As students brought up in Europe all their lives, we’ve always dreamt of exploring the unknown in our world. Back home in Europe, India is especially perceived as an exotic, mysterious and chaotic country that embraces such a different and beautiful culture. Despite all the research you can do about the country, you can never understand the real feel of India without experiencing it in loco!
Coming to India was not a travel experience, it was a long and strong desire; a deep dream for an exciting adventure. And let me tell you, here your expectations are easily exceeded!
So, what can you do in India? Well, there are fascinating cities that will make your head spin because of all the chaos, cities like New Delhi or Mumbai, the astonishing palm-fringed beaches of Goa, the mighty forests in Madhya Pradesh, the yummy cuisine that makes you lick your fingers, the religion and spirituality intricately intertwined with everyday life and the history and architecture that makes any history buff and design enthusiast discover the place of their dreams.
Since your arrival, you are welcomed by everyone in the streets with a big smile and a curious look, and you can bet that if there is a camera nearby, you will probably be asked for a photo. But you will be addicted to shooting too, since there are so many places and so much culture to remember that one brain will not be enough, and that means taking a selfie with the holy cow too!
Photo Credits: Alexia Guilbert
Let’s talk about the food. Huumm the food, spicy as hell for the delicate European tongue, but so good! The number of vegetarian restaurants here will shock you, but with so many different and stunning plates you can bet you will start thinking of becoming one. The astonishing colours that you can find in the Thali will make your mouth water like never before! Also, there is a huge variety of delicious chicken dishes too, even if it means you have to struggle with a hidden bone or two. In case you don’t have too many rupees left, no worries, you can get cheap and appetizing snacks from the street vendors, cooked on the spot!
There is a special and mysterious trait in this place that will get you outside of your comfort zone and will excite you, as you will start being embedded into the culture bit by bit.
You are sure to fall in love with the mishmash of surprises and wonders.
Everyone here is fascinating, whether it is the street vendors that will put your negotiation skills to the test, children who are always smiling and who would get easily distracted by you or the simple village man that crafts the glorious and imposing piece of rock into the small, detailed elephant face that you would definitely want to take home and show off to your friends. And trust me, leave same space for souvenirs in your backpack!
A lot of everything happens in India, where you experience an overload of the senses with the pure, concentrated intensity of its colours, tastes, smells and sounds. My doubtful European friend, immerse yourself into this different and unfamiliar culture and you will find out that the problem here is not when to come, but how long can you stay!