April
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Best Countries To Visit In April

Planning A Trip In April? Here's our list of best countries to visit in April
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This is the April Fool’s month. Quite the departure from all the serious bleakness of winter’s frost and summer’s heat. April brings spring to the Northern Hemisphere and autumn to the Southern, making colours burst in different hues across the globe. April also marks the vacation season in India and hence major holiday trips are planned. If you are one of the those, then here’s a list of some of the best countries to visit in April, from the brilliant mosques and mountains of Turkey to quaint side-walk cafes of France, the canals and windmills of Netherlands to cherry blossoms of Japan. The world is your oyster and April is the time to jump in!

Turkey

Turkey:  Best Countries To Visit In April
Photograph by http://tlc-travel.com.ua

The land of Turks, Black sea and Baklava, which also happens to straddle the two continents of Asia and Europe, Turkey is also a very coveted tourist destination. Suffused with its mosques, minarets, modern cities, rugged hills, sea-side fishing towns and amazing food (read: Shorba, kofta sandwiches and dondurma ice cream), the erstwhile Ottoman Empire is a charming place. The country comes alive in spring season, with winter breaking and sun becoming more merciful. In April, Turkey sees a daily average of 16°C, with slightly warmer seas. The Tulip Festival in Istanbul, Ankara International Arts Festival and Javelin Games in Erzurum are a few of the April highlights here.

 

Things to Do: 

Start your Turkish holiday with the cultural and ancient capital city - Istanbul. Visit Hagia Sophia, the  17th century blue coloured mosque with Christian mosaic and blue domes. Topkapi Palace and Sultan Ahmed Mosque are also quite beautiful. A drive down the bridge across Bosphorus strait must also be on your bucket list. For shopping in Istanbul, explore the spice bazars and old markets hunting for dry fruits, jewellery, silverware, spices, linens and their famous Turkish coffee. Also, do visit the Maiden’s Tower before moving on to the next city, Ankara. This is the capital of Turkey and famous for Ankara Castle. Then there is Pamukkale town, known for its mineral-rich thermal water bound by white coloured terraces. Other tourist attractions here are the ancient Roman spa city called Hierapolis, Cappadocia, Antalya and Mardin

 

How to Reach: 

Turkey boasts of two major International airports - Atatürk International Airport (Istanbul) and Esenboğa Airport (Ankara). Mumbai, Delhi and Bangalore operate non-stop flights to Turkey with Emirates as a major player. People also drive into Turkey from European countries including Germany, Italy, France, Greece etc. For internal commute, you can take buses, domestic flights, ferries and boats, hire cars or hail taxis.

France

France:  Best Countries To Visit In April
Photograph by https://www.aperturetours.com

One of the most romantic countries in the world with a history that rests on the ideals of democracy - Liberation, Equality, Fraternity; France is a beautiful place located in the western part of Europe. Known also as the fashion capital of the world with Paris as its gem city, France becomes a coveted tourist destination. Especially in the month of April, when Spring comes to France, with a temperature range from start to end of April being 9°C on 1st April to 12.5°C on the 30th. Rainfall is there but very less, and sunshine is bright to make sure a happy holiday is in store for you. April 1st is also the April Fool’s day or the Poisson d’Avril and celebrated by playing pranks.

 

Things to Do:

France is a delight of charms, right from idyllic walks down cobbled streets of medieval villages to late night dancing in the lounges of Paris, from walking past the world’s best fashion brands in Nice to exploring the iconic Eiffel Tower, Louvre Museum and Notre Dame. You have a lot of touristy delight coming your way here, especially in the delicate French cuisine and pastries. In spring, the parks are green and heavenly, ready for picnics and strolls, with musicians by the curb playing their guitars and accordions and poets writing you a poem for a few coins. Explore the French Alps or Burgundy for wine tasting events, visit Lascaux for its ancient drawings, and Lyon’s Roman theatre for its history. The Palace of Versailles is another enigma, while Nice is great for beaches. If you are in love with the retro, then head to Moulin Rouge, a 19th Century cabaret. 

