Your Travel Must-Dos This Winter

Oh! when it snows ain’t it thrilling

Though your nose gets a chilling

We’ll frolic and play the Eskimo way

Walking in a winter wonderland

(Lyrics: Winter Wonderland)

Winter is here and so is the time to plan your dreamy winter getaway.

It’s time to take on the morning chill that makes you want to laze around in bed for that extra 10 minutes until you have your morning cup of soothing coffee…..those warm afternoons that get you stepping out and soaking up the sun before those romantic evenings catch up with you and make you want to cuddle your partner around the fireplace.

Winter has its magic of its own. It makes even the simplest of food, places, activities and everyday things all the more exciting and fun.

Those cups of chai in the evenings with pakoras are so much more desirable in the winter than in the summer. Agreed?

Even holidays are so much more memorable during the winters. From spending Christmas in Goa to celebrating the New Year at a breathtaking hill station……winter makes every moment a little more worth living.

Taking the winter chills and thrills forward, we have handpicked fascinating destinations, food and activities to make sure your winter will be a winter worth bragging about!
*Those filter-glazed Instagram pictures you’ll be posting as #throwbacks for months to come. We all want to have those, don’t we?*

Perfect chilly winter getaways

The go-to holiday destination – Goa

Spells out Refreshing, doesn’t it?

Every travel blog, every party listicle, every trip memo is drenched in Goan fever… and for a very good reason. Goa IS undeniably the ultimate travel destination.

Besides being famous for its beaches, fish curry, churches, casinos, music, history and activities that don’t end, goa is proclaimed to be the “Las Vegas of India”.  The same place where Ross and Rachel ended up getting drunk and married.

The casinos in Vagator, Goa get wild during festive seasons. Yeah getting drunk and married kinda wild. The artwork, decorations, music, and fireworks light up Goa in the night to give you those drool-worthy, Instagram posts. Apart from that, you can experience beautiful sunsets on the banks this popular Goan beach. Cool breeze, warm sand and the water gushing against your feet makes you believe that heaven is actually a place on earth.

Even if you aren’t a practicing Christian, you would probably want to experience how Christmas is celebrated here. The vibes of Christmas and the hype of New Year gets you high without rolling nasty stuff.

No one leaves this pint-sized state unhappy, everyone has a story to tell and memories to share.

Secret tip – Want to be at the most happening New Year party spot in Goa? Every year Sterling Goa Bardez and Sterling Goa Varca throw New Year Gala parties filled with fun, frolic and lots of alcohol of course. Go as a madly-in-love couple or with a group of nonsensical friends, there’s no other place worth being at for the New Years’ Eve.

Why just engage in New Year’s Eve? These groovy resorts entertain you throughout winters with their never-ending list of activities. From Aqua Zorbing to pool parties and karaoke, these resorts leave no stone unturned to make your vacay a solid one.

The non-cliche getaway destination – Ziro, Himachal Pradesh

A retreat, indeed!

For balmy winters, we would suggest a chilly retreat to peace seeker’s paradise, Ziro in Arunachal Pradesh where winter dominates from December to February.

Ziro is included as one of the World Heritage Sites by UNESCO due to its stunning beauty!

Did you hear that? STUNNING BEAUTY! Yes! What more reasons do you need? Just pack your bags and leave?!

The chilly atmosphere of winter is the best time to visit Ziro as this quaint place offers panoramic views of the pillowy clouds and lush green mountains. Any photographers listening? You can thank us later.

Travel tip – Travel in the month of September if you are keen on being part of the hip and happening Ziro Music Festival that takes place every year.

Zero down on Ziro (see what we did there?) if you wanna be amidst the clouds and never-ending pastures of green. Away from the hustle and bustle of everyday life, Ziro is a spectacular place to be at for these upcoming winters.

For the love of snow and adventures – Manali, Himachal Pradesh

Adventurous Manali!

Did you really think we weren’t going to include Manali in a winter blog?

Trekking, snow-fights, mountain-climbing, you name it and Manali is going to be ready to keep you engaged with an overload of your winter fantasy. Backpackers hit Manali to bring their adventurous dreams to life and honeymooners come here for the first taste of snow.

Besides serene landscapes, Manali is also an excellent place for adventure sports like paragliding, ice skating, rappelling, and rock climbing.

A perfect winter holiday that you don’t just need but deserve. Take a winter trip to Manali to experience pearly snow knock off your windows in the mornings.

But, but, but…Manali is an all-year-round magnet with tourists jam-packed at all popular spots. So, if you are looking for a peaceful and sorted winter holiday, book a stay at Sterling Manali that takes you 4 km away from the hustle and bustle of Manali. This cozy resort is nestled between snow-capped mountains and offers a hoard of exciting activities to keep you engaged. Bonfire, party games, river rafting, paragliding, table tennis are just some of the fun activities this resort has to offer.

Activities for never-ending fun

A Walk On The Living Root Bridge – Mawlynnong, Meghalaya

The living root bridge.

