India is endowed with one-of-a-kind and enticing wonders that will astonish you. It’s a fascinating country with a rich culture and traditions, a plethora of colorful fairs and festivals, a diverse range of flora and fauna, and delectable traditional cuisine.
Furthermore, the well-known yoga and Ayurveda originated in India thousands of years ago. India is credited with various innovations, including mathematics, zero, shampoo, chess, the value of pi, and diamond mining.
India’s rich legacy is reflected in the abundance of historic structures. In terms of the number of World Heritage Sites, India ranks in the top ten countries worldwide with 32 UNESCO heritage sites.
The topography and climate of India are highly diverse. Northern India is defined by the Himalayan snow-capped mountain range and the Great Indian Desert.
On the other hand, the south is defined by tropical jungles, rainforests, coastal plains, islands, and beaches.
Moreover, India never invaded any country in the last 100000 years of history. Learn more about Incredible India’s unique characteristics by reading the following guide.
1. Culture and Tradition
The primary distinction between India and other countries is that India has a unique feature known as UNITY IN DIVERSITY. Indian culture invites outsiders due to its infinite distinct ceremonies and traditions.
The majority of these come from ancient Indian scriptures and manuscripts, which have guided India’s way of life for thousands of years.
Some of the world’s main religions, including Buddhism, Hinduism, Jainism, and Sikhism, have their origins in India.
Other religions, including Islam and Christianity, have infiltrated the populace in recent years, but Hinduism remains the most prevalent.
When you visit India, you will find people greeting you by saying Namaste by holding hands together at heart and bowing.
In India, there is no single official language. There are 22 major languages in India and more than 1000 dialects.
When it comes to clothing, you can see men wearing dhoti and women wearing colorful saris. For decades, India has practiced the mixed family arrangement.
It occurs when a family’s extended members — parents, children, children’s spouses, and their descendants, and so on – live together.
India is the world’s greatest producer of milk, spices, pulses, tea, cashew, jute, rice, wheat, oilseeds, fruits and vegetables, sugarcane, and cotton. Agriculture is the livelihood for a majority of the population in India.
2. Fairs and Festivals
Religious holidays and festivals are observed throughout India, which are multi-cultural, multi-ethnic, and multi-religious.
Numerous temples, churches, mosques, gurudwara, and other spiritual worship centers can be found in India.
The world’s richest pilgrim center can be found in Kerala, The Padmanabhaswamy Temple.
Fairs and festivals in India depict the culture and life of people. Each fair and festival has a noble cause and a significant identity. Some of the major fairs and festivals include Holi, Diwali, Christmas, Eid, Pushkar Mela, Kumbha Mela, Onam, Surajkund Mela, Goa Carnival, Snake Boat Race, Desert festival, and many others.
The world’s largest religious fair is Kumbha Mela, conducted in four places in India – Haridwar, Nasik, Ujjain, and Allahabad.
This fair is conducted every 12 years, and people worldwide come to be a part of this large gathering. The next event will happen in 2025.
3. Flora and Fauna
The Western Ghats is the region that encompasses all of nature’s wonders.
Forests, hill stations, lakes, parks, sanctuaries, gardens, farm fields, waterfalls, rivers, trekking paths, meadows, and everything else that a nature lover may want can be found here.
The Indian government maintains approximately 120 national parks, animal sanctuaries, and bird sanctuaries to conserve wildlife.
Indian flora includes diverse indigenous or native plant species with economic, religious, and cultural value.
India’s floral diversity is astonishing, ranging from alpine to temperate thorn, deep tropical forests to temperate woodlands, cone-bearing trees to evergreen trees, scrubs to deciduous forests.
In India, there are around 45000 plant species. Annual plants, biennial plants, perennial plants, bulb plants, shrubs, herbs, medicinal plants, vines, creepers, and climbers are examples of Indian plants.
The Banyan tree is India’s national tree. Mango is India’s official national fruit, and it grows on mango trees. Indian flowers have a beautiful appearance and a captivating smell. India’s national flower is the lotus.
There are approximately 410 mammalian species in India, nearly 1301 bird species, and 30,000 insect species. According to the census, India also has a diverse range of mammals, amphibians, reptiles, and fish.
Lions, elephants, rhinoceros, wild bison, deer, monkeys, and wild goats are among the mammals found in India. Lizards, snakes, crocodiles, and other reptiles are among them.
As you might know, the Royal Bengal Tigers are considered the national animal of India.
Yoga developed in Northern India about 5000 years ago during the Indus-Saraswati civilization. Yoga is a spiritual practice that focuses on subtle science to establish individual harmony between the mind and body.
It was during the 3rd century BCE, and yoga becomes common to all people in India. There are many benefits of practicing yoga that can help you in daily life.
There are about 196 yoga sutras(aphorisms), and 84 classic yoga asanas when it comes to variations and aphorisms. Yogis refer to male yoga practitioners, whereas yoginis refer to female yoga practitioners.
Yoga helps in reducing stress and anxiety, inflammation, improves heart health and flexibility, and can fight depression that most people face these days.
Yoga is not a religious practice. It is a style of living aimed at achieving a healthy mind in a healthy body.
Yoga can help you reach a serene body and mind by combining physical and mental skills. Yoga can help you lose weight, boost your immunity, and live a better lifestyle if you practice it regularly.
The actual essence of yoga is to raise the life energy, also known as Kundalini, at the base of the spine.
Several physical and mental activities are used to achieve this goal. On a physical level, the techniques include a variety of yoga poses (asanas). Breathing exercises (pranayama) and meditation (dhyana) for the mind are among the mental therapies.
