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Top Heritage Places to Visit in India

pro51tripiwikicom : 30 Jan 2018
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Heritage is our legacy from the past, what we live with today, and what we pass on to future generations. Our cultural and natural heritage are both irreplaceable.  India has been a country with rich history, culture and traditions, country is a house to many historic buildings, monuments and places which glorify and add on to the charm of India attracting tourists, historians and travelers from across the globe. In India totally 36 World Heritage Sites are recognized by UNESCO. These include 30 cultural sites, seven natural sites and one mixed site. India has the sixth largest number of sites in the world. there are an additional 44+ sites on the UNESCO tentative list for India. Following are the must visit Heritage sites in India.

1 Agra Fort

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Agra Fort is a historical fort in the city of Agra, Uttar Pradesh, India. With the Taj Mahal overshadowing it the important 16th-century Mughal monument also known as the Red Fort of Agra is one of the finest Mughal forts in India. Agra Fort remained the main residence of the Mughal emperors till 1638. It is situated on the west bank of the Jumna River, about 2km upstream from the Taj Mahal . Agra is located at approx 231km from Delhi, 234km from Lucknow, 240km from Jaipur.

2 Aihole

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Aihole a capital city of early Chalukyan dynasty is one of the most popular tourist destination in north Karnataka, located on the banks of Malaprabha River in Bagalakote district of Karnataka, India. City is know for it's magnificent rock architecture, there are more than 125 temples in various styles. Most of these temples are from 6th & 8th centuries and some even earlier. Many temples and caves of historical importance can be found at Aihole. The temples carry rich architectural sculpture on pillars and ceilings, especially depictions of such major gods as Vishnu, Shiva, and Brahma. Some of the famous temples include the Gowda Temple, Suryanarayana Temple and the Durga Temple. The Ravana Phadi Cave is one of the oldest rock-cut cave temples. Aihole is located at approx 140km from Hubli, 139km from World Heritage Site Hampi, 446km from capital city Bengaluru, 271km from Goa, 425km from Pune, 384km from Hyderabad.

3 Ajanta Caves

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Ajanta and Ellora Caves are a UNESCO World Heritage Site located in the Aurangabad district of Maharashtra, India. Ajanta and Ellora caves, considered to be one of the finest examples of ancient rock-cut caves and are one of the major tourist attractions of Maharashtra, India. According to UNESCO, these are masterpieces of Buddhist religious art that influenced the Indian art that followed. The Ajanta Caves constitute ancient monasteries and worship-halls of different Buddhist traditions carved into a 75-metre (246 ft) wall of rock. There are over 100 caves at the Ellora, all excavated from the basalt cliffs in the Charanandri Hills, 34 of which are open to public.[3] These consist of 12 Buddhist (caves 1–12), 17 Hindu (caves 13–29) and 5 Jain (caves 30–34) caves. Ajanta Caves are located at approx 102km from Aurangabad, 255km from Nashik, 355 km from Pune, 420km from Mumbai, 413km from Nagpur, 451km from Bhopal, Madhya Pradesh, 368km from Surat, Gujarat.

4 Badami Cave Temples

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Badami is historic town know for cave temples, located in Bagalkot district of Karnataka, India. Badami was the capital of the early Chalukya dynasty. the Rock Cut Cave Temples are the main tourist attraction in Badami. Carved out of massive stone cliff, the cave temples are the best example of Chalukya architecture style.. Three among the four cave temples are dedicated to deities of Hinduism and one temple is dedicated to Jainism. Important feature of Badami Caves and their surroundings is ancient inscriptions in Kannada writing and in Kannada and Sanskrit languages. Agastya Theertha, a serene lake is a must-see spot in Badami. The Government of India has declared Badami as one of the heritage cities in India. Badami is located at approx 105km from Hubli Airport, 141km from world heritage site Hampi, 449km from Bengaluru, 241km from Goa, 425km from Hyderabad, 449km from Pune.

5 Bhimbetka Rock Shelters

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The Rock Shelters of Bhimbetka are an archaeological sit situated near Amchha Khurd villages in Raisen District of Madhya Pradesh, India. It is a UNESCO world heritage site that consists of seven hills and over 750 rock shelters distributed over 10 kilometres. These ancient naturally carved rocks surrounded by dense forests of Bhimbetka in the foothills of the Vindhyan Mountains are the must visit place in Madhya Pradesh, India. An archaeological treasure, Bhimbetka has around 243 rock shelters. The paintings found in the rock shelters here have a striking resemblance to the ones discovered in Kakadu National Park in Australia; to the cave paintings of Bushmen in Kalahari Desert and Upper Palaeolithic Lascaux cave paintings in France. This site is located at approx 45km from state capital Bhopal, 237km from Indore, 313km from Nagpur, Maharashtra.

