5 Camping Locations In India That Will Leave You Awestruck

Take a break from your daily routine in the majesty of the natural world and allow yourself to reconnect with the rhythms of plants, trees, birds, mountains and lakes
A scene from Chopta in Uttarakhand
A scene from Chopta in UttarakhandFlickr: Santanu Chatterjee

India is blessed with amazing camping locations that are sure to leave you awestruck. Its numerous offbeat campsites are hidden gems that will satiate any wanderlust. From the foothills of the Himalayas to those in the southern states which are an arm's length from the Indian Ocean, every corner of the country is home to some sublime sites.  

Check out our top five list and get ready to make some reservations.

Chandra Taal Lake, Himachal Pradesh

Chandra Taal Lake in the Spiti Valley
Chandra Taal Lake in the Spiti ValleyWikimedia Commons:

Surrounded by rocky terrain and mountains, Chandra Taal feels like a place from another world. A challenging trek through the Spiti Valley and the Kunzum Pass leads you to the resplendent lake. Its crystal clear waters sparkle with the reflection of the Himalayas. Breathe in the complete silence and calm with a walk on the periphery of the crescent-shaped lake. According to Hindu legends this is where the eldest Pandava, Yudhisthira, was picked up by the Lord Indra on the former's pilgrimage to the Himalayas. 

Sonamarg, Jammu And Kashmir

A campsite at Sonamarg
A campsite at SonamargFlickr: albert_d_lewis

This picturesque hill station in India's northernmost state is located nearly 9,000 feet at the foothills of the Himalayas. Offering a view of the glittering snow-capped mountains, the valley encapsulating it brims with lush greenery. Treks to Thajiwas Glacier, the Zoji La Pass and the Amarnath Temple are popular activities in the area. It is highly recommended to visit the free-flowing Sind River, which further embellishes the alluring beauty of the place.

Ramanagara, Karnataka

Adventure activites in the Ramanagara Hills
Adventure activites in the Ramanagara HillsFlickr: Radtel IT

This is the area in which arguably the first Bollywood blockbuster movie was filmed. In the hills of Ramanagara, around 50km from Bangalore, Jai and Veeru fought off the bandit Gabbar Singh and his minions in the 1975 movie 'Sholay'. Located on the banks of the Avalahalli Lake and the verdant forests of the SRS Hills, adventurers can partake in ziplining, rappelling, kayaking and archery.

Mawphlang, Meghalaya

The sacred forest of Mawphlang
The sacred forest of MawphlangWikimedia Commons: Daniel Romanson

When you think of places to travel around in Meghalaya, Shillong is probably the first to cross your mind, but slightly off the radar for most tourists is the village of Mawphlang. Made for nature lovers, the gleaming green forests of the East Khasi Hills are a marvel. The sacred groves of the area, generically called 'law kyntang' in the Khasi language, are home to medicinal trees that have survived for centuries.

Feel free to trek through the forest and speak with local guides to understand the ancient stories and mysteries of the region, but under no circumstances pick up leaves, pebbles, fruits, flowers, seeds, wood or anything else from the forest.

Chopta, Uttarakhand 

Camping in Chopta
Camping in ChoptaFlickr: AshwinGokhale

This is another destination nestled among the Himalayas. The exotic sight of the Nanda Devi, Chaukhamba, and Trisul peaks all covered in snow is a sheer delight for any visitor. Situated in the midst of the Kedarnath Wildlife Sanctuary, Chopta is open to visitors throughout the year but temperatures in the winter hover in the minus. While the brittle cold might appear to be a drawback, the beauty and serenity of the snow make it an experience like no other. 

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