Handmade from aerial roots of rubber fig trees, a walk on this living root is a must on your bucket list for this winter. If you love taking a stroll through the forest amidst the luscious green landscape, your walk on this bridge is gonna be surreal. The tangled web of roots look straight out of a fantasy TV show. With waterfalls to visit and caves to be explored, this clean and refreshing city deserves a chilly winter visit.

Fun fact – It takes around 15 years for a new root bridge to become strong enough to bear the weight of people crossing it.

Indulge in exciting winter activities at dreamy Kashmir location

Some snowy adventure!

Head over to Gulmarg to find out what happens when the gorgeous season of winter befalls upon an already beautiful location. Nestled in the lap of nature, Gulmarg, apart from being a picturesque destination, it is filled with adventures that’ll last you an eternity. *Okay, that was an exaggeration, or maybe not*.

Fun fact – The word Gulmarg is literally translated as “meadow of flowers”.

Gulmarg is a unique and rejuvenating winter destination that treasures luxurious resorts and exciting winter adventure sports. In Gulmarg, lots of adventurous activities are available including skiing, snowboarding, heli-skiing, cable car ride, and hot-air balloon.

Ice skating, skiing and snowboarding

Shwoop! Shwoop! Shwoop!

Located in the stunning valleys of Kashmir, Gulmarg is known for skiing and snowboarding. During winters, the lakes in the valleys of Kashmir transform water into sheets of ice that are perfect for ice skating and skiing. From beginner slopes to the massive ski run, travellers get to glide down the thick bed of snow and create thrilling memories.

Cable car ride

A high ride!

The Great Gulmarg Gondola being Asia’s highest and longest cable car project gives you a chance to experience a serene and thrilling ride from “The Gulmarg Meadows” through the pine-clad sloped to Apharwat.

Heli-Skiing

Skiing with a twist of adrenaline!

A treat for Advanced Skiers. heli-skiing gives you the ultimate experience of skiing down the slopes of the mighty Himalayan peaks.

Not sure of a place in Kashmir? Stay at De-Laila Houseboats to experience a rocking combination of serene ambience and modern amenities.

Yummy in the tummy – Winter foods you can’t resist

Thick, frothy, creamy – Malai Makkhan

The delicacy!
Image Source: ndtvimg.com

Your calorie counter will have to take a chill-pill as you dig into this light, frothy dessert churned with milk, khoya, saffron and dried fruits. This cloud-like makkhan malai is formed through an elaborate process that starts with a flowing, rhythmic movement that churns makkhan out of the malai.

For a burst of flavour – sugar, cardamom, and yellow food coloring is added to the concoction. The final step involves letting the mixture sit overnight and so that all the ingredients can fuse in to bring out that perfect flavour. Finally, at the break of dawn, the dessert is set out in the morning dew to give it that extra flavour.

Fun fact – What makes this the “perfect winter dish” is the fact that the main ingredient of this dish is the winter morning dew.

Malai Makkhan holds a mysterious connection with the winter season as it is available only in the winters.

Sweet, sugary, jaggery – Nolen Gurer Sandesh

Oh! Sweetness!

If you couldn’t pronounce that in the first go, trust us you ain’t the only one.

Nolen Gurer Sandesh is a Bengali sweet specialty infused with winter palm jaggery or date palm jaggery which is only available in winters.

This sweet dish is designed to have a hard outer texture so that it can be sent as a “sandesh” and not crumble in the travel. Once you bite into this thick sweet, it instantly melts in your mouth.

Sweet, tangy, chatpata – Shakarkandi ki Chaat

The mouth-watering delight!
Image Source: TOI

If you are looking for a street-style chaat that beats the winter blues in a healthy way, it has got to be shakarkandi ki chaat.

If you are hearing it for the first time, let us introduce you to this winter-perfect delicacy. It is tangy and sweet chaat recipe that blends in with chaat masala, chillies and lime juice to give it that chatpata flavour.

All over a super healthy dish to be relished over the icy winters to keep you warm and healthy from the inside.

Warm, earthy, comforting – Raab

The delicacy!
Image Source: archanaskitchen

Let us know how this sounds to you…

Bright colored beanie covering your ears…chilly feet covered in plush blanket…soft mittens covering your hands and a warm, soul-soothing drink in hand.

Sounds like a perfect winter set-up right?

The warm, soul-soothing drink in your hand could be Raab, a sweet drink that can drive away even the strongest of winter chills. Nutritious and delicious, Raab is a popular winter drink made with pearl millet flour. It builds immunity and heals your body from common winter ailments.

Heads up guys! Embrace all the magic and wonder of winter – the blankets of snow, the tranquil and crisp feel of the air, the layers of your favorite clothing, socks, gloves and beanies, outdoor adventure sports…winter is so much more than lying around in your house with a bag of salted potato chips.

Head out…engage in thrilling outdoor sports, eat without gaining weight, explore Christmas markets decked up with festive lights and join the crowd as they count down to the New Year! Can’t decide on a place? Choose from an exciting lineup of luxurious and happening Sterling resorts.

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