India is known for its culture, people, diversity and food, making it an ideal place to discover for travellers. When we think of Indian cuisine, the mind conjures images of numerous dishes, rich in aroma and flavour. A small bite of seekh kebab or biryani—which itself varies from region to region—to the chaats that the streets of India have to offer, this list is exhaustive. Be it spicy, sweet or savoury, or a funky blend of all three, these dishes give us all the flavours we need in our life.
If you love travelling and trying out new cuisines, here are some of our recommendations that we'd like to share with you on account of World Tourism Day.
This city is surely a meat lover's paradise. Famous for biryani and kebabs, it has multiple other offerings, too. Some famous places to check out while in the city include Hazratganj and Chowk, which are filled with shops that serve juicy kebabs, seekh paratha, chaat, kulfi falooda and chole puri. Top recos: 1. Dastarkhwan, Kaiserbagh: Visit and try their famous galouti kebabs and chicken biryani. 2. Idris Ki Biryani, Chowk: They serve a magnificent mutton biryani. 3.Tunday Kababi, Chowk: Try their kebab-paratha, tunday ke kebab and kheer. Best time to travel: From October to March
If you are a big fan of street food, you must visit Indore. The city has a lot to offer when it comes to food. From sweet to savoury, there is always something for everyone. Some treats that you must try at Indore are dahi bhalle, poha, jalebi, moong bhajia, shikanji, malpua and dal batti. Top recos: 1. Joshi Dahi Bada House, Sarafa Bazar: Drop by for a taste of their amazing dahi bada. 2. Vijay Chaat House, Sarafa Bazar: Try their famous khopra chaat. 3. Young Tarang, Chappan Dukan: Must-try items include poha and jalebi. Best time to travel: From October to March
Kolkata, also known as the cultural capital of India, has a myriad of delicacies and sweet treats to offer. Apart from its famous roshogulla and sondesh, the city has many hidden surprises. Some of the traditional delights are machher jhol, alu torkari with luchi, katla kalia, aloo posto, kati rolls and mishti doi. Top recos: 1. Peter Cat, Park Street: Popular for its chelo kebab. 2. Arsalan, Park Circus: Their mutton biryani is to die for. 3. Bhojohari Manna: Visit for an OG Bengali spread. Best time to travel: From October to February
The holy city of Varanasi—also referred to as Kashi, Banaras or Benaras locally—is situated on the banks of river Ganga, in Uttar Pradesh. Some of the popular Varanasi street foods that you must try are kachori sabzi, dahi vada, dahi chutney, gol gappe, choora matar, thandai, baati chokha and tamatar chaat. Top recos: 1. Ram Bhandara, Govindpura: Known for kachori and jalebi. 2. Deena Chaat Bhandar, Luxa: Try their dahi vada and gol gappe. 3. Blue Lassi shop: For various flavours of lassi. Best time to travel: From November to February
Darjeeling's unique cuisine draws from the Gorkha, Khampa, Lepcha, and Sherpa tribes. Some of the must-try items in Darjeeling are kwati, sel roti, thukpa, sekuwa, phambi, momos and aloo dum. Top recos: 1. Glenary's Restaurant, Chauk Bazaar: Established in 1935, this restaurant is known for its continental and Chinese dishes. 2. Keventer's, Nehru Road: Over 100 years old, this iconic eatery in Darjeeling is known to serve Darjeeling tea, breakfast and snacks. 3. Kunga Restaurant, 51 Gandhi Road: Known for Tibetan and Chinese cuisine. Best time to travel: From March to May and September to November
Coorg is famous for its luscious green landscapes, serene atmosphere, and scenic views. And if you visit you should know that the Kodavas do not take their food lightly. Some notable dishes from the Kodava table that you must try are pandi curry, kadambuttu, paputtu, noolputtu, akki otti and thambuttu. Top recos: 1. The East End Hotel, Madikeri: Famous for kheema dosa. 2. Coorg Cuisine, Madikeri: They serve a mean pandi curry, kadambuttu and koli curry. 3. Capitol Village, Kadagadal: Famous for steamed nool puttus, sannas and koli curry Best time to travel: From September to June
Kerala is not known as God's own country for no reason and has splendid views of the backwaters, exotic wildlife, lofty mountains and beaches. Varkala is a beach-town renowned for its natural springs. Plus, the cuisine here does not disappoint. When you decide to take a trip to Varkala try filter coffee, appam, dosa, biryani, fish curry, and the numerous seafood dishes the city has to proffer Top recos: 1. Sree Padmam, Janardhanapuram: Must try thalis and biryani. 2. ABBA Restaurant and Everest German Bakery, Varkala Cliff: Best known for seafood and Indian cuisine. 3. Darjeeling Cafe, Middle cliff: Must-tries include masala dosa, banana leaf fish and Kerala chicken curry Best time to travel: From October to March
From aspiring to be an interior designer to graduating in finance. Afreen’s passion for food, art, poetry, and travel inspired her to become a content writer. She believes in healthy and balanced eating, but her love for all things chocolate gets in the way. When she isn't writing or creating content for social media, you can find her reading Architectural Digest, scrolling through H&M's latest collection, or watching period dramas.