Lucknow, the City of Nawabs, has got a lot to keep you occupied. Visit grand mausoleums, spend time with family at the perfectly-manicured gardens or treat your taste buds at the iconic Tunday Kababi – there are so many things to do in Lucknow and more. But if you want to get away from the hustle and bustle of the city, there are several weekend getaways that are only a couple of hours’ drive away. Exploring these destinations is a perfect way to relax and spend time away from the maddening crowd. So, pack your bags and drive off to any of these places to rejuvenate your senses and have a wonderful weekend.
Weekend Getaways from Lucknow within 200 km
1. Ayodhya – The Birthplace of Lord Ram
- Distance from Lucknow – 136 km
Located on the banks of River Sarayu, Ayodhya is the birthplace of Lord Ram. As soon as you enter this holy town, you get an altogether a different feel. There are several temples, ghats and palaces in Ayodhya that tell tales of its mythological and historical bonds.
The interesting thing about Ayodhya is that it is not just a Hindu pilgrimage centre; there are many Jain shrines as well. When in Ayodhya, you must visit the Ram Janmabhoomi Temple, Hanuman Garhi, Kanak Bhawan, and Treta Ke Thakur, among other attractions.
2. Allahabad – One of the Oldest Cities in India
- Distance from Lucknow – 200 km
Originally named Prayag, Allahabad holds immense religious significance as the three holiest rivers in Hinduism – Ganga, Yamuna and the mystical Saraswati – meet here. As per legends, Lord Brahma chose this place on Earth for Prakrishta Yagna, which makes it one of the most sacred pilgrimage centres of India. It is believed that taking a dip here can wash off all your sins. The historic Kumbh Mela is also held on the banks of Triveni Sangam, every 12 years.
Allahabad Museum, Allahabad Fort, Anand Bhavan, Khusro Bagh, and Hanuman Mandir are other attractions in the city worth visiting. With its grand temples, beautiful ghats, and age-old monuments, the city sure fascinates history lovers and pilgrims alike.
Weekend Getaways from Lucknow within 300 km
3. Dudhwa National Park – For Nature and Wildlife Lovers
- Distance from Lucknow – 222 km
Spread across 490 sq. km of land, Dudhwa National Park is located on the Indo-Nepal border in Terai region of Uttar Pradesh. It was established as a wildlife sanctuary for swamp deer in 1958, declared a national park in 1977, and made a tiger reserve during 1988.
With its captivating landscape of dense forests, enormous lakes, and a wide variety of flora and fauna, this site never fails to entice nature lovers, birdwatchers and wildlife enthusiasts. You can spot many rare and endangered animals here like tiger, leopard, swamp deer, rhino and elephant, and more than 400 species of birds.
4. Chitrakoot – The Hill of Many Wonders
- Distance from Lucknow – 230 km
Chitrakoot is a holy town with lush green forests, ancient temples, and beautiful waterfalls. As per legends, Ram, Sita and Lakshman stayed here for 11 years of their 14-year long exile. His brother Bharat also met him in Chitrakoot and asked him to return to their kingdom.
There are several temples and other places of religious importance in this town. The popular ones include Ganesh Bagh, Gupt Godavari, Ramghat, Kamadgiri and Hanuman Dhara.
5. Varanasi – The Religious Capital of India
- Distance from Lucknow – 300 km
Varanasi is one of the seven holy cities in Hinduism that never ceases to amaze tourists with its massive temples, beautiful ghats and rustic charm. As old as the time itself, Varanasi isn’t just the religious capital of India. The city boasts an impressive architectural heritage with its temples, which are an example of grandeur and opulence.
Those who wish to see the serene side of the city should attend the Ganga Aarti performed every evening on the ghats. Some other must-visit attractions are Kashi Vishwanath Temple, Gyan Vapi, Dashashwamedh Ghat, Durga Temple, and Ramnagar Fort & Museum.
The city is also famous for Banarasi sarees. Do check out the local weavers to get your hands on some of the finest weaves that are exported across the world.
Weekend Getaways from Lucknow within 400 km
6. Khajuraho – For Some of the World’s Finest Art
- Distance from Lucknow – 310 km
Khajuraho, a small town in Madhya Pradesh, is famed worldwide for its three UNESCO-listed temple complexes that are adorned by erotic stone carvings. As per records, the Khajuraho temple site had a total of 85 Hindu, Jain and Buddhist temples but only 25 of them survived the test of time to give us a glimpse of the architectural splendour of erstwhile dynasties.
Majority of tourists visit Khajuraho for its beautifully built temples and finest works of art in history. But the town also draws the attention of nature and wildlife lovers with the Panna National Park, which is home to many endangered and rare animals.
7. Jhansi – The City with Tales of Bravery and Self-respect
- Distance from Lucknow – 316 km
The historical significance of Jhansi has made it a prominent tourist destination. Located in Bundelkhand region, Jhansi is the place where Rani Lakshmi Bai, Nana Sahib, and Tatya Tope planned the revolt of 1857. The forts and monuments in Jhansi remind us of the struggle for independence.
The majestic Jhansi Fort is a key attraction in the city. Tourists must visit the Jhansi Museum within the fort to learn more about the history of the Chandela dynasty which ruled Jhansi during the medieval period. Mahalakshmi Temple, Maharaja Gangadhar Rao ki Chatri, and Rani Mahal are other must-visit attractions in Jhansi.
8. Agra – The City of Taj Mahal
- Distance from Lucknow – 336 km
The Taj Mahal is the first thing that comes to mind upon the mention of Agra. However, the city has more to it than this iconic monument. There are two more UNESCO World Heritage Sites, Agra Fort and Fatehpur Sikri, which give you a sneak peek into the era of the Mughals.
When you are done exploring the historical structures, we recommend visiting the famous bazaars of Agra to shop for artefacts, jewellery, and textile. Also, don’t forget to try the local delicacies like petha and dalmoth.
9. Gwalior – Cultural Capital of Madhya Pradesh
- Distance from Lucknow – 341.3 km
Home to the famous Gwalior Fort, this city has something about it that makes tourists fall in love with it. Gwalior is an ideal weekend retreat for history buffs and art lovers. The palaces, temples, and other monuments in Gwalior speak volumes about its glorious past.
If you are planning to spend a weekend in Gwalior, the itinerary is going to be longer than expected, as there’s so much to explore. Gwalior Fort, Phool Bagh, Moti Mahal, Sun Temple, Jai Vilas Palace, Gopachal Parvat, and Tigra Dam are a few places that you must visit on your trip to Gwalior.
10. Nainital – The Lake District of India
- Distance from Lucknow – 387.3 km
Flanked by mountains on three sides with the beautiful Naini Lake in the centre, Nainital is a charming hill station in Uttarakhand. Its pleasant weather makes it a year-round destination for nature lovers. Go for boating, explore Tiffin Top or spend time at Nainital Zoo; there is a lot to experience in Nainital.
If you have an offbeat vacation plan in mind, head to the less-explored places such as Sattal and Naukuchiatal that are only a few kilometres away from Nainital.
We bet you didn’t know there are so many amazing weekend getaways from Lucknow. So, next time when you want to get away from the noisy city life, don’t think twice!