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25/05/2015 8:47 PM IST | Updated 15/07/2016 8:25 AM IST

15 Gorgeous Trails Across India Trekking Enthusiasts Dream About

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Scenic Zanskar river - beginning to freeze - once completely frozen, the famous Chadar trek on the river begins

Trekking in a vast country like India can be magical. You can walk through icy deserts and tropical rain forests, climb vast Himalayan peaks or run down expansive rolling meadows, all without ever crossing a national border.

There is quite nothing like finishing a trek to a peak and staring down into the vast openness. The satisfaction derived from a steaming cup of tea and the simplest fare (bread and jam for instance) can outmatch the fanciest meal, and getting to know the locals is always a bonus. And after the gut-wrenching struggle that involves short bursts of vertigo and paranoia, innumerable scrapes and cuts, buckets of sweat and aches and pains, you're bound to feel two things. First, how out-of-shape you really are. Secondly and more importantly, the dawning realisation that life is about much more than existing from one day to the next, trying to beat other rats at the race.

From romantic spots to crystal clear lakes and staggering heights, here are 15 of India's most reputed trekking trails that you should visit at least once in your life. All you'll need is a good pair of lungs, and sturdy shoes.

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