Pocket Guide: Delhi
Crowded, chaotic and charismatic in equal measure, few cities can boast the sheer energy and enigma of India’s capital, Delhi.
A booming global metropolis, Delhi is a destination full of complicated juxtapositions. Extreme affluence brushes up against relentless poverty. Peaceful green spaces lie alongside traffic-choked streets. Gleaming skyscrapers and shopping malls sit beside grand colonial and Mughal architecture – yet there’s still no better way to experience the Indian subcontinent in microcosm.
Delhi is sprawling and dusty, exciting and overwhelming, and is an undeniably intense experience for the first-time visitor – but it’s one you’re never likely to forget.
Whether you’re travelling for business or leisure, it’s fair to say the highlights of Delhi might not be immediately apparent. But dig a little deeper and you’ll see this city is awash with awe-inspiring monuments, tombs, religious structures and other sites. Go in search of the atmospheric nooks and crannies of Old Delhi, with its overflowing alleyways and bazaars.
From a tourist’s perspective, Delhi is best approached as two parts. The contemporary, well-planned boulevards of New Delhi are to the south, and this is where you’ll find some of the city’s most prominent landmarks, including the presidential residence Rashtrapati Bhavan, the Bahá'í Lotus Temple and the 1920s-built India Gate, a memorial to Indian soldiers who died in the World War I.
Old Delhi is the city’s frenetic heart, full of crumbling buildings, overhead cables and tightly-packed streets teeming with people, animals, street-food vendors, cyclists, scooters and rickshaws.
In Old Delhi, you’ll find iconic attractions like the 17th-century sandstone Red Fort and the extraordinary Jama Masjid, the largest mosque in India. Old Delhi is also home to the unmissable market at Chandni Chowk, a maze of hole-in-the-wall eateries, shops and stalls where you’ll find everything from folk crafts, spices and other foodstuffs to electrical goods, textiles and jewellery.
Hotels in Delhi
Accommodation in central Delhi ranges from budget hotels and guesthouses to ultra-high-end luxury resorts and colonial-era palaces. Popular places to stay include Connaught Place in New Delhi, one of the city’s major commercial, business and banking districts, as well as the neighbourhoods west of the central railway station, particularly along DB Gupta Road and Arakashan Road, home to many budget hotels and backpacker hostels.
If you’re a business traveller, you might stay near the DLF Cybercity in the far south west of Delhi, home to some top global corporations. While many places to stay reflect the upmarket surroundings, you’ll find a good number of mid-range hotels, guesthouses and apartments, too.
Alternatively, head to the mixed residential and commercial neighbourhood of Karol Bagh, home to the main shopping streets of Ajmal Khan Road and Ghaffar Market. The streets are lined with western brand stores, alongside homegrown- brand budget hotels.
Whether you’re seeking a high-end business hotel, a luxury palace hotel or a simple guesthouse near the railway station, use Expedia’s to find a hotel in Delhi that suits you.