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Join us get a glimpse of rural life in India and celebrate the festival of colours!
Holi is one of India’s largest and most popular Hindu holidays, taking place every year between February and March. Spend the day with us learning about life in a village and celebrating this colourful holiday safely and authentically with the community.
Travelling by ferry, local bus and tamtam (a large rickshaw), we’ll explore the countryside to the south of Mumbai. On our way to our partner village, Chinchoti, we’ll visit several local industries and activities as well as a school, where we will learn about education in villages. In Chinchoti we’ll be treated to a delicious lunch with a local family. Then, we will get hands-on, interact with the community and further explore and the surrounding area.
Your guide will explain their history, religion, the challenges they face and how they fit into Indian society today. Throughout the tour, you will be able to talk with locals through our guide. At night, we have a special activity: we’ll create a bonfire on the eve of Holi and perform various prayers and rituals that are unique to the festival.
You’ll be hosted for an overnight stay with one of the families in the village. The next day, as means of ending your trip, get ready for to play Holi–a memorable and colourful way to spend time with the community.
Learn about how the majority of Indians in the village live: spend time with the community members, visit their houses, wander around the village, enjoy the peace of the surroundings.
Depending on the season, you may help plough a field, harvest rice, make bricks, fish and even go for a swim. Whatever day of the week it is and whatever the weather— you’ll be invited for a game of cricket.
Food is an essential part of Indian culture, so the home-made lunch in a villager’s home is undoubtedly a highlight! You will eat what the locals eat—rice, scrumptious vegetable dishes, fresh fish and even chicken curry. Get comfortable for a feast, sitting on the floor and eating with your hands.
The travel to and from the village is much more than just getting from A to B. See country life unfold across the stunning countryside as you bump along in a rickshaw. And get an unobstructed view of some of Mumbai’s most iconic sights as we return by boat.
Witness the enthusiasm of rural Indian youth and get a deeper understanding of the education system.
Learn all about the pujas and prayers associated with the festival of colours. We’ll perform these rituals before a bonfire together! Then spend the night with your host family, gearing up for the Holi Party tomorrow.
After your overnight stay, join our friends from the community for a music and colour filled Holi party. Rest assured that we will be using safe, all-natural Holi powders.
Boat Ticket Office at the Gateway of India
We meet at 8am at the boat ticket offices in front of the Gateway of India in Colaba. (Photo)
Boat Ticket Office at the Gateway of India
Begins 8am on March 20, ends 3pm March 21
It will take about 2 hours to get there in total, but it is an exciting journey involving a ferry, and rickshaw and some outstanding views!The villages we visit on the tour are located about an hour by rickshaw to the South of Alibagh, a coastal town South of Mumbai.
First we will take a one hour ferry to Alibagh and then we will take a rickshaw south for one hour to Chinchoti. There are toilets on the ferry and snacks are available for purchase.
It’s a little different every time, that’s what’s so exciting about this tour! But in general, we will visit farms, a rice mill, a brick making community a lake for washing, a school, a lake for swimming, a local home for lunch, a local temple and an Indigenous community.
Depending on the season, different farm activities will be going on that guests are welcome to try if they should wish. And at any time of year, we can swim, eat lunch with a local family, visit an indigenous community, hike the nearby village mountain or enjoy a game of cricket.
We eat a simple, traditional vegetarian lunch consisting of dal (lentils) roti, rice and vegetables.
Yes, absolutely. We make it a priority to work with families with clean kitchens and we use bottled water when water is required. We’ve had hundreds of satisfied guests, so no need to worry! We can also cater to most allergies if required.
We are careful not to disrupt any ongoing classes. Depending on timing, we typically try to see a classroom, meet some students, see the school prayers and play with some kids during their break.
Chinchoti is a typical Indian village that was formed in the past 100 years or so. The indigenous community, however, is comprised of the original inhabitants of Maharashtra and is much, much older. They only moved down from the hills into permanent homes about 60 years ago, after Independence. As a result, they don’t own any land themselves and often work as laborers on other people’s farms.
Yes, private tours are available on request for groups of 4 or more people.
Definitely. We facilitate village visits for several study trips and we would love to help you group too. Please get in touch for more information: firstname.lastname@example.org