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If you’re planning a big vacation, it can be hard to decide where to go. It’s going to be a large investment: both financially and in regards to your precious time off work. So you want it to be worth every penny and second of your time. So, where to go? Well, India has seen a rapid increase in tourism and for a good reason! It’s the perfect destination for any explorer. It’s such a large country that it has something for absolutely everyone. Urban spaces, beautiful beaches, cultural hotspots and expansive rainforests. Here are a few reasons you might like to make visiting India top of your bucket list.

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The Food

Indian restaurants have established themselves around the globe. Curries are now one of the planet’s favorite cuisines. But there’s no beating the real deal. Whether you’re a carnivore or vegan, there will be plenty of options available to you. They will be some of the most delicious dishes you ever get your hands on. Menus will be as diverse as the country you’re visiting. The North will see more thick and creamy curries that are mild to the taste. It is heavily influenced by Persian and Mughlai traditional cooking methods. Southern Indian dishes will tend to use more coconut, spiced rice and will generally be more spicy. There are also snack-like street foods that you will want to try out.

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Architecture

India is home to one of the most famous architectural feats of the world: the Taj Mahal. This is, understandably, a UNESCO world heritage site. Made of white marble, this is a huge mausoleum built between 1631 and 1648. The emperor of the time commissioned the project in memory of his favorite wife. The result was a masterpiece and is visited by around three million people each and every year. There are also various other architectural wonders to keep a look out for while visiting India.

The Markets

Indian is renowned for its bustling marketplaces. There are endless traditional markets spread across the country, selling wares and goods of high quality and the brightest colors. Visiting a local market is one of the most authentic experiences you will undertake on your journey. They’re also a great place to pick up little trinkets and souvenirs for your friends and family back home. Remember to barter for goods; it’s expected and you will be able to receive a better price for your purchase.

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The Beaches

The state of Goa is home to some of the world’s most beautiful beaches, with white sand, azure seas and clear skies for most of the year. There are also lower footfall beaches that you might like to check out as an alternative though. Maharashta, Kerala and Karnataka are all home to beautiful alternatives.

 

 

Preparing

 

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Documentation

Remember that you will need to have all of your documentation and identification ready well in advance of your flight out. Make sure that your passport is well up to date and exceeds beyond the length of your stay. You will also need an Indian Tourist Visa. Without one of these, you will be denied access to the country. The process of gaining the visa is easier than ever and can now be completed online. So don’t delay and apply as soon as your flights are booked.

Vaccinations

Check in with your local GP and ask for their recommendations regarding vaccinations for the area of India that you will be visiting. Vaccines are likely to include: hepatitis A, tetanus and typhoid. To be on the safe side, you might also like to consider diphtheria, hepatitis B, and (if you are planning on contact with animals) rabies. You should also take a course of malaria tablets, as the risk is moderate in most parts of the country.

What to Pack

The length of your stay will determine how many items that you need to pack. The weather will most likely be hot and humid. So make sure you have plenty of lightweight, breathe easy clothing to tide you over during your stay. Also, remember to pack plenty of sun protection: sun creams and oils are good options. Try out a high SPF lip balm (your lips are one of the most sensitive areas of your body) and to wear sunglasses and a wide-brimmed sunhat too. You will also want to stock up on insect repellent. Most areas will have creepy crawlies that are prone to nip and bite. Prevention is better than cure, so remember to coat yourself with plenty of bug spray. For extra protection, wear an insect repellant bracelet.

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