Well this is it folks, it is time to go, to India. I’m starting off in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, I’m in Bukit Bintang, and I’m just waiting for MRT, the Mass Rapid Transit train to arrive to take me to, four stations along, where I’m gonna get the KLIA Ekspress, to go to Kuala Lumpur, International Airport, from there, I’m gonna to fly into Mumbai.
First Time in India arriving Mumbai airport fly to Varanasi rickshaw to Sarnath fly to New Delhi Photo Gallery
So, I guess this is officially day of my trip to India, even though I’m gonna arrive, just today, so this is sort of day zero, we’ll call tomorrow, India day one, but I’ve never been to India, so it’s very exciting. And I’m now gonna get, the Ekspres train to KLIA, so although it says welcome to Malaysia, it’s actually for me, it’s farewell to Malaysia. Oh, there’s actually a train here, I wonder if I can get to it.
Run, run, run, run, run, run, run, run, run oh timing, got it. Welcome on-board the KLIA Ekspres, next station, Kuala Lumpur, International Airport. One step closer, to India and zipping along in the fast train, it’s a really easy way to get to and from the airport, to central, Kuala Lumpur, sit back, relax and enjoy the ride, I get the feeling, from here on, it’s just gonna get more hectic, the closer I get to India, but, it should be great.
The next station, is Kuala Lumpur International Airport. Hello, good morning ladies, morning, B-A, you can go to this way, thank you, enjoy and welcome on-board. And I’m in India, at Mumbai Airport, now let’s go and see if I have a lift to the hotel, oh, it’s hot, now where do we start? Okay, looking for, no, no, no yes, I got a lift.
Hey how are you doing? okay, that’s me. Good evening sir, good evening, good evening sir. Hi, good evening good evening, so morning breakfast starts from : to :, you can come now, okay, thank you. Your room number is, on the second floor, okay, this is your room, please come inside, huh, too bright, here we go. Well, it was a, quite a long flight from Kuala Lumpur, four and a half hours and we were late leaving as well, that meant that I arrived, in my Kuala Lumpur timeline, arrived at like about, ten o’clock at night, no, no midnight, midnight Kuala Lumpur time because, India is a bit odd, it’s two and a half hours, different from, GMT, where they get the half an hour from, I have no idea, I’ll probably discover as I get halfway through India, but got picked up at the airport, the guy was waiting there for a sign, and in the ten minute drive, from the airport to the guesthouse, which is close by the airport, I’m just over-nighting here, it’s quite nice here, nice and clean and quiet, because on the road, we nearly squashed about a dozen tuk tuks, just in that short journey, the driving is chaotic but I am here, and i’m in India.
But I’m not staying in Mumbai for long tomorrow, I’m back to the airport, so I get up, hopefully have some sleep, get up, have some breakfast, no idea what breakfast is, well obviously I know what breakfast is, but I don’t know what the breakfast is going to be here, if you understand, then I’m back to the airport, I’m flying to, Varanasi, in the far northern eastern side of India, where I’m going to spend a few days, exploring that area. So, no exciting footage for, today this is, is this day one? we called this day nought didn’t we? day nought, so far, no exciting footage of day nought, got a few glimpses out the window, a few, posts through the, the window as we, tried not, I don’t know if he was trying not to squash too many tuk tuks or whether he was actually trying to squash tuk tuks and they dodged him, I’m not really sure. So day nought, tomorrow officially, day, India.
Good morning, I’m in India, yes, welcome, to India, day. Okay, let’s go get some breakfast, let’s go, hmm, I have a, delivery, of a Sunday Times, makes you want to kick back and read that, it’s off. Okay, oh key card, don’t want to sit outside my room, and what room am I in? now I must just remember that,, now, I came this way and I came up the lift but I don’t really trust lifts, I didn’t trust that lift, so, as you can hear, I’ll take the stairs.
Morning, cereal, wow, mhhh smells good, and fruit, and tea and coffee, coffee please, coffee please, yes please black coffee, milk coffee? white coffee, thank you very much, black coffee?, white, white, white. And it’s check-in time, at the Mumbai domestic airport with Indigo, self-service check-in, one of those machines, prodvall the buttons, get your thing, but then you’ve got to drop your bags off, this queue could take a while, no wonder they want you to get here early. Morning, good morning sir, check-in complete, bag is dropped off, now just gotta find my gate, and maybe a cup of coffee, before I fly to Varanasi.
Owh, cafe owwh, let’s check this out, now, sandwich, coffee, croissants, it’s gonna have to be coffee. Good morning. thank you, thank you have a good day.
Good morning. And I’m onboard. Welcome to Varanasi, thank you.
