Monthly Archives: January 2014

China’s ‘Guidelines on Civilized Travel Abroad’ by K.J.S.Chatrath

Shimla August 2011 001A lovely little Post Office in Shimla, Himachal Pradesh, India. (Photo by KJS Chatrath)

The National Tourism Administration’s of China has issued  “Guidelines on Civilized Travel Abroad”* suggesting ideas of good behavior and  standards of etiquette in several popular destination countries, as perceived by the Chinese . Take a look:

General Tips

1: Refrain from limp handshakes.

2: Do not pick your nose in public.

3: Soiling a swimming pool is frowned upon.

4: Do not leave footprints on the toilet seat.

5: Keep nasal hair trimmed at all times.

6: Do not take airplane life jackets as gifts.

7: Do not coerce locals into taking your photo.

8: If you have to pick your teeth, do not use your fingers.

9: Try not to drink soup straight from the bowl or make slurping sounds.

10: Do not talk about people behind their back in Chinese (because someone nearby might understand you).

By Country: (As perceived by the Chinese)

Scotland: Do not buy stones as souvenirs.

Britain: Do not ask Brits whether or not they’ve eaten.

Spain: Women are considered naked without earrings.

Germany: Do not click your fingers (“finger clicking is for dogs”).

France: If invited to a home, do not bring yellow flowers.

Hungary: Do not smash mirrors.

Japan: Do not fiddle with your hair or clothes during meals.

Thailand: Do not talk about the royal family.

Nepal: Don’t touch people’s belongings with your foot.

Hong Kong: Do not try to get a refund for your food or smoke in air-conditioned rooms.

Algeria: Don’t touch other people’s heads.

Iran: Do not comment on babies’ eyes.

India: Don’t touch other people with your left hand.

Islamic countries: Refrain from talking about pork.

African countries: Do not call Africans “Negros.”


May I add some more suggestions for my fellow Indians travelling abroad:

(i) Be punctual. Being late is frowned upon in practically every country.

(ii) Please, please do not jump the queue at the airport and elsewhere. Wait at the designated waiting line till the person at the window nods you to come.

(iii) Do not get drunk on a  plane and put all Indians to shame.

(iv) Do not talk loudly in public spaces – airplanes, trains, buses, metro etc.

(v) Do not use your mobile in public places, unless it is an emergency situation.

(vi) Do not litter.

(vii) It is very bad manners to yawn or burp or pass wind loudly in public places.

(viii) Do not overload your plates in buffet breakfasts/meals. If need be come back for a second helping. Generally the items served in buffet breakfasts are meant to be consumed in the dining hall and not to be taken along.

(ix) Staring at ladies is bad manners and just not done.

(x) One needs to treat tourist guides/ hotel staff etc. with politeness and dignity.

(xi) Do not pat or touch children even if you want to show your affection.

(xii) No flowers or leaves should be plucked from any public place.

(xiii) And please do not pick up any towel from the hotel.

Have I left out anything important?


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‘Phnom Bakheng near Angkor Wat, Cambodia- a curtain raiser’ by K.J.S.Chatrath


This is Phnom Bakheng, a symbolic representation of Mount Meru, believed to be the home of the Hindu gods, a status emphasized by the temple’s location atop a steep hill. It was constructed in 11th century AD. Phnom Bakheng is located 13 kms from the town of Siem Reap and about 6 kms from Angkor Wat.  The photo above hows tourists gathered atop to witness the sunset.

A detailed photo article on Phnom Bakheng would follow on this website some time later.


Photos, text and copyright: K.J.S.Chatrath

 IMPORTANT: This website does not sell any hotel rooms/air tickets/packages/insurance cover etc.  This post is intended only for sharing information and experiences with travel enthusiasts. Readers are advised to double check the information and satisfy themselves before taking any decision.


Contact: [email protected]


‘Morroco – usual & unusual’ by K.J.S.Chatrath

Morocco  is located in the Maghreb region of North Africa. It is one of only three nations (along with Spain and France) to have both Atlantic and Mediterranean coastlines. Geographically, Morocco is characterized by a mountainous interior and large portions of desert. The country has  a population of over 32 million and an area of 446,550 square kilometres. Its political capital is Rabat, although the largest city is Casablanca; other major cities include Marrakesh, Tangier, Fes, Agadir and, Meknes, Its distinct culture is a blend of Arab, indigenous Berber, African, and European influences.


A rough map of Morroco


A de rigueur photo shot of camel ride in the Saharan desert. I am on the extreme right


Popular Morrocon dish of Chicken tagine with almonds. Tagine is both a way of cooking as well as the pot in which it is cooked. The dish is cooked in this pot and then served sizzling hot.


This is an extremely popular photo shot and one sees it in posters, tourist books and as picture post cards where ever one goes in Morroco. You just can not ignore these eyes!


Colourful tiles are used profusely.


This was an unusual advertisement that I saw pasted in a coffee shop.

morrocan filmstar 1976 220 95souad housni

Two famous Morrocon actresses of yester years. The one on the right is Souad Housni.

rochdi abada

A popular Morrocon film hero of mid 1970s- Rochdi Abada.

madan-mohan-220-95 actor-suresh-220-95

The famous Indian music director Madan Mohan (L) who died in 1975 and the one time hero of Hindi films late Suresh (R). Notice how the three gentlemen look alike!


 Singer Hindi Zahra (Photo source: Wikipedia)

‘Hindi Zahra’ is a Franco-Moroccan singer. ‘Hind’ means India and ‘Hindi’ means coming from India. ‘Hindi’ is also the official language of India. When coming up with a stage name, she simply inverted her birth name. Her songs are mostly in English but some lyrics as in the song Imik Si Mik are in the Berber languages.

The well known French actor Jean Reno was born in Casablanca, Morocco, to Spanish parents (from Andalucía) who had moved to North Africa.  Jean Reno settled in France at 17.

Incidentaly Ibn Batuta, the Morrocon traveller of Berber origin came to India in the 14th century.  He is known for his extensive travels, accounts of which were published in the Rihla.



Want to buy one of these?


An interior street- absolutely clean and tidy.

Useful information: 

Air fare: Delhi to Casablanca return airfare starts from Rs.59,000/- upwards (indicative)

Morroco Tourism Board website:

(Text with inputs from the internet)

Photos, text and copyright: K.J.S.Chatrath

 IMPORTANT: This website does not sell any hotel rooms/air tickets/packages/insurance cover etc.  This post is intended only for sharing information and experiences with travel enthusiasts. Readers are advised to double check the information and satisfy themselves before taking any decision.


Contact: [email protected]