Recently, I embarked on the wonderful and fulfilling adventure – a trip to India. All in all, it was one of the most amazing trips I have ever taken in my life. Looking back, though, there are several things I wished I would have known ahead of time. So, to save you from learning the hard way, I’ve put together some of my top tips for traveling safely and having an amazing time in the great country of India.
Tip #1: Be Safe
Being safe is the most important part of any trip, and while traveling to India can be entirely harmless, there are several key precautions you will want to take.
First of all, you’ll want to be careful about flashing money around. Pulling out a wad of cash is an invitation to would-be muggers.
Another thing to keep in mind is to always keep your passport and other important papers of your person, not stowed away in your luggage or hotel room. You never know when you might need them, so keep them close to yourself.
Finally, you will want to be careful about drinking the water. Indian water can contain many different forms of bacteria that are not easily filtered out. It’s a good idea to carry your own water, but if you have to purchase it there, be sure to stick with known, reputable brands.
Tip #2: Travel Around
Getting from place to place in India can be interesting to say the least. The roads are crowded with everything from bicyclists to pedestrians and buses, with little regard to the type of street laws you are probably used to.
Many times, walking may be your best bet to travel, but going back to tip #1, be sure to be cautious. Another travel option is to take a bus, but if you do so you’ll want to be accustomed to the idea of personal space becoming a nonexistent idea.
If this does not sound appealing to you, your final option is to take a taxi, which is generally a great way to get around. I know it was my own preferred method of travel when I was there.
Whatever way you choose, be sure to travel while you’re there. The beauty of India can only be taken in by exploration.
Tip #3: Enjoy the Culture
The rich and historic culture of the Indian people is by far one of the most profound reasons for wanting to travel to the country. Get a bite of the local cuisine, view the beautiful architecture, and interact with the people.
It has been said before that there is a difference between a tourist and a traveler. A tourist never leaves their comfort zone, at least not in the way a traveler does. A traveler will take a piece of the country back with him, and immerse himself in the culture. One of the most thrilling ways I was able to personally do this was by enjoying some of the Indian Classical dance. Watching the beautiful and historic dances being performed, just like they were performed centuries ago in the palaces, was truly one of the things I enjoyed most about my trip.
Whatever you find to enjoy, be sure that when you return home that you’re taking a little piece of India back with you.