My stomach aches and I’m at the point of exhaustion. I didn’t think it was possible to go to the toilet as many times as I just did throughout the night. At last count, it was into double digits.

I’ve just experienced a night from hell. The type that makes you want to pack up and go home. It’s all part and parcel of travel but is usually so few and far between that you usually forget what the exact feeling is, until it resurfaces.

My first 48 hours in India have been magical, minus this bout of gastro, and I’ve fallen in love with travel again.

Fort Cochin, India, Kochi, Motorbike, Riding, Jorden Teo
My new wheels

Following a quick stopover in Kuala Lumpur for some of my favourite food, I flew to Cochin in Kerala which is one of the southernmost of India’s 29 states.

I was able to organise a SIM card (5GB of 4G data for $6), withdraw money and try a vegetable samosa that exploded with flavour before even leaving the airport, and most importantly, within 30 minutes of landing. Who said travelling India was hard?

Day one was spent exploring Fort Cochin and sampling as many new dishes as possible. India is renowned for its food and it didn’t disappoint: thalis, stuffed parathas, curries and dosas, just to name a few.

Thali, Vegetarian, India, Fort Cochin, KochiVegetarian Thali

I’m a sucker for a good sunrise or sunset, usually more so for the latter with the timing a little more palatable. And given India is two-and-a-half-hours behind Perth, getting up early is relatively easy and I’ve fortunately seen three out of three comings and goings of the sun.

Sunsets in Perth are pretty spectacular (just check the Instagram of anyone from Perth) with the sky catching fire, emitting a concoction of reds and oranges. The sunrises and sunsets in India are a bit different, with the sun an intense fireball that lights up a normally cloudless sky.

Fort Cochin, Kochi, Sunset, India
Sunset in Fort Cochin behind the iconic Chinese Fishing Nets

Golden hour yesterday morning was just unreal. It was my first morning in India and I crept out of the hostel to walk around the beach and see the sun rise. Armed with my camera and my favourite music pulsating through my headphones, I felt so blessed. Watching people exercise, meditate, and enjoy the warm early morning sunshine gave me chills. I was so happy to be in India and remembered why I love to travel. It’s all about these experiences. Seeing people enjoy life and enjoying every part of your own.

Sunrise, Fort Cochin, Kochi, IndiaSunrise

Hiring a scooter motorbike with some new friends from the hostel provided a quick education on road etiquette in India. Basically, if you’re going to go, just go. And beep to let them know you’re coming through. I clocked up about 65km riding out to Cherai Beach, all whilst dodging cars, auto rickshaws, cows, pedestrians and bicycles; it was so much fun.

Friends, India, Kochi, Fort Cochin
Motorbike Gang

Even while I’m on my deathbed right now, I’m already excited to explore more of India and indulge in all it has to offer. Reflecting on my first 48 hours in India has put a smile on my face and I’m buzzing for the next 28 days.