I thought I had seen the world. I had traveled to more than 50 countries and walked through more than 100 cities in my 31 years. I didn’t know why I waited so long to travel to India. India had shown me that I had seen nothing. I knew nothing.
This thought may seem daunting to some, not to me, to me this thought was comforting. I had previously thought the world to be a very small place. India had shown, a seasoned and experienced traveler, that the world was a huge place and we are incredibly small.
India has been the most varied and unique country I have visited. India feels like 10 countries already, and so far and I have barely even seen a few States.
This morning I was within arms reach of 2 male Asiatic Lions. No fence, no zoo just lions being wild and free. The feeling was unforgettable. In the past week I have lived on a house boat in Kerala and slept anchored next to a 9th century sculpture of Buddha, I watched elephants roaming wild in Kabini, cycled through lush green tea plantations, explored 7th century temples and visited the ashram where Gandhi once lived and led India to political independence.
Prior to embarking on this 90 day journey through India I had spoken with many fellow travelers, including Indian expats about my trip. I was taken aback by the negative feedback I received even from Indian nationals.
I was shocked at how people described India. I was lectured by fellow travelers who had warned me about stories of rape, violence, disease, malaria and whole host of other ‘problems’ when traveling in India. I can recall one conversation I had with a photo journalist in Hawaii who had traveled to India, Afghanistan, Iran and many other places off the beaten tourist trail. The photographer, who was in his late 60’s had experienced more than most people do in two lifetimes. This journalist actually tried to deter me from this trip.
I’m questioning why I had not made this journey earlier.
While I am not denying that its important to have your wits about you when traveling, and have personal safety in mind, I feel that India is and has been very misjudged and is often met with suspicion and negativity by the media. The media focuses heavily on the negative and in my opinion does not show the whole story of India.
While I am traveling through India filming a documentary series, I am having a truly authentic experience living with locals here in India. I hope after this journey to share my India story without prejudice.
For a great list on some of the best things to do in India: read my India Travel Guide
I would love to hear from you, if you want to add to this list!
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My journey through India took place a few months ago. Most posts on this blog will be post in real-time and will be updated as I am traveling. As I was filming a documentary while in India I kept notes on my travels and often lived without wifi so kept an ‘old-fashioned’ diary. I will be uploading my diary entries to this blog.
Read more about my adventures traveling in India in this section dedicated entirely to Travel in India: Dear India