Did you know that India used to be an island more than 100 million years ago? About 50 million years ago, it collided with the Asian continent and thus was born the Himalayas. Fascinating, isn’t it? With over a billion people from all kinds of religions and ethnicities, India is not only the second most populated country, but it also has in store some mind-blowing and interesting facts under its belt. Here are a few fun and interesting facts about India:
Asia’s Cleanest Village
Mawlynnong, a small village in Meghalaya, was awarded the prestigious tag of ‘Cleanest Village in Asia’ in 2003 by Discover India Magazine. Located at about 90 kms from Shillong, the village offers a sky walk for you to take in the beauty as you explore it. According to visitors, you cannot find a single cigarette butt/plastic bag lying around there.
Rajasthan has a Temple of Rats
The animal wonders of India continue. Although rats might not be the first species you think of to worship, there is a temple in Rajasthan dedicated to rats.
Thousands of rats call the temple home, making it one of the country’s most unique attractions. Many pilgrims visit the temple every year on their own religious journeys, so make sure to be respectful of local customs when visiting.
Chenab Bridge is the Highest Rail Bridge in the World
Not all of India’s famous monuments are religious. The jaw-dropping bridge spanning the Chenab River in Jammu is 1,178 feet above the water. If you’re afraid of heights, you might want to skip this one!
A Village with No Locks and Doors may be the Safest on Earth
Shani Shingnapur, located in Maharashtra, is a village that defies every newspaper report you have ever read. Touted as the safest village in India, this place is known for its lack of doors to houses. Not just that, there is no police station in the village. And no, we are not making this up.
Many people think that the shared vulnerability has created a neighbourly trust between the residents, which has formed a protection stronger than a deadbolt or heavy gate.
A Meteor formed the Breathtaking Lonar Lake in Maharashtra
A 4-hour drive from Aurangabad and doubling as Maharashtra’s best-kept secret, this lake was created by a plummeting meteor about 52,000 years ago. Travel enthusiasts must not miss this astronomical marvel and the temples around it.
Mysterious Anti-Gravity Hills in Ladakh, Magnetic Hill
With the anti-gravitational effect, this is the only magnetic hill in India. Landmarked by a yellow notice board that spells out instructions and asks you place your car on neutral gear right on the spot marked by white paint, this one will leave you in awe as your car will begin to move uphill on its own.
The Village with Wi-Fi, CCTVs, AC Classrooms and more
Punsari, located in Gujarat, puts most metros to shame. Funded by the Indian government and the village’s own funding model, Punsari is no NRI-blessed zone. The village also boasts of a mini-bus commute system and various other facilities. Believe it.
Mawsynram is the Wettest Place on Earth with 11,873 Millimetres of Rain Annually
Holding a Guinness record for highest average annual rainfall, this town in Meghalaya gets about 11,873 millimetres of rain owing to its proximity to the Bay of Bengal. The winter months of this region are spent in preparation for the six-month-long monsoon ahead.
A Voting Poll Booth Set Up for Just ONE Voter in Gujarat
India’s most privileged voter, Mahant Bharatdas, resides in a small hamlet called Banej in the middle of Gir Forest, Gujarat. The setting up of a particular polling booth for just one voter goes a long way in speaking decibels about the democratic spirit of the country.
Home of a Mysterious Skeleton Lake
Located in the Himalayas at about 16,470 feet, the glacial Lake Roopkund has become famous for the human skeletons found in the lake and surrounding areas.
It is thought that the skeletons are the remains of people from the 9th century who perished during a severe hail storm.
The Popular Game “Snakes and Ladders” Originated in India
Now sold across the world (sometimes adapted to ‘Chutes and Ladders’), this board game traces its roots back to India. It was first created to teach morals and lessons about karma in a way that young children would understand and remember.
India was the First Country to Mine Diamonds
From the 4th century BC for around 1,000 years, India was the only source of diamonds in the world. The original diamonds were found in the Krishna River Delta.
