Modern, wealthy, steeped in history, and responsible for growing 80% of India’s coffee, Karnataka is far less frequented than its neighbours Goa to the north and Kerala to the south. Its capital, Bangalore, has put itself on the map as a world tech-hub and has a young, trendy population and a booming food scene. A state where ancient traditions meet modern practices, it is the abode of Iyengar yoga in Mysore, where spiritual tourists travel from around the world to visit. It is also home to the archaeological wonders of Hampi, and the impressive national parks of Bandipur, Nagarhole, Bhadra and Dandeli and ranks second for the number of bird species spotted in an Indian state. Best visited between the months of November and February.