Okay, I organised my prepaid taxi, at one of these booths, rupiah to my hotel and they’ve got no change so, gotta pay the taxi driver and he’s gonna find change and I couldn’t get the cash machine to work either, and there’s my driver. Here I am, on the Ganges river, most sacred river in India, in one of the oldest towns or cities in India, Varanasi. Behind me, maybe you can’t see very clearly, are the ghats or the steps to go down from the town into the river Ganges, where people come to bathe, and also, if they die here they get cremated here and their ashes are scattered in the river, so it’s not been a bad first day, I woke up in Mumbai this morning, after arriving on a late flight last night, slept through the night, had my breakfast, got on a plane, flew to Varanasi, it’s about two and a half, three hours, then get in from the airport to my hotel, wash, change and then took a tuk-tuk, down towards the river, then you have to walk the last little bit to get down to the ghats, but here I am, then I got a boat, came out onto the Ganges river, now I’m enjoying the relative peace and quiet, of being on the river, as you saw earlier, in town it is, crazy, there is tuk tuks, cars, cows people, bikes, cars everywhere, all blowing the horn and swerving and oh it’s crazy.
So it’s actually quite nice to get on the river, it’s not completely quiet, there’s still lots of other boats going up and down, you can hear a lot of noise carrying across the water, but it’s still very beautiful here, and we’re waiting for the, ceremonies to begin, they begin about : p.m. I will try and film them, I will show you if they come out well, of the ceremonies that happen along this river, here tonight.
So I hope you’re enjoying day of India, quite a stunning start isn’t it? let’s hope the whole of India is as wonderful and amazing as this. Thank you. India day two, and it’s straight back out, in the noise and madness of Varanasi.
Well today, I’m gonna try and find myself a tuk-tuk, to Sarnath I think that’s how you say it, it’s meant to be a quiet, village Hi, I want to get to Sarnath, yes okay, how much? five hundred, five hundred, five hundred? owh way too expensive. How much? It’s meant to be one fifty, two hundred no Sarnath only, four hundred. Hey how are you doing? I’m going to go to Sarnath, Sarnath, yeah go and come back or only go, I’m gonna go, stay there for a few hours till sunset so I don’t know how long I’ll be, just go, yeah, how much?, how much? yeah you pay, how much price?, the hotel told me fifty rupees, no fifty rupees, I’m joking.
So maximum two hundred, three hundred, how much you have? two hundred, that’s all I have, add fifty rupees more, two fifty? yes, okay, thank you. India, day two, Varanasi, day two and I’m escaping the main city of Varanasi to go to, Sarnath, which is meant to be a green, quiet temple area, let’s see. Task one, securing and then, negotiating a price with the tuk tuk driver, next stage, is surviving the ride.
Are you, are you ging it? yep. Welcome to Sarnath, if you’re getting a bit overwhelmed with everything that’s going on in the city of Varanasi and the Ganges and down at the ghats with the people the hawkers, the dirt, the noise, the pollution, the everything that’s going on there, it’s well worth taking half a day, maybe even a day, to go and chill out, at Sarnath. There’s various archaeological sites and temples around this area, much, much quieter, there is beautiful well manicured lawns, big huge trees, the archaeological temples and things to look around and just, nice places to sit and escape from the sun and the hassle of people trying to sell you something or I, having said that, even here it’s good to see there’s security guards around, patrolling around, I’ve met four of them, three of them have asked me for money, it’s, I know it’s only day two of India, and I’ve only been to one place, but, you do have to get used to the in-your-face poverty that is obvious in India, everybody knows about it.
You think about it before you come, but you just don’t realize how in your face and how bad it is, Or how rampant it is until you get here and literally you know, everybody wants something from you, everybody and as a foreigner you’re an obvious target because you’ve probably got more money, than any locals, but it is a bit of a pain when you’re trying to visit a place and look around, everyone wants their two cents from you and sometimes is as much as, two cents, twenty cents you know, they’re not asking lots from you, but they all want it and nobody will leave you alone. They’re all trying to sell you something, give you something, hike the price and on principle, I always try and pay the fair, the going rate because I don’t like to be extorted, which is basically what it is, but also at the end of the day, I don’t want to be caught arguing over, twenty US cents, so, it’s a balance Well after escaping the hustle and bustle and noise of Varanasi for the day at Sarnath, it’s time to go back. New tuk tuk rider, into the hands of the tuk-tuk we go, as we go in the city of Varanasi, and see how busy it is, see how the driving is, one thing, it will be noisey.
Paneer butter masala okay, not spicy. Here sir, paneer butter masala and garlic naan and plain naan lovely, thank you very much, you’re okay? oh no, it’s okay, okay, thank you. I have no, I know what this is, I have no idea what this is, it doesn’t look like meat, okay, here it goes, it’s paneer, paneer butter masala, with naan bread, I have some plain naan bread and some garlic naan bread, and it’s tasty, nice sauce now this is, paneer, I have no idea what paneer is, it’s like, white stuff, I take it’s not meat, looks suspiciously vegetarian, so if somebody can tell me what paneer is, then I’ll decide if I like it or not.
