India has always been considered geographically as well as culturally rich nations across the globe. We are also called the “Land of contrasts”. We have so much divergence in locations which is just unreal. One can find dense forests, snow-capped mountains, beautiful seas, tropical islands, dunes to sunny beaches. This also marks one of the promising features as to why filmmakers today find it suitable to make such great movies. The Indian filmmakers have a top-notch choice in the selection of destinations. They have shown famous monuments and heritage sites but apart from that they strive hard and keep looking for unknown, unexplored destinations. The surreal views we look at in the movies are just not for background, but they are chosen to keep the story, characters, and plot in mind as they connect us to a story. Check out these amazing Bollywood shooting locations which have today become must-visit destinations in India:
1. Ooty- Tamil Nadu
The place is called the Filmmaker’s paradise. Famous hits like Dil Se, Kuch Kuch Hota Hai, Ajab Prem Ki Gajab Kahani, Hum Aapke Hai Kaun, Maine Pyaar Kiya, Roja, are shot here. Ooty’s beauty lies in the intense plantations of coffee, eucalyptus trees, soothing weather, abundant greenery. The destination has been exhibited through splendid cinematography which shows deep-rooted simplicity of people, peace, and effortless charm!
2. Athirappilly Waterfalls and Munnar- Thrissur, Kerala
Located in the Thrissur district, The Athirapilly and Vazhachal falls are known to be as the “Niagara Falls Of India”. The scenic beauty of this place is pure bliss. Ever thought about the iconic scene of the movie Baahubali? This is a place one needs to check out. Apart from Bollywood movies like Baahubali, Raavn, Guru, Yaariyan, a lot of South films are also shot here. Munnar is another place much appraised by Bollywood makers today as the lush green gardens, tea estates, spices, dense forests, rare flora-fauna captivates our eyes. Chennai express, Dil Se, Life of Pi have done full justice to these serene views.
3. Amber Fort- Jaipur
The magnificence the Amber fort reflects is truly unbeatable. The royalty and charm this place exhibits have been creatively shown in Bol Bacchan, Khoobsoorat, Joddha Akhbar, and Bajirao Mastani. The elite fort situated in Jaipur, over Maota Lake, is an integral part of the city that has four courtyards built of yellow and pink sandstone along with very attractive marble. This is also World Heritage Site as per UNESCO as it was once home to the Royal family of Raja Mansingh.
4. Golden Temple- Amritsar
Amritsar is symbolically represented by the Golden Temple, which is the holy shrine for Sikhs. From movies like Rang De Basanti, Rab Ne Bana Di Jodi, Udta Punjab to Manmaziyaan, all of them have beautifully captured the essence of the city of Amritsar. Wagah Border is another place a lot of movies have chosen to shoot at. Veer-Zara shows close-up and lovely shots of the Wagah border which also attracts a lot of tourists through all seasons.
A small state-based in the southwestern coast of India that has an eccentric mix of Portuguese and Indian cultures and architectures. The place holds Panaji as the state capital with Vasco Da Gama as the largest state which receives a huge number of visitors throughout the year. The sunny and exotic beaches, wildlife, casinos, nightlife, forts, houses of worship; from cathedrals to shrines one can find it all here. Aren’t these enough reasons why movies like Golmaal, Singham, Guzaarish, Dear Zindagi, Dil Chahta Hai, Drishyam, Dilwale, Go Goa Gone, Bhoothnath, Malang are shot here.
6. Banaras Ghats- Banaras
Banaras, Varanasi or Kashi, are all names of the same places. It is one of the oldest cities that often lures us to the majestic temples, pure ghats, Ganga aarti is the spiritual capital of India. Many films like Masaan, Raanjhana, Bunty Aur Babli, Piku, and many others have very well revealed the true soul of the city. With an old-world charm, this place is one of the most famous places to shoot for Indian filmmakers.
7. Rohtang Pass- Manali
On the Manali-Leh Highway, is the Rohtang Pass, which has been one of the prime filming locations, shown in Highway, Jab We Met, Dev D to name a few. What makes this place special is the long stretch of the narrow road with snowcapped mountains on either side with vibrant flower-beds. The place is visited by tourists for skiing, biking along with a few adventure sports, from which makers of Bollywood films have taken ideas and incorporated them in the movies.
