One of the massive urban agglomerations of India, Delhi has remained the capital of India since the British era. Seated on the banks of River Yamuna, this incredible city boasts of centuries-old monuments, imposing modern-day structures, colorful bazaars and drool-worthy cuisine. Since the city serves as the political seat of the country, it is also home to the Parliament House and the Rashtrapati Bhavan (Presidential Palace) that are architectural marvels in themselves.
According to the Ministry of Tourism, Government of India, 2,740,502 foreign travelers visited the National Capital Territory (NCT) of Delhi in 2017. Being one of the most visited Indian cities, Delhi is dotted with many budget and luxury hotels, guesthouses, and more to take care of the influx of tourists from across the world.
Delhi Tourism Quick Info
|Area||1,484 square kilometers|
|Official Tourism Website||http://www.delhitourism.gov.in|
|Major Railheads||New Delhi (NDLS), Old Delhi (DLI), Hazrat Nizamuddin (NZM), Anand Vihar Terminal (ANVR), Delhi Sarai Rohilla (DEE), Delhi Cantonment (DEC)|
|Airport||Indira Gandhi International Airport|
History of Delhi
Delhi has a long, rich history finding its way in the epic Mahabharata – it is said to be the site of the capital of Pandavas, Indraprastha. During the medieval period, the city was ruled by some of the most powerful Indian emperors the world has ever known like Ashoka and Prithviraj Chauhan. The latter was overthrown by a Muslim invader Muhammad Ghori; post which the Turkish dynasties gained dominance in the area. After his death in 1206, Qutb ud-din Aibak took control and laid the foundation of the Mamluk dynasty and the Delhi Sultanate.
Lodis ruled Delhi for almost 300 years after the Mamluks and were succeeded by the Khaljis and the Tughlaqs. By the end of the 14th century, the Sayyid dynasty came to power followed by the Lodis, before the sultanate was destroyed in 1526 by the Mughals. Their rule in Delhi continued for over three centuries, all the while fighting for it with the Marathas.
In the early 19th century, the British East India Company took Delhi under their control and later made it their capital in 1911. The name ‘New Delhi’ was coined in 1927 and post-independence on 15th August 1947, it was officially declared as the capital of India.
Geography & Climate
Delhi is bordered by Haryana in the north, south, and west while Uttar Pradesh borders it in the East. The National Capital Territory of Delhi consists of New Delhi (the capital of India) and Old Delhi. Along with the neighboring satellite cities of Noida, Faridabad, Gurugram, Ghaziabad and 20 other districts in Uttar Pradesh, Haryana and Rajasthan, it forms the National Capital Region (NCR). The city is surrounded by the Aravalli Range on one end, while the other end is bounded by River Yamuna.
Delhi witnesses extreme climate; while summers are extremely hot, winters are cold and chilly. The best time to visit Delhi is from October to March when the weather is pleasant.
- Religious Sites: Akshardham Temple, Lotus Temple, Birla Mandir, ISKCON Temple, Kalkaji Mandir, Chhattarpur Temple, Gauri Shankar Temple, Sri Digambar Jain Lal Mandir, Dargah of Nizamuddin Auliya, Jama Masjid, Cathedral of The Sacred Heart, Gurudwara Rakab Ganj, Gurudwara Sis Ganj, Gurudwara Bangla Sahib
- Heritage Sites: Red Fort (UNESCO-listed), Humayun’s Tomb (UNESCO-listed), Qutb Complex (UNESCO-listed), India Gate, Purana Qila, Tughlaqabad Fort, Jantar Mantar, Agrasen ki Baoli, Safdarjung’s Tomb, Mehrauli Archaeological Park
- Memorials: Raj Ghat, Veer Bhoomi, Shakti Sthal, Shanti Vana, Vijay Ghat, Kalam Memorial, Dr. Ambedkar National Memorial, Guru Tegh Bahadur Memorial, National Police Memorial
- Parks and Gardens: National Zoological Park, Waste to Wonder Park, Lodhi Garden, Garden of Five Senses, Mughal Gardens
- Museums: National Gallery of Modern Art, National Rail Museum, National Museum, Crafts Museum, Gandhi Smriti, National Philatelic Museum
- Local Marketplaces: Chandni Chowk, Connaught Place, Janpath, Khan Market, Lajpat Nagar, Dilli Haat, Paharganj, Sarojini Nagar, Karol Bagh
Cuisine of Delhi
Right from age-old eateries to contemporary restaurants and cafes, Delhi offers myriad options to food lovers. From the Mughlai cuisine to the best street foods in the entire country, there is a lot to indulge in. Some of the classic dishes of Delhi include Dal Makhani, Shahi Paneer, Butter Chicken, Chaat, Kachori, Dahi Bhalla, Samosa, Cholle Bhature, Kulche, and Samosa. Jalebi, Gulab Jamun, and Lassi add a perfect finishing touch to the meals.
Shopping in Delhi
From rustic bazaars to upscale shopping malls and more, the urban city of Delhi offers varied shopping experiences. Some of the best things to buy in Delhi are:
- Precious and semi-precious jewelry
- Wedding clothes
- Second-hand books
- Lifestyle items
- Go for a morning walk in the historical gardens
- Enjoy an evening at India Gate
- Go boating at Old Fort
- Listen to Qawali at Nizamuddin Dargah
- Take a rickshaw tour in Chandi Chowk
- Enjoy street food delicacies
- Pay homage at Raj Ghat
- Do budget shopping at local markets
- Dive into history at national museums
- Explore historical places
How to Reach Delhi
By Air: The Indira Gandhi International Airport connects the city to domestic and international destinations. It serves daily flights from major Indian cities like Mumbai, Bangalore, Hyderabad, Kolkata, Pune, Chennai, Patna, Ahmedabad, Goa, etc. Major international cities accessible from Delhi airport are Dubai, Bangkok, London, Singapore, Hong Kong, Kuala Lumpur, Doha, etc.
By Rail: With six major railheads, Delhi is a major junction of the Indian Railway network and is well-connected to a number of cities across India.
By Road: Delhi is connected to its neighboring cities and other parts of the country via National Highway 1, 2, 8, 10, and 24. It also has some major roads connecting to other cities in the NCR region including Outer Ring Road, Delhi-Gurgaon Expressway, Delhi-Noida Direct (DND) Flyway and Delhi-Faridabad Skyway. The Inter State Bus Terminals (ISBT) at Kashmiri Gate, Anand Vihar and Sarai Kale Khan service a number of buses connecting the city to other parts of the country. Private buses and taxis are also available from neighboring cities to reach Delhi.