled with exceptionally beautiful and architecturally diverse structures in the world as indicated on this list of tourist places in India. You should take your shoes off and stay for a while! A trip to this unique country may be filled with so many unexpected things, but one thing’s for sure – you will return home quite different after your adventure!
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Disclosure: As is common in the travel industry, I was provided with accommodations, meals, and other compensation for the purposes of review by the Ministry of Tourism – Govt. of India. While it has not influenced my review, PointsandTravel.com believes in full disclosure of all potential conflicts of interest. All Photos were taken by the author and affiliate links are located in this article.