In 2019, before the impacts of the pandemic, India had approximately 10 million foreign tourists visit its country. This unique country is full of facts that range from world records to unexplainable phenomenons.
These diverse India facts will help you better understand its culture and people. Keep reading for 16 incredible facts about India that you probably never knew!
Interesting Facts About India
India is such a diverse country. With a huge population, varying landscapes, and bustling cities it is one of those places that you have to visit more than once. This country is constantly changing and that is one of the reasons we find it so exciting. Dive into these cool and interesting facts about a country that should be on your bucket list.
1. Many Mosques & Hindu Temples
Since almost 80% of India’s population practices Hinduism, you can find their temples just about anywhere. Throughout the country, there are over two million Hindu temples. The holy city, Varanasi, is home to 23,000 temples on its own.
Islam is another prominent religion that is commonly practiced, with 15% of the population being Muslim. Mosques can be small in size or famously large and are found all over the country.
2. Sacred Cows
In Hinduism, it’s believed that cows are holy creatures. In India, this makes cattle sacred, which gives them protection from the Constitution. Killing or selling any cow is illegal and can result in life imprisonment.
In West Bengal, cows must have a photo ID card, making it one of the most surprising facts about India. They’re issued identification to battle cattle trafficking from West Bengal to Bangladesh. More recently, the discovery of a cow smuggling tunnel caused an extensive crackdown on cattle security.
3. First Mined Diamonds
Among the most historical facts about India is that it was the first and only country to mine and produce diamonds. Mining dated back to the 4th century BC and lasted for about 1,000 years before others started mining them.
The first diamonds found in India came from the Krishna River Delta. Later, diamond discoveries appeared in Brazil and South Africa, adding to the diamond market.
4. Different Languages
India recognizes Hindi and English as their official languages. However, they also recognize 20 other languages spoken across the country. Some of these languages include:
Falling directly behind the United States, India is the second-largest English-speaking country. The “mother of all languages” is considered Sanskrit, now practiced by less than 1% of Indians.
5. North Sentinel Island
North Sentinel Island is home to the Sentinelese, an indigenous people of India. The Sentinelese people prefer to be left alone and do not want to be bothered by foreigners. They have even violently defended themselves against outsiders before.
These reasons are what make this island one of the only remaining places untouched by the outside world. The government has forbidden anyone to go within three miles of North Sentinel Island.
6. Second Largest Population
China has the largest population in the world, with 1.398 billion people. The second-largest population is India’s with 1.37 billion people living in the country, growing daily. Estimations predict that India will eventually exceed China’s population by 2050, making it the most populated country on earth.
7. Mawsynram, Meghalaya
The Meghalaya village of Mawsynram is the wettest inhabited place on earth. It has won the Guinness world record for this title with approximately 11,873 milliliters of rain each year. This large amount of rainfall is due to its proximity to the Bay of Bengal.
In this area, the monsoon season lasts for about six months, from June to September. During this season, rains can last for days at a time, and flooding is almost always inevitable.
8. Large Spice Production
One of the most surprising facts about India is that it takes the title for producing the world’s most spices. Approximately 70% of the world’s spices come from India. The country then ships them throughout the world to restaurants, kitchens, and stores.
Most of the spices in your pantry most likely came from India. The most popular of these spices include cumin, saffron, turmeric, and a variety of chili powders.
9. Most Vegetarians
India has the largest population of vegetarians in the world. Due to religious or personal reasons, 20-40% of Indians do not eat meat. Hinduism and Jainism are two of the most significant religions that practice vegetarianism in India.
Many others choose to only eat fish instead of land animals. Vegetarianism is so widely practiced that many chain restaurants have specialized vegetarian menus for their patrons to enjoy.
10. Bandra-Worli Sea Link
The Bandra-Worli Sea Link is a cable bridge that links the Western Suburbs of Mumbai with South Mumbai. It is an eight-lane freeway that is 3.5 miles long, 66 feet wide, and 413 feet high. After completion in 2010, revelation showed that it needed 90,000 tons of cement to build.