 

Another beautiful part of France is the French Riviera that includes Cannes, Saint Tropez and Monaco. They make for a few luxury resort towns. Disneyland Paris is an un-missable destination too, as is Corsica (Tin Tin fans known what this is, Tamasha fans too).

 

How to Reach:

Paris and Orly (south of Paris) are the two main international airports in France. Air India, Jet Airways, Air France, British Airways etc ply on the routes from Mumbai, New Delhi and Chennai to France. You can also sail across the English Channel from Calais (England) to Dover (France). Or take the Eurostar from one of the various European cities.

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Greece

Greece:  Best Countries To Visit In April
Photograph by http://compassandpassport.com

The land of Acropolis, yogurt, white-washed islands and swoon-worthy Greek gods, Greece is a country in Europe that has been called the cradle of the Western civilisation. With its collection of islands and mainlands done in superb sparkling whites and cobalt blues, kissed by the azure seas, Greece makes for a brilliant holiday destination at the right times of the year; one of them being April. It is spring season and the highest temperature goes up to 20°C at this time, with very less crowd and almost nil precipitation (only 6 rainy days). The April Fool’s Day, The Feast of Saint George and sometimes even Easter fall in this month.

 

Things to Do: 

Start with the Greek capital, the city of Athens, that is home to some pretty iconic sights like the Parthenon, National Archaeological Museum and the Acropolis. The Island of Santorini is another awesome destination, soaked to the skin with picture perfect views, white-washed homes, steps carved out of stone and resorts that spoil you with their pampering. You can also go to the island of Mykonos and plan a leisure stay there, with its markets and gentle hikes. Another great place for a stroll is Europe’s oldest city, Knossos of Crete. Visit Olympia in Peloponnese to see its renowned archeological site by the same name. If you want some thumping music and happening nightlife, visit Thessaloniki. Finally, trek up Mt. Olympus in Macedonia. It is called the mountain of gods as it features at the centre of Greek mythology. All that myth coupled with great views is bound to make one hell of a holiday memory.

 

How to Reach:

Greece’s main international airport is located in Athens, called the Elefthérios Venizélos International Airport. Some major airlines flying here from India are Turkish Airlines, Air France, Emirates, Jet Airways, etc. You an also take a ferry from Turkey or drive in across the border. Ferries and cruises come to Greece from Italian ports such as Bari, Trieste and Venice, while trains and buses come from all major European counties.

Netherlands

Netherlands:  Best Countries To Visit In April
Photograph by https://www.locationscout.net

Netherlands has been affectionately referred to as the land of canals, and not wrongly. The country is intermeshed with canals of water that even float houseboats, riding straight through the city and paved roads. A real wonder, with tulip gardens, windmills and art museums in Van Gogh’s memory, Netherlands is a brilliant burst of culture, life and cheer. The winters are very cold here but come April and spring sets in, with average highs of 12°C. The month of April also marks the blooming of Tulips in this country hence it hosts the famous Tulip Festival Amsterdam, the Gold cycle race and the national celebration for King’s Day. 

 

Things to Do:

The Dutch love their chocolate and bread so make sure you tuck in a fair share here. When it comes to exploring, start with some of the most brilliant, undiscovered cities like the Hague and Rotterdam. The best thing to do here, as the locals do, is to hire a bicycle and peddle away from place to place. In fact, people hardly use cars here; its either your boat or the bicycle. In Amsterdam itself, spend some time exploring canals with boats and museums dedicated to Anne Frank ( the Jewish girl who survived World War II and accounted it all in her diary). There are also museums of Van Gogh’s art as well as some of Rembrandt. You must also pay a visit to Zaanse Schans, an idyllic open air museum in a traditional Dutch village. Finally, go to the Garden of Europe for those tulips we said bloom in April. April also hosts many marathons, cycling races and King’s Day celebrations all across the country; keep an eye out for each.

 

How to Reach: 

When flying out from India, you have the option of Mumbai, Chennai, Hyderabad, Bangalore and Delhi airports. Some major airlines flying from India to Amsterdam are British Airways, Etihad and Emirates. In Netherlands, there are connecting domestic flights and trains but bicycles are always the preferred mode for relatively shorter distances.

