Making a ranking of the 10 must-see places in northern India is a challenge because this country is rich and vast. Indeed, India has more than a billion inhabitants and its surface area is 5 times that of France. Suffice it to say that there are a lot of things to discover there. We had the chance to travel the north of this wonderful country for more than a month, particularly the Rajasthan region.
It is best to plan your stay in this country carefully given the multiple points of interest. Don’t panic, we are here to help you. We have prepared a ranking of the 10 places not to be missed during a trip to India, more precisely in the North. Let’s go !
- The mystical city of Varanasi
- The Taj Mahal in Agra, northern India
- Jaisalmer Citadel
- The City Palace in Udaipur
- The Dharavi slum in Mumbai
- Ranakpur temple, northern India
- Jaswanth Temple in Jodhpur
- The Baby Taj in Agra, northern India
- Amber Fort in Jaipur
The 10 must-see places in northern India
So that you understand the rest of our article, this is not a ranking from the best thing to do to the worst. It’s way too hard to know what’s best in India.
In addition, there are many other exceptional activities to do in northern India. We have only done a tiny part so don’t hesitate to go to other sites to see what else there is to do.
The mystical city of Varanasi
Varanasi is one of the 7 most sacred cities in India but also one of the oldest in our world. It is crossed by the Ganges, the most sacred river in the world. It is here that, every day, thousands of pilgrims come to purify themselves to obtain the favors of their god Shiva.
However, it was something else that made us come and explore this place. Indeed, Varanasi is unique and its atmosphere is very special. There are ancestral rites where Indians burn their deceased in crematoriums and then throw their ashes into the Ganges.
Honestly, it’s a city that shocked us. To understand it better, you have to delve into its history and go there. We wrote a complete article going into detail about our experience in Varanasi which you can find right here.
The Taj Mahal in Agra, northern India
A stay in India means a mandatory visit to the Taj Mahal, one of the 7 wonders of the world. It is located in the city of Agra, in northern India. It is the most visited place in India and you will quickly understand why.
This immense mausoleum covered in white marble is a true symbol of love thanks to its legendary history known throughout the world. Built by Emperor Shah Jahan in honor of his late wife Mumtaz Mahal, the Taj Mahal is an architectural marvel. It is one of the most beautiful monuments that we have seen in the four corners of the world.
The Taj Mahal is such a magical experience that we have dedicated an entire article to our tips and tricks for visiting this wonder of the world. The article can be found right here.
The ticket price is 1100 INR (13 euros) to enter the Taj Mahal. You also need an additional 200 INR (2.30 euros) to gain access to the Taj Mahal Mausoleum. It’s free for children under 15.
Jaisalmer is a city located in the Rajasthan region of northwest India. Each house is built of yellow stone, which earned it the nickname of the city of gold. It is full of secrets and things to discover. Just walk around the citadel to feel like you’re on another planet.
The city is located next to the Thar desert where it is possible to spend the night under the stars. This is an experience that we tested. If you want to learn more, our article can be found here.
Jaisalmer is located in the heart of the Rajasthan region. It is a well-known region in India for its beauty and diversity. We spent 2 weeks there and it was our favorite part of India. Through our article, we will introduce you to other unmissable destinations in Rajasthan. If you want to discover our itinerary in this region, our article can be found here.
The City Palace in Udaipur
One of the major activities in India is to explore the forts or temples of this country. You will quickly see that every city has at least one. It’s sometimes even difficult to know which ones are worth it. Because yes, not everyone is equal. From our point of view, the most beautiful palace in India is in Udaipur.
Indeed, the City Palace in Udaipur is a large complex bringing together several palaces with an architectural style unique in the world. It’s a great place to delve into Indian history. Each piece has its own style and details. We have explored lots of temples and palaces in India but this one stands out the most.
The article on our 2-week itinerary in Rajasthan goes into detail about the must-do things to do in the city of Udaipur. Do not hesitate to consult it here for more details.
Entrance costs 250 INR (approximately 3 euros) per person and you have to add 250 INR for the camera. This palace is open Monday to Sunday from 9:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
Dharavi slum in Mumbai
It may seem strange to recommend a slum in a top 10 places not to be missed during a trip to India. However, the Dharavi slum in Mumbai is a nice surprise and we think it is important that people take the time to visit it.
