A herd of buffalo wandered back from the fields, followed by women in brightly coloured saris, water gourds balanced on their elegant heads. Blue jays darted overhead as smoke rose from the cooking fires and aromatic smells filled the air. A reclining cow chewed on a cabbage, a man on a bicycle wobbled slowly past. The village children played on the path between the crocked houses while several of the village elders, pulling indolently on their smoking beedis, squatted by the track to discussed the day’s events. It’s a magical time of day when dusk settles in a thousand villages across the Indian subcontinent and the night creeps in. The Indians have a word for it… Godhuli, the homecoming.
Sadly, very few visitors get to experience the day to day beauty of rural India, focussing instead on well known urban centres such as Delhi, Jaipur and Agra. Estimates suggest over 60% of the 650,000 British visitors to India in 2005 travelled within the Golden triangle, their trips consisting almost solely of sightseeing tours to historical monuments, religious sites and heaving bazaars. With most companies offering similar itineraries during the 5 months tourist season, it is very hard for travellers to escape the hoards and experience the true nature of India.
Cattle on rural India holidayNot any longer. Now an imaginative company has come up with a novel way of getting their clients off the well-worn tourist trail, and into the heart of India, allowing them to witness firsthand the life that the vast majority of Indians live. In these lesser-travelled areas there is a richness of life, guaranteed to rival the palaces and opulence of Golden Triangle and a colour and tranquillity that will stay with you for ever. And with a number of trips on offer, from Rajasthan and Madhya Pradesh to Uttaranachal and the mighty Himalayas, this is an original way to explore real Indian life in a way that benefits both the visitor and the host. For its not just visiting… its interacting as well.