The massive metropolis and capital city of India is unavoidable if you are travelling directly to the north of India from another country as your flight will land at Delhi airport, the largest in the country since its renovation. New Delhi is a city of contrasts, the old beside the new, bringing the ancient past to life, while simultaneously showcasing India’s modern future. While the crumbling city of Old Delhi exists alongside the organised and sleek New Delhi, they feel like they are world apart. Delhi has a rich history and was ruled by the Mughals and later the British, and there are forts, monuments and evocative mosques, many of which are set in beautifully landscaped gardens, left over from the Mughal occupation.
Northern India is a vast, diverse region consisting of the states of Punjab, Jammu & Kashmir, Haryana, Himachal Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh, Uttarakhand and the Union Territories of Delhi and Chandigarh. There are other states that do not officially form part of North India, but are traditionally, as far as culture and linguistics are concerned, considered so, namely Bihar, Rajasthan, and Madhya Pradesh.
The vast eastern region of India starting from the northernmost point consists of: the contiguous Seven Sister States of Arunachal Pradesh, Assam, Manipur, Meghalaya, Mizoram, Nagaland, and Tripura; the Himalayan state of Sikkim; Chhattisgarh; Jharkhand; West Bengal; and Odisha.
The western region of India consists of the states of Maharashtra, Gujarat, and Goa, as well as the Union territories of Daman and Diu, and Dadra and Nagar Haveli. The West of India is bounded by the Vindhya mountain chain in the north, the Thar Desert in the north-west, and the Arabian Sea in west.
South India encompasses the states of Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka, Kerala, Tamil Nadu and Telangana as well as the union territories of Andaman and Nicobar, Lakshadweep and Puducherry. The region amounts to almost 20% of India’s total area. The geography of the South is diverse, with two mountain ranges, the Western and Eastern Ghats on the borders of the plateau heartland. The Indian Ocean is to the south of the region, with the Arabian Sea to the west and the Bay of Bengal in the east.