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Scotland

Scotland:  Best Countries To Visit In April
Photograph by https://www.nationalgeographic.com

Scotland, a part of the United Kingdom, has for the longest time been called the land of glens, tartans and whiskey. Not to mention the fierce Scottish highlanders. Today the country is home to as much electrifying historical base as it is to modern cities like Glasgow and Edinburgh. The country is frozen solid through winters and is rained upon almost all year round, hence the best time to visit Scotland starts from spring and goes all the way until the end of summer. In April, spring blooms in Scotland with maximum temperature climbing up to 17°C. Daffodils, rhododendrons and cherries blossom, giving a burst of colour to this otherwise grey and green land. April also marks the fire festival of Beltane, the pagan source festival from where the Christian Easter has been derived.

 

Things to Do:

For fans of the Netflix show Outlander, Scotland is bound to be your dream come true. The show has been entirely shot here and there are special ‘Outlander tours’ arranged. You can also visit places like Cairngorms and Northwest Highlands to take in the scenery of the place. Hikes and treks are quite common too. Visit the Loch Ness (Lake) and don’t miss the story of the Loch Ness monster. There is also Loch Lomond as well as the breath-taking Isle of Skye. Another historical sight worth visiting in Scotland is the Culloden moor, the field where the bloody battle of 1746 was fought between Scottish Highlanders and British soldiers over the throne of England. It bears the graves of the deceased highlanders, whose culture was stripped off as a result of the battle of Culloden. In fact, 16th April marks the anniversary of the battle and is a special day at the museum.

 

You must also explore Holyrood Palace and Edinburgh castle while here and drink lots of whiskey, eat lots of ‘shot-bread’ and 'scones' and pick up a little Scottish accent for back home. 

 

How to Reach: 

Scotland’s major international airports are Aberdeen International Airport, Edinburgh Airport, Glasgow International Airport, Glasgow Prestwick International Airport, Inverness and Dundee. Stopover flights from Mumbai to Edinburgh are available with airlines like Air India and British Airways. The National Rail System of Scotland and Great Britain rail system together have a smooth network, making travel from England to Scotland very easy. Buses are also an option, as are cars.

Singapore

Singapore:  Best Countries To Visit In April
Photograph by https://tripofun.wordpress.com

Once known as Singapura, the kingdom has since seen many a trials and tribulations. This south-asian country was liberated from British colonisation in 1960 and has since shown one of the fastest growth rates among all the Commonwealth nations. It is a global business hub today, a shopping paradise, a top tourist destination and a breath-taking city-country to soak in all that fast-paced life. April here is breezy and warm, with thunderstorms on the heel and rainfall for around 20 days. The temperature however does not cross 31°C, making it ideal to explore.

 

Things to Do:

Take a day of Universal Studios and the Marine Park here, filled as they are with thrilling rides, theatres of your favourite cartoon and superhero shows, fairytale castles, aqua park and much more. Go to the Sentosa Island, which is also a fun, luxurious collection of beaches, clubs, resorts and shows. Bird Park is ideal for bird lovers and Cloud Dome, Forest Dome and the public parks of Singapore for nature lovers. This time of the year they are in full bloom. Try the night safari in the zoo here with fire shows and animal shows to amuse you, and finally head to the main city for some modern fun. Marina Bay Sands is famous for its roof-top views of the Singapore skyline and fountain show, while the ferris wheel is the largest in Asia. Also check out the promenade by the famous Singapore Merlion, the statue of a lion spewing water. Shopping here is not the road-side bargaining kinds usually, but done in plush malls. Victoria Street and Bugis Street are some of the best here. Charles & Keith, being a home brand, always hosts special discounts here.

 

How to Reach: 

Singapore’s Changi International Airport is one of the most plush airports of the world, featuring in top 10. It caters to most flights, international in particular, with those coming in from Mumbai, Chennai, Bangalore, Delhi and Kochi. People also drive to Singapore from Malaysia. In Singapore, you can use the metro system, hail cabs or hire a car for travel.