With the sauce, it doesn’t really have any taste, now this, I asked for something not too, not spicy, because I am not used to eating spicy food, but I’m learning that, Indian not spicy is not the same, as me not spicy, this is actually, no spice at all, and, I mean it’s not burning, much, but I can feel the tingle, tingle around my mouth already, note to self, when they say not spicy, it’s, for me it’s mildly spicy, if it says spicy, it’ll probably burn me, if it says very spicy in India, probably means instant death, as soon as I eat it. But anyway, I’m gonna tuck into my, chicken, no, no, not chicken, my paneer butter masala, I’ll let you know how it goes. Morning cows.
The Ganga, the River Ganges, the holiest river in India, in the oldest city in India, of Varanasi, I took a tuk tuk, through the traffic and the horns, down to the river, down to the ghats, the ghats are what you can see here, the steps, these steps, that’s the ghats, and they’re all along the front, and it’s, it’s meant to represent, the steps down from life, into the afterlife or Nirvana, because they believe, that if you die, here in Varanasi and you’re cremated and your bones or your ashes are put into, the River Ganges or the Ganga, as they call it, then you will go straight to Nirvana. So, it makes a strange culture because the city here is full of, old people, dying people, sick people, poor people, who want to die as close to the Ganges as possible, so they can get their shot at Nirvana. It’s in the evening when that, this really comes to life, but to give you an idea, up to five hundred people a day, are cremated along, this section, of the Ganga and their bones not all their bones I learnt, usually just the hipbone, the ash of the hip bone is scattered in the Ganga, in the Ganges and that then allows that person to go straight to Nirvana.
That’s the way to spend a hot, sunny day afternoon. Head massage twenty five, this here, here, here, twenty five, no thank you, twenty five sir, head, neck sorry, no food, no money, no money, head, neck for a massage, twenty five no, thank you. Whoa, you’re an acrobat.
And it’s time for another, flight this time, from Varanasi, where I’ve spent the last few days, heading to, Delhi, New Delhi, just in time for Diwali. So India, day four four? India, day three. Namaste, namaste.
Thank you. Good morning, good morning. Thank you for choosing to fly with us.
Welcome to Delhi, first at the airport, find an exit, then hopefully, find my lift. Here he is, looking very excited and good morning, morning, or good afternoon, that’s me. Thank you very much And we’re here, And we’ve arrived To Delhi Godwin Hotel morning, no afternoon, how are you doing? got it, thank you.
Hello, good afternoon, how are you doing? Thank you. Fancy looking hotel, surprised they let me in, really let’s have a look at it, That’s very nice, it’s reasonably quiet, from the outside, which is one of the big things with picking a hotel, in India, you’re just trying to get away from the road noise and the honking, he says. Now, let’s get on, I got a map from reception, and Red Fort’s about seven kilometres away, one tuk tuk ride, so first order food, tuk tuk, Red Fort, let’s get organised.
Welcome to Delhi, and welcome to the Red Fort, and welcome to all the people waving, thinking I’m a crazy person and all the people who keep wanting their photograph taken with me, it’s really quite bizarre, hey sir can I have a photograph taken with you. It’s not like I’m the only foreigner here, and it’s not like I’m a superstar, although you feel like one. So, it’s India, day four, day one, two, three, four or five, I’m not sure but I’ve made it to New Delhi, not only have I made it to New Delhi, I’ve it to the Red Fort.
Okay, it may not look red, inside, I mean inside the Red Fort, the wall around the outside, is big and huge and red, here, look at some footage of the outside and so you can see why it’s called the Red Fort. You see, the Red Fort, inside is really quite huge, gardens, palaces, halls as you can see, most of it is white, very beautiful and lots of people, and in fact as I’m sitting in here, there’s people coming and taking photographs of me, taking a post, of myself, which is quite strange, I really should get my photograph and take a picture of people photographing me, doing a post of myself, now if this isn’t a good way to learn ging, I have no idea what is. Okay, namaste.
And once again I’m drawing a crowd of people who want to come and see what the crazy foreigner is doing here, so, come on, come and say hello, come on, come on this side, say hello, hey, hey, certainly, come on, come on sit down, there we go, thank you sir, pleasure. Here we are, who’s next? who’s next? Who’s next? Come on everybody in, we still need some more people around this side, are you gonna come in? in you come, have we got everybody in, come closer, anybody missing? and this is your son? there we go, family photo, hold on, must work out this modern technology, here we go, everybody in?.