Packed with spectacular temples, mosques, shrines and gurdwaras, New Delhi – or Dilli, as India’s vibrant capital is called by locals – is a culturally rich spot that has a history dating back over 2,500 years
New Delhi is said to have been built upon the remains of no less than seven cities from various centuries, empires and dynasties. Mosques, churches, Hindu and Sikh temples and the ruins of ancient forts and monuments lie scattered about among grand colonial-era buildings as well as the concrete skyscrapers, creating a perfect balance between the old and the new. Delhi is also one of India’s greenest hubs, with dozens of parks and gardens in every neighbourhood. It is also the cultural capital of India – though Mumbai is a close rival – and hosts concerts, exhibitions and literary events through the year.
And of course, it has some of the best street food in the country, and residents are known to be intrepid in their quest for the best chaat (tangy, savoury snacks) and kebab – not to mention the hottest new restaurants and clubs. In short, this is a city that values the good life and is not afraid to spend its weekends in search of it.
When to go
New Delhi can get scorching hot in the summer months, so stick to the cooler season between October and March. This is also when the city comes alive with numerous arts and culture festivals, from the colourful Delhi International Arts Festival in November or December to the popular New Delhi World Book Fair in January.
How to get around
The most efficient way of commuting in this sprawling city is with an unlimited one- or three-day Tourist Travel Card on the Delhi Metro, which incidentally is among the longest in the world and has convenient stops near most major tourist attractions.
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