20 Cheap Places to Visit in India: 2022 Updated List

Budget Trips in India

Goa, Rishikesh, Alleppey, Jaipur, Meghalaya, Udaipur, Darjeeling, Pondicherry, Kasol, Pushkar, Nainital, Jaisalmer, Itanagar, Kanyakumari, Ooty, Mcleodganj, Gokarna, Lonavala, Kodaikanal, Khajuraho.

From scenic escapades to the mountains to cozy offbeat reposes, the cheap places to visit in India make quality tourism accessible to travellers across all budget strata. Whether you’re drawn to the busy quality of city life or desire a quieter holiday amidst nature, these affordable and fantastic destinations will help you design the perfect vacation of your choice. Contrary to popular notions, big cities such as Goa, Jaisalmer, Udaipur and Kanyakumari can prove to be some of the cheapest places to travel in India, if one’s holiday is planned properly.

To make one’s trip as cost-effective as possible, tourists can optimize their budget by taking self-guided tours across the attractions in these cities, most of which do not charge an entry fee and choose standard hotels and dormitories for stay. Hill stations could turn out to be some of the best low budget tourist places in India as well. Whether it be the quaint Darjeeling to the stunning Mcleodganj or even Meghalaya in the Northeast, the hill stations offer a perfect balance of great weather, budget stays opportunities, and adventure, making them especially popular among backpackers and solo travellers.

Here is the list of cheap places to visit in India:

01

Goa

As a tourist destination, Goa remains popular among both international as well as domestic tourists throughout the year. When planned well, Goa can turn out to be one of the cheap places to visit in India. The city boasts of a bohemian vibe, and offers plenty of Air Bnbs and homestays to choose from for budget travelers.

Entry to beaches- which are, by far, Goa’s biggest attraction - is free unless one voluntarily opts for water sports. There are plenty of beach shacks and local eateries to choose from as well. Sightseeing tours are pocket friendly and experimental and include scooter, cycle and walking tours as well.

Average Cost: Rs. 5,000/- for 2 nights

Best time to visit: October to March
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02

Rishikesh

If you’re a tourist with a religious bent, Rishikesh can turn out to be one of the cheap places to visit in India. It’s history inextricably linked with the epic Ramayana, the ‘Yoga Capital’, as it is popularly known as, is a much sought after site of religious pilgrimages.

The temples, which are the biggest attractions here, charge a nominal entry fee. Besides, watching the Ganga aarti is absolutely free. When it comes to accommodation, Rishikesh has plenty of pocket friendly options to choose from, including guest houses, hostels such as goStops and many ashrams.

Average Cost: Rs. 3,000/- for 2 nights

Best time to visit: April to June
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03

Alleppey

Contrary to popular belief, a trip to the south need not be heavy on one’s pockets. If the holiday is timed properly, Alleppey can make for one of the best budget trips in India. The backwaters of course, are the biggest draw here, but an economical way of exploring it would be to book a ferry tour rather than an overnight stay in a houseboat.

There are several standard hotels in Alleppey, and some of them choose scenic locations as well. However, when visiting off season, one might be able to secure a hefty deal at one of the better resorts as well.

Average Cost: Rs. 8,000/- for 2 nights

Best time to visit: May to June
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04

Jaipur

The city of towering forts, Jaipur is one of the most stunning low budget tourist places in India. Although Jaipur is widely known for its haveli and palatial stays, there are plenty of Treebo hotels, guesthouses, and homestays to choose from as well. Besides, the forts and the palaces charge only a nominal fee from domestic travelers, making sightseeing a super pocket friendly affair.

When it comes to shopping, Jaipur offers plenty of local bazaars and markets where haggling is not only commonplace, but also recommended. If you’re traveling from another city within Rajasthan, taking the road might make the journey not more affordably but also way more enjoyable.

Average Cost: Rs. 7,000/- for 2 nights

Best time to visit: October to March
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05

Meghalaya

Nestled in the mountains of the North East, Meghalaya can be one of the cheapest places to travel in India. A common haunt for backpackers, the hill stations here are prepared to welcome solo and budget travelers. Shared accommodation facilities are commonplace throughout the state, although camps are preferable as well.

To make your trip as cost effective as possible, it would be ideal to go on individual treks instead of booking an adventure tour. The living root treks is the most popular trekking spot in Meghalaya; one can even avail the help of local guides to make their way easier. When it comes to food, there are several local cafes selling full meals at good prices.

Average Cost: Rs. 5,000/- for 2 nights

Best time to visit: April to June
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06

Udaipur

Albeit known best for its royal accommodation, a pocket friendly trip to Udaipur is definitely a possibility. And that wouldn’t include compromising on one’s accommodation either, for there are several havelis and lakeside resorts leasing out rooms at budget rates.