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USA

USA:  Best Countries To Visit In April
Photograph by https://o4uxrk33.com

The big uncle Sam, United States is an entity renowned world over, not only for its world dominance in culture, politics and economy but also for Hollywood. The States are a coveted holiday destination, with its varied landscapes, cities that literally breathe new life into you and countryside that is par beautiful. From cityscapes like New York and San Francisco to the rugged terrains of Nevada, North Carolina’s mountains to Alaska’s white beautiful plains, USA has it all. In the month of April, with the onset of spring in most places, the tourist season commences. While many places might still not have thawed, others are great with blooms and delights. Most states of USA are in their 20s at this time while places like New York, Washington etc are between 15-20°C, with plenty of sunshine.

 

Things to Do: 

The capitol Washington DC is particularly beautiful at this time of the year, with cherry blossoms lending it a baby pink Hue. The state hosts numerous cherry blossom festivals (Japan style) as well as celebrates the famous Easter Egg Roll in the White House with the President and his family. Miami is also quite coveted at this time, with its beaches, promenades and food-wine festivals, while Orlando’s theme parks like Disneyland and Universal are best explored in April weather. Vegas celebrates beer at this time of the year and hence you will find yourself surrounded by all kinds and brands, while New York is alive with pillow fights (yes, come in pyjamas and indulge with a soft pillow at night). You must also visit Seattle, Boston (Patriot’s Day parade on 16th April must not be missed) and Saint Antonio in Texas. Party hard in Los Angeles and of course, don’t forget to go to Hollywood for a stunning photoshoot at all the incredible markers.

 

How to Reach:

USA is a huge country, half of a continent, so to speak. Hence for you to fly there really depends on which coast and which part of the coast you are visiting. Almost all big US cities ave flights (direct, and mostly stop-over) from Indian cities like Mumbai, Delhi, Bangalore, Ahmedabad etc. In America, it is best to travel cross country by air or car, depending on your plans. Trains are well connected but not the most famous. Buses will also take you from city to city.

Vietnam-Laos

Vietnam-Laos:  Best Countries To Visit In April
Photograph by https://kids.nationalgeographic.com

Vietnam is a beautiful country situated by the South China Sea, renowned for its rivers, beaches, Buddhist monasteries and ancient cities. Usually, Vietnam is a destination combined with another nearby country - either Laos or Cambodia. In April, Vietnam is best combined with Laos, another Southeast Asian country known for its mountains, French architecture, tribes and of course, Buddhist Gompas. The temperatures in both these countries are down during April, as is the humidity. Rainfall is at its lowest and hence makes for a great time to explore the outdoors.

 

Things to Do:

Start your holiday with Vietnam, at the capital city of Hanoi. The city is richly made with the iconic marble mausoleum of their Communist-era leader Ho Chi Minh. The Ho Chi Minh City too, named after the leader, is a great tourist attraction with its French colonial architecture, historic war museums and the very famous Củ Chi tunnels that were once used by Viet Cong soldiers. You can also cruise down Halong Bay, pay a visit to the Cao Dai Temple in Tay Ninh and go to town with great nightlife and pubs of Vietnam.

 

While in Laos, explore the Golden City Temple also called Wat Xieng Thong, situated in the old quarter of Luang Prabang. Viewpoint Nong Khiaw is famous for its amazing views, while shopping is great in the Luang Prabang Night Market, with loads of local street food stalls. You can also indulge in adventure here, from the eerie Underground River Caves (Kong Lor Cave) to treks up Mount Phousi, and cycling, kayaking and hiking up Luang Prabang.  

 

How to Reach: 

The best way to reach Vietnam is by flying to Hanoi-Danang or Ho Chi Minh airport. For Laos, the best way is to fly to Bangkok first and then take a flight to Luang Prabang, Vientiane or Pakse airport of Laos. Trains are available from Beijing to Vietnam too. To travel between Vietnam and Laos, you can either take a flight (1-2 hours) or bus (24-27 hours).

