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Nine Low Key Places to Visit in India in 2021

Sheena Joseph | Jan 08 2021
Image credits: BP Creation

Many celebrities and travel influencers have made it known that it is safe to travel as long as you abide by the guidelines. While celebrities like Kiara Advani took to the pristine beaches of Maldives, Instagrammers like Shramona Poddar (@mishti.and.meat) and Sharanya Iyer (@trulynomadly) are making travelling within India also normal by spending time in Kashmir. However, it is safer to stay away from the bustle of cities. That makes it the best time to take a trip to low key yet beautiful places. Fortunately, India has many of those. Some are best for a laid back vacation and some are best enjoyed when you go on a hike.

1) Kanatal, Uttarakhand

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Kanatal is a small village located 78 km from Dehradun. During summer, you will have a pleasant temperature of 10-20 degrees celsius. But the weather is not the only attraction here. The highest point of Kanatal is Surkanda Devi temple. According to legend, it is the spot where the head of goddess Sati had fallen while God Shiva was carrying her from Haridwar after she killed herself. You can also go camping in the wild or among the oak trees. Some other tourist attractions are the kaudia forest, Tehri Lake, and Tehri dam.

2) Damro, Arunachal Pradesh

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This charming village is surrounded by other smaller villages of Arunachal Pradesh, but the highlight is that Damro shares a border with Myanmar. The village is known for being the base of the longest hanging bridge in the state. Damro Gidum is also the largest village in the Mariyang Block of Upper Siang but is home to a small population of 500. You will be taken by the simple laid back way of living with thatched bamboo houses and meadows. You can also visit the River Yamne. Damro is known as the original village of the Adi Padam Tribe. The tribe has a distinct culture. They also worship the sun and moon.

3) Moodabidri, Karnataka

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Moodabidri is a town located 34 km from Mangalore. The name comes from the abundance of wildly grown bamboo (Kannada word bidiru translates to bamboo). The villagers practice Jainism and the town is home to the holy shrine of Jains across the country 'The Thousand Pillars Temple'. You will also see several other Jain temples and catholic churches in Moodabidri. The area is known for the Hanuman temple as well. You can also visit Sammilan Shetty's Butterfly Park and Kadalakere Nisargadhama Park.

4) Mandu, Madhya Pradesh

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Mandavgad, popularly known as Mandu, is the ruins of an ancient city. The fortress town is only 100 km away from Indore. It is worth visiting if you are a fan of excellent architecture. The fortress has witnessed many rulers since the 6th century. The earliest available evidence indicates that Mandu was a prosperous town in the 6th century. Some of the popular tourist spots are Roopmati's Pavilion, Baz Bahadur's Palace, Rewa Kund, Darya Khan's Tomb complex, Shri Mandavagadh Teerth, and Hindola Mahal. You can also visit a love sunset point and a man-made lake inside the fort called Sagar Talab.

5) Thachi Valley, Himachal Pradesh

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Thachi Valley is one of the many beautiful places in Himachal Pradesh. But the difference is that it has only become public knowledge a few years ago. Nestled amongst pine trees, the village smells enchanting. You will not find a shop selling souvenirs, which is proof of being an offbeat place. Apart from a few old temples and a traditional Himachali water mill (gharat), all you have to look at is nature. You can also hike to Chanjwala and Saponi Dhar. If you are up for it, a one-day-long hike will take you to Janjehli.

6) Khecheopalri Lake, Sikkim

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Sikkim is known for its pristine beauty and Buddhist culture. Khecheopalri village, located about 147 km west of Gangtok, is known for its lake. Local legend says that it is a wish-fulfilling lake. In the local language, the lake is called Sho Dzo Sho (meaning "Oh Lady, sit here"). The lake is part of a Buddhist religious pilgrimage circuit which includes a series of monasteries. Legend says that leaves are not allowed to pollute the lake and birds always pick them off the surface.

7) Andaman and Nicobar Islands

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Andaman and Nicobar Islands may not exactly fit the description of an offbeat place. The islands are popular for their beaches. However, it is not as crowded as Goa and has more to offer. The islands have been home to the Chola Empire, Danish colonial rule, and British rule. The architecture is influenced by all three. The main attraction of the islands is plants. Some of the must-see spots are Giant evergreen forest, tropical evergreen forest, Southern hilltop tropical evergreen forest, Canebrakes, Wet bamboo brakes, Andamans semi-evergreen forest, Andamans moist deciduous forest, Andamans secondary moist deciduous forest, Littoral Forest, Mangrove forest, Brackish water mixed forest, and Submontane forest.

8) Thar Desert Villages, Rajasthan

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The Thar Desert is the largest arid region in India. It is also a subtropical desert (9th largest in the world). The geography has made it the most widely populated desert in the world. You will be surprised to know that 40% of Rajasthan's population lives in the Thar desert. They have a colourful culture blessed with folk music and dances. Some of the popular desert villages are Bikaner and Jaisalmer. You can either go camping in the desert or visit many spots like Gadsisar Lake, Patwon Ki Haveli, Kuldhara Abandoned Village, Tanot Mata Temple, and Tazia Tower.

9) Munroe Island, Kerala

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Munroe Island is a group of eight small inland islets in Kerala. They are located at the confluence of Ashtamudi Lake and Kallada River in the Kollam district. The islands are named after Colonel John Munro of Travancore. The island is popular for coir retting, weaving, fishing, migratory bird watching, coconut farms, mangrove plants. Much of its beauty comes from narrow canals and waterways. The islands are a place to have a laid back vacation instead of a sight-seeing frenzy.