The birthplace of some of the most incredible traditions and cultures in the world, India is a fantastic place to visit. For history lovers, there are scores of heritage sites in India you can explore on your vacation this year. From palaces and forts to monuments and landmarks, the choice of heritage sites in India is endless. Explore some of these awesome places and get an incredible insight into the country’s glorious past.
Top UNESCO World Heritage Sites in India:
India’s heritage sites are among some of the best in the world and will leave you mesmerized by their beauty and fascinating past. Even if you are on a last minute unplanned travel to the country, make sure to visit at least one of the below-mentioned amazing heritage sites in India.
- Taj Mahal, Agra
It comes as no surprise that the enchanting Taj Mahal tops the UNESCO World Heritage sites list. The sparkling white marble monument is famous worldwide as much for its beauty and grandeur as for the story behind it. Actually a mausoleum, the structure is an epitome of love and an inspiration to lovers the world over. One of the finest examples of Mughal architecture, every part of the monument holds incredible, delicate beauty. The monument is visited by families, friends, and couples alike.
- Hampi, Karnataka
The spectacular ruins of the powerful and erstwhile Vijayanagara Empire Hampi prove why the importance of heritage sites in India cannot be undermined. Depicting finest Dravidian architectural style, the ruins of forts, palaces, and other monuments here are stunning to behold. The most important of these is the Virupaksha Temple which is an important religious site for Hindus even today. There are several other religious sites here that make this one of the most significant heritage sites in India for Hindus.
- Bodh Gaya, Bihar
A prime center for Buddhists, Bodh Gaya in Bihar is where Buddha gained knowledge and enlightenment. It is among the most important heritage sites in the country and one every Buddhist hopes to visit at least once in his lifetime. Top attractions include the holy Bodhi tree where the Buddha attained wisdom and the Mahabodhi Temple built during the rule of Ashoka the Great. Spectacular to explore, the structure depicts some of the most stunning architectural beauty ever.
- Red Fort, Delhi
An important site not just historically but politically as well, the Red Fort complex in Delhi is a must-visit. The remarkable red structure built by Emperor Shah Jahan became a prime hub of political power for the Mughals. There are several buildings within the complex that you can explore such as the Diwan-i-Khas, Diwan-i-aam, and scores of private pavilions. Even if you’re booking business class flights for a work trip, make time to see this spectacular monument. It will give you an invaluable look into the glorious past of this remarkable country.
- Chola Temples, Tamil Nadu
Built during the reign of the powerful Chola Empire, these temples display some of the most awesome architectural splendor ever. Standing as magnificent examples of Chola art, traditions, and culture, these are some of the most beautiful temples in South India one can visit. One of the top heritage sites in India, there are two primarily important temples to visit here – the Brihadisvara Temple and the Airavatesvara Temple. The rituals that took place hundreds of years ago are still observed here today. This is one of the holiest sites for Hindus in India.
- Rani Ki Vav, Gujarat
Constructed on the orders of Queen Udaymati for her deceased husband, this is one of the most fascinating heritage sites in India to explore. Famed for its stepped corridors, delicate stone carvings, and spectacular sculptures, Rani Ki Vav was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site a few years ago. Made in the design of a temple that’s been inverted, maximum sculptures here are devoted to Hindu deity Vishnu and his ten avatars.
- Churches of Goa
Owing to their beautiful architecture and intriguing history, the churches of Goa have also been declared as UNESCO World Heritage sites. The Portuguese were the ones to introduce Christianity in India and subsequently, so many churches as well as convents were built in Goa. The most famous monument of these is the Basilica of Bom Jesus which houses the body of the revered St. Xavier. Other important sites include Saint Catherine’s Chapel, Church of Saint Cajetan, and Church of Saint Augustine among others.
- Forts of Rajasthan
The hill forts of Rajasthan are among the most stunning heritage sites in India to explore. Also recently included in the UNESCO World Heritage list, these forts are among the most spectacular ones to visit. They include Ranthambore Fort, Amber Fort, Jaisalmer Fort, Gagron Fort, and about 6 forts in Kumbhalgarh and Chittorgarh. The majestic structure of these forts is sure to leave you spellbound and you will marvel at their strong fortification and spectacular architecture. Book cheap flights with Indian Eagle for a vacation to India and come visit some of these spectacular heritage sites in India.