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    16 Surreal Places That Make India The Most Beautiful Country In The World

    *Spends entire life savings on plane tickets*

    1. Nubra Valley

    Perched at an altitude of 10,000 feet over sea level, this picturesque valley is hard to get to – non-locals require a permit, and some solid navigation skills – but (as is evident from these stunning pictures) so, so worth the effort.

    2. Chettinad

    Tucked away in Tamil Nadu, this is a district that you absolutely must visit if you like a) food, b) architecture, or c) all of the above. Whether it's meals, buildings, or saris, Chettinad believes in boldness and attention to detail.

    3. Zanskar Valley

    Via Flickr: kshathriya

    This remote valley boasts a total population of little over 13,000 people, split into small villages (the largest of which is inhabited by 700 people). So basically, if you ever want to really truly get off the grid, follow these simple steps: 1) Go to Zanskar. 2) Enjoy.

    4. Andaman & Nicobar Islands

    Paradise (noun): A cluster of islands off the coast of India, where the water is clear and the sand is soft and the weather is perfect and the people are kind. Synonym: Andaman & Nicobar.

    5. Suraj Tal Lake

    A lake fed by glaciers, streams, and year-round snowfall, Suraj Tal is considered a sacred body of water by some. Which makes sense because, if these pictures are anything to go by, it is evidence that heaven exists.

    6. Ghats in Varanasi

    If someone were to find themselves in a situation where they had 5 minutes to experience a broad cross-section of life in India, this would be the place to do it. The ghats are home to a diverse range of entrepreneurs, vendors, priests, sadhus, and families, all united by a dependence on – and deference to – the Ganga.

    7. Lake Pichola

    This lake was made in the 14th century to serve as a dam and source of irrigation for its surrounding villages and towns, but – in typical Rajasthani fashion – its pragmatic purpose is now secondary to its stunning aesthetic beauty.

    8. Sandakphu

    This West Bengal peak requires a trek (or a very bumpy car ride) to get to, and temperatures can drop down to -20 degrees Celsius, but the view is 100% worth it.

    9. Athirapally

    Via en.wikipedia.org

    What do you get when you combine streams, forests, an 80-foot waterfall, and perfect Kerala weather? God's own vacation destination.

    10. Allepey

    And, while we're in Kerala, it would be unfair to move on without a little detour through the stunning backwaters. Home sweet houseboat.

    11. Chitrakoot Falls

    Via Flickr: asianu

    These impressive falls – known to some as India's Niagara – serve the dual purpose of telling you what season it is (if, for some reason, all your senses have failed except eyesight): They are brownish in the monsoon because they carry silt, but are clear in the summers when they don't.

    12. Aizawl

    The gorgeous capital city of Mizoram is literally built on a ridge nearly 4,000 ft. above sea-level. Talk about living on the edge.

    13. Thar Desert

    This massive desert touches some of the most beautiful cities in the world, including Jodhpur and Jaisalmer, and is home to some of India's most vibrant art-forms.

    14. Sindhudurg

    This Maharashtrian district (an 8-ish-hour drive from Mumbai) is a serene, relatively untouched patch of India's beautiful West Coast, made dramatic by its many forts.

    15. Chittorgarh

    Via Flickr: saad

    While Jaipur, Jodhpur, and Udaipur steal Rajasthan's touristy limelight, Chittorgarh quietly boasts some of the most intricate and beautiful architecture in the state.

    16. Munnar

    Via Flickr: amre

    A meeting-point of rivers, hills, and sprawling tea plantations, this scenic hill station is testament to the fact that there's a "tea" in "pretty."

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