India, the largest country in South Asia, has many of the world's highest mountains, most populated cities, and longest rivers. India's heritage and culture is a rich amalgam of the past and present. This vast country, the second most populous in the world and set to become number one, offers the traveller a view of fascinating religions and ethnography, a smorgasbord of languages, and architectural masterpieces that were built millennia ago and remain intact today. As the nation opens up to a globalised world, India still has a depth of history and intensity of culture that awe and fascinate the many who visit there.
One thing that foreign visitors need to know is that India is, in many ways, heterogeneous. If they experience one set of behaviours from the locals in one part of the country, it does not mean that the same behaviour is common in another area. India shows extreme variation in most things, and one needs patience and luck to find the best. Never assume you know everything about any aspect of India; be prepared to see completely new things every day.