Where to stay in India
Holidays in Goa
What comes to mind when you think of a Goa holiday? Stretches of silver sand wet by a rush of blue waters, the sky mirroring the sea below, the strumming of guitars from distant taverns, riverside promenades, white churches resting against green paddy fields and coconut groves, international cuisine with local flavour, sumptuous seafood, exotic fruits and intoxicating local drinks, longer days of sun, sand and seas. Experience all this and more with our Goa holiday packages.
Essential information for India
- Virgin Atlantic fly daily to Delhi from London Heathrow
Do I need a visa?
British citizens require a visa for India and need to obtain this before travelling.
Best time to visit India
The peak season for tourism is Nov-Mar when daytime temperatures are warm and nights can be cool. Spring months between Apr-Jun can become very hot as well as summer with high temperatures and rains from Jul-Sep/Oct. The tiger reserves are closed during this time too (Apr-Sep).
Experience colours and spice: Highlights of India
From the private beach resorts of Goa to the bustling, culture-rich cities of Rajasthan, spotting magnificent wildlife on safari to exploring the ancient, fairytale-like ruins of Hampi... India is one of those countries that not only lives up to, but far surpasses, every expectation. It’s as intoxicatingly colourful, vibrant and culturally rich as you’ve heard.
This unforgettable country has something to offer every kind of holidayer, so let’s get you started with some of our India holiday highlights:
- Rajasthan boasts architectural and cultural must-sees. In Jaipur, discover the Amber Fort and the vibrant buildings known as the ‘Pink City’. Wander the busy streets, dip in and out of the various market stalls and shops for some of the best artsy souvenirs the country has to offer, and travel local-style with a trip in a rickshaw. Be sure to haggle for the best price! While in Rajasthan, be sure to travel on the Deccan Odyssey to the state’s villages, where you’ll meet the local tribes.
- Head to the sacred city of Varanasi, on the banks of the mighty Ganges, to experience its spectacular and fascinating culture. Hindu pilgrims come to this holy city, one of the oldest cities in the world, to bathe in the sacred waters and cremate their loved ones. There’s nowhere on Earth quite like Varanasi – India holidays would be incomplete without a stop here.
- In almost total contrast, the UNESCO World Heritage Site, Hampi, is an otherworldly oasis of green palm trees, paddies and plantations contrasted with rusty hued ruins and boulders. Hampi Bazaar is the perfect chillout spot after you’ve finished exploring the beautiful area, boasting lantern-lit rooftop restaurants aplenty.
- If you’re seeking beach holidays to India, heading south is always a safe bet – Goa and Kerala offer some of the most spectacular coastlines. There’s sun, sea and sand, of course, but also spirituality and tranquility in towns like Anjuna, Goa.
- The stunning Varkala beach in Kerala is the perfect spot for relaxation, lined with cliffside beach shacks overlooking the Arabian Sea and yoga on the beach to help you zen out. If luxury India holidays mean secluded beaches, head to the holy town of Gokarna in northern Karnataka to relax on one of four pristine stretches of sand.
- Sportier types will enjoy scuba diving and snorkeling around the coral reefs at Tarkarli beach in southern Maharashtra. This one’s a little off the beaten track, so perfect if you prefer to avoid touristy beaches.
- Not all temples, busy streets and colourful culture, India holidays are great for nature lovers and adventurous types, too. For safari, nothing quite beats spotting the Royal Bengal Tiger and the elusive leopard at the Ranthambore National Park. Truly one of the best places on Earth to see these incredible animals, why not take a tour as an extra to our India holiday packages?
- The ideal way to relax while also taking in some of India’s most famous sights, take a houseboat tour of Kerala’s backwaters. It’s hard to beat cruising through the breathtaking palm-studded lagoons. If trains are more your thing, a ride on the Kalka-Shimla toy train, which twists and turns past some of the most beautiful scenery northern India has to offer, is a must.
- Take a trip to the temples of Galtaji, an ancient hindu pilgrimage site just outside of Jaipur, Rajasthan. One of the temples is known as “Monkey Temple”, and is an animal lover’s dream. Buy some peanuts at the bottom and you’ll be a (monkey) crowd pleaser.
- India holidays are sure to be unforgettable, but inject some added luxury and it’ll be one for the holiday hall of fame. Whether you’re celebrating a special occasion or just want to treat yourself, planning luxury India holidays is easy: we’ve done it for you. Why not experience India’s ‘Blue Train’ onboard the Deccan Odyssey between Delhi and Mumbai? Wake up to breathtaking scenery and stay at luxury hotels at each end of your journey.
- Stay at the glorious Park Hyatt, overlooking Arossim Beach in Goa, home to an organic spice farm, sleek rooms and the award-winning Sereno Spa. Our luxury India holidays and all-inclusive India holidays are world-class, no-fuss, and absolutely not to be missed.
With all the smells, colours and cultural traditions, where better to sample exciting and exotic foods than on holiday in India?
- Take to the beaches of Goa for spicy seafood dishes that British curries don’t even nearly match up to, as well as Portuguese-influenced cuisine. From laidback restaurants to ocean-side shacks, the Goan dining experience is like no other, no matter your tastes.Aboard the Deccan Odyssey, luxuriate with fine dining and five-star service from waiters dressed in traditional Maharashtrian attire – you’ll feel like you’re in a Wes Anderson movie. The food is truly exquisite, and the views from the train will take your breath away.
- Mumbai is known for its deliciously distinctive street foods, or chaat. Head to Juhu beach for the best offerings – look out for pav bhaji, a tomato and vegetable-based curry dish served with soft, garlic-y bread, vada pav, a spiced potato burger, and pani puri, crunchy, crispy spheres filled with chickpeas, tamarind chutney and other tasty things. Better yet, you can feed two people – and we mean feed – for a couple of pounds max.
- For India holidays spent in Kerala, sample the tropical state’s southern delights in the form of thali (small servings) with a side of vegetable stuffed paratha (flatbread) for good measure.
Of course, this rich and vibrant country is known for its equally colourful festivals, and it’s certainly worth planning holidays to India around one if you can! Most of note…
- October/November: India celebrates Diwali, the Festival of Lights. Provided you stay in an area with a Hindu culture, the festivities, alight with lanterns and candles, will be all around.
- Spring: an explosion of colour marks the celebration of Holi, where old age traditions meet modern parties filled with music and food. This is a famous festival for a reason – don’t miss it.
Itching to get yourself one of our India holidays? We certainly don’t blame you! We’ve handled all the boring bits, so all you need to do is browse our selection of India package holidays and hotels and book today. See you at the airport!