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Best Places To Visit Near Indore - Weekend Getaways
Indore is literary the heart of MP. One of the biggest and most forward cities of this state, with beautiful history in the form of palaces and museums. Summers in this city, like the rest of the state, are just too hot. Whereas monsoons are bearable. But the best season in all of MP is winter. And this is usually the time when everybody wants to just get behind the wheel and go for a quick getaway for the weekend. So here’s a list for those who want to take a little impromptu weekend break from Indore.
22 km from Indore’s hustle-bustle is the quaint little lotus valley of Gulawat. The town is renowned for its swamps and lakes that are ripe with lotuses. It is just as simply endowed with mother nature’s gifts. Visit the Gulawat Lotus Lake to pluck lotuses, do some mild boating and enjoy picnicking with your loved ones. Photography is also a coveted activity around here, given the scenic nature of this place. Winter and early summer make for a good time for a day-visit.
An ancient city, dating back to 6th Century CE, Mandu is the perfect holiday if you are into forts and architecture. Visit the Mandu Fort for its markedly Afghan architecture. Nearby is the Jahaz Mahal, another feat of manmade beauty, also called the Palace of Ship. It stands in-between two lakes and is shaped like a vessel. Mandu is 97 km from Indore and makes for a good short weekend holiday. You can also do a one-day trip and drive back the same night.
Kalakund, a landscape blessed with lovely lora and fauna, is a camping and trekking retreat for those Indorians who are looking for some adventure. The place is named after the scrumptious Indian milk sweet —Kalakand, and offers visitors some of the sweetest vistas. With its waterfalls, lush green hills and trekking trails, Kalakund is where you should be in monsoons. It is only 32 km away and easily reached by car.
“…Ratlam ki galiyon mein.” This famous dialogue of Kareena Kapoor in Jab We Met put Ratlam on the map for most cinephiles. However, this small town of Madhya Pradesh has always been a nice little religious escapade from Indore for many decades. Erstwhile called Ratnapuri, this town is known for its spiritual vibe. The Shwetamber Nageshwar Parshwanath Tirth is one of the most coveted places to visit, especially for Jains. Others like the Kedareshwar Mandir, Mahalaxmi and Kalika mata mandir also make the list of visitors. Ratlam is 139 km from Indore and also great to buy munchies and snacks like trail mixes, Ratlami sev etc.
The ancient city of Avantikapuri, one of the four main dhams of Hinduism, Ujjain is situated on the banks of the holy river Shipra. Ujjain was once the home of Emperor Asoka too. Nowadays Ujjain is renowned for its temples and ghats, as well as its fabric and saree shopping. This Hindu pilgrimage hosts the Kumbh Mela every 12 years too. When in Ujjain, do not miss places like the Kaal Bhairavnath Mandir (where the deity is fed alcohol), Mahaprabhuji Baithakji and Sandipani Rishi ashram (where Lord Krishna and Balram went to school) and Harsiddhi Temple (one of the 51 shaktipeeth). Ujjain is around 55 km from Indore, just over half an hour’s journey.
The Hanumantiya Tapu, perched on the bank of Indira Sagar Dam is THE destination for water babies. With a variety of water sports and indulgences, Hanumantiya Island offers you things like bird watching, camping and trekking too. There is a boat club where you can rent out a cruise ride or take small vessels into the serene backwaters. A vivid experience of nature and beauty through and through, Hanumantiya Island beckons you for a long summer weekend. Cool off, enjoy some sports and eat to your heart’s content! Hanumantiya Island is 170 km from Indore and hosts the largest water carnival of India — the Jal Mahotsav.
Ralamandal Wildlife Sanctuary
Imagine a haven of wildlife at your doorstep. That’s Ralamandal Wildlife Sanctuary for Indorians. The sanctuary is home to loads of deer and elephants, camel rides mingling with lush babool, teak, eucalyptus and chandan trees. You can also tour the Holker Palace built centuries back, right in the middle of this sanctuary. Ralamandal Wildlife Sanctuary is only about 15 km from Indore and perfect for a winter weekend getaway.
Once upon a time, this was the capital of Malwa Dynasty. Known for its forts and ramparts, Dhar today is a nice excursion for those who are fans of the outdoors. History lovers also find much to see and do here. Visit the Dhar Fort, trek up the barren hills nearby, check out the old mosque and temple ruins of 13th Century, and do not forget to visit the Bagh Caves. Dhar is 64 km away from Indore.
80 km from Indore, Omkareshwar is a small city situated on the banks of Narmada, which flows in such a way that the shape of ‘Om’ is formed. Omkareshwar is also home to one of the 12 Jyotirlingas as well as the hanging bridge of Narmada. Visit the Omkar Mandhata Temple, Sri Govinda Bhagavatpaada Cave, Kedareshwar Temple and Siddhanath Mandir. Do a parikrama of the holy island and enjoy the views on the banks of Narmada. Picnics on this island are also quite fun with friends and family.
Maheshwar is a temple town. It is 95 km from Indore and coveted if you want to spend a weekend out on a religious retreat. Located on the banks of Narmada, Maheshwar is also quite coveted by leisure travellers. Ghats, temples and forts make up its tourism itinerary, while sari shopping is the highlight of its leisure. Its exemplary Maratha and Holker architecture styles set it apart from the rest of MP. Visit the palace of Rani Ahilya Bai, also known as Holkar Fort. Explore ghats like the Narmada Ghat and pay your respects at Shri Raj-Rajeshwar Mandir, Jaleshwar Temple and Ek Mukhi Datta Temple.
The capital of Madhya Pradesh, Bhopal is a cultural high in all the melodies of this state. Located 194 km away from Indore, Bhopal is known for its beautiful architecture, museums and lakes. The city is divided by the two lakes- upper lake and lower lake. Bhojtal or Upper Lake is India’s oldest manmade waterbody, named so after Raja Bhoj. Walks, boat rides, picnics and sunsets are quite famous on its banks. You can also take your car for a spin in the Van Vihar National Park. Explore the grandness of Taj Ul Masjid and Moti Masjid. And don’t forget to take a stroll down the Sair Sapata bridge across Upper Lake.