Airplanes and Railways are certainly much more comfortable ways of travelling but they are definitely not as exciting as renting a car and going on a long road trip with your family and friends. If you are struck by wanderlust and love long drives whilst exploring the splendid environment around you, then here are some road trips that you just have to go on, at least once in your life.
The Best Road Trips in India You Should Definitely Take Once in Your Life
Delhi – Manali – Leh Highway
One of the most popular and extraordinary road trips in the country, driving from Delhi
to Leh will leave you completely mesmerized. The road trip covers the beautiful Himalayas, which are known for their thrilling roadways and splendid landscapes. It is divided into two parts. The drive from Delhi to Manali
will be smooth and comfortable but as soon as you hit the Leh highway, it will become quite treacherous.
The drive from Manali to Leh is one of the most difficult and thrilling roads to travel in the country. However, the splendid beauty of the surrounding nature will make you forget the tough road. There are several places one can stop for breathtaking views such as Rohtang Pass, Taglang La Sarchu, Barlacha La, Upsi and Keylong. There are also many Buddhist monasteries on the way that one can visit.
Khardung La is the highest motorable road in India, which the riders should not miss at all. The road between Manali and Leh is open for only 5 months a year, mostly from summer months till the month of October. Do not forget to fill up your tanks at Tandi Petrol Station, as the next petrol pump is almost 365 kilometers away.
The travel route for this road trip starts from Delhi via Chandigarh, Mandi, Kullu and Manali. From there, one has to take the road to Rohtang La, Kokhsar, Tandi, Keylong, Darcha, Sarchu, Panh, Upsi and finally, Leh. Total Distance
: 990 KilometersTravel Time:
Mumbai – Goa
When we talk about road trips, the drive from Mumbai to Goa
is the most popular one. Moreover, it has been showcased in many popular Bollywood
movies including Dil Chahta Hai and Bombay to Goa. The party capital of India is about 10 hours away from Mumbai, but the drive is totally worth it. This long journey will offer an experience that will be embedded in your memory forever.
Take the Pune
Expressway from Mumbai, about 93 kilometers, and reach Kolhapur
via NH 4, Amboli and Sawantwadi. The stunning Western Ghats along the way will definitely make your drive unforgettable.
Alternatively, one can also take the picturesque and smooth NH 17 to Goa. There are several food joints and rest stops to keep your stomach and energy level full. It is best to leave from Mumbai early in the morning, so you can be in time for the famous parties in Goa. Total Distance
: 615 KilometersTravel Time:
Pamban (Rameshwaram Island) – Tamil Nadu
If you are looking for a short picturesque road trip, then you must drive through the famous Pamban Bridge. Surrounded by a vast expense of water, a drive through this bridge has to be the most beautiful road trips in the country. Pamban Bridge connects Pamban in Rameshwaram Island to Tamil Nadu
Sometimes, all you need is the thrill of the infinite ocean under your feet and a cool breeze blowing through your hair to refresh and rejuvenate your mind and body. There are also many stories attached to this bridge. It is believed that a man let his son die to save the lives of others who were building this bridge. It is a must drive for bikers who want to be surrounded by clear blue waters. Total Distance:
13.5 KilometesTravel Taken
: 20 Minutes
Jaipur – Jaisalmer
The smooth and long drive from Jaipur
will definitely prove to be one of the most exhilarating road trips you have ever been. Whizz past the golden sands of Thar Dessert as you visit the numerous small towns and villages in Rajasthan. Experience the true vibrancy and warmth of Rajasthan as you drive down the 570-Kilometer Highway.
The roads of RJ SH 19 highway are in top notch condition, which will make your trip even more pleasurable. You can even stop at Jodhpur
for fuel and eat some authentic Rajasthani cuisine
along the way. The route includes a drive from the Pink City via Merta Road, Jodhpur, Mathaniya, Osiyan, Phalodi, Ramdevra, Pokaran and Lathi to Jaisalmer. You can also stop at Kumbalgarh and visit the famous Kumbalgarh Fort and Wildlife Sanctuary.
Alternatively, if you do not have the time for such a long road trip, you can drive down to Ranthambore
and visit Bassi Wildlife Sanctuary for tiger spotting. It is only 135 kilometers from Jaipur, which is about a 3 hour drive. Total Distance
: 570 KilometersTravel Taken:
Guwahati – Tawang
One of the most beautiful road trips in India, Guwahati
to Tawang will leave the riders asking for more. The Buddhist culture, snow-covered mountains, delicious roadside food in Jung, hot tea in Sela Pass, Ani Gompa and Indian Army Camp will make your trip even more interesting and memorable.
