Skift Take

This will surely win some awards in tourism marketing, but the realities of traveling around India aren't as fun or gorgeous. Infrastructure, including transport networks, leave a lot to be desired and inhibit more tourism growth.

This one has to be the magnum opus of country tourism ads. The 2013 Incredible India TV ad, just released earlier this month, is breathtaking in its scope, both geographically and visually. Clearly this one took a huge budget and a long time to get done.

Produced by Mumbai-based creative shop Nirvana Films and directed by Prakash Varma, the ad is shot all over India – from up north in Kashmir and Leh to all the way down south to Andaman & Nicobar Islands and Kerala. It features The Mentalist co-star Patricia Malone, looking multiculturally neutral enough, traveling as a solo woman across India (which by the way is a feat in itself, ask any solo fair-skinned woman traveler who has attempted that before).

Tough to capture a huge and diverse country like India, even in a director’s cut 3 minute video, but this one avoids the cliches for most part, and goes for the ordinary experiences of daily India. Usually the biggest test of anything about India is how well the locals are receiving it. Here’s what the usually cranky Firstpost has to say about this new ad:

So there’s no edification of how gloriously warm and welcoming we are, how chivalrous and spiffy British etiquette-educated too. Instead, the woman visitor is shown taking in the pleasant quirks of an average Indian – an animated nod, an unabashedly inquisitive question posed in broken English and a heavy south Indian accent.

It doesn’t spoon-feed India to an outsider. It teases one with the warmth behind the awkwardness and tells you how India’s an awesome country to try figuring out!

Turn up the volume, turn on full 1080p HD with full brightness, and full screen, and sip on a chai while watching this one.

Tags: india, marketing