India attracts millions of visitors every year, and they visit for all kinds of reasons. Some go for the beautiful beaches and breathtaking mountain ranges.
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India attracts millions of visitors every year, and they visit for all kinds of reasons. Some go for the beautiful beaches and breathtaking mountain ranges. Others go for a spiritual holiday. Some visit India to serve the needs of others in a voluntary capacity. And others go for the festivals, the food, and the many other cultural opportunities that are on offer. If you have never visited India before, I wholeheartedly recommend it, for all of the reasons I gave above and beyond.
Here’s why I think India should be your next travel destination….
You will experience many culinary delights
Of course, when it comes to Indian food, you might have the skills in the kitchen to whip up your own curries and Indian-style flatbreads. You could also choose something from the menu at your favourite Indian restaurant. But to really experience the explosion of tastes that an Indian meal can give you, you owe it to yourself to visit the home of many of your favourite spices and home-cooked recipes.
With sweet rice dishes, curries made from the finest Indian spices, and unique desserts that are quite unlike anything we are used to in the Western world, there is much to smell and savour when you tour the markets and restaurants in India. To tempt you, take a look at some of the most popular Indian foods here, and then have a look at some of the Indian recipes that you will be able to cook at home. I bet your mouth is watering at the prospect.
You will experience Indian hospitality
There is a popular saying in India, and that is “Athithi Devo Bhava,” which, when translated means, “the guest is God.” You will experience this when you book a stay at one of the many hotels in India, and you will discover the same when you eat at one of the restaurants in the country.
But if you really want to experience Indian hospitality, I recommend homestay experiences, which are far from the humble abodes you are probably expecting. As you can see in the linked article, you have the opportunity to stay in beach houses, house boats, farmhouses, and royal residences, so not only will you experience the friendliness of your hosts, but you will get to reside in some exceptional properties too.
You will have the opportunity to explore India’s greatest tourist attractions
While you should definitely wander off the beaten track occasionally and explore India away from the masses, you should still take the time to visit some of India’s most famous tourist attractions.
The Taj Mahal is one of the most famous, of course. As one of the most beautiful buildings in the world, elegantly made out of white marble, you should make the effort to visit, as you will be overwhelmed by the building’s opulent beauty. Not only that, of course, but there are several other magnificent buildings nearby, alongside reflecting pools, and ornamental gardens that are overflowing with flowering trees and plant life. The Taj Mahal is fittingly known as ‘a teardrop on the cheek of eternity,’ and it’s a “must see” historical monument to visit when in India.
Another popular attraction is the Ellora Caves. Constructed between the seventh and ninth centuries, the caves are carved with images that are a reflection of the Hindu, Buddhist, and Jainism deities that are worshipped in the country.
When it comes to stunning displays of architecture, there are many temples to explore too, as well as palaces, monastery, and towering minarets. To discover more about them, and to learn about some of the other tourist attractions that are famous in India, check out this article at Touropia, and mark them down on your travel itinerary.
You could serve the needs of others
Whilst I have advocated the hospitality of the Indian people, you could travel to serve instead of having the opportunity to be served during your stay in the country. There are many charities working in India, each one serving the needs of the people in the countries poorest communities. Set apart from the places that ooze extravagance, there are people living in poverty, and you have the opportunity to do something to help them. You could work with the homeless, for example, or with underprivileged children.
Giving back is good for the soul, so check out the various ways you can volunteer in India, and consider a cause that close to your heart. Of course, as you can see from the linked site, you will also have the opportunity to travel to some very scenic places in India when volunteering, so you have added incentive to showcase the charitable side of your character.
You could take part in one of India’s many festivals
There is a festival for almost everything in India. There’s a festival for elephants, a festival for kites, a festival for camels, and even a festival for unmarried women! One of the most popular festivals in India is Diwali (the Festival of Lights), a five-day festival that celebrates the spiritual victory of light over darkness. You can expect magnificent firework and lantern displays, as well as lots of yummy food if you plan to visit India for this festival (starts November 14th in 2020).
Holi, the Festival of Colour is another popular festival. It’s a celebration of Spring, and traditionally involves people throwing lots of coloured powder and water over one another (you probably shouldn’t wear your best clothes then).
Then there is a festival in honour of Ganesh, India’s beloved elephant-headed God, and this involves lots of singing and dancing during street parades at the tail-end of August. Needless to say, this is one festival you shouldn’t forget.
Check out these and other popular Indian festivals here.
You can explore the country’s spiritual side
No matter what your own spiritual preference is, you owe it to yourself to discover more about the spiritual side of India. You could learn yoga while you’re here, visit one of the meditation centres to get in touch with the inner you, and spend time at an Ashram, where you will get to meditate, try yoga, and learn more about the spiritual teachings from some of India’s religious leaders.
The spiritual side of India is very popular for many western visitors, as they finally get the opportunity to refresh their souls against the beautiful scenic backdrops around them. If you’re tired and weary and in need of some peace and reflection in your life, then India has to be your destination of choice when you’re looking to get away from it all.
When considering holy places to visit, you might want to add these spiritual destinations to your travel plan.
You will experience the beauty of the country
India really is a delight for all of the senses. You have the sensory blends of the foods and spices. You have the extravagant delights of the country’s festivals and architecture. And you have some incredibly beautiful places to visit, no matter what part of India you venture into.
If you’re not afraid of heights, you could visit the Himalayas, which contain three of the world’s highest mountains. These sacred mountains run along India’s eastern border and offer magnificent views of the rest of India. Many people visit the Himalayas for spiritual pilgrimages, but there are other reasons to visit, not least the opportunity to get a glimpse of a magnificent Snow Leopard.
India also has 7,500 miles of coastline, and there are some wonderful beaches and luxury resorts along the way. With aqua green waters, dense forest views, and lots of opportunities for water-based activities, you can do as much or as little as you like when exploring the beaches of India. Some of them are very crowded, as you would expect, but if you’re after a little more exclusivity when you’re away, check out these utterly gorgeous beaches in India.
You will enjoy the shopping opportunities
There is an astonishing variety of clothes, shoes, spices, jewellery, and souvenirs to buy in India, each one a part of the cultural immersion that you will experience within the street markets, beach bazaars, and fashion precincts of the country. You can learn more about some of the country’s best shopping hotspots here, and no matter what your budget is, you are bound to find a place worth exploring.
Of course, part of the Indian shopping experience is bargaining. This is like a pastime in itself in India, so if you do visit, get ready to bargain with the locals, and use these haggling tips to ensure you get a fair price.
India is one of the most beautiful countries in the world, and I have barely covered everything there is to say about this exotic destination. Still, I hope I have whetted your appetite for what there is to offer, and I’m not only talking about the delicious curries that are famous in the country!
Nic | Nic's Adventures & Bakes says
Thanks for sharing, I have always had India on my bucket list, hopefully one day I will be able to visit 🙂
I love India, I’m just waiting for the whole Covid thing to die down a little. I’m just going for the food.
Karen Burns-Booth says
Same here Amy, cannot wait to start travelling again, Karen
maharastrian traditional food says
Karen Burns-Booth says