There is an opinion that you either can love India or hate it but definitely can’t remain indifferent. So why does India make such a different impression on different people?
When I fly to India/from India, I find it very interesting to observe the types of tourists. Who are they? Some people start talking to me themselves, from overflowing impressions about India that they saw. So, i came up with some “types of tourists in India” classification (but it’s only my completely personal view):
- A type of tourists very common in India are the people who are interested in spirituality. In Russia it’s very much in “fashion” now, that I can tell for sure, can’t say about another countries that much. So, such tourists usually visit India for holy places or to study yoga, often wear traditional Indian clothes themselves or look like hippies. To come to India may have been their dreams and here they find confirmation to its spirituality – it seems that the whole country is spiritual and happy to them – since they are spiritual themselves. Perhaps they would like to move to India. But they are the people who usually not interested in any other sides of the country;
- The second type of tourists are the people who have visited many countries, love to travel, but they feel bored in typical travel destinations. They are interested in countries that are radically different from their own and India is not easy to understand so they come back here again and again. They treat India slightly skeptically, unlike the first type of tourists, see the country’s pros and cons for themselves. They wouldn’t want to move here usually, despite of the fact that they come more than once;
- However, not everyone goes to India because of their interest in the country, but possibly due to the circumstances, for the sake of personal interests – to visit somebody or for work, suppose. Such tourists can have just any opinion about the country…They can be completely unprepared for it also, then, in such case, cultural shock will overtake them. The cultural shock is usually something that makes people to be annoyed and irritated about many things. If such tourists are for a long time in the country, they will get to know the secular side of Indian life, most likely, better than previous types of tourists;
- And, of course, tourists who go to Goa. Also, not all of them are interested in the country, some are just looking for not too expensive opportunity to live on the beach in the cold season of their country.
Such classification of tourists is only my subjective opinion based on personal observations. There can be different purposes of people to visit India, of course, too. But here’s the point – India has it all that these people see. It has it all. That’s why there can be such a different views on the same country.
Meanwhile, Indians love to ask foreigners whether they like India or not. But they usually only expect to hear “yes” so Indians themselves may not know about how differently foreigners can feel in their country.