Delhi Travel Guide
Located on the banks of the Yamuna River in the very north of the country, Delhi is a whirlwind of a capital city that manages to squeeze in some 13 million people along with a huge number of tourists. For many, this is the gateway to the subcontinent, a daunting destination for the first-time visitor to Asia but a place in which there are always numerous highlights to go with the traffic jams, scams and smog.
The Indian capital is a huge expanse of a city, loosely split up into two main sections - the new and old cities - and numerous districts. Backpackers head to the guesthouse mecca Paharganj, close to theRailway Station, with areas like Chanakyapuri and Connaught Place offering more upscale lodgings.
Delhi is a city featuring a bewildering array of religious temples, monasteries and shrines. Hindu temples are unsurprisingly abundant, but there are also a huge number of impressive mosques alongside places of worship of lesser-known religions like the Lotus Temple of the Bahai faith. Delhi features two impressive UNESCO World Heritage sites, the most popular being Humayun’s tomb, the second emperor of the Mughals. South Delhi’s Qutb Complex is also UNESCO-protected, featuring picturesque gardens, a 73-meter high minaret dating back more than 800 years and the ruins of the city’s first mosque, among other attractions.
Humayun’s tomb: dating back more than 400 years, this building was said to be a precursor to the Taj Mahal and is almost as impressive.
Qutb Complex: great place to spend half a day or more, with expansive gardens and numerous Islamic structures and artifacts dating back nearly 1,000 years.
India Gate: dedicated to the Indians that died in WWII, this archway lies within the center of a huge complex of government buildings and close to the Indian parliament buildings.
Swaminarayan Akshardham Temple: a huge, elaborate shrine to all things Indian; a must-see for Indian culture enthusiasts.
Red Fort: a centuries-old labyrinth of passageways and grandiose architecture that has become one of the most-visited sites in the Indian capital.
Chandni Chowk: just when you thought Delhi couldn’t get any more crowded, you discover this heaving district of little shops and markets.