6 Chittorgarh Fort

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The Chittaur Fort or Chittorgarh Fort is a one of the largest forts of india located in Chittorgarh city of Rajasthan, India. It is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and Its origins are traced to the Pandavas of Mahabharata. It is said that Bhima, one of the Pandava brothers, built the fort. Standing on 180 meters high hill, the fort covers an area of 700 Acres. Has a one-mile-long twisty road leading to it with seven gateways guarded by a watch tower and iron-spiked doors. While only 22 of the original 84 bodies of water within the fort still exist. Apart from Padmini and Rawal Ratan Singh’s palaces, Chittor Fort houses intricately carved Jain temples, ornamental pillars, Gaumukh reservoir, considered sacred by the locals and Meerabai’s temple where she worshipped lord Krishna. Chittorgarh Fort is located at approx 123km from Udaipur, 314km form state capital Jaipur, 463km from Bhopal, Madhya Pradesh, 489km from Jhansi, Uttar Pradesh, 361km from Gandhinagar, Gujarat.

7 Darjeeling Himalayan Railway

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The Darjeeling Himalayan Railway, also known as the DHR or the Toy Train, is a 2 ft gauge railway that runs between New Jalpaiguri and Darjeeling . Small steam engine pulling mini coaches up the steep mountains through breathtaking landscapes and overcoming almost impossible curves and gradients using sheer engineering ingenuity and creative skills. Riding the Toy Train of Darjeeling Himalayan Railways (DHR) has always remained a coveted experience to the tourists. Toy Train has been accorded the UNESCO World Heritage status, and that's for a special reason. Darjeeling is located at 98 km from Gangtok, 500km from Guwahati, 515km from Patna.

8 Double Decker Living Root Bridge

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There are several examples of double living root bridges, the most famous being the "Double Decker" root bridge of Nongriat Village near Cherrapunjee, Meghalaya, India. The Living Root Bridges are made from rubber tree roots. Living Root Bridges in Meghalaya are recognized by UNESCO as a World Heritage Sites. Of all the Living Root Bridges in Meghalaya, the double-decker root bridge in Cherrapunji and the single-decker root bridge in Shillong are the unique bridges in the world and make for prime attraction in the Northeast. Nongriat Village Double Decker Living Root Bridge is located at 22km from Cherrapunjee, 67km from Shillong.

9 Ellora Caves

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Ajanta and Ellora Caves are a UNESCO World Heritage Site located in the Aurangabad district of Maharashtra, India. Ajanta and Ellora caves, considered to be one of the finest examples of ancient rock-cut caves and are one of the major tourist attractions of Maharashtra, India. According to UNESCO, these are masterpieces of Buddhist religious art that influenced the Indian art that followed. The Ajanta Caves constitute ancient monasteries and worship-halls of different Buddhist traditions carved into a 75-metre (246 ft) wall of rock. There are over 100 caves at the Ellora, all excavated from the basalt cliffs in the Charanandri Hills, 34 of which are open to public.[3] These consist of 12 Buddhist (caves 1–12), 17 Hindu (caves 13–29) and 5 Jain (caves 30–34) caves. Ellora Caves are located at approx 30km from Aurangabad, 175km from Nashik, 255 km from Pune, 341km from Mumbai, 500km from Nagpur, 572km from Bhopal, Madhya Pradesh, 351km from Surat, Gujarat.

10 Gwalior Fort

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Gwalior Fort is a Magnificent hill fort near Gwalior in Gwalior district of Madhya Pradesh, India. It is also called "the Gibraltar of India" as the The fort has existed at least since the 10th century. The historical significance & wonderful architecture makes it a must visit attraction in Madhya Pradesh, India. The fort is built on an outcrop of Vindhyan sandstone on a solitary rocky hill called Gopachal. Located at 3km from Gwalior railway station, 104km from Jhansi, Uttar Pradesh, 121km from Agra, Uttar Pradesh, 267km from Kanpur, Uttar Pradesh, 407km from Bhopal.