8. Qutab Minar, India Gate Delhi
Being the nation’s capital, Delhi had to be on the list when we talk about Bollywood movies shot here. There are a lot of spots from historical places like Qutab Minar, Lodhi Gardens, Jantar Mantar, India Gate to the old-Delhi streets of Delhi-6, Karol Bagh, Chandni Chowk. Blockbuster movies like Rang de Basanti, Rockstar, Fanna, PK, Queen, Jannat-2, Delhi-6, Love Aaj Kal, Raanjhana, Ek Tha Tiger all of them were majorly shot in the city. The city isn’t just about the historic significance of monuments, but also about the experience which is sure of a lifetime!
Udaipur is also known as “The White City” as the Rajput palaces are built of marbles on the Pichola Lake which is alluring. The appeal of the city lies in the luxurious lifestyles, cuisines, heritage, legacy, royal cultures, handicrafts, temples, mountains, folk dance, palaces, and people. The picturesque beauty of the city is something every filmmaker has endeavored for many decades now. Popular movies like Guide, Ramleela, Yeh Jawani Hai Deewani, Dhadak have been shot here and have shown the enchanting view of the city. “Udaivilas” a heritage property by the Oberoi group which is also what attracts a lot of celebrities and tourists throughout the year.
10. Gulmarg- Jammu
Yeh Jawaani Hai Deewani, Rockstar, Highway, Haider, Aap Ki Kasam, Bobby are just a few of the films that have been able to accurately seize the beauty of the lush green fields and snowy mountains. Gulmarg has also become one of the finest places for skiing lovers. Bollywood has been portraying the city as the most romantic and delightful place for decades now. It all had started back in 1964 with Kashmir Ki Kali, where Shammi Kapoor did an iconic song- “Tareef Karu Kya Uski” and “Isharon isharon mein”.
11. Howrah Bridge- Kolkata
A place that has sure hypnotized all of us with the aura it posses. Kolkata, “The City Of Joy” has been home to great authors, singers, poets, actors who today are a big name in the Industry. The key spots of the city are Howrah Bridge and Dakshineshwer temple amongst many other places like Victoria Memorial, Kalighat, and Vicinity. Recall Amitabh Bacchan cycling through the narrow lanes of the city in Piku. Other movies like Kahaani, Gunday, Barfi, Lootera, Vicky Donor have emphasized the delicacies, Durga Puja, tram rides which are so pleasing.
12. Dhom dam- Near Panchgani
A secret location for the Hindi film industry is Dhom Dam, in Wai, which has been an ideal spot for taking surreal shoots for films. The location has been captured in more than over 250 films now. Gangajal, Swades, Omkaara, Chennai Express, Dabangg, Ishqiya are a few honorable mentions who have greatly score the background scenes with the village, ghats, and dam for shooting.
The first time we saw the scenic beauty of Darjeeling was back in 1949, with the movie Barsat and has been THE romantic destinations since then! Megahits like Aradhana, Raju Ban Gaya Gentleman, Main Hoon Naa, Parineeta, Barfi, Kahaani 2 are just a few All-time Bollywood romantic movies that are also shot here. What wins people’s hearts are the tea-gardens, toy trains, steep mountains, simple living, and warm generosity of the local public.
14. Pangong Tso Lake- Ladakh
We all remember the climax scene when Raju, Farhan, Pia, and Phunshukh Wangdu reunite. Rajkumar Hirani outdid himself with the movie “3 idiots” not just with his storyline but also how he beautifully has captured the lovely lake and chain of mountains. The place stretches more than 150km from India to Tibet, which makes it the largest saltwater lake in ASIA! The location has been spotted from the movies Dil Se, Jab Tak Hai Jaan, 3Idiots, Road to Ladakh to Bhaag Milkha Bhaag.
15. Marine Drive and CST- Mumbai
Mumbai, being the place where the entire Hindi film industry is based, also is called the “City Of Dreams” has quite been every filmmaker’s go-to choice for shooting their projects. The entire city has amazing spots like Dharavi, Bandra, Colaba, Juhu where a lot of movies are shot, with Marine Drive and CST station being the most prominent ones. Wake Up Sid, OK Jaanu, Munnabhai MBBS, Fashion, Barfi, Talaash, Slumdog Millionaire are dominantly based on the city. Mumbai ki baarish, kaali-peeli taxi’s, cutting chai, vada pav are a few quintessential important things filmmakers make sure to capture to get the essence of the city.