Have you always wanted to visit Delhi in India? I have for so long. It has always intrigued me, and I finally got to see and experience this historic, colourful, bustling city for myself first hand. It was so much better than I had imagined. Here is my epic ‘Delhi in a day’ tour, full of culture, amazing architecture, life and soul.
Even though it was the monsoon season and rain was almost a daily feature in July, I didn’t let that dampen my enthusiasm. So I hired a hotel driver for a few hours who was happy to take me wherever I wanted to go around Delhi for the day.
This is my list of 5 places to see in one day, that I think you will be interested in seeing too. They are all easily accessible in a self-guided tour. I’ll give you a bit of background and some spicy details of each site as we go, to whet your travel taste buds.
A Bit About Delhi
Officially, Delhi is the National Capital Territory of India. It is also a city unofficially divided in two – the old and the new. Delhi has existed since 1st century BC/BCE (before common era) when a king by the name of Raja Dhilu ruled the area. Delhi has been ruled by many different empires and kingdoms over its history, as is evidenced by the numerous relics you can see around the city.
Old Delhi, also known as Central Delhi, is the historic centre, and was originally a walled city dating from the 1600’s. Most of the historical monuments and sites are located in Old Delhi. It is not easy to drive in this historic part of town. The roads are very narrow it is chaotic. Often referred to as the soul of India.
New Delhi is an urban district and territory of Delhi, and is the capital of India since its independence from British rule in 1947. Here is the location of the Government of India, with both the Prime Minister and the President using these palatial Secretarial Buildings.
New Delhi has modern architecture, wider roads, and was established by the British. You can see a huge difference between Old and New Delhi.
Experiencing Delhi’s roads when touring around this city is part of the adventure. It’s the first thing you will be confronted with when you leave the airport. Be prepared for the worst and double that!
The road system, and I use the term loosely, is like no where else I’ve experienced in the 4 continents I’ve visited. I thought other countries like Italy and Malaysia were pretty bad, but nothing compares to the ‘orderly chaos’ of Delhi roads. I say ‘orderly chaos’ because the local drivers seem to be calm and in control of the madness.