Chandigarh Named in NYT List of Places to Go in 2018

Chandigarh is the only Indian destination to be featured on the New York Times’ "52 Places to Go in 2018" list.


Chandigarh, the capital of the northern Indian states of Punjab and Haryana, has been featured in the New York Times’ “52 Places to Go in 2018” list, alongside tourist destinations like Prague, Denver, and Colorado. It is the only Indian city to be included in the selection.

Chandigarh, called “green city and mecca for architecture lovers” in the publication, ranks at No. 43 on the list. The city, the planning of which was commissioned by India’s first Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru, was designed by Swiss-French architect Charles-Édouard Jeanneret, also known as Le Corbusier, more than 60 years ago.

The NYT article notes that while Chandigarh is not usually on the radar for most tourists, “the metropolis of wide boulevards, plentiful green spaces and noteworthy architecture is finally getting its due.” According to data from India’s Ministry of Tourism, the states of Tamil Nadu, Maharashtra and Uttar Pradesh attracted the most number of foreign tourists in 2016. Punjab did not make it to the top 10 in the list.

The article recommends the city for housing structures like the Capitol Complex, a government compound that was named a UNESCO World Heritage site in 2016; architect Pierre Jeanneret’s home that was turned into a museum dedicated to his contributions to the city in 2017; and the Oberoi Sukhvilas, a luxury resort in the heart of a forest spread over 8,000 acres. The feature also notes that with its large spa, which offers an extensive range of wellness programs, the resort “promises to be a destination in and of itself.”

Chandigarh is one of north India’s cleanest cities, a survey done by the Union government called Swachh Sarvekshan-2017 showed. The city also has other tourist attractions such as the Sukhna Lake, a spot for birding enthusiasts; and the Rock Garden that was designed by government official Nek Chand who made 2,000 sculptures made from stone, debris, glass scrap and other waste materials.

The top spot in the NYT article has been claimed by New Orleans. Other destinations on the list include Top End in Australia, Colombia, Estonia, Basilicata in Italy, Gansu in China, the Caribbean, Vierwaldstättersee in Switzerland; Kuelap in Peru; Cincinnati in Ohio, Bhutan, and Glasgow in Scotland.

The choice of destinations in the list, which is in its 13th edition, was justified by the publication by saying: “We also aim for a geographic and thematic diversity. And we look for a mix of destinations both well-known and off the beaten path. That means we often exclude the very obvious spots; even though cities like London, Paris and Tokyo are always exciting, they didn’t make this year’s list.”

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