If you’re open to being experimental, sightseeing in Udaipur can be both fun and cheap. Cycle, boat and trekking tours are some of the most exciting ways of navigating the city without spending much. The forts and museums in Udaipur also make it one of the best cheap places to visit in India in terms of sightseeing, charging a very nominal fee for entry.

Average Cost: Rs. 2,500/- for 2 nights

Best time to visit: November to February
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07

Darjeeling

Nestled on the slopes of the Lesser Himalayas, Darjeeling is one of the most beautiful cheap places to visit in India. An itinerary in the little hill station would inevitably include a ride in the colonial Toy Train, a sunset watch at the Tiger Hills and a visit to the Japanese Peace Pagoda, all of which are either free of cost or require a nominal fee.

Although there are luxury hotels galore, homestays and standard AirBnbs are common here, and often sought after by student or budget travelers. Darjeeling has a Mall Street as well, where locally made clothes, books, souvenirs and jewelry are sold at extremely friendly prices.

Average Cost: Rs. 3,000/- for 2 nights

Best time to visit: April to June
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08

Pondicherry

Although travel to Pondicherry is generally deemed too expensive, it can prove to be one of the cheapest places to travel in India if planned with care. The most economical way of traveling to the city is by rail, although there are frequent buses connecting Pondicherry to neighboring cities as well.

Dormitory rooms would be the best option for backpackers or solo travelers, although there are several standard hotels to choose from. Auroville, Pondicherry’s biggest attraction, does not require an entry fee, and the beaches are always free. Additionnary, bicycles and bikes can be availed on rent, for those willing to tour the city.

Average Cost: Rs. 2,000/- for 2 nights

Best time to visit: October to March
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09

Kasol

Hill stations are among the best cheap places to visit in India, and Kasol is no exception. To make your trip here as cost effective as possible, it would be advisable to book a homestay or hostel, rather than going for the traditional resorts.

Parvati Valley is a popular tourist area near Kasol, and while booking a car to the valley is the more popular choice, trekking to Parvati is not only more exciting but also goes much easier on the pockets. As for food, Kasol has plenty of local dhabas serving warm, well prepared meals at extremely pocket friendly prices.

Average Cost: Rs. 7,000/- for 2 nights
Best time to visit: October to June
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10

Pushkar

One of Rajasthan’s smaller cities, Pushkar makes for one of the best low budget tourist places in India. Most of the resorts here quote standard prices, although one can always avail homestays as well.

The Camel Fair at Pushkar, which is one of its biggest cultural attractions, requires only a nominal entry charge. The Pushkar Lake is the central attraction in the city, along with the many Hindu temples, none of which incur an entry fee either.

Average Cost: Rs. 5,000/- for 2 nights

Best time to visit: November to February
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11

Nainital

While a great visit in itself, Nainital can be an ideal detour from the other hill stations of Uttarakhand here. Staying and touring in Nainital is comparatively much less expensive than its sister cities, making it among the best cheap places to visit in India. Standard hotels and homestays are popular among budget travelers, and are quite easy to access as well.

The lakes, which are the primary attractions here, are free to visit, although activities such as boating might incur a minimal charge. Most of its other attractions, such as the temples or the viewpoints, do not require a fee either. Like Darjeeling, Nainital has a Mall Road as well, selling locally made items at extremely nominal charges.

Average Cost: Rs. 5,000/- for 2 nights

Best time to visit: May to June
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12

Jaisalmer

Although more popular as a luxury travel destination, Jaisalmer ranks pretty high in the list of cheap places to visit in India as well. There are plenty of budget friendly hotels and resorts to choose from, and some cost effective desert camps as well. If you’re planning on visiting the attractions, it would be safe to include any or all of the forts, museums and palaces to your list, since these places either charge no or very minimal entry fee. If you’re opting for a desert safari, it would be advisable to go for camel safaris offered by locals and negotiate the prices accordingly.

Average Cost: Rs. 3,000/- for 2 nights

Best time to visit: November to February
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13

Itanagar

Perched atop the Himalayas, Itanagar is the capital city of Arunachal Pradesh. The fantastic scenic beauty and weather of the place makes it a popular haunt among backpackers and solo budget travelers, although Itanagar is often considered as a gateway or a layover stop between other locations. The attractions in Itanagar do not incur extra charges, making it one of the cheapest places to travel in India.

The charming Ganga Lake is the biggest attraction here, although the Namphada Wildlife Sanctuary is a big hit among wildlife lovers as well. The Ita Fort is another prominent site here. Activities such as rafting, angling or kayaking might be a little luxury addition to the trip, although if you’re coming equipped, you won’t need to pay for the materials either.