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Bhutan

Bhutan:  Best Countries To Visit In April
Photograph by http://www.natgeotraveller.in

The land of monks, mountains and happiness, Bhutan is one country that puts its Happiness quotient above its GDP. A land torn by war and bloodshed, Bhutan became uninhabitable until a few Buddhist monks settled on its mountains and meditated for decades to purify the terror that haunted this place. Today the positive vibes of those meditations make this place a beautiful paradise, an almost tranquil country with yoga, hiking, adventure and massages awaiting you. April is one of the best months to visit Bhutan as it marks the pleasant, dry spring here, with blooming flowers and clear skies before heat of summer engulfs it. The country also hosts the Rhododendron blooming Festival of Thimpu sometime in mid-April. 

 

Things to Do: 

The most famous valley here, Paro Valley, is a delight in spring. It also is home to the Paro Taktsang Monastery or the ‘Tiger’s Nest.’ The valley and monastery offer breath-taking views of the mountains, flora and fauna. Trekking is a very famous adventure in Bhutan, with trails like Nabji Korphu Trek and Jomolhari, Druk Path Trek. Snowman Trek is also quite good. You can also go for rock-climbing in Thimphu and have the time of your life; or choose to spend an afternoon river-rafting in Po Chu river. Some hot springs here like Gasa Tshachus, Gelephu Tshachu etc make for wonderful pampering experiences. For bird lovers, you must head to Trongsa, Bumthang, Punakha or Phobjikha Valley for sighting some of the most beautiful birds. For relaxation, there are loads of guided yoga and meditation classes, as well as massages. The famous Rhododendron Festival is celebrated here with great pomp, food, traditional crafts and dance, while you can sight Rhododendrons in the Lamperi Botanical Park near Thimphu. 

 

How to Reach:

You will reach the Paro International Airport of Bhutan by flying directly from any of these Indian cities - Kolkata, New Delhi, Guwahati or Bagdora. Mumbai, Kochi, Bangalore etc have one-stop flights. Trains are also available from Bagdora or Jalpaiguri station, but you will have to cross the border by taking a cab as no rail lines connect the two countries.

Malaysia

Malaysia:  Best Countries To Visit In April
Photograph by https://misslulafortune.wordpress.com/2014/08/21/the-bajau-of-malaysia-the-photo-of-the-day-by-national-geographic/

A country in the Malay Peninsula, Malaysia is a beautiful mix of islands, beaches and futuristic marvel cities. With Kuala Lumpur as its jewel city and loads of shopping, sight-seeing, food tours and pampering here, you are bound to have one of the best summer holidays. April marks one of the best months to visit Malaysia, with amicable temperatures. While the west coast of Penang and Langkawi is at 31°C, Kuala Lumpur sees an average of 30°C. Rainfall is sparse and occasional. This is the driest weather you will find here. 

 

Things to Do:

Exploring Kuala Lumpur should top your list. Breathe in the fast paced life of this futuristic city, with its tall Petronas Tower, breath-taking bridges, rooftop views, shopping arcades and amazing street food. If you are looking at some relaxation, beaches, sun and the likes, head to Langkawi. The Eagle Square here is worth visiting, as are the many beaches, seafood joints and resorts. Wildlife lovers must visit Tunku Abdul Rahman National Park for jungle safaris. While history and architecture buffs will find their interests channelised at the historic town of Malacca. The town is home to the beautiful colonial architecture left behind by the Portuguese. Shopping in Malaysia is also great and you can buy gadgets, clothes, perfumes from most malls in Kuala Lumpur. 

 

How to Reach:

You can fly from India to Kuala Lumpur International Airport, it is one of the best modes to get to Malaysia. Some regular airlines operating the routes include Malaysian Airlines, Jet Airways, and Sri Lankan Airlines. In Malaysia, you have the option of travelling internally by domestic flights, hired cars, railways or KTM. Buses are also a cheap option.

