India is complex and fascinating place – a country with an abundance of history and culture, stunning architecture and ancient religions and traditions that are still very much alive.
The streets of India’s cities are alive with the hustle and bustle of humanity – street carts of fragrant curries, vendors selling brightly coloured saris, children running and laughing. 1.2 billion people live here and this country is multi-faceted – it contains everything from gleaming skyscrapers and gorgeous mansions to dilapidated slums and rural villages. It’s somewhere that you have to visit to understand and once you do – you will never forget it.
What are some of the misconceptions that many people have about India before they visit and experience it for themselves?
When you picture India you might think of a hot country, but in fact, it’s not swelteringly hot everywhere. India is a huge country and it encompasses a wide range of geography. There are high altitude mountain regions where you are going to need a jacket and you might even see snow.
Don’t assume everyone in India has the same religion. Yes, it is true that approximately 80% of people in India are Hindu. However, India is also home to Muslims, Christians, Buddhists, Sikhs, Zoroastrians, Jains and Atheists. With so many people in India, there is naturally a diverse range of different religions. This will enrich your travel experience, as you will be able to visit some truly stunning religious buildings.
Yes, it is true that there is a lot of poverty in India. As you walk through the streets of one of the cities such as Delhi or Mumbai you will see barefooted beggars living in squalid conditions on the street and in rickety slums. However, there is also significant wealth in India. In fact, India has more multi-millionaires than Russia, Australia and France. There are 14,800 multi millionaires in India and the highest number of them live in Mumbai. India has both rich and poor people, with a huge divide in between.
Another common misconception is that Indian women will only wear traditional clothing, such as beautifully coloured saris and kurtas (a long top and pant set). However, this is not true either. You’ll see more women wearing traditional clothing in the smaller communities or rural areas, but in the cities the fashion is much more cosmopolitan. You’ll see women dressed like they would be in Paris, London or New York – wearing chic dresses, skirts, jeans and high heels. The traditional fashions may only be reserved for special functions such as weddings.
These are just a few of the misconceptions that many people have about India, which are shattered as soon as you experience this beautiful and fascinating country for yourself. To see India through your own eyes, contact us about our unforgettable trips.