India is one of those countries that everyone should visit in their lifetime. The sheer variety of things to experience here is incredible, and to help you decide whether a holiday here would suit you, I’ve put together a list of the ultimate reasons for visiting.

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To see world-famous landmarks

India is home to some of the world’s most incredible landmarks, so naturally seeing these is a massive draw. If you’ll be on your first trip to India, your best bet is to travel around the ‘Golden Triangle’ of Delhi, Jaipur and Agra.

By doing so, you can see the sights of the capital city, including the India Gate Memorial in New Delhi and Jama Masjid, the largest mosque in the country, in Old Delhi. Over in Jaipur, meanwhile, you can check out the amazing Hawa Mahal (a spectacular palace), while Agra is, of course, home to the Taj Mahal.

To try the flavoursome food

Indian food is massively popular in the UK, but no matter how many curry houses you’ve been to nothing quite compares to having a taste of the real thing. What I really love about the food here is just how much variation there is from one region to the next.

For example, Goa’s really big on seafood, while Puducherry’s cuisine blends French and Indian traditions. Andhra Pradesh is known for using heaps of chilli and spices, while northern India’s food is an interesting mix of Indian and Chinese styles. Eastern India’s staple ingredients are lentils, fish and five spice.

By the way, you’ll often taste some of the most amazing – and authentic – food in street markets. Each destination has its own specialities, but among the best is golgappas (a mixture of chickpeas and potatoes deep-fried, and popular in Delhi) and bhel puri, which is a well-loved snack in Mumbai.

To spot fantastic wildlife

India’s also pretty famous for its wildlife, so seeing some of that should definitely be on your to-do list. A lot of people come here in the hope of spotting tigers, and if that’s an ambition you share then you should plan a trip to Ranthambore National Park, which has a quite high population density of tigers. Plus, you can also see things like sloth bears, leopards and mongoose.

Periyar Wildlife Sanctuary in Kerala is another amazing place to visit, and also has quite a high number of tigers. What’s really exciting is that you can see elephants here, too, not to mention a great mix of other animals; so, this sanctuary is particularly good if you want to be in with a chance of spotting lots of different creatures.

To experience the colourful culture

India has a really rich culture, and while you’ll be able to get a feel for it by doing all of the above, it’s also worth trying to throw some cultural events into the mix. Steeped in tradition, Kerala is a great place to catch some – and there’s a lot to choose from.

You could go to see some ritual theatre, for example, where you’ll watch old stories being acted out. Alternatively, head to a temple festival – these will usually include some ritual theatre, as well as things like fireworks and elephant processions. Handily, all temples in Kerala have at least one such event a year and because they tend to happen at different times, it’s always likely there’ll be one going on somewhere!

Of course, when you’re travelling to India for the first time or you’re planning an epic adventure to explore it as fully as possible, the idea of doing so while remembering to incorporate all these elements can be a little daunting. Personally, I think the best way to keep life simple without compromising on the experience you have is to organise a tour through a specialist company like¬†TransIndus. This way, you can benefit from their expertise and, because they offer tailor-made tours too, even work with them to create a unique itinerary from scratch.

 

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