Nestled in calm on the lap of the lofty hills of Nelliyampathy range in Palakkad, a pastoral hamlet has been beckoning visitors from across the world for a while. Kollengode, which is known to many as a popular film shooting location is a quaint location that can soothe any tourist's soul and recently, it figured in Mahindra Group chairman Anand Mahindra's list of 10 beautiful villages in India.
“This beauty around us just left me speechless…My bucket list for travel in India now overflows”, he wrote, sharing the list of ten of the most beautiful villages in India including Kollengode. From Himachal Pradesh to Arunachal Pradesh, places from various parts of India have been featured in this list prepared by a social media page called the ‘Colours of Bharat’.
The page had listed ten of the most beautiful villages in India and had even shared their pictures on Twitter. Kalpa in Himachal Pradesh had grabbed the first spot in this list. The other villages were Mawlynnong in Meghalaya, Kollengode in Palakkad, Mathur in Tamil Nadu, Varanga in Karnataka, the Gorkha region in West Bengal, Jirang in Odisha, Ziro in Arunachal Pradesh, Mana in Uttarakhand and Khimsar in Rajasthan and their photos are also quite breathtaking.
The unsung beauty of Palakkad
Kollengode, which represents Kerala on the list, is known as the home for many interesting spots like the Chinganchira nature temple, Seetharkund and Palakapandi waterfalls, Chellan chettan's rustic tea shop, Kudilidam, Kollengode Palace, Govinda Mala Hills, abundant paddy fields, Bharathapuzha River's tributory Gayathripuzha, traditional houses and agraharams.
Though many tourists have Kollengode in their wishlist these days – thanks to social media reels and shorts portraying its beauty – the hamlet is still an unsung beauty considering its unexplored tourism potential.
The Kollengode Palace has been a favourite spot of 'Save The Date' shoots too, for a while. It also has a children's park, painting museum and folklore gallery.
Kalpa, Himachal Pradesh
The picturesque village is situated in the valley of the Sutlej River. Kalpa is part of Kinnaur district which is one of the major spots in Himachal Pradesh. The Kinnaur district is known for its beautiful apple orchards, traditional houses and unique rural life.
Mawlynnong has earned fame as the cleanest village in Asia. It is also known as God’s own garden for its spectacular natural beauty. Agriculture is the main source of income in Mawlynnong which is part of the East Khasi Hills.
Mathur, Tamil Nadu
Mathur in Tamil Nadu has taken the fourth spot in the list of ten most beautiful villages in India. The village situated in Kanyakumari district exudes the goodness of authentic rural life.
Varanga in Udupi is a major Jain pilgrimage centre in Karnataka. The iconic Jain temple with its four faced symmetrical structure dates back to the twelfth century. Meanwhile, the serene beauty of the village never fails to charm the visitors.
The Gorkha region, West Bengal
The Gorkha village in Darjeeling district is the village that separates West Bengal and Sikkim. The pine orchards and the rivulets with its pure water makes this region awe inspiring. The village that lies away from the bustle of the city is the perfect destination to enjoy peaceful atmosphere.
Jirang which is also known as Chandragiri is in Gajapathi district in Odisha. Interestingly, the biggest Buddhist monastery in Eastern India is situated here. The fabulous rural sights in Jirang, which lies in the lush valley of the Eastern Ghats, is truly mind blowing.
Ziro, Arunachal Pradesh
The Apatani Cultural Landscape in Ziro in Subanshiri district has been included in UNESCO’s temporary list of world heritage sites. Even though it has grown into a quaint town, Ziro hasn’t lost its unique rural charm.
Mana in Chamoli district is situated at 3200 metres above sea level. Interestingly, the border between India and Tiber passes through this village. The Badrinath temple and the Vyasa Cave where sage Vyasa is believed to have written the grand epic of Mahabharata are the major spots here.
Khimsar in Rajasthan is known for its sand dunes and small trees that are sprawled in acres of land. The iconic Khimsar Fort which is believed to have been built in AD 1523 is a major tourist attraction.