The home to one of the Seven Wonders of the World, Uttar Pradesh has been always an important part of Indian history, politics and tourism. With the perfect blend of heritage, culture and religious centre, it attracts billions of tourists every years and still increasing. Its deep history, various cultural and religious fests, beautiful monuments with flaunting exquisite arts like the handicrafts and jewellery with massive royal influence in the fields of dance and music and arts largely contributes the maximum number of tourists to the country. Not only this, but it is home to one of the first classical dances of India, Kathak and many mouth-watering dishes and cuisines like Awadhi and Mughalai.
Agra, Fatehpur Sikri, Lucknow, Prayagraj (Allahabad), Mathura, Vrindavan, Ayodhya and Varanasi are the major tourist destinations witnesses a large number of tourists every year. Uttar Pradesh has an influential role in the growth of Buddhism in India as well.
Lucknow: The city of Nawabs and Kebabs, Lucknow is the largest city of the state and serves as its administrative capital. The city is well- known for its cultural values and hospitality with a heartwarming saying “Muskuraiyein, kyunki aap Lucknow mein hai” meaning “Please be delight, you are at Lucknow”. This phase not only depicts the hospitality of the city, but also the culture and feeling of belongingness.
Lucknow is always famous for its cuisine “Awadhi Cuisines” with wide range of Kebabs, Biryanis and lots more. It has also contributed in the tourism with its heritage buildings and architectural legacy dating from the time of Nawabs.
Delicacy: Lucknow is not only famous for its historical heritage architectures, but also for its mouth- watering foods. The home for many Kebabs, Biryanis and other Mughalai dishes, Lucknow is certainly holds the candidature for the title of “Heaven for Foodies”. Its cuisine has a very in-depth varieties of dishes which attracts the tourists and foodies to experience.
How to reach: One can visit Lucknow by all means of transport mainly Air, Land and Rail from different parts of the country.
Agra: Home to three UNESCO World Heritage sites – Taj Mahal, Agra Red Fort and Fatehpur Sikri, Agra is a popular tourist destination situated at the banks of River Yamuna. Once the capital city of mighty Mughal Empire, Agra is unbeatably one of the most popular Indian destination among the world tourism. Fatehpur Sikri is a ruined ghostly city about 40 km drive from Agra, was once the Pride of Mughal Empire. It was predominantly made of red sandstone and founded by Mughal Emperor “Akbar – The Great” in 1571, who shifted his capital from Agra to Fatehpur Sikri. It is home to Jodha Bai’s Palace, Jama Mosque, Buland Darwaza, and Tomb of Salim Chisti among many other famous monuments.
Delicacy: Cuisine of Agra has great influence of Mughalai food with the essence of local traditional cuisine in it. The home for the famous sweet dish – Petha ((a sweet made from pumpkin and flavoured with rose water and saffron), Agra is “The city of Taj Mahal, the monument of eternal love”.
How to reach: One can reach Agra by road, driving from the National Capital – Delhi via Yamuna Expressway. It is also well connected by railways from major cities throughout the country.
Mathura: One of the seven sacred cities in India, Mathura is the birthplace of Lord Krishna. Along with its neighboring city “Vrindavan”, it witnessed the early life and leelas of Lord Krishna and is famous among the ISKCON followers from every part of the world.
Vrindavan: One of the oldest cities on the bank of River Yamuna, Vrindavan has always a special place in the heart of Lord Krishna’s devotees. Here only Lord Krishna has spent his childhood. It has many temples devoted to Lord Krishna and his love interest Devi Radha.
Some of the places to visit at Mathura – Vrindavan are Banke Bihari Temple, Prem Mandir, Radha Raman Temple, ISKCON Vrindavan, Govardhan Hill, Shri Krishna Janmasthan Temple, Dwarikadish Temple, Vishram Ghat, and Birla Temple.
Delicacy: Mathura – Vrindavan is famous for Pede – a form of sweet dish made from condensed milk. But one should also try Kachori, Jalebi, Chaat, Panipuri, Samosa, Dhokla, Aloo tikki and Lassi while visiting.
How to reach: You can either drive from Delhi or Agra to reach Mathura – Vrindavan. Mathura is a major Railway Station of Uttar Pradesh Station.
Prayagraj: Prayagraj earlier known as Allahabad is the city of offerings and Maha Kumbh Mela. It is also the birthplace for our first Prime Minister “Jawaharlal Nehru”. Nehru’s ancestral house has been converted into a museum name as Anand Bhawan. Here at Prayagraj only, the three holy river – Ganges, Yamuna and Saraswati meets at Triveni Ghat. It got its name Ilahabad (Allahabad) by Mughal emperor Akbar, which means “The Abode of God”
Some famous places to visit are Triveni Ghat, Anand Bhawan, Khusro Bagh, Allahabad Museum, Allahabad Fort, Allahabad pillar, and All Saints Catheral.
Varanasi: Varanasi also known as Kashi is the oldest living city, is entitled as The Spiritual Capital of India. Being the home to Kashi Vishwanath Temple, one of the twelve Jyotirlinga, Varanasi is famous for its network of Narrow Streets and BHU University. Sarnath is a nearby city has an importance in the Buddhist with numerous Stupas, museums, excavated ancient sites and beautiful temples.
Some of the famous tourist attractions, one should visit are Kashi Vishwanath Temple, Sankat Mochan Temple, Dashashwamedha Ghat, Manikarnika Ghat, Sarnath complex, New Vishwanath Temple BHU, Tulsi Manasa Temple, Ashoka Pillar Sarnath, Thai Temple, Archeaological museum Sarnath.
Delicacy: Similar to its historical monuments, Varanasi is also famous for its street food which has a distinct place in the heart of foodies. Some famous delicacies from the oldest living city are Kachori Sabzi, Channa Dahi Balla, Thandai, Samosas, Choora Matar, Tamatar (Tomato) Chaat, Baati Chokha, Laaiya Chana and the world famous Banarasi Paan.
How to reach: Varanasi is the International Airport with good connectivity. One can also visit using railways and roadways to this ancient city.