Holding all of that weight are substantial steel cables that hold their share, about 900 tons of weight. A fun fact about these cables is that if they were each laid out end to end, they could wrap around the earth.
11. World’s Largest Family
Ziona, leader of Lalpa Kohhran Thar, was the head of the world’s most prominent family. He practiced polygamy and lived in Mizoram, India. Ziona died this year on June 13, 2021, at the age of 75.
He had 39 wives, with who he fathered 94 children. With all the relatives stemming from these marriages, he had 181 family members in total. The entire family lived in a four-story residence in Mizoram, making it a popular tourist attraction in India.
This unique family learned to be self-sustaining by growing their crops, teaching their children, raising livestock, and crafting supplies.
12. Amritsar Golden Temple
The Amritsar Golden Temple can be found in Amritsar, Punjab, and is the holiest site in the Sikhism religion. It is a central religious place for the Sikhs that symbolizes equality and brotherhood for the country.
This temple is commonly known as a site of compassion and generosity for its visitors. Each day, up to 100,000 people receive free food from the temple. No matter what race or religion you practice, you are welcome to join in on the meal.
13. Largest Milk Producer
Among the many cool facts about India is that it also takes the title of being the largest milk producer in the world. Within the last six years, production has grown by 35.61%. This growth has led to 198.4 million tons of milk from 2019-2020.
The government has even overseen specific measures to increase milk and livestock production, ensuring it remains the number one producer. The highest producing states in the country include Uttar Pradesh, Gujarat, Rajasthan, Punjab, Madhya Pradesh, and Andhra Pradesh.
14. Lonar Lake
In the state of Maharashtra is Lonar Lake, a notified National Geo-heritage Monument. It formed about 52,000 years ago when a meteor crashed at its site. This unusual lake is 1 of 4 hyper-velocity craters formed in basaltic rock.
Its size is 3,900 feet in diameter and 449 feet deep. Lonar Lake’s waters are both saline and alkaline, making it very unique. Extensive research has been done on this lake to examine its various characteristics and aspects.
15. Temple of Rats
Among the countless temples found in India is the Temple of Rats, located in Bikaner, Rajasthan. The Karni Mata rat temple is dedicated to the 25,000 rats who inhabit it. Many people flock to see this unique attraction for entertainment, but pilgrims visit for religious reasons daily.
Rat worship dates back to the 15th century in India for reincarnation purposes. Members of the Depavats family feed and care for the rats located in the temple daily.
When visiting, be respectful of the religious people and their beliefs. For an optimal view of the rats, it is best to visit late at night or early before the sun rises when they are most active.
16. Magnetic Hill
One of the most unique Indian facts deals with the Magnetic Hill, located 19 miles away from the town of Leh. This hill is a popular attraction for locals and tourists as they wish to experience the confusing phenomenon.
The hill appears to have an upward slope that allows you to travel “uphill” while your car is neutral. Signs are placed along the slope, giving you the proper instructions on how to experience its wonder.
As impressive as this Magnetic Hill sounds, it is an optical illusion formed from the landscape. It occurs because the horizon is obstructed, making it hard to differentiate between slopes. There are also no flat surfaces to use to compare upwards from downwards visually.
Students from the Rajasthan Institute of Engineering and Technology tested this theory to find that the magnetic forces were not strong enough to pull anything uphill. Canada has a magnetic hill you can visit in New Brunswick.
The Most Interesting Facts About India!
Here are some quick facts about India to leave you with
- India has the highest motorable highway in the world – The Ladakh Road has an altitude of 5882 meters (19,300 feet)
- India is the 7th largest country in the world by area at 3,287,263 square km
- The board game snakes and ladders originated in India. It’s an ancient game originally known as Moksha Patam
All of these facts about India make the country even more interesting and you can see why so many people visit each year. If you’re ever interested in traveling to India, hopefully, these facts help educate you in preparation for your trip.