Set in the foothills of Aravalli, the State of Haryana sprawls over a physical area of over 44,000 sq km in North India, It shares its borders with Rajasthan, Uttar Pradesh, Punjab, and Himachal Pradesh. Haryana is hailed as a tourist’s delight because of its salubrious climate and array of tourist attractions — the rugged hills, places of historical interests, century-old monuments, soul-stirring temples, romantic lakes, picturesque landscapes and many more.
The tourism department of the State is focusing on the development of various sites of natural, historical as well as of religious importance. Haryana Tourism has developed 44 tourist complexes spread all over the State.
Most attractive tourist spots in Haryana
Chandigarh, the capital of Haryana, is famous as it is the first city to initiate the concept of town planning in India. Designed by Le Corbusier, Chandigarh is strategically segregated into 61 sectors. The pollution-free clean air, the wide tree-lined boulevards and avenues, all roads laid in parallel, the cool breeze from the Sukhna Lake, and the neat layout — all combine to make Chandigarh heaven for fun-loving tourists and holidaymakers as well as students of Architecture and Civil Engineering.
Kurukshetra is often called the Land of Holy Legends’ as it is here that the epic battle of the Mahabharata took place. Kurukshetra is dotted with numerous sacred shrines and is a revered place for Hindu pilgrimage. The important religious sites are the Brahma Sarovar, Sannihit Sarovar, Gurudwara Sadbhiti, Thaneswar Tirtha, and Rajghat. Sri Krishna Museum in Kurukshetra features remarkable ancient stone carvings, and prominent among them are the deities of Krishna and Lord Vishnu. The praiseworthy works of hundreds of Indian artists including ancient and modern pieces are displayed here.
Panchkula, situated 8 km away from Chandigarh, is home to the temple of goddess Shakti, built by the Maharaja of Patiala, to commemorate his victory in a battle of 1861. Panchkula district has also the Morni Hills — the only hill station in Haryana — a salubrious and calm haven where you can relax amidst the lush forest and in the company of colourful chirping birds of a bird sanctuary too. During the monsoon season, the lush green grass covers the hillside which makes it look like a green carpet rolled out, and it forms a grazing ground that attracts the blackbuck and nilgai. Tigers and panthers can also be spotted, and peacocks frequently show their colourful dances there.
Sultanpur National Park with Bird Sanctuary is an excellent destination for avid bird-watchers. Large numbers of migratory birds visit the place from October to March. Sultanpur Bird Sanctuary was upgraded to a National Park in 1991. There are four watchtowers located at different points in the park to facilitate better bird-watching by tourists. There are more than 450 species of bird in Haryana, and of these about 250 have been recorded in the Sultanpur Bird Sanctuary. Some of the popular and more ubiquitous birds include the purple sunbird, grey and black francolin, egrets, weaver birds, doves and mynahs. And flamingoes, cranes and wagtails are some migratory birds.
Some other tourist attractions in Haryana are:
Bandhkhal Lake, situated 32 km away from Delhi, with its manicured gardens, presents a serene ambience where holidaymakers can spend quality time.
Dumdama Lake is a must-visit with the Aravalli Hills forming a picturesque backdrop to the placid lake, and there are facilities here for canoeing, kayaking and angling.
Surajkund, the famous lake, was built by a Rajput king Surajpal Tomor to honour the rising sun. The ruins of a Sum Temple lie around the lake.
Pinjore gardens is really a worth-seeing site.
Yadavendra Gardens, 22 km from Chandigarh, presents a historic building belonging to the 17th century. It is set in a Mughal garden with a waterway surrounded by green lawns. A later addition to this beautiful spot is the romantic Japanese garden.
Haryana is noted for adventure tourism also. Adventure sports like Rock climbing, Trekking, River Rafting and Parasailing are regular events held in different places in the State. Canoeing or kayaking in the river Yamuna from Paonta Sahib to Hathnikund is a terrifying adventure.
Thus Haryana, the land of great culture and heritage, is fast developing as an attractive travel destination.