India Travel

A Glimpse into What Rural Village Life in India is Like

You might feel like the villages in India have a long way to go before they have proper sanitation facilities or rather, a more liberal mindset. But the truth is, what you see in these rural villages is the past of India. A simple and primitive past that these villagers have still maintained. Read on to know about what you can expect if you ever visit any of the amazing villages in India.


This has to be your first concern. Their lifestyle is truly very different from what you or I have grown up in.

Usually, the houses in Indian villages are made of bamboo, clay and mud. Most of these households have cows and hens to get fresh milk and eggs. They also have domestic animals. The best thing about these villages is that they are very environment-friendly. They collect forest produces and most of the villagers are farmers. Other jobs usually include blacksmiths, carpenters or potters. Their houses don’t have many rooms. In fact, they wouldn’t even have doors most of the time.



Local women in villages giving water to animals
Local women in villages giving water to animals. Photo by Honza Soukup.
Paddy Fields in Kerala
Paddy Fields in Kerala. Photo by Wikimedia Commons.

Although some villages are getting electricity now, most of them are still devoid of it, so forget about internet connectivity or proper cell reception. They usually grow their own vegetables and have a common well to collect water. In states like Rajasthan, the women have to walk for miles to bring water because of its scarcity.

Transportation facilities into the villages are limited unless it’s an important village. Therefore, you’d have to catch a bus auto-rickshaw from the closest town that you’ll have to share with at least 4 or more people.

There is not much traffic near villages so its very calm and peaceful. Festival seasons are celebrated with lots of fervor here. Every one plays an equal part in decoration and arrangement during such occasions. A collective, family-like feeling is common among the villagers unlike in a city where every one prefers to mind their own business. They lead a very simple lifestyle and naturally, they feel content with it.

Beautiful villages of India
Beautiful villages of India. Photo by Travelling Slacker


Just like Indian states are diverse, the food is too. A village in Punjab will offer you different dishes than a village in Kerala would.

As mentioned earlier, villages in India are the major agricultural hotspots of the country. Therefore, the cuisine of each state depends largely on the crops that are grown there. For example, rice is grown in abundance in Kerala and Tamil Nadu and so, it’s a staple meal there. In Punjab, wheat, sugarcane and mustard are plenty, therefore you can expect to have roti (flat bread made of wheat dough) and sabzi (vegetable dishes). Non-vegetarian meals are available everywhere. In South Indian states, fish and beef is common (beef is now banned in India though) while in North Indian states, chicken is served more.

Makke ki roti with sarso ka saag
Makke ki roti with sarso ka saag. Photo by Wikimedia Commons

In Punjab, all the meals end with a large glass of lassi (a sweet or sour drink made of yoghurt). Roti made of other grains like makka (maize) is also common here. In the South India states, idli (small cake-like dumplings prepared by steaming fermented rice batter), dosa (a huge flat pancake kind of dish made of fermented rice batter) and sambar (lentil based vegetable stew) are the major local dishes.

Idli, sambar and tea
Idli, sambar and tea. Photo by Wikimedia Commons

Then there are also places like Ladakh, Gujarat and the North-Eastern states where you’ll get their own local cuisines, whatever that may be.


Well, again, this differs. States like Kashmir, Bengal, North-Eastern states, etc have their own particular dressing style which usually differs from Central India and South India.

Traditional Rajasthani outfit worn by women
Traditional Rajasthani outfit worn by women. Photo by nevil zaveri

To generalize, women in India wear saree and salwar-kameez which is considered to be traditional. Men in the North Indian villages like Rajasthan, Gujarat and Punjab wear dhoti (a loose garment just like a salwar) and a loose kameez on top. They also generally wear a turban on their head.

A local farmer in Punjab
A local farmer in Punjab. Photo by Wikimedia Commons

Atmosphere and People

A beautiful village in Seraj Valley, Himachal Pradesh
A beautiful village in Seraj Valley, Himachal Pradesh. Photo by Wikimedia Commons

Villages in India have boundless beauty surrounding them. Usually, these villages are tucked away in deserts, hilly areas, near forests or near some rivers. This gives them a natural appeal. They are away from the pollution of the city life. You will have a relaxing time in the villages, left to your own thoughts.

Bishnoi tribal community in Rajasthan
Bishnoi tribal community in Rajasthan. Photo by TL Thompson.

The villagers in this country are extremely friendly. They will treat you like a member of their family and make sure that you face no inconveniences during your stay with them. If you’re here to not only visit places but also learn about the culture of the country, you should definitely think about staying in an Indian village.

If you’d like to read about which villages to visit, check out The Most Beautiful Villages in India.

By Merlin Chacko

Currently studying English Literature at Delhi University. Obsessed with Harry Potter and NOT Shakespeare. I believe that nothing nourishes the soul like books and travelling. Constantly amazed by the Indian culture and its history. Personally feel that the old forts and ruined palaces in India are almost magical.

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