Millions of people now perform yoga all over the world in many styles and variations.
India taught the world the benefits of Yoga, and 21st June is celebrated as International Yoga day.
Ayurveda is an ancient Indian medical practice that dates back over 3,000 years. The Sanskrit terms ayur (life) and Veda (science) are combined to form the term Ayurveda (science or knowledge).
The five elements, according to Ayurveda, make up the human body: space, air, water, fire, and earth. A healthy individual is created when all of these factors are in sync.
While we all have all five components, they are distributed in varying proportions in our bodies, causing us to fall into one of three categories: Vata, Kapha, or Pitta.
The entire physical volume of a living creature is Kapha, the entire biochemical process operating in the body is Pitha, and the body’s movement and activity is Vata.
A disruption in any of these three doshas causes a specific sickness, and treatment is given to restore the balance.
Ayurveda employs the ‘Astavidha rogi pareeksha’ or ‘eight ways’ methodology to examine a patient. This entails putting the following elements to the test. Naadi (pulse), Mutra (urinary), Mala (stool), Shabda (voice), Jiva (mouth), Sparsha (skin), Drik (eyes), and Aakriti (skin) (body build).
After the doctor has determined your body type and the difficulty you may be experiencing, they will attempt to determine which elements may be out of balance and, as a result, prescribe medicine. Medications, oil baths, and massages, or a combination of both, are used depending on the nature and severity of the ailment.
The patients should also follow a healthy diet. Ayurvedic medications include milk, ghee, butter, honey, molasses, gingelly oil, rock salts, minerals, ashes, and self-fermented alcohol, among other ingredients. While herbs form a significant part of the treatments recommended, other substances are also used.
Five categories can be found in Indian cuisine: northern, southern, eastern, western, and northeastern. The careful use of spices and herbs distinguishes India’s diverse and tasty cuisine.
Every region has its own set of signature meals and cooking techniques.
The way they cook, the flavors they use, and their specializations change as the landscape changes. So if you travel to any state of India, you can taste unique cuisines that explode with flavors.
Many cultural groups such as Central Asians, Arabs, Mughals, and European colonies have influenced Indian cuisine throughout history. India is appropriately known as the “Land of Spices.”
India produces more spice kinds than any other country on the planet.
Because of the rise and dominance of Arab traders in the spice trade between India and Europe, European explorers like Vasco da Gama and Christopher Columbus set out to find new trade routes with India, ushering in the Age of Discovery.
You can find savory cuisines, sweets, and different varieties of snacks in India. Although Indian cuisine is predominantly vegetarian, several dishes contain meats such as chicken, mutton, beef, pork, fish, eggs, and a variety of shellfish.
In India’s eastern states, particularly West Bengal and Kerala and Tamil Nadu in the south, fish-based dishes are prominent.
7. Martial Arts
Martial arts have a long history in India. You can find a variety of martial arts in India that are unique in their own style and techniques.
Let us take a look at some of India’s great martial art forms that are rooted in the culture of the land from they originate.
Another fascinating feature of most of these martial art forms is the preparation that goes into them before a battle or performance, such as oil massages in some cases and the appropriate dress and weapons.
This 3000-year-old art discipline is often known as the “Mother of All Martial Arts,” which originated in Kerala.
The Kalaripayattu technique evolved from research into the habits of eight Indian warrior animals: the lion, battle boar, cobra, elephant, tiger, horse, fighting cock, and buffalo.
The most significant part of Kalaripayattu is the footwork. Kalari refers to a training hall or school, and ‘payattu’ meaning practice.
Kalaripayattu is made up of five aspects that are interconnected: martial arts, Ayurveda, yoga, astrology, and spiritual practice.
Silambam, Tamil Nadu
The attacks and defends used in Silambam are like animal gestures. Silambam is an ancient stick- martial art technique that employs footwork and attacks the body at several levels, much like a snake, hawk, tiger, or monkey. There is the use of force as well as clever strategies.
Gatka is a weapon-based Indian martial technique developed mostly by Punjabi Sikhs. Stick, Talwar, Kirpan, and Kataar are some of the weapons used in Gatka.
It is frequently presented in Punjab at various festivals and fairs.
Mardani Khel, Maharashtra
During the Maratha Empire, Mardaani Khel arose and flourished. The British forbade martial arts after the 1857 Revolt, but it was kept alive as a folk game. Bamboo sticks, daggers, javelins, darts, and swords were among the weapons utilized.
Thang-Ta is also known by the name Huyen Lallong. This martial art form includes two main components: armed combat and unarmed fighting.
Huyen langlon’s principal weapons are the sword and spear. Hundreds of sword drills exist to teach the fundamental strokes and stepping patterns of this combat style.
Other significant martial arts in India include Pari-Khandaa from Bihar, Lathi Khel from Bengal, Musti Yuddha from Varanasi, Sqay from Kashmir, Kushti, Thoda from Himachal, and many more.
Visiting India is sure to give you a unique experience. Let it be landscapes, food, fairs and festival, and tourist spots, and you will be amazed by the diversity of India. Traveling in India can be a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. Mountains, forests, plains, deserts, rivers, and oceans are all examples of India’s diverse geography. The country’s rich legacy is reflected in its old temples, mosques, cathedrals, and monasteries. People differ from one another in terms of culture, yet they will greet their visitors with an open heart. “Atithi Devo Bhava,” which means “Guest is God,” is a notion held by Indians.