Located in the heart of Mumbai, this slum is one of the largest in the world. According to urban legends, there are more than a million people living in just 2 square kilometers. This makes this slum the place on earth with the highest population density per square meter. He became world famous thanks to the film Slumdog Millionaire, which needs no introduction.
Several people had advised us not to go there and on numerous forums, we had read everything and its opposite. To form a definitive opinion, we chose to see it with our own eyes. On site, we are the opposite of its sad reputation. People were delighted to see us and at no time did we feel unsafe. Our goal was not to go there just to take photos or for the sake of voyeurism. We wanted to understand how these people live and especially in what conditions. And of course, you have to expect to see complicated things but that’s also India.
We wrote an article on the must-see attractions not to be missed in Mumbai where we also talk about the slums. Find the article here.
Ranakpur temple, northern India
As mentioned previously, India has thousands of temples and forts. Some of them are simply exceptional. This is the case for the Ranakpur temple.
It is a temple that was built in the 15th century. It is thanks to its architecture that the Ranakpur temple is unique and much more interesting than some. This temple has 29 rooms and more than 1444 pillars. It is relatively small but there are so many details that you can stay there for hours.
We advise you to visit it from Udaipur because it is relatively accessible. We talk in more detail about how we did it in our article about our 2 weeks in Rajasthan which you can find here.
Entrance costs 200 INR (2.30 euros) per person and 100 INR for the camera. The temple is open Monday to Sunday from 6:30 a.m. to 8:15 p.m.
Jaswanth in Jodhpur
Jodhpur is a well-known city in the Rajasthan region because it has a very special atmosphere. Indeed, the walls of certain buildings are painted blue, which has earned it the nickname of the blue city.
Jodhpur is also known for its immense fort overlooking the city, however this is not what surprised us the most. The monument not to be missed in this city is the Jaswanth temple, located near the fort.
Indeed, this temple is a magical place and it is the place you must visit during a stay in Jodhpur. The temple offers gardens which are ideal for coming to rest and admire the sunset far from the hustle and bustle of the city. We advise you to go there around 4 p.m. to witness this beautiful spectacle.
Entrance costs 50 INR (0.60 euros) per person. It is open Monday to Sunday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Be careful as entry is prohibited after 4 p.m.
The Baby Taj in Agra, northern India
To be honest with you, the city of Agra is not very pretty, especially after having visited many exceptional cities in Rajasthan. It is world famous because, as previously mentioned, the Taj Mahal is located in this city.
It would be a shame to come to Agra and only visit the Taj Mahal because it has other lesser known gems. In fact, the baby Taj is a replica of its big brother but smaller. It is nonetheless magnificent and worth a visit.
We have written an article detailing our experience at the Taj Mahal in Agra where we look back on what to visit also in the city and its surroundings. You can read it by clicking right here.
Entrance costs only 310 INR (3.50 euros) per person. Children under 15 do not pay admission. Finally, it is open Monday to Sunday from 8 a.m. to midnight.
Amber Fort in Jaipur
To finish our top 10 must-see places to visit in the northern region of India, we had to mention Amber Fort in Jaipur. This fort is the emblem of this city and it is located on the outskirts of the latter. It has a fabulous history and an incredible exterior facade.
But to be honest with you, we didn’t like the interior of the fort. We were expecting details and rooms like the City Palace in Udaipur but unfortunately it was nothing like that. Everything seemed dirty and poorly maintained and there were a lot of people… All around the temple, there is a large wall which supports its supremacy over this region. It is not possible to go there unfortunately because it is a dangerous place.
Entrance costs 500 INR (6 euros) per person. Fort Amber is open Monday to Sunday from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. There are two entrances, but we recommend the front one because it opens directly onto the exterior facade.
Northern India is full of cultural wonders worth exploring. The 10 must-see places mentioned in our article will offer you a rich and varied experience, ranging from historic temples and mountainous landscapes to imposing forts and bustling cities.
Whether you are looking for adventure, culture or relaxation, these destinations will offer you an unforgettable trip. Thank you very much for taking the time to read us. Please feel free to leave us a comment or send us a message on Instagram.
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