11 Jaipur

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Jaipur is and beautiful historic capital city and the largest city of the Indian state of Rajasthan. It's also referred as Pink City due to the distinct color of its buildings and is an is a major tourist attraction in Rajastan, India. Jaipur is home to many hostoric forts, Places and Lakes. Jaipur’s major monuments are Jantar Mantar, Albert Hall (Central Museum), Hawa Mahal, Amber Fort and Nahargarh Fort. Jaipur is located at approx 398 km from Udaipur, 236km from Agra, Uttar Pradesh, 255km from New Delhi.

12 Jaisalmer Fort

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Jaisalmer Fort is a one such amazing site, which is also a UNESCO World Heritage Site situated in the historic city of Jaisalmer, in Rajasthan, India. The fort is also known as the Golden Fort, Sonar Quila or Sone ka Quila as the fort appears like a golden structure when seen from a distance. Jaisalmer fort is the most popular landmark of Jaisalmer city. Unlike other forts of Rajasthan, Jaisalmer fort houses museum, shops, restaurants, residential accommodations, hotels, etc. Jaisalmer Fort is located at approx 282km from Jodhpur, 559km from state capital Jaipur, 761km from New Delhi.

13 Kaziranga National Park

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Kaziranga National Park is a World Heritage Site situated in Assam state of India, Is known for Great Indian one horned Rhinoceros, which hosts two-thirds of the world's great one-horned rhinoceroses. this park is one of the last areas in eastern India undisturbed by a human presence. Situated in between two districts of Assam - Golaghat and Nagaon. Kaziranga National Park is one of the most visited attractions of Assam. Kaziranga Park remain closed from 01 May till 31 Oct every year for the visitors. Therefore November to April is the best time to visit Kaziranga National Park. Located at 193 km from Guwahati, 253kom from Shillong, Meghalaya.

14 Khajuraho Group of Monuments

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The Khajuraho Group of Monuments are a group of ancient Hindu and Jain Temples with exquisite carvings and beautiful architecture in Chhatarpur district of Madhya Pradesh, India. The Temple of Kandariya is decorated with a profusion of sculptures that are among the greatest masterpieces of Indian art. Known for their breathtaking sculptors and elegance, the magnificent Khajuraho temples present aesthetics at its best. Khajuraho is an UNESCO World Heritage Site located at approx 175km from Jhansi, 376km from state capital Bhopal, 44km from Chhatarpur.

15 Mahabalipuram

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Mahabalipuram is a historic city and a UNESCO World Heritage Site is situated on the shores of Bay of Bengal coast in Kanchipuram district of Tamil Nadu, India. The temple city is also refereed as Mamallapuram, is a beachside tourism center with a group of Hindu monuments and one of the must visit tourist destination in Tamil Nadu, India. Some famous tourist attractions here are the Shore Temple and the Five Rathas, the Crocodile Bank which is home to some exquisite species of crocodiles and alligators, and the beach resorts. There are a number of temples in the town with Shore Temple being the most famous one present on the water's edge. Mamallapuram was one of two major port cities by the 7th century within the Pallava kingdom. Mahabalipuram is located at approx 56km from Chennai, 96km from Puducherry, 351km from Bengaluru, 418km from Madurai, 190km from Tirupati.

16 Mountain Railways of Maharashtra

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The Matheran Hill Railway is a 2 ft narrow-gauge heritage railway in Raigad district of Maharashtra, India, which is administered by the Central Railway. It covers a distance of 21 km cutting a swathe through forest and connecting Neral to Matheran in the Western Ghats. The MHR is on the tentative list of UNESCO World Heritage Site. Matheran’s cliffs with incredibly heights create stunning points. The Neral-Matheran Hill Railways is one of the most famous attraction of the city, it passes through the amazing mountain tunnels and dense forest of the region. Matheran is located at approx 80km from Mumbai.

17 Mysore Palace

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Mysore Palace also know as Ambavilas Palace, is a historical royal palace located at the heart of Mysore city of Karnataka, India. It is the official residence of the Wadiyar dynasty. Mysore is commonly described as the 'City of Palaces', and there are seven palaces including this. Mysore Palace is now one of the most famous tourist attractions in India, after the Taj Mahal. Mysore offers a variety of attractions like palaces , temples, gardens, dams, waterfalls, forts, museums, zoo etc. All this is accompanied by the serenity of nature, making Mysore a dream destination of every travel enthusiasts. Mysore is also know as Cultural capital of Karnataka. Mysore is located at approx 142km from Bengaluru, 256km from Mangalore, 480km from Chennai, 655km from Goa.

