We’re back! This time our bucket list experts are heading to Bangalore, India, one of the most unique USAC programs. Not for the faint of heart, but instead the perfect place for the open heart and open-minded, there’s so much to see and do in India that we’re helping you build your bucket list.
If you plan on studying abroad in Bangalore, don’t miss these 16 things in and around the city.
1. Get an Indian Buddy
One of the best ways to get to know Bangalore and the locals is to take advantage of USAC’s buddy program. We’ll connect you with a local student interested in helping you feel right at home in India.
2. Learn to cook in the cuisine class
Authentic Indian cuisine will most likely be like nothing you’ve tasted before. Even compared to Indian food you’ve had in the U.S. Once your stomach has adjusted to the new flavors, why not take some time to learn how to cook those delicious dishes for yourself?
3. Shop the local markets
Jump right into Indian culture with local goods and products that you can only find at the markets.
4. Get exercise in the Bollywood Dance Class
Bollywood is the commercial name for modern Indian dancing and combines classical Indian dance, folk dance and even has Arabic and Latino influence. Trust us when we say that your study abroad experience won’t be the same without it.
5. Participate in the Festival of Colors or Holi
This festival only takes place in the Spring but it’s celebrated across all of India as well as countries with large Indian subcontinent populations. Aside from walking away very colorful, you’ll be a part of one of the most famous and biggest festivals in the world.
6. Learn how to wrap a traditional Saree
Knowing how to properly wrap a Saree is not only a unique skill but takes time and practice. In fact, even those well practiced in it take around 30 minutes. However, you can’t study abroad in India without learning how to properly wear this common attire.
7. Get a Henna tattoo from a local
Henna tattoos serve more of a purpose than a beach memory from Spring break. Getting a Henna tattoo from a local in India can be a spiritual and educational experience. Henna tattoos are symbols of luck, joy, and beauty and have been used to adorn women’s bodies as part of social and holiday celebrations for centuries.
8. Visit the early morning flower market
Lose yourself in the most flowers you’ve ever seen at the flower market. Whether you’re shopping to buy or just want to experience some natural beauty, this is one thing you don’t want to miss. Don’t forget your camera as thousands of flowers always make for a good photo-op.
9. Participate in the Heritage Tour
This walk takes you over 450 years back in time to the rule of Kempe Gowda, the founder of Bangalore. Discover what made the city so prosperous and why the British occupied it. Learn about the battles that took place, and visit the last surviving silk weavers to see them reel, dye, and weave silk yarn. Walk through Bangalore’s oldest market; learn about famous philanthropists, Sufi saints, temples and much more as you explore the oldest part of Bangalore.
Experience Indian culture and society through the Centre for Social Action (CSA), a student-run organization that provides volunteer opportunities in a variety of settings. Opportunities include rural exposure programs, overnight camps in local villages to educate disadvantaged children, a medical program for pregnant women, advocacy and awareness programs, and a child-rearing self-help group for women.
11. Join campus clubs and sports
Christ is one of the finest educational institutes in India. Treat the university as your own and join on-campus clubs and sports teams. Plus it’s a great way to meet other international and local students.
Participate in the following free USAC field trips
Included in your program fees, travel to the mountain region of Coorg, home to the Kodava people. There you will visit Raja’s tomb to find a spectacular view of the town, take a jeep excursion to Abby Falls, visit the Omkareshwar Temple, and watch the sunset at Raja’s Seat, a popular place to go to admire the beauty of the misty hills and valleys. You will also visit the Dubare elephant camp where you can participate in elephant rides, bathing the elephants, and watch them be fed. On the way back you will visit The Golden Temple located in one of the largest Tibetan Settlements in the world. At the Buddhist temple you will be able to speak to monks and visit some of the Tibetan shops within the city.
This field trip takes you to the capital of the Hindu empire Vijayanagara, which ruled south India from the fourteenth-sixteenth centuries. The ruins of Hampi, as it is known today, are a vast open museum of history, architecture, and religion spread over an area of more than 25 square kilometers.
On this trip, you’ll visit the city of Mysore alongside historical sites such as the Srirangapatna Fort, which is considered to be the second strongest fort in India. There’s also a stop at the Sri Ranganthaswamy Temple, one of the most important Vaishnavite shrines in southern India. You’ll get a second day in Mysore to explore the city, churches, carvings, and the Mysore Palace.
Take advantage of these USAC Optional Tours
15. Northern India
Offered in the Fall, this optional tour includes visits to Dehli, including the Raj Ghat, Red Fort, and Jama Masjid as well as India Gate, the Rastrapathi Bhawan, and the Laxmi Narayan, Lotus, and Akshardham Temples. A stop in Mughal will include a tour of Mathura, the birthplace of Lord Krishna, and time in Agra will include a tour of the Agra Fort, built by the great Emperor Akbar, and the famous Taj Mahal, built by Emperor Sha Jahan in memory of this wife Mumtaz Mahal.
16. Southern India
You’ll have the extraordinary opportunity to explore some of Southern India’s cultural, historical, and natural sites in the Indian state of Kerala. This tour will include accommodation, air-conditioned transportation, train/bus tickets, all meals, entrance into the different sites, fees for different activities, and an English-speaking tour guide. Your tour will include places such as Kochi, Munnar, Allepey, Thekkady, and many other places.
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