Himachal Pradesh is a land of mysteries with so much to explore and so much to discover about this humble abode of snow. Some things though, are quite strange and intriguing about this state. And we bet you did not know about them. So, here are a few interesting facts about the state for you to read and enjoy.
1. The most exciting way to commute to Shimla is by the Kalka-Shimla Railway, better known as the Toy train. But what’s more amazing is that it declared a World Heritage Site by the UNESCO and holds the world record of being the train to cover the steepest slope (5816 ft) in least distance (just 96 km).
2. The Kalka-Shimla express is runs through a massive stretch of 806 bridges, 103 tunnels and 18 stations.
3. Himachal Pradesh has 33 Sanctuaries and 2 National Parks of which The Great Himalayan National Park has been declared a heritage site by the UNESCO. There you will find some rare species of animals that can only be found here including, the barking deer and the snow leopard.
4. Kasol is famous by the nickname of ‘Mini Israel’ perhaps because of its maximum tourists being that of Israeli origin and so most of the shops and inns too bear hoarding in Hebrew language. Moreover the clothes, goods and food, especially pita bread and hummus also gives you the feeling of being in Israel.
5. Himachal Pradesh proudly holds the title of being the second least corrupt state of India after Kerala; so you can stop worrying of getting duped or overcharged and enjoy your trip to the beautiful Himachal Pradesh.
6. Malana, a fairly unexplored and hidden village in Himachal Pradesh is also famous by the name of ‘The Village of Taboos’ which is mainly because of their strict rules of no outsider touching any wall or belonging of the residents.
7. Malana is also one of the oldest democracies and interestingly it has its own set of Greek-resembling beliefs and ways. They even consider themselves to be the descendants of Alexander the Great and consider non-Malanis as inferior and untouchables. That must explain the above fact.
8. The village is also infamous as a weed-tourist destination. In fact, it has won the title of ‘Best Hashish’ twice; once in the year 1994 and again in 1996 at High Times magazine Cannabis Cup.
9. Himachal has some most famous boarding schools that are also the oldest running schools since they were established during the British era.
10. Himachal Pradesh is the land of deities. Almost every village has its own Gods and Goddesses which the local people rigorously worship.
11. The temples situated at Dodra and Kwar have beautiful exteriors and (sadly) decorated with the heads of animals mounted on them, of which many are now a rarity.
12. Himachal towns and villages show traces of the mythological era of Ramayana and Mahabharata. The Jakhoo temple of Shimla is believed to be the place where Lord Hanuman rested while in pursuit of the Sanjeevani booti while Kullu has many temples that are said to have been built by the Pandavas in the last year of their exile.
13. Himachal Pradesh produces apples, peaches, cherries, kiwis and plums in abundance apart from the dry fruits such as hazelnuts and chilgoza or pine nuts. The latter is a rare nut that is grown in the state alone.
14. Also, apple cultivation was initiated by an American missionary named Satyanand Stokes in a place called Kotgarh in the state.
15. Shimla is the only place in the whole of Asia to sport a natural ice skating rink! So, when you do travel to Himachal Pradesh make sure you do try your
hand feet at this exciting sport.
16. The Manimahesh Kailash peak is believed to be the abode of Lord Shiva and is an important pilgrimage site of the state. It is especially held in high respect by the Gaddi tribe of the area.
17. Himachal Pradesh has given us many talented and famous Bollywood actors, authors, artists, sportsmen and military personnel. Read about them here.
18. Khajjar, considered to be our very own Switzerland, has a lake that boasts of a floating island right in its centre.
19. The legendary Silk Route, trusted to have been the path for the traders to go to and from other countries such as China, Tibet, Laddakh and Kashmir for selling wool, semi precious stones, livestock and of course silk is also located nowhere else but in the Abode of Snow- Himachal Pradesh.
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