- Sukhna Lake
Sukhna Lake in Chandigarh is a must-see attraction located at the foot of the Shivalik Hills. It is the only one of its sort in the city. The lake’s pure blue water attracts a steady stream of morning runners and walkers who may also enjoy the fresh air. Alternatively, abandon everything and sit on the lake’s granite stairs with your companion to watch the sunset in peace. Interestingly, entry is absolutely free, and it is open until 6 p.m. for your beautiful experience. It’s also a popular place for bird watchers because of the migratory species that visit, including Siberian ducks, storks, and cranes. This lake, which is completely tranquil and peaceful, accentuates the city’s vegetation and serves as a perfect place for leisure and pleasure.
- Elante Mall
Elante is that one huge mall that newcomers in the city first go to. From your favorite shopping brands to bars to bowling alleys, it has all. It is for one of those days when you run out of touristy places to hang out and want to splurge your saved money. Or maybe just watch a movie with friends and have McDonald’s after. Elante has got you covered for your last-minute outing plans.
- Rock Garden
Situated 30 minutes from AIL, Rock Garden is a charming tourist spot for those days when you step out to explore. The place is a pocket of creativity which although very popular, seems like an untouched spot. With pretty waterfalls and aesthetic backdrops, it is a perfect place for an outdoor date or picnic.
- Zakir Hussain Rose Garden
The Zakir Hussain Rose Garden is Asia’s largest rose garden. It is a popular destination for nature lovers, especially in the winter months–it is a wonderful place to soak up the winter Sun! With over 1500 species of roses and tonnes of medicinal trees, the garden is a sight to behold. The best time to visit is between February to March when the flowers are in full bloom and the Rose Festival also takes place. Over 20,000 visitors from across the country prong the festival!
- Japanese Garden
If you know someone who plans to go to the Japanese Garden, know that for the next week your social media feed is going to be filled with their pictures against pretty flowers and Japanese-style structures. As the name suggests, this garden located in sector 31 of Chandigarh is designed using Japanese architecture. While you can go there seeking peace and calm, what we can guarantee you to be getting out of this place are insta-worthy clicks.
- Sector 15 market
You do not go to sector 15 market and return just like that, empty-handed. Going to sector 15 is an event. Sector 15 houses a thrift market where you get really comfortable but affordable clothing, shoes, and accessories, those tiny gel bags that you use as heaters, and lots of good Chinese street food. The momos and egg noodles of sector 15 are worth the time it taken to reach the place. You can go to the market whenever and it is almost always bustling with people in every part. A similar place that you might want to try if you’re into street shopping is sector 22 Shastri Market.
- Sector 17 market
Imagine a pedestrian’s paradise where you could find high-end stores siding with intriguing local boutiques; branded items adorning showrooms but you’ll also find handcrafted items for as far as you’d see. That’s sector-17 for you. And if you happen to visit it for the first time, you’re in for an absolute treat. Endowed with amazing fountains, tree groves, and interesting sculptures, visitors are bound to be taken away by the beauty of neon lights designed around the fountain in the night. The sector turns into an open-air club during winters when the sun shines and visitors flock to the plaza. Or even during summers; you’ll happen to see a long queue of people outside the renowned ice cream parlor “Softy Corner” known for serving some of the best and most delicious icecreams in the Tricity.
Versatility is the essence of this beautifully planned sector. You can find the National Gallery of Portraits situated right in sector 17-B, an exclusive government emporium(store) that deals in Indian ethnics known as “ phulkari” where you can even purchase beautifully embroidered Punjabi-styled dupattas – the traditional toed shoes(juttis), western wear, books from some of the oldest bookstores in the city, music stores, ethnic jewelry, and funky shoes! Sector 17 proves to be a perfect amalgamation of old school and modernization.
- Night Food Street
Night Food Street is for those lucky ones who get a night-out pass to explore the city. Located in sector 14, is found to be in its true state in the silent midnight hours in the city. One can find families and college students enjoying the varied street-style food available. From chhole bhature and pizzas for a midnight snack to warm gulab jamuns and icecream for the Punjabi sweet tooth, it is a saving grace for the after-party munchies in Chandigarh.
- Morni Hills
About 30 km from Panchkula, Morni Hills is the only hill station in Haryana. Apart from the beautiful views of the Shivalik range, the Morni adventure park and Morni fort are a must-visit. The Morni fort, a nature museum filled with animal figures, caves, and murals is a nature lover’s delight. If you plan to go to Tikkar Taal for hiking, boating, or even just sightseeing, the Maggi from the famous Maggi point will be an absolute treat for a hungry stomach. The drive-in itself is a pleasant affair and it is a Sunday well-spent. For us Chandigarh kids, it is like our personal mini Lonavala trip.
Now that we are talking about places near the college, we cannot leave Sameerdeep out of the list. On cold sleep-infused winter mornings, one can always depend on Sameerdeep’s hot chocolate with extra cocoa and bread pakora on the side. It’s likely that in the years that you stay in AIL, you will get to hear about their famous lassi too–a delicious savior in the harsh summers. Their food is not only yummy in the tummy but also pocket-friendly to us pocketless college students. Oh and of course, if on days the mess breakfast is not pleasing to your eyes, then you can count on Sameerdeep parathas for a yum filling meal.
- Government Museum and Art Gallery
For some of us; crowded and social places aren’t as appealing as the rest. Or maybe you crave a tranquil day of walking through halls adorned with magnificent history and art. Does your ardent love for art pull you towards the corridor of an art gallery every time? Ever felt like spending hours admiring beautiful sculptures? If you are nodding your head to these questions, then The Government Museum and Art Gallery Chandigarh is the right place to visit. The museum is located at Jan Marg, 10C, Sector 10 C, Chandigarh and is open to the public every day (except Monday) from 10.00 A.M to 4.30 P.M.
Deemed rightfully as one of the best museums in the country and designed by Chandigarh’s city developer; French architect: Le Corbusier, it is said to be the largest home to the collections of Gandhara sculptures, sculptures from ancient, medieval, and modern history, and Pahari and Miniature paintings with the best art gallery in Chandigarh which consists of modern, contemporary art and Indian Mural paintings. The museum also has a resource library to read and learn more about the displayed sculptures.
The Government College of Art is situated right beside this museum and in the center of the city with one of the best sprawling campuses; on one side and the Museums of Architecture and Natural History on the other. This museum and art gallery has proved to be a heaven for tourists, researchers, students, families, and people who have a special love for enveloping art in their hearts and lives.
- Peeche wala Theka
How could we possibly miss this? If you are an AIL student, you know this place. We have seen teetotallers eating crispy corn and masala fries in and others sitting on the stairs of that half-constructed building having the deepest conversations of their life. A place where friendships have been made and broken. Truly one of the most iconic places where you’ll almost always find someone from AIL chilling.