Take a look at the picture below and see if you can guess what those blocks are. If you have guessed it, well and good but if you haven’t then let me tell you! They are blocks of ice. These blocks of ice seem to have been frozen in some large container and thrown outside and destined to end up on a drink stall like a lassi bar or probably waiting to be delivered to a restaurant or a bar.
I would like to introduce my friend Rob Cubbon who is a graphic designer, an author, an internet marketer and a website designer. He’s from London but is currently visiting Thailand and is posting some amazing pictures on Facebook. I had a set of questions about his travels to Thailand and he was kind enough to answer them.
I am happy to announce my new book called “India Travel Health Guide: Health Advice and Tips for Travelers to India”.
Most of the time, a traveler to India will be fine if they have their travel jabs sorted out and if they take a little bit of precaution. But there are other risks such as rabies, insects, dengue fever, and so on that could be an issue for some. This book has all the health advice for traveling to India one will ever need, it even has a section on celiacs. In addition, the book also details what to eat, how to cope with traveler’s diarrhea, how to cope with air pollution, guide on street food, avoiding quacks or fake doctors, has a guide on restaurants, about India’s garbage problem and so on. I have also included essential health words, phrases and sentences in Hindi that might come in handy if required.
If you are the adventurous type and love trying things to eat then I highly recommend trying chewing the “paan” in India especially if you consume tobacco. Some people would laugh at the sight of a westerner chewing the paan but it is something that you must experience. You find little stalls on the roadside everywhere so you can’t escape it. There are different types of paan in India so I will go through what exactly paan is and which ones you should try?
The city of Varanasi or Banaras (or Kashi) as most Indians know it, is one of the holiest cities of India. It is here you will find Hinduism in its raw form. Many foreign tourists visit Banaras in large numbers to seek of spirituality. I have spent large parts of my childhood growing up in Banaras. I have seen tourists come to this place from all over India and the world. Indians come here to bathe in the holy river Ganges while foreign tourists come here to get to know about the Hindu religion. Some foreign tourists come here just to consume marijuana, one of the few places in India where you can drink bhang lassi (shake) on the streets.
If you are considering travelling to India but didn’t know how then keep on reading. First, let me congratulate you for considering visiting India. I think it’s an excellent choice and I am sure you will not be disappointed. You might find the country a little crowded and perhaps a little hot if you are coming to India during the summers but all in all, it’s a great choice and there is always something to do and fascinating to see. If you are considering India, then this is right time to come. India has the best weather between the months of November and March. Although it can get cold in some parts of India but generally the climate is suited for those coming from the West.
We just had India’s most widely celebrated Hindu festival called the Durga Puja. If you were in India then you would have seen the festivities. Devotees install stages for the worship of the Goddess called “pandals” on the streets and market places – an absolute delight. Durga Puja is a festival that marks the victory of the Goddess Durga over the evil buffalo demon Mahishasura. The festival also signifies the coming of autumn. The 10th day is called “Vijayadashami” or “Dussehra”. The festival lasts about 9 nights and 10 days (called Navratri) and is an annual holiday in India. On the 10th day, the idols of Durga are carried out in grand procession and immersed in the river. On this day, Lord Ram also killed the demon “Ravana” who had abducted his wife Sita to his kingdom of Lanka. An effigy of Ravana is burnt on the day of Vijayadashami.
Today is Mahatma Gandhi’s birthday and a national holiday in all the states and union territories of India. Second of October is referred to as “Gandhi Jayanti”. Mahatma Gandhi was born on this day in 1869 at a place called “Porbandar” in the state of Gujarat, Western India. This day has been recognised and celebrated as the International Day of Non-Violence by the United Nations General Assembly.
India is one of the most popular pilgrimage destinations not just for Hindus, Buddhists and Sikhs but people of all religions. People from all over the world of all faiths come to experience spirituality. You will find that all of your senses are fulfilled by spiritualism in India. If you are considering visiting India for spiritual purposes then here are some facts about the Hindu religion you might find useful on your spiritual journey.
If you are travelling to India then one of the most striking features that you will notice is her poverty. You might have heard of lots of nice things about how India is making progress and about its growing economy. That is all well and good and rightly so; millions of people have been uplifted out of poverty. You can read more about poverty in India here. Gone are the days when people used to starve to death – thankfully none of that anymore.
To explore any city in India one must be aware of the various modes of commutation that are available at hand. In most cities in India you would find the local state transport buses and hired cabs or taxis. In addition to these, larger cities such as Mumbai, there is the option for “local trains” and Kolkata has the “trams” while Delhi has the “metro“.
However, the one mode of transport that is vital across most of India is the auto rickshaw. In fact, in cities and towns across the country, the black-yellow or the green-yellow rickshaws are the backbone of city transport. They are called “autos” by the locals. The seating capacity of a normal auto is 4, including the driver. There are also six-seater rickshaws in certain towns and cities. Normally their fare rates of these autos controlled by the government.
If are travelling to India then you have to try the famous street foods of India. Although I have advised against it previously but if you are up the mark and have all your jabs in place (cholera, typhoid and hepatitis C) then be a devil and go for it. You can find more about health tips in my India travel guide book.
Thousands of people visit India so that they can experience Indian spiritually. But many of them who visit the country do not know that other than Hinduism there are other religions that also exist in India. This means that there are non-Hindu religious places that can also be visited and can provide spiritual upliftment.
What to wear in India? What kind of clothes would be safe to wear? What should I pack? Can I carry my shorts along? Should I carry cotton or linen or woollens or all? Should I carry flats or high heels? Are these questions in your mind too? Well then read along, as I pen down some basic tips that would help you pack that bag for your trip to India.