The Republic Day weekend could be a good way to leave behind the commotion of the national capital and head out to the hills and other places near Delhi with family or friends. One can take their cars or opt for cabs after their offices wind up on Friday. One can also hop onto various public transports or trains connecting scenic tourist destinations for a few fun-filled hours.
For History buffs
Jaipur (280 kilometres): Also called the Pink City due to the dominant colour palette splashed across buildings, major attractions include Hawa Mahal, Jal Mahal, Amer Fort, Givind Dev Ji Temple, Jantar Mantar, and Jaipur Zoo. The city of Jaipur was founded by Jai Singh II, the Raja of Amer in 1727.
How to reach Jaipur: One can either take a train or bus from Delhi to visit Jaipur, or book a cab or take their car to reach the city. The journey by car takes around six hours. Once there, not only are the historic sights visual delights, there is plenty to choose from when it comes to shopping as well.
For the romantic at heart
Agra (230 kms): Home to the architectural masterpiece The Taj Mahal, a trip to Agra takes around four hours from Delhi. The city itself exudes an old-warm charm and the ivory-white marble mausoleum on the south bank of the Yamuna river, built by Mughal emperor Shah Jahan for his beloved Mumtaz Mahal, is a must-visit.
Other historic spots and places of interest in Agra include Agra Fort, Fatehpur Sikri, Akbar's Tomb, Jama Masjid, Mariam's Tomb, Keetham Lake among others.
How to reach Agra: There are several options to go to Agra. One can take a flight to Kheria and then hire a taxi to reach the city. Apart from that, one can also take a bus or car to visit the city. The city is well connected by train as well. Driving down from Delhi on the Expressway can make for a fun experience too.
For wildlife enthusiasts
Jim Corbett National Park (260 km): Established in 1936, the oldest national park in India is located in Nainital and can be a perfect getaway for nature enthusiasts and photographers, who want to spend two quiet days away from the humdrum of daily life. An ecotourism destination, it offers visitors a chance to see a wide variety of flora and fauna.
How to reach: One can reach Jim Corbett National Park by road. In a six-hour drive one can reach the place through Gajrola, Moradabad, Kashipur and Ramnagar. There are various trains connecting New Delhi to Ramnagar, from where one can take a cab.
For mountain lovers:
Lansdowne (260 kms): For those looking for an escape into the hills, this town in Uttarakhand could be the perfect weekend destination. From the War Memorial at the Parade Ground to Tip n Top View Point, Kaleshwar Mahadev Temple, Regimental Museum, Lover's Lane and St March's Church, there are quite a few attractions one can visit in Lansdowne.
How to reach Lansdowne: The place can be reached either by road or train. The nearest railway station is Kotdwar. From Kotdwar one has to take a cab to reach Lansdowne. The other way of reaching Lansdowne is by car. One can reach Lansdowne from Delhi via Meerut, Bijnore, Najibabad, Kotdwar, before finally entering Lansdowne.
For the adventurous at heart:
Hrishikesh (240 kms): If you are a sports enthusiast, Hrishikesh not only has a number of temples and ashrams to visit but has sports like trekking, giant wheeling and rafting to get your adrenaline rush sorted. One can also experience bungee jumping in Hrishikesh.
How to reach Hrishikesh: One can reach Hrishikesh by flight, roadways or train. There are daily flights to Jolly Grant airport at Dehradun, from where one can opt for a regular taxi or bus service. The touristy destination has a number of buses that ply from Delhi's Kashmere Gate. Tourists can also take a train to Haridwar, which is approximately 25 kilometeres away from it.
Driving or cab is also an option as it is connected to other cities via National Highway 58. It generally takes 6 to 7 hours via roadways.