The road from Guwahati to Bhalukpong via Tezpur is very smooth and well maintained. The six lane national highway till Tezpur offers beautiful scenery, which gets better as you move closer to the destination. The bewildering route from Guwahati to Tawang showers you with some highly incredible tourist spots including a 3 kilometer bridge over Brahmaputra, Imphal, Kaziranga Forest
(the wettest place on Earth). There are also many rest stops and eateries on the way for a delicious local meal, especially in Bomdilla.
Once in Tawang, you can spend your time exploring the surrounding nature or visiting few of the several monasteries located over here. Total Distance:
480 KilometersTime Taken:
Chennai – Pondicherry via the East Coast Road
This is one of the most popular roads among bikers for short road trips. The entire East Coast Road (ECR) is very smooth and scenic. The sea on one side of the road is a sight to see. As the sun goes down, the beauty of the road increases making it the most picturesque road around Chennai. Make sure you carry your camera for lots of pictures.
The entire drive takes just about 3 hours and the route passes through some beautiful places in Tamil Nadu including Kalpakkam (known for its nuclear facility), Mahabalipuram
(a UNESCO World Heritage Site), Mudaliarkuppam, Idaikkazhinadu (known for its Alambara/Alamparai Fort) and Marakkanam.
Along with beautiful scenery, the entire road is lined with numerous resorts, eateries and amusement parks. Sagar Dhaba and Basera are some popular restaurants on East Coast Road. You can also visit MGM Amusement Park, Muthukado Boating Center and Madras Crocodile Bank.
Bikers can also drive to Thoothukudi via the East Coast Road (ECR) for a more rural experience. The entire drive is bordered by the magnificent Bay of Bengal on one side of the road, which promises a breathtaking driving experience. The small fishing villages on the way will definitely mystify you. Total Distance:
160 KilometersTravel Time
: 3 Hours
Chennai to Munnar
If you are looking for a longer road trip from Chennai
and want to escape the hot and humid environment over there, then a trip to Munnar
would be perfect for you. The zigzag roads and beautiful weather will definitely make your road trip unforgettable.
Once in Munnar, you can either visit one of the several lush tea gardens or explore your adventurous side by trying various sports such as paragliding and rock climbing. Do stop at Tiruchirappalli on the way, which is known for its skillfully sculpted forts and temples. Total Distance:
600 KilometersTravel Time:
Ahmedabad – Kutch
Watch the pristine white dessert blend with the beautiful blue sky as you drive from Ahmedabad
to the Rann of Kutch
. It is one of the most exciting and memorable road trips of India as you revel in the white beauty and magical land of Kutch.
A land of contrasts, Rann of Kutch looks white and barrens but as you enter you will be greeted with hoards of warm-hearted and vibrant people. Go crazy shopping for local handicrafts or visit the Wild Ass Sanctuary for a bit of adventure and sightseeing. Also, do not forget to stop at the Hodko Village for unique and artistic handicrafts.
Some parts of the roads are a little untamed and uneven, therefore, it is best to leave Ahmedabad early in the morning. Reach Kutch via Viramgam, Dhrangadhra, Halvad, Lakadia, Bhachau and Bhuj. Total Distance:
400 KilometersTravel Time:
Bangalore – Coorg
The drive from Bangalore
is a dream road trip for any enthusiastic traveler. It consists of roads where one can drive without pressing the clutch even once. In a nutshell, driving to Coorg from Bangalore includes clear road signs, fresh crisp air, well marked hills, beautiful coffee plantations and comfortable but thrilling bends and slopes.
For Bangaloreans, driving to Coorg is pure bliss. Revel in the lush Western Ghats as you drive further away from the noisy city life and closer to an adventurous but relaxing holiday. Moreover, along the way one can stop for delicious Masala Chai’s, Maddur Vada’s and sumptuous Dosas.
Escape the hustle bustle of city life and drive down to the mesmerizing hill station of Coorg via Srirangapatna. Do not enter Mysore city as you drive to Coorg and avoid the traffic by taking a bypass from Srirangapatna. So, the route includes driving from Bangalore to Bidadi, Ramanagaram, Chennapatna, Mandya, Srirangapatna, Mysore, Yelwal, Hunsur, Bylakuppe, Kushalnagara, Suntikoppa and finally Madikeri or Coorg. Total Distance:
260 KilometersTravel Time: