Drivable getaways you can take to escape from the city
After spending weeks confined at home, many travellers are craving a change of scenery. Whether it’s exploring destinations off the beaten path or a desire to be in the open landscapes, we are all dreaming of experiencing the world again, when the time is right. After delving into Booking.com data, it was observed that the most searched destinations in August by Indians are - New Delhi, Mumbai, Jaipur, Bangalore and Udaipur. With that in mind, here’s a list of quick drivable getaways around the urban cities to provide you with much needed travel inspiration and fuel your wanderlust. Travellers can travel to these ‘off the beaten path’ destinations in the safety of their cars to relax and rejuvenate and break free from the hustle-bustle of the city, as and when it's safe to do so.
- New Delhi
‘The Lake of the Sun’ or Surajkund is located very close to the city borders of Delhi. Travellers can enjoy a scenic drive to this manmade lake and unwind and relax with their loved ones by planning a weekend getaway and a small potluck or picnic. One can get a great set of pictures with the backdrop of the Aravalli hills and an amphitheater-shaped embankment constructed in semicircular form. Travellers can also take a peaceful walk and meditate by the beautiful Peacock Lake, just a few minutes away from the kund.
Distance from New Delhi: 22.2 km
Activities to do: nature trail, photography, meditating
Not too far away from the city is Damdama Lake in Sohna district, which overlooks the splendid Aravalli Hills. Travellers can plan a day trip to this small lake on a weekend and enjoy various activities such as angling, parasailing, cycling, rock climbing, kayaking, and valley crossing. One’s who are not in a mood for such adventures can laze around and relish a home-cooked meal watching the sunset with their families. And if you are lucky, you would also get a glimpse of about 90 species of migratory birds flocking around the lake.
Distance from New Delhi: 46.6 km
Activities to do: Angling, parasailing, cycling, rock climbing, kayaking, valley crossing, bird watching, nature walks
Nothing better than a road trip where you can make multiple stops only to get mesmerized by the greenery and waterfalls before reaching the destination! For travellers missing the fresh air and open skies, Pelhar Dam is a picturesque drive away from the city of Mumbai. And as you pass by the road to Pelhar Dam, you also get to witness a wildlife sanctuary. Travellers looking for a secret escape can plan a quick getaway to this hidden gem as it becomes safe to do so.
Distance from Mumbai: 59 km
Activities to do: sightseeing, walking
Travellers who have spent most of the monsoons in their homes can plan a short road trip from Mumbai to Jawhar, an unexplored hill station in Maharashtra. Driving through breezy weather and quaint views, travellers can experience a ride like never before. Travellers can step out of their vehicle and walk through the enchanting Dabhosa waterfall, hike to the temples, dams and other spots offering a fulfilling view of the valley. This place would also excite travellers who have missed being around nature as they get to spend time in dense cover of lush green forests.
Distance from Mumbai: 120.7 km
Activities to do: nature trail, bird watching, sightseeing, trekking
Located on the outskirts of Jaipur, Chandlai lake is a lesser known waterbody for travellers who want to catch a glimpse of migratory birds. Travellers should take an early morning drive before the sunrise to get the best sight of this lake, and if you are lucky you can see a range of bird species like Pied Avocet, Pallas’s Gull, Ruff, Ruddy Shelduck and the White Wagtail. Along with bird gazing, travellers can also plan a picnic away from the crowd in a socially distanced manner.
Distance from Jaipur: 30km
Activities to do: birdwatching, walking
Known to be one of the most divine territories of Rajasthan, Chand Baori or Chand Bawri is an ancient step well-built thousands of years ago. The drive to this place reflects the historical importance of the city, which is hidden in a village with rich architectural ruins. Travellers will have one of a kind experience after reaching the royal stepwell that leads you down to the water and is 3500 in number.
Distance from Jaipur: 93.2 km
Activities to do: photography
Built on the water of the tranquil Arkavati River, Manchanabele Dam is a perfect drive away from the rush of the city. Travellers looking forward to a quick break can prepare themselves for a breathtaking journey on their way from Bengaluru. Known for lush green trees, panoramic sky and clear water, the dam offers a wholesome experience for the ones who have been craving to be in such a landscape for a long time. One should not forget to catch and cherish the brilliantly red and orange reflection of sunset falling on the clear blue water.
Distance from Bengaluru: 36km
Activities to do: nature walk, sun gazing, photography
Travellers looking to surround themselves with nature and greenery can plan a heavenly escape to Muthyala Maduvu, 40kms away from Bengaluru. Also known as Pearl Valley, this place is known for its waterfall amidst dense forests and diverse flora and fauna. One can indulge in walking across the forest trail and witness a variety of exotic species of birds. Travellers seeking adventure can also plan quick treks and hikes for that long due adrenaline rush amidst the hills.
Distance from Bengaluru: 42.4 km
Activities to do: nature trail, trekking, day camping
The city of lakes boasts of many pretty lakes, but Lake Badi is not so known amongst travellers. Travellers who love riding around freshwater lakes, can take a quick 30-minute drive to reach this lake built around the Sajjangarh Wildlife Sanctuary from Udaipur. It’s a view to catch if you make it for the sunrise or the sunset. One can cycle around the lake or engage in a short hike to reach the top of Bahubali hills for a splendid view of the lake.
Distance from Udaipur: 12.9 km
Activities to do: hiking, cycling, walking, birdwatching
Haldighati is the place for those travellers who have spent their lockdown researching on the history of places, but could’t visit them. Situated about 50 km from the city of Udaipur, Haldighati is a historical mountain pass in the hills of Aravali. The ride from Udaipur to Haldighati is all things nature as the entire route runs parallel to the green mountains of Aravali hills.
Distance from Udaipur: 40 km
Activities to do: sightseeing, walking