Native Language You Must Know While Travelling in India

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Well, we just celebrated the 17th anniversary of International Mother Language Day on February 21. However, we might not know the native language of every Indian state. Never mind, we are here to guide you with! After all, ‘travelling like a local’ is the best way to explore an unknown land and fall in love with its local culture. To ensure you a comfortable holiday and definitely, a safe trip, we have listed some frequently spoken local phrases in Indian metros.

Mumbai

native language
Taj Majal Hotel opposite Gateway of India, Mumbai | Photo Credit: Debatree Saha

The ‘City of Dreams’ is a hot favourite of everyone. Here you must gain expertise to adjust yourself in a over crowded local train and to relish the taste of ‘vada pao‘ and ‘misel pao‘. Do remember that Hindi in Mumbai is not the regular one. Mumbaikars love to hear Marathi. So, stay cool and approach them by saying ‘Kya boltaay boss’ or ‘Kya bolttaay bhidu’ (meaning ‘what’s up dude?’).

Kolkata

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Sealdah Station area in Kolkata | Photo Credit: Manasij Kanjilal

Ahh!! The city of rosogolla (sweet made of cottage cheese and soaked in sugar syrup) and macher jhol (fish curry) gives a warm welcome to all. Even if it is your first visit, a Bangali babu would love to invite you for lunch or dinner and serve Bhetki Macher Paturi (baked fish covered with banana leaf) or Ilish Maacher jhal (hilsa curry). Don’t hesitate! Just step in and say ‘Kemon acho?’ (how are you?). With a smiling face he will surely reply ‘ami bhalo achi’ (I am fine).

Chennai

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Kapaleeshwarar Temple in Chennai | Photo Credit: https://www.flickr.com/photos/roadblog/8473810896/in/

Confused how to interact with locals in the Tamil capital, Chennai? Rather than considering yourself to be an alien, learn the state’s native language or some local dialects like ‘Nalla Irikiringala?’ (Are you well?) or ‘vannakkam’ (meaning greet or namaskaar). I am sure you are going to have a pleasant stay in the cultural capital of Tamil Nadu!

Delhi

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Lodhi Gardens, an historic landmark in Delhi | Photo Credit: Debatree Saha

In our capital, every male is greeted as ‘bhaiya’ (brother). Delhi is speckled with historical remains, glorious past and thereby, worthy of travel. While Delhi gives a friendly happy-go-lucky feel, knowing some basic Hindi phrases like ‘Aapka swagat hai’ (you are welcome), ‘phir milte hai’ (see you later), ‘namaste aunty/unchle/bhaiya’ (hello sir/madam/brother) help to interact with locals and get acquainted with local culture.

Bangalore

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The road from Bangalore to Nandi Hills | Photo Credit: Kireet Suvra

Don’t get disheartened with the style of Hindi or English you hear from locals here. Bangalore is full of life and here every tourist is treated like God. To travel like a local in Bangalore, you might get to learn a bit of Kannada like ‘inda bandēni’ (I am from …). Wait! There is another way too! Simply learn to say ‘Kannada Gotilla’ (I don’t know Kannada.), and people will guide you towards the right path.

Guwahati

native language
Sarusajai Sports Complex, Guwahati | Photo Credit: Nibedita Basumatary

Like all other north-eastern states, Assam boasts of a peaceful environment coupled with abundant natural beauty. While in Assam, you cannot deny to fall in love with its slow moving life. Knowing its native language like ‘Aapunaak loge pai bhaal lagil’ (Pleased to meet you) or ‘Aponar Bhalne?’ (How do you do?) will let end up making friendship with locals. While returning bring along the traditional gamusa (cotton towel) as a token of memory.

We wish you a pleasant trip!

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3 thoughts on “Native Language You Must Know While Travelling in India

    ch.Subbarayudu said:
    March 5, 2016 at 5:43 am

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      March 30, 2016 at 6:41 am

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    March 5, 2016 at 6:07 am

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