Delhi is consisted of two entirely separate cities: the City of Mughals or Old Delhi and New Delhi. After Mumbai it is the second largest city in India, with a population of 20 million (cca. – I don’t think anyone knows the exact number) and also one of the oldest cities in the world. It is a complex, challenging city – infuriating, fascinating, loathsome and wonderful in equal measure – I think would the best way to describe it. There is plenty to see and do in Delhi and one would spend a long time (definitely more than 3 days, which is the time we had) exploring the city’s mixes. Getting around the capital is a bit of a mission – always agree the price with the rickshaw-wallah (driver) before you start. If the tempers flare, just remember, that the money means an awful lot more to him than it does to you.
Here are my top 7 places to visit, while in Delhi, India.
You might have already figured it out by now, why it is called a Lotus Temple. This marble, sacred lotus flower shaped landmark is dedicated to the Bahá’í faith, which is a religious worshipping grounds for people of all religions. If it reminds you of Sydney’s Opera House, you’re not the only one. Entrance fee: free
Delhi’s Taj Mahal is what I also like to call it, eventhough Humayun’s Tomb was built before the actual Taj Mahal, furthermore it was the one Taj took inspiration from. It was the first time I experienced a wow moment upon my arrival to Delhi as it is one of the most magnificent tombs built during Mughal’s rule. Entrance fee: 500 rupees
In contrast with Humayun’s Tomb, which was built more than 500 years ago, Akshardham Temple is being considered a new building as it was only built in 2005. This modern Hindu temple complex includes a ridiculous amount of perfect detail and decoration that will blow your mind. Entrance fee: free
Tomb of Safdarjung
I never know how to pronunce the name, but I really like his eternal resting place. The tomb’s construction is very similar to Humayun’s tomb but because Tomb of Safdarjung is not enlisted as a Unesco World Heritage Site it is not extremely well maintained. When we visited (early in the morning), we were the only tourist around so it was really quiet and a nice break away from the normal Delhi crowds. Entrance fee: 200 rupees
If you have seen Agra Fort then I don’t think you will want to see Red Fort as well, because they are very similar to each other, many say that Agra Fort is even more impressive. Red Fort is a red (duh) sandstone Mughal fortress of walls that surrounds an entire ancient city.
Jama Masjid is the largest Islamic mosque in the city and has been build by Mughal emperor Shah Jahan in the 17th century. The is ‘no’ entrance fee, but they will try to charge you a rediculous amount of money (300 INR) if you want to take pictures inside the mosque (no one said anything about the outside wink wink ;)).
Chandni Chowk is one of Delhi’s oldest and most famous markets and is home to many iconic and historic monuments such as Red Ford, Jama Masjid, and a few more sites. It remains famous for being Delhi’s largest wholesale markets, attracting plenty of shoppers daily. Make sure to check out the Chawri Bazaar and Spice Market while being here.