Dazzling destination weddings in exotic Indian locales are de rigueur among the high-heeled. But the standard cities of Goa, Jaipur, and Mahabalipuram have become passé. Couples are now on the lookout for unmapped, untouched territories. With a limited and select guest list, they wish to offer conscious and interesting experiences to make their weddings memorable.
It is important to keep in mind the accessibility, network, number of invitees, and viability of transporting the necessary paraphernalia to the location. Wedding Planner Alok Dubey says, "It’s advisable to select a destination with proximity to one’s domicile city. People are enamoured with uncharted places now. Many are opting to host ethical, eco-friendly events with only a few handpicked guests and conscious eating with local flavours."
Who said Goa is the only beachside wedding destination? Kovalam, a small seaside settlement in Kerala, is an internationally famous beach. With its pristine beaches, it is yet to be explored by Indians as a venue, to take the plunge. "Well known for its Ayurvedic therapies, sandy beaches, and friendly people, Kovalam is becoming a popular wedding destination. The Kerala sadhya served on banana leaf is a huge gastronomic draw here," observes Piyush Mishra, Executive Chef of The Leela Kovalam, a Raviz Hotel.
Palampur, Himachal Pradesh
Oft heard places in Himachal Pradesh are Shimla, Mussorie, Manali but the underrated gem of Palampur is an idyllic hideaway for those who wish to conduct their nuptials in an unobtrusive manner. Resorts on the foothills of the snow-kissed Dauladhar mountain range in the mighty Himalayas are a heaven for peace and nature lovers. "A riverside picnic on the Neugal River, a session at Andretta Pottery, and a tour to Wah Tea Estate with a Himachali Dhaam experience will certainly be appreciated by the limited and discerning guests. Guaranteed to be an unforgettable wedding ceremony for years to come," hints Akhil Taneja, General Manager of Araiya Resort Palampur.
Mt. Abu, Rajasthan
Duck the flogged-to-death destinations of this desert land. Opt for Mt. Abu, which is an equally charming locale. Star-rated hotels offer comfort and luxury. Being a hill station in the Aravali range, it is a tranquil getaway with an all-year-round cool weather with several luxury resorts and hotels to consider. A trip to Dilwara Temples, waterfalls, or boating in Nakki Lake is sure to offer the couple plenty of pre-wedding photo ops.
Khajuraho, Madhya Pradesh
There are no huge crowds or the humdrum of tourists in this milieu. Just soak in the ethereal grandeur of these temple complexes, their architecture, and their spectacular rock-cut sculptures. If it’s a virgin and unacquainted destination you are looking for, then look no further than Khajuraho. Tying the knot with the backdrop of Kamasutra-inspired sculptures would be a lucky find for Instagram-worthy images.
A closer-to-home unique wedding venue for Mumbaiites would be a vineyard or wellness center in Nashik. Vineyards with lush green lawns, pleasant weather, with wine tourism thrown in, quite unlike the regular wedding drill, would rake in an enjoyable and heady nuptials.
Rejith Daniel, General Manager of Viveda Wellness Village in Nashik, points out, "Awareness among people, especially after the pandemic, makes them opt for a sublime, alfresco wedding, with the untapped gem of a Sattvik feast. Ayurvedic spa treatments are an additional pull for the invitees."
Premium hotels in Ranthambore have luxury tents that lend a close-to-nature appeal. A trip to Ranthambore National Park for the invitees will fascinate them with a unique adventure of the wild kind. It is more than a safari park. With an ancient fort, glorious temples, and a captivating old hunting lodge, it promises an earthy romantic touch with the growl of the tigers for company!
Safari lodges in Bori Wildlife Sanctuary near Bhopal, Jim Corbett in Nainital, or resorts near Satpura National Park are gaining traction as preferred wedding destinations among nature lovers. With a natural wooded, forest setting, these charming and remote retreats offer luxury plus exclusivity. With conservation and wild-life focus, these places offer the raw, rare, and wild glory of Indian wilderness.
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