Preparing for India!

Kerala boat

So in about a week and a half, I’ll be on my way to India with Kerala Tourism! I am so excited to be one of the few lucky contestants to win the Kerala Blog Express contest! This is going to be my first third world country and a part of me is excited and the other is scared!

A BIG THANK YOU!

First, I’d like to thank every single person who voted for me to win this amazing trip to India for two and a half weeks! I couldn’t believe how supportive all my friends, family and readers were! I really feel honored to have you all and greatly appreciate every single one of you. I don’t think I ever won a contest before and I’m so freakin excited! I clearly couldn’t of done this without you guys! So thank you, thank you, thank you!

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I’ve been dying to go to India for over 10 years! I always pictured India as this (oddly) dreamy place!  I’m sure it’s far from what my imagination has led me to believe, but I also know it has beautiful cultural traditions and I’ve always been very curious about their spiritual beliefs. I’m obsessed with the colorful saris and bracelets from India, as well as henna tattoos and the architecture there. I’m also a fan of Indian food, so this is definitely a dream come true. I’ll be visiting the south-west region of India.

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PREPARING FOR INDIA:

SHOT- First and foremost, shots!!!
Who loves them? No one! But I especially don’t and I normally end up holding the doctor’s arm away from me, to gain a few extra seconds of having a needle in my arm. Although the part of India that I’m traveling to, I don’t “need” any of them. I think you’d always rather be safe than sorry.

What shots do you need for India? It’s a long list! Enjoy! 😉

  • Hepatitis A
  • Hepatitis B
  • Typhoid
  • Malaria
  • Rabies
  • Yellow Fever
  • Japanese Encephalitis

Kerala-tourism-snake-boat

I never really realized how different, going to a third world country would be like. After speaking to a good friend who just got back from Cuba, which is another third world country, I was shocked at how unadvanced some parts of the world still are. With most places in Cuba not having essential things we take for granted, like toilet seats, toilet paper, paper towels, tampons, pads, diapers and hair conditioner, to name some. I started to really think of all the things I need to bring, that I never really had to on past travels.

Things you should bring to India:

  • Hand sanitizer
  • Sanitary napkins
  • Toilet paper
  • Shampoo and conditioner
  • Extreme bug spray
  • Bed-sheets
  • Snacks
  • Towel
  • Mostly cash
  • Water bottles
  • Water filter
  • Mosquito net
  • Traveler’s diarrhea antibiotic
  • Nausea medicine
  • Vitamin C
  • Advil
  • Soap
  • Conservative clothes
  • First Aid Kit

VISA- With my Israeli passport, I could have gotten a visa upon arrival because Israel is one of the very few countries that is allowed a visa on arrival. But the tourism group that I’m traveling with wanted me to get one in advance. So filling out an application online took about 2hrs and you have to wait 72hrs for approval.
I was lucky to get my approval in less than 12hrs (yay)! But in most cases you have to contact the Indian Embassy and I believe it takes a week to 2 weeks, depending on what kind of passports you have.

Indian spices

Fears and concerns: 

Food: The food is probably going to be my most difficult task. I am a vegetarian and a total hygienic freak when it comes to food. I know that most Indians are vegetarians, but I also know that in India people eat insects and the food there isn’t so clean! Ahhhhh! But nevertheless, I do enjoy Indian food.

Diseases: Being that India is a third world country, getting sick is very common to most visitors. I was already pre-warned, by many of my friends who visited India about getting sick and to be prepared and bring medicine with me. I, not like most people, get sick fast! On my last trip to Europe, which was less than 3 weeks, I got sick on 3 different occasions! So I’m really hoping for the best case scenario and HOPING not to get sick. Although I’ve already taken into consideration that that probably won’t happen.

Indian bracelets

Things I’m looking forward to???

Culture!

Colorful saris!

Getting both my hands filled with henna tattoos!

Riding an elephant!

Trying new spices and food!

I’m also very excited to see the wildlife in Kerala. The last time I saw some wildlife on a trip, was 13 years ago in Brazil at the Iguazu Falls. Although I wouldn’t fully call it “wildlife”.

indian elephant

I would also LOVE LOVE LOVE to attend the Holi Festival, which I have also been dreaming about for years! I will be in India during Holi, however, I was told that the area where I’ll be visiting doesn’t celebrate it. BUT, I was also told that last year’s contestants got to experience the fun at a nearby town. So cross your fingers for me. (Related post: Top 15 Festivals Around The World)

India holi festival of colors

I really can’t wait to just play with this colorful country! I’ll be reporting to you soon from INDIA!

HAVE ANY ADVICE ON INDIA? PLEASE SHARE

Comments

comments

7 Responses to Preparing for India!

  1. Hi Miss Kim,
    I am from Kerala but currently in the USA. Just to clarify, India is not a 3rd world country!
    First South India is completely different from the North of India. In fact the culture, customs & languages are entirely different in every state. The festival Holi is typically celebrated in the north of india. But you might find some sort of celebration due to the presence of North Indians.
    Have fun in Kerala (land of coconuts & spices).
    Regards,
    Santosh

    PS: lived in NYC for 10 years & currently residing in Port Sant Lucie, Florida (45 min north of west palm beach)

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