India’s varied and often rugged terrain makes for the perfect playground for adventure enthusiasts. The vast natural resources like the mountains, rivers, jungles, desert and the ocean on one side and sea on the other; can be exploited in different ways to get that perfect rush of adrenaline. The top 5 adventure sports in India are:
White Water Rafting/Kayaking: From the mighty heights of the Himalayas spring forth some beautiful rivers that traverse treacherous paths over massive boulders that form rapids of different levels ideal for rafting. There is surely no thrill similar to attempting to navigate your way through violent waters! If you’ve a bit more daring, try kayaking through those rapids instead! Some of the raft-able rivers are the Ganga (Rishikesh), Indus (Leh), Tista (Sikkim) and Beas (Kullu). Though the rafting season in India starts from 15th September and closes on the 30th of June, October to April are the best months.
Trekking: The different mountain and hill ranges in India provide many a remote and scenic route for fabulous treks. Whether it’s the Indian Himalayan or Karakoram Range, the Nilgiris or the Western Ghats, the Gharwal or Kumaon region, they all offer the most spectacular views and a chance to enjoy nature in its pristine form. Along with trekking, you can even enjoying mountain climbing and mountain biking. Trekking season in India roughly runs through April to November.
Wildlife Safaris: India is home to some beautiful and exotic animals and it is indeed sad that most of them are facing extinction. These animals are now harboured in their natural habitats in restricted areas which can be accessed only through government-run safaris. The most famous national parks in India are Corbett, Ranthambore, Sunderbans (all home to the Bengal Tiger), Kaziranga (home to the One Horned Rhinoceros) and Gir (home to the Lion). While the ideal times to visit these places vary, summer is usually the best as the animals can be easily spotted near the watering holes.
Scuba Diving and Snorkelling: The world underwater is often more stunning that the world above. Coral reefs and other astounding sea life can really leave a person speechless. In India, the option to explore this wondrous yet hidden world can be found off the pristine shores of the Andaman and Nicobar Islands in the Bay of Bengal and the Lakshwadeep Islands in the Arabian Sea. Unharmed by litter and pollution, the blue, green and turquoise waters host the most amazing sights. Other activities like jet skis and parasailing are also available. All diving centres are closed during monsoons (May to September).
Paragliding and Hang-Gliding: Soaring free through the sky has held the human fancy for centuries and paragliding allows you to get a glimpse of that feeling. Some destinations in India are great for paragliding owing to their scenic setting as well as optimum flight times. Kamshet in Maharashtra is set amongst rolling hills and lush green fields and from October through May, the winds here allow for great flights. Billing in the Kangra Valley is considered one of the best paragliding destinations in the world as it allows for flights that can last up to 30 minutes, the ideal season for which is from March to early June.