South Asia is home to many intriguing traditions and customs. It is hard to find a more diverse place with so many unique festivals and celebrations. Examples of this include Makha Bucha Day throughout many of the countries and Independence Day in India. There are also many traditions and practices unique to the region. In some areas, it may be considered disrespectful to use the left hand for social tasks, or in some areas you may find women covering their faces and showing modesty. Things such are tips are less common then in the West. People in some areas may even find it strange if you say ‘thank you’, as they often prefer a certain grace, attitude, and quiet gratitude.
Read below to learn more about South Asian history & culture.
Afghanistan used to be a common entry way into India. They have a very diverse culture and mainly practice Islam. They have two official languages including Dari and Pashto. They are also home of the oldest oil painting in the world. They gained independence from Britain in 1919 after several Anglo-Afghan wars which began in 1839.
Bhutan has a long and complicated history. For quite a while it was a feudal war-zone. The area was unified by 1907 by King Ugyen Wangchuck. Despite Britain exerting authority over Bhutan’s sovereignty, they never officially colonized the region. Bhutan was offered the chance to join the Indian Union but they chose to remain independent in 1949.
It is believed the Maldives was first inhabited by Buddhist immigrants from India and Sri Lanka (also known as Ceylon) in the 5th century. They became a British colony in 1887 but later received their independence in 1965 after signing a landmark agreement with the British. People in the Maldives speak Dhivehi and English.
South Asia is a very large region with one of the most diverse cultures in the world. Other diverse groups include the Dravidians, who speak Dravidian and live primarily in India, Sri Lanka, and Pakistan. The Bengali, who live in the area between India and Bangladesh and the Bhutanese who practice primarily Tibetan Vajrayana Buddhism. Due to there being so many ethnic groups in South Asia, it is sometimes hard to communicate but most of them seem to enjoy the diversity and wide range of culture.