In the 18th century, more diamond deposits were discovered in Brazil, and soon after, in South Africa, adding to the market of diamonds.
The World’s Largest Sundial is Located in India
The town of Jaipur is home to the largest sundial in the world, which is a towering 27 meters (90 feet) tall! If that’s not impressive enough, the sundial is constructed from beautiful polished stone to create a truly impressive work of architecture.
The sundial has been listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Every year, it attracts thousands of visitors, who come to witness the shadow moving at about six centimeters per minute.
Dharnai – First fully Solar-powered Village
Dharnai, a village in Bihar, beat 30 years of darkness by developing its own solar-powered system for electricity. With the aid of Greenpeace, Dharnai declared itself an energy-independent village in July. Students no long need to limit their studies to the day time; women no longer limit themselves to stepping out in the day in this village of 2400 residents.
During World War II, the Taj Mahal was disguised as a Bamboo Stockpile
Even if the colour is changing, the Taj Mahal is still one of the most beloved and important monuments in the country.
To protect the building during World War II, the entire palace was covered with bamboo scaffolding, completely hiding the true structure from bomber planes flying overhead.
The trick seemed to work because the Taj Mahal was never struck during the war.
North Sentinel Island is One of the Last ‘Untouched’ Places on Earth
North Sentinel Island is one of the Andaman Islands, an archipelago in the Bay of Bengal which also includes South Sentinel Island. It is home to the Sentinelese, an indigenous people in voluntary isolation who have rejected, often violently, any contact with the outside world.
In 1991, the anthropologist Madhumala Chattophadhyay had several peaceful encounters with the Sentinelese, but in subsequent years, the people made it very clear (sometimes violently) that they did not want to be disturbed. It is now considered one of the last places untouched by the outside world.
The Tiny Village of Madhopatti is called the ‘Officer’s Village of India’
A small village in the Jaunpur district of Uttar Pradesh, Madhopatti has created history by producing the most number of IAS officers. With about 75 households, it has given 47 officers to Indian administration. Not just that, many from the same village have made their careers by joining prestigious organisations like ISRO, Bhabha Atomic Research Centre and World Bank. Ask the villagers about their study schedules, maybe?
The Kumbh Mela is Visible from Space
The Kumbh Mela is an important festival and pilgrimage site, and the largest gathering on Earth. While a celebration takes place each year, there is a festival of greater significance at four-year and twelve-year intervals.
The number of people attending the festival is so large that the crowd is visible in satellite photos taken from space.
The Highest Cricket Ground in the World
India is a cricket-loving nation. It’s only natural for it to also feature the highest cricket ground in the world recorded by the Guinness Book. It is situated at a level of 2,144 metres above sea level in Chail, Himachal Pradesh.
Bandra-Worli Sea Link Has steel Wires Equal to Earth’s Circumference
This is a Fact About India that many probably don’t know. Each of the cables is capable of holding 900 tons of weight. The entire establishment’s weight is equivalent to that of 50,000 African elephants.
Biggest Family in the World
Living in his 100-room mansion in Baktawng village of Mizoram, Mr Ziona Chana is the head of the world’s biggest family consisting of 181 members. He has 39 wives, 94 children, 14 daughters-in-law and 33 grandchildren.
There’s a Day Dedicated To Dr. A.P.J. Abdul Kalam in Switzerland Called Science Day!
Dr. Kalam had visited Switzerland on May 26th 2006, and that day is nationally known as Science Day in Switzerland.
TWO Cities in the UNESCO World Heritage List!
With over 40 Indian attractions in the list of UNESCO World Heritage Site list is one of India’s two most beautiful cities – Ahmedabad and The Pink City, Jaipur! With Ahmedabad having traditional houses that are densely packed and an urban landscape layout that was frozen in time, this city is a much-deserved place on the list along with the Pink City’s unique landscape of pink structures that go back to the city’s old rule.
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