Welcome to India
The world’s oldest culture and civilisation is, unsurprisingly, one of the most vibrant and exciting places to explore and discover. Indian religions, ways of life, cuisine, fashion, and traditions have transformed the world more than those of any other country. It’s one of the most incredible places on earth.
The Taj Mahal
One of the new wonders of the world, the Taj Mahal is one of the main reasons so many of us visit India. It’s the nation’s most famous, grand, and beautiful building, inspiring stories, art, and poetry. Originally built 400 years ago by the then-emperor of India as a tomb for his wife, the Taj Mahal stands like brand new today as a symbol of love and Indian beauty.
India has one of the oldest cultures on earth. It’s where Hinduism and Buddhism were born, and we have Indian culture to thank for more food, inventions, fashion, and customs than we realise. The sheer depth of cultural history and wonder is enough to draw anyone to India. That being said, be ready for a culture shock. India is a busy place where animals often share the streets with humans and the traffic abides by no laws. It’s an intense place, to say the least.
Varanasi – the most sacred city in India
If you’ve ever come across the famous and sacred custom of Hindu pilgrims bathing in the blessed waters of the Ganges, Varanasi is where it happens. Varanasi is a 3000 year-old city that demonstrates the history of India better than anywhere else. It’s a sacred place that exemplifies so much of Indian religion and culture.
Indian food is some of the richest, most varied, and most delicious on earth. Their use of spices, meats like lamb, and colourful vegetables to great incredible bursts of flavour is mind-blowing. If you come to India for the food alone, nobody would argue with you. It’s incredible.
Amazing experiences in India
A must-see in India
Find them in Jaipur
The city of temples
Explore the desert on camel
Best sights in India
New Delhi (capital)
India’s government has three official branches, and all of them call New Delhi home. The capital is also home to the famous Red Fort, India Gate, and Humayun’s Tomb.
Varanasi (800 km from New Delhi)
A North-Indian city whose history dates back more than three thousand years! Varanasi is most famous as the site where Hindu pilgrims bathe in the sacred waters of the Ganges River.
Goa (1.872 km from New Delhi)
An incredible coastal state of India which sits at the edge of the Arabian Sea. It was, for a long time, a Portuguese colony and this colonialism can still be seen in its churches and plantations.
Mumbai (1.456km from New Delhi)
India’s largest city was once known as Bombay and it sits at India’s west coast. It is home to the iconic Gateway of India – a stone arch built by the British almost one hundred years ago.
Jaipur (268 km from New Delhi)
Jaipur is the capital of Rajasthan, which once had its own royal family. That same family founded the now famous Pink City in Jaipur, as well as the City Palace which still stands as a royal residence.
Jaisalmer (771 km from New Delhi)
Because Jaisalmer was once a medieval trading centre for silks, spices, and other goods, it still maintains its powerful stone citadel and the incredible and world-famous Maharaja’s Palace.
Where to g
How to get around
I always use 12Go for traveling Asia. This site is so easy to use. It quickly comes up with a variety of transport options to suit your time and budget. All costs are shown, even taxis.
Best time to visit
Picking the right season to visit India is key for a comfortable trip. People often say there are three seasons in India – winter, summer, and monsoon! The temperature varies greatly around the country and temperatures will always be warmer in the south and breezier on the coastline.
The ideal time to visit India, when it’s the most cool and dry is between October and February. If you’re going to travel March-April, the very hot and dry months, then ideally stick to the north of the country.
- Language: Mostly Hindi (but also English and many others)
- Currency: Rupee
- Plugs: India uses a three-pin plug with rounded pegs like the European plugs but with a third pin like in the UK. It’s definitely a good idea to get a universal adapter)
- Population: 1.3 billion
- Important telephone numbers: 100 for police, 101 for ambulance, 102 for emergency disasters
- Visa: You need a tourist visa to enter India from an EU country or from the US. Make sure to apply well in advance. You can get one at your nearest Indian embassy.
- Hotel: $5-30
- Food: $5-25
- Activities: e.g. $115 for a Taj Mahal sunrise tour
- Transportation: $1-10 for a bus, depending on distance
- Hello: Namaste
- Thank you: Dhanyavaad
- Yes: Haan
- No: Nahin
- Bye: Alavida
- Cheers: Chiyars