18 Palitana Temples

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Palitana Temples is a largest cluster of Jain temples located on Shatrunjaya hill near Palitana city in Bhavnagar district of Gujarat, India. This site on Shatrunjaya hill is considered sacred by Svetambara Jains. It is said that 23 of 24 Jain Tirthankaras (except Neminatha) sanctified the hill by their visits. The main temple at the top of the hill is dedicated to the 1st tirthankar, Lord Adinath (Rishibdeva). These temples are built by different generations of Jains over a period of 900 years. Palitana Temples hill top is located at approx 12km from Palitana, 64km from Bhavnagar, 170km from Rajkot, 246km from Gandhinagar.

19 Pattadakal

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Pattadakal group of monuments is a UNESCO world heritage site situated on the banks of the Malaprabha River in Bagalkot district of Karnataka, India. Pattadakal showcases the architectural prowess of the Chalukya dynasty. Malaprabha River is located to the north of this complex, whereas a small village is situated to the south what transform Pattadakal to a sort of holy city. There are 10 major temples in Pattadakal, all dedicated to Lord Shiva. The temples contain elements of bothDravidian and Nagara styles of architecture. Virupaksha Temple, Jain Temple, Kashiviswanatha Temple, Galaganath Temple, Sangameshwara Temple, Mallikarjuna Temple, Papanatha Temple are few of the must visit attractions in Pattadakal. The Sangamesvara temple is known to be the oldest temple in Pattadakal. Pattadakal is located at approx 127km from Hubli Airport, 135km from one more World heritage site Hampi, 443km from state capital Bengaluru, 263km from Goa, 461km from Pune, 404km from Hyderabad.

20 Red Fort

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Red Fort is one the famous attraction in Delhi, Located in the center of the city, also called Lal Kila. REd fort is one of the prominent red sandstone architectures Built By Shah Jahan in the Year of 1648. walls stretch to a distance of almost 2 kilometers, cover a total area of about 254.67 acres. The fort is named as such as it was built from red sandstone which gives the building a red tint.

21 Ruins of Hampi

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Hampi is a UNESCO World Heritage Site located near Hosapete in Bellary district of Karnataka, India. It was the Capital city of Hindu Vijayanagara Empire in the 14th century which was the last great Hindu kingdom in South India. It includes "forts, riverside features, royal and sacred complexes, temples, shrines, pillared halls, mandapas, memorial structures, water structures and others". The City was built on the bank of river Tungabhadra. The Vijayanagara Empire was defeated by a coalition of Muslim sultanates; its capital was conquered and destroyed by sultanate armies in 1565, after which Hampi remained in ruins. But the ruins are yet still stand tall, looks stunning and gives the glimpse of the richness and culture of the great Hindu Empire. Hampi is charismatic even in its ruined state. Hampi, also known as Pampa-kshetra, Kishkindha-kshetra or Bhaskara-kshetra, is derived from Pampa, which is the old name of the Tungabhadra River. Virupaksha Temple, Vittala Temple, Hampi Bazaar, Queen’s Bath, Stone chariot at Vitthala temple, Elephant stable, Lotus Mahal are some of the must visit attractions in hampi. One can enjoy the specacular views of the ruins of Hampi from top the of Hemakuta and Matanga hills near by along with sunset and sunrise. Hampi is located at approx 12km from Hosapete, 61km from Bellary, 164km from Hubli, 342km from Bengaluru, 327km from Goa, 371km from Hyderabad, 534km from Pune, 563km from Chennai.

22 Srirangapatna

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Srirangapatna is an island town on the banks of Kaveri river near Mysore in Mandya district of Karnataka. Srirangapatna is an architectural masterpiece of Hoysala and Vijayanagar styles. City is know for it’s magnificent temples and monumental forts. Ranganathaswamy temple, a temple is dedicated to Lord Vishnu is the major attraction of the town. It was once the capital of Mysore under Tipu Sultan. Monuments on the island town have been nominated as a UNESCO world heritage site. Sri Ranganathaswamy Temple , Dariya Daulat Palace:, Balmuri Falls, Nimishamba Temple, Ranganathittu Bird Sanctuary are few of the attractions near the town. Srirangapatna is located at approx 15km from Mysore, 127km from Bengaluru, 123km from Coorg. 414km from Kochi, 260km from Mangalore.


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