India boasts of a variety of landscapes including three of the most beautiful types of deserts: the Cold Mountain Deserts of the Trans-Himalayas; the White Salt Desert of Kutch and the Sandy Desert of Rajasthan.
Each of these three distinct deserts is blessed with unique traits, which make them ideal escapes for an adventure/outdoor holiday. They also make excellent romantic destinations. With desert tourism fast mushrooming in India, read on to know about these three spectacular deserts of India so that you can plan an informed Indian desert holiday!
Cold Mountain Desert of the Trans-Himalayas
Many visitors consider travelling through the Cold Mountain Desert of the Trans-Himalayas as an once-in-a-lifetime experience. These bare brown mountains are devoid of rains and vegetation, receive heavy snowfalls and are cut-off from the rest of the country for around 8 months of the year. Visit the Desert Mountain Valley of Lahaul and Spiti, which is located high up in the Himalayan Mountains in the Indian state of Himachal Pradesh, and boasts of picturesque sceneries. Or visit the cold desert in Ladakh, which is one of the top destinations with travellers during summers as it is blessed with a cool climate round-the-year. Mountaineering, biking and hiking are some of the most popular activities here. You will enjoy spotting exotic wildlife, including yaks and ibexes at this destination. Learn about local Indian and Tibetan cultures, savour local cuisine and admire the Indo-Tibetan architecture here. The highlight of a trip to Ladakh is a visit to the Pangong Tso Lake and a camel ride of the Nubra Valley on two-humped camels.
White Salt Desert of Kutch
Explore the White Salt Desert of Kutch, locally popular as the Great Rann of Kutch, to take home memories of an exciting cultural holiday. This seemingly endless expanse of white salt desert – a dead land – is located in the Kutch district of the Indian state of Gujarat. Visit the largest salt desert in the world, Rann of Kutch, during the winter months from October to March and see the white desert glittering with light from the moon and stars on a clear winter night. This is also the period when the famed international festival 3-month-long Rann Utsav is held. Rann Utsav is a cultural treat for tourists, which gives them an insight into the local culture. The desert is a sanctuary for migratory birds and a breeding ground for flamingos and exotic wildlife including Indian wild ass – making it a paradise for bird watchers and animal lovers.
Great Indian Sand Desert
Collect beautiful memories at the Great Indian Sand Desert, more popularly known as the Thar Desert, which is one of the largest deserts in the world. The Thar Desert is located majorly in the Indian state of Rajasthan, extending to other states of Gujarat, Haryana and Punjab. The desert is covered with golden sand dunes, few villages containing unique mud huts and even fewer fresh water lakes and large oases. The best and the most popular way to explore this desert is on a camel safari or a jeep safari. Don’t forget to visit the Khuri sand dunes in the outskirts of Jaisalmer in Rajasthan! Wildlife spotting is also possible here as the desert is home to rare wildlife including Black Buck and Chinkara. For an enjoyable holiday, visit during the winter months from October to March. The weather is pleasant enough for you to explore its attractions without being bothered by the Indian heat.