It seems ages ago since I went to India, needless to say I loved it and I will be back. You have my word. So to refresh my memory and to also give you guys some travel tips here is the best (and worst) India has to offer.
The Best Bits
The Best Food
Definitely momos which are kind of steamed filled dumplings and apparently tibetan, but wherever they’re from they are good. They cost roughly 30-40IR (30-40p) from street vendors. Or there is a fast food chain version called Wow Momo which does every kind of momo known to man – chocolate, tandoori style, momo burger, fried, steamed, you name it and they do it.
The Best Vibezzz
Varanasi at sunrise was an unforgettable experience. Being in the holiest place in India and therefore the world (FU Vatican City) was pretty spesh, the river Ganga is where Hindus and some other religions burn their dead to send them off to the spirit world all pure. I also got the best souvenir on the river from a man in a boat – a Ganesh Russian Doll (haggled down from 600IR to 200IR).
The Best Bar
The Best Experience
It’s a toss up between Pushkar, the art class I did in Udaipur which cost just £4 and was such a fun experience I never thought I’d be having and Varanasi. It’s a crazy place. I also really, really like Delhi – it’s a really cool city with a bad rep. I had so much fun there, the clubs are great, the transport is slicker than even London and the people are so friendly.
The Best Discovery
Of course it wasn’t all good, but don’t let these little gripes put you off going.
The Worst Bits
I’m sorry but no matter how I try I just can’t get down with this, like fucking get some bins! It’s just mad coming from the west where dropping a crisp packet will see you relived of £80 instantly in the form of a fine, to India where every street is a rubbish dump. Even in rural areas that are really beautiful, there’s litter everywhere. There are some exceptions – the posher parts of Delhi, Udaipur and Pushkar.
The Caste System
It still exists WTF? There is a caste called the untouchable caste and people literally will not touch them – I witnessed this between a hotel manager and a cleaner, the manager wanted some keys from the cleaner and he had to place them on a table rather than pass them directly to the manager. It just really upset me, like join the 21st century India.
The begging is next level in India, not necessarily in terms of numbers but just in the methods. It’s always the cutest, most beautiful little children you’ve ever seen (who are clearly picked for this reason) and they will throw themselves at your feet, cry and grab at you. It’s overwhelming. But you must not give money to them, it will go straight into the hands of their kidnappers.
Lack of Women
In some places it’s rare to see a woman on the street, they’re all indoors. I know India has a terrible reputation for it’s treatment of women, but i have to say I felt very safe, respected and welcomed everywhere I went. However I was surprised just how little interaction I had with females in the month I was there – it’s definitely a man’s world.
In Agra I visited Sheroes Hangout; a cafe run by survivors of acid attacks. It was a humbling experience and showed me the dark side of how India’s women are treated. Acid attacks and honour killings are still common practice in rural areas which is terrible.
Read about Sheroes HERE
What a place! ❤