One of the most well-touted reasons for traveling is to experience new cultures. Culture is important, because while we’re all humans, our culture is what bonds us together in groups and dictates how we think and choose to live our lives. To experience a different culture, you may order a country’s national food, attend a traditional event, read a piece of literature, or visit a local marketplace. The further you delve into a culture, the more interesting (and in some cases, strange) it becomes. How about throwing cinnamon at single people or carrying your wife throughout an obstacle course? Or what abut the U.S. tradition of waiting for a groundhog named Phil to emerge from his burrow to determine when winter will end. Strange? Yes. Want more? Read on.
1. Baby tossing, India
While baby tossing may not seem like a very safe (or fun) tradition, it’s a common practice for people in Solapur, a village in the Maharashtra state of India. They believe it brings children good luck, a long and healthy life, and plenty of intelligence — benefits that outweigh the obvious danger. In this ritual, newborn babies are dropped off from the terrace of a 50-foot tower while a group of people at the base of the tower hold a sheet to safely catch the infant.