Uttar Pradesh is certainly among the mainstream touristy destinations. It comprises a host of beautiful destinations, some of which are naturally pretty and some have rich history and heritage attached to them. And the places near the city of Nawabs - Lucknow, welcome locals and tourists with arms wide open!
Even though the bustle and sights of Lucknow can keep travellers busy, there are several must-see natural and historical sites nearby, including many UNESCO World Heritage Sites. From lakes to national parks and ancient cities, here are the best weekend getaways from Lucknow.
Known as Benaras and Kashi and deemed to be the world's oldest civilisation, Varanasi is one of the most prominent weekend getaways in Uttar Pradesh. Also a part of the seven holy cities, Varanasi is undoubtedly the spiritual seat of India. While you would locate Hindu temples at nearly every turn in the holy city; the oldest of all, the Kashi Vishwanath Temple, which is one of the 12 Jyotirlingas, is the most visited of all. Moreover, Varanasi is believed an auspicious place to die, as it is considered to bestow moksha or freedom from the cycle of life and death. There are about 80 ghats along the banks of the Holy Ganges. The tradition of monumental brilliance and spiritual enlightenment - the Ganga Aarti is a must-experience.
Far-famed, as one of the most important centres of the Mughal reign, Fatehpur Sikri, is located about 42 Km away from Agra! And even to this day, Fatepur Sikri remains to be one of the most prized relics of the reign of the Mughals in India. Today it is regarded as one of the significant structures on a list of World Heritage Structures. Thus, Fatehpur Sikri in Agra is a must-visit during the weekend!
Renowned as the birthplace of Lord Krishna, Mathura is one of seven sacred Hindu cities and thus draws a flock of devotees from across the country, making it one of the best weekend getaways in Uttar Pradesh. Out of the attractions in Mathura, the most celebrated tourist attraction is Shri Krishna Janmabhumi; this place is regarded to be the place where Lord Krishna was born, and also the legendary prison where Lord Krishna was born is now on show for visitors to see. The other two most significant temples in town are the Gita Mandir and the Dwarkadheesh Temple. Also, Mathura has a history of appetising street food. Some must-try local snacks are aloo-puri, jalebis, kachodis, chaat, and gulab-jamuns.
Home to one of the Seven Wonders of the World, Agra is a city laden with spell-bounding architectural wonders. Agra is famous for the marble structure 'Taj Mahal' hued in the boundless beauty that is glorious in its terms. Taj Mahal, located on a bank of the Yamuna River, has spurred lovers and poets throughout the world.
Sarnath, also known as Mrigadava, Rishipattana, Migadaya and Isipatana, is located about 10 km away from Varanasi. It is believed that Gautama Buddha came to Sarnath to preach his first sermon after attaining enlightenment. And Dhamek Stupa - built during the 5th - 6th century, is the precise spot where Buddha taught his first sermon. Therefore, Sarnath is one of the most-visited Buddhist pilgrim centres in India. Besides the Buddhist monasteries and pagodas, Sarnath is also home to a famous museum, that exhibits a rich collection of Buddhist figurines, showcased among the fine embodiments of Buddhist art.
Allahabad, recently renamed Prayagraj, has shaped India's legacy as well as the culture in a way that can never be overlooked. And its history dates back to immemorial times! Thanks to its long-lasting legacy, almost the whole of Allahabad is laden with souvenirs and artefacts. Consequently adding a special touch to the dominant role that Allahabad's culture plays on India and its people. Arguably one of the most-liked cities in the state, a visit to Allahabad is a must.
Ayodhya is widely revered as the birthplace of Rama; thus, it draws Hindu adherents and tourists from across the globe. Most of the pilgrims visit this holy land to seek divine blessings. Besides its spiritual importance, shopping and sightseeing in Ayodhya could be an exciting things to do to keep yourself lively while having some fun at the same time.