New Zealand

New Zealand:  Best Countries To Visit In April
Photograph by https://hostelnz.co.nz

Jewel of the Southwest Pacific, New Zealand lies in the Southern Hemisphere and hence sees a reverse climate from the rest of the world of Northern Hemisphere. Therefore April here is autumn, almost the beginning of winter, with the land turning a fiery orange and leaves crunching beneath your feet and the smell of pine and sap in the air. The country is best visited at this time as the temperatures are controlled, not too cold yet, as well as the peak tourist summer is over, leaving behind quiet landscapes and lots of discounts. The average temperatures are 18-20°C for the North Island and 16-18°C for the South side. 

 

Things to Do:

April is the best time to enjoy autumn colours in New Zealand, the rusted yellows and oranges and reds on trees. You must go to South Island (Arrowtown) for leaf peeping this time of the year. Arrowtown also hosts an Autumn Festival. Other places include Wanaka, Christchurch and Alexandra. This is also the best season to go for a hike, so head to Mount Maunganui (Tauranga), coastal track at Ohope Beach near Whakatane, Mount Roy and Diamond lake. Other great towns and cities to visit here are Auckland, Wellington and Gisborne. You can also go bungee jumping to Kawarau Bridge and cruising to Milford. Wine tasting tours are famous at Amisfield Bistro. Head to Bay Island to swim with the dolphins and spend a night star-gazing at Lake Tekapo. If you are interested in the tribal culture of New Zealand then you must go to the tribal Tamaki Maori Village up in Rotorua.

 

How to Reach: 

Auckland is the major International airport of New Zealand and is well connected to the rest of the world. From India, you have stop-over flights from Mumbai, Delhi, Chennai and Kolkata with Air India, Jet etc. There are also cruises that leave Australia for New Zealand and make for one great holiday travel. Once in New Zealand, you can travel by domestic flights, buses, trains or hire a car. Self drive options are also available.

Japan

Japan:  Best Countries To Visit In April
Photograph by https://www.travelandleisure.com

The Japanese, known all over for their great nuclear tragedy of World War II but more so for their determination and grit to come out of it and build an advanced, world-leading country, are a resilient community of people. Their country, Japan, therefore is a beautiful marvel of the natural as well as manmade, fast-paced cities like Tokyo and serene lakes, gold coloured temples and wood houses of Kinkaku-ji. Located in the Pacific Ocean, the country is a delight for tourists and has become a coveted holiday destination for Indians lately. April in Japan is a brilliant burst of spring. With an average temperature range of 5-13°C, the month also sees cherry blossom and amazing vistas of whites and pinks surround even the most modern cities.

 

Things to Do:

This is the cherry blossom season (Sakura in Japanese) and makes for one hell of a view anywhere you look. White and baby pink blossoms cover every inch of trees and give the towns and cities a fairytale-like Hue. A part of Japanese spring culture is Hanami, i.e. viewing the cherry blossoms. Lots of parties, picnics and festivals are held around it too. In Tokyo, places like Ueno Park, Shinjuku Gyoen and Yoyogi Park hold these parties. Illuminated Yozakura or ‘cherry blossom at night’ are also great sights in Tokyo. Other tourist spots here are the city of Kyoto, Kiyomizu-dera and its temples, Kinkaku-ji and its serene lakes and lakehouses, Odaibaand and its ferris wheel, waterfront sushi bars and cafes. Tokyo’s Disneyland is decorated with Easter goodies in April while parades and egg-hunting games are abound. Okinawa makes for great ocean views, swimming and beach fun. There is also Mt. Fuji, Itsukushima and Osaka Castle. For foodies, do try the Sakura sweets or special cherry blossom deserts here, some even sold by Starbucks.

 

How to Reach: 

Delhi operates regular direct flights to Narita Airport of Tokyo, while Mumbai, Kolkata, Chennai and Bangalore do one-stop flights that stop at Delhi mostly. Major airlines on these routes are Air India, Korean Air, Singapore Airlines, Cathay Pacific, Malaysian Airlines and Sri Lankan Airlines. For sea-route, there are no cruises from India to Japan but you can avail one from China or Singapore, and even Australia.

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