Delhi is a tale of two cities – old and New Delhi. With shimmering new skyscrapers and presidential palaces, New Delhi is structured and organised. Over 5000 years old, Old Delhi is one of the oldest cities in the world; one of mysticism and medieval magic.
On first sight, Delhi is all at once devastatingly poor and dazzlingly wealthy. This juxtaposition continues throughout the city. Shimmering shopping malls are a stone’s throw from the tangle of dusty, rose petal scented bazaars dating back to India’s medieval times, where shoppers wind their way past mounds of colourful spices, suspended rugs and genie-like lamps. Roads are cluttered with rickshaws, cars, motorcycles, donkeys and pedestrians who vie for space in a cacophony of noise and organised mayhem.
Littered with the remains of lost empires, Delhi is full of Mughal Forts, medieval markets and colonial masterpieces like the Imperial Hotel that harks back to the days of the Raj. Humayun’s Tomb is one of the most spectacular and perfectly proportioned mausoleums in the country while the Red Fort is an imposingly grand sandstone edifice. Climb the magical minarets of the Jama Masjid Mosque for glorious views, in one of the largest mosques in India that can hold up to 25,000 people.
Museums, emporiums, monuments and restaurants, unrivalled street food and archaeological parks are all wonderful places to explore, drink coffee, get a tailor made suit, stroll and unwind. For a quiet spot away from the chaos, visit Ghandi’s Tomb. There is no more peaceful place in city.
The following information is correct as of January 2015 and is subject to change. Please check with the airline directly for complete accuracy.
New Delhi Indira Gandhi International Airport is located 14 miles from the city centre of Delhi. It can be reached by car in approximately 45 minutes. A metro service operates from Terminal 3 of the airport, direct to the city centre taking just 18 minutes. Alternatively Express Bus 4 runs 24 hours a day and takes just 50 minutes to reach the city centre. A choice of taxi companies operate from outside the airport terminal.
What you need to know
Currency: The Indian Rupee
Visas: UK nationals require a visa to enter India. A passport valid for at least 180 day is required. Tourist visas can be obtained for 3 months, 6 months and 1 year with single, double or multiple entries. The maximum period of stay in India is limited to 6 months however.
Laws: The legal age for purchasing and consuming alcohol in India is between 18 and 25 depending on the region. There is also a smoking ban in place that prohibits smoking in all indoor public places including restaurants, bars and hotels and on public transport.
Best Time to Visit
The most comfortable time to visit Delhi is between October and March when temperatures are not as scorching and oppressive as they can be during the summer months. May, June and July often see temperatures in the +40 degrees and are often teeming with tourists. This is also the most common time for flooding and monsoons to occur so it is best avoided.
There are so many festivals and events in Delhi throughout the year from food and wine and kite flying in January, book fairs and crafts in February and European film in March to theatre in April, a Mango Festival in July and the stunning festival of lights Diwali, or New Year, in October.
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