Average Cost: Rs. 5,000/- for 2 nights

Best time to visit: October to April
14

Kanyakumari

Located on the southernmost tip of the country, Kanyakumari is one of the most beautiful cheap places to visit in India. The beaches of Kanyakumari are of course, as resplendent as they come, and form the biggest attraction here.

If you’re a fan of natural landscapes, do make it a point to catch a sunset at the beach - Kanyakumari is the only place in the world where, on full moon days, one can catch a simultaneous sunset and moonrise in the same sky. The standard of living is varied here; apart from luxury resorts, the city does feature plenty of standard hotels and dormitory accommodations.

Average Cost: Rs. 3,000/- for 2 nights

Best time to visit: October to March
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15

Ooty

Sitting on the bright blue Nilgiris, Ooty serves as a dream vacation spot for anyone looking to escape the busy city vibe. While a luxury stay in Ooty can be heavy on the pockets, planning one's holiday meticulously might make Ooth one of the cheapest places to travel in India.

The Nilgiri toy train is the most popular attraction, and like in Darjeeling, the tickets don't cost much. The beautiful lake at the center of the city serves as a great visit as well. If you’re an adventurer, camping could be a good way to spend one’s time here, and it costs nothing to pitch a tent at the lakeside camping spots.

Average cost: Rs. 5,000/- for 2 nights

Best time to visit: November to February
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16

Mcleodganj

Also known as the Little Lhasa, the dreamlike Mcleodganj nestles just beside Dharamshala.  While Dharamshala is rarely considered for a full fledged vacation, it is a popular getaway destination, especially during the summer season. With most of its attractions being natural, Mcleodganj is among the most beautiful cheap tourist places in India.

Camping and trekking are some of the most popular cost effective activities here, especially if you’re tent-camping individually, and not through tour groups. The Triund Trek is, in fact, one of the most popular routes in the HImalayas, and can be attempted by beginners as well. The hill station has several excellent flea markets as well for cheap and affordable shopping.

Average cost: Rs. 3,000/- for 2 nights

Best time to visit: October to March
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17

Gokarna

Located on the eastern Kannada Coast, the sleepy town of Gokarna serves a perfect respite from the bustle of everyday life. The temple town is known widely for its Mahabaleshwar Temple, which is one of the most important Shaivite pilgrimages in the country.

Gokarna is among the best cheap places to visit in India as well, offering several standard hotels and hostels for stay. Gokarna has some beautiful beaches, and while swimming is never a bad idea, one can also try their hand at a number of water sports here. Beachside trekking is another popular activity.

Average cost: Rs. 3,000/- for 2 nights

Best time to visit: October to February
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18

Lonavala

A short drive from both Pune and Bombay, Lonavala is one of the most popular weekend destinations. The hill station has plenty of stunning view points to choose from; Duke’s Point is just a beautiful trek away and serves up breathtaking views of the valley, while Lion’s Point is known for its ravishing sunsets.

Lonavala has a lot of charming lakes as well, the Bushi Dam and Lonavala Dam standing out among them. While there are plenty of luxury stays in Lonavala, prior research will yield good quality, budget friendly accommodation options such as Treebo homes and standard hotels as well.

Average cost: Rs. 5,000/- for 2 nights 

Best time to visit: October to March
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19

Kodaikanal

Located in the Dindigul district of Tamil Nadu, Kodaikanal is one of the most beautiful places that one can choose for low budget trips in India. In literal Tamil, the name of the city translates to “The Gift of the Forest.” Lakes, temples and scenic promenades scatter the hill station on one side, and none require a fee for visit.

However, nominal prices are charged for secondary activities such as boating. Kodaikanal is replete with a number of stunning natural marvels as well, including the Guna Caves and the Bear Shola waterfall.

Average cost: Rs.4,000/- for 2 nights

Best time to visit: October to March
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20

Khajuraho

Housing some of India’s most esteemed temples and shrines, Khajuraho is one of the grandest of cheap tourist places in India. In fact, the monuments in the city have earned a title of a UNESCO Heritage Site, and are recognized as one of the ‘seven wonders’ in India. Going to Khajuraho, one must make it a point to take a temple tour, with the Ghantai, Matangeshwar, Vamana, Brahma, and Jagdambi temples being only some of the names on the list.

The temples require no entry charges, making the tour easy on pockets. There’s a light and sound show conducted in the temple area as well, which adds to the visit. The city has several budget accommodations to choose from, including standard hotels that offer good quality stay at low rates.

Average cost: Rs. 3,000/- for 2 nights

Best time to visit: November to February
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