What are the top five things to do in Delhi? From famed monuments and forts to fun festivals and food, here is a list of our favorites.
Visit the Rashtrapati Bhavan in New Delhi-official home of the President of India and the third largest estate in the world to belong to a head of state. Spread across 320 acres, this stately home includes 340 guest rooms, endless hallways, guest rooms and offices, as well as vast Mughal-style gardens, stables, and staff residences. Built by famous British architect Edwin Lutyens, the property boasts plenty of Buddhist elements, temple bells, Jaali latticework and a miniature replica of the Buddhist Sanchi Stupa.
Holi is one of the most colorful and fun Hindu festivals in the world. Essentially a harvest festival, Holi marks the end of winter days and the start of summer. Celebrate this festival with a local family in Delhi, sprinkling colored water and powder over one another. Afterwards, a traditional lunch awaits.
Visit the awe-inspiring Akshardham Temple: a sprawling complex representing traditional Indian Hindu culture, spirituality and architecture. It is listed as the largest Hindu temple complex in the world by the Guinness Book of Records!
Take a bike tour in the quaint streets of Old Delhi to discover its centuries old history, culture and traditions. Amid a riot of vibrant sights and sounds, visit a 150 year old heritage haveli mansion which belonged to a Kashmiri nobleman. The property is an elaborate example of a decadent era long gone. The visit also includes a tour of the surrounding area, Chandni Chowk, Red Fort Lookout, Jama Masjid and Turkman Gate.
The imposing 14th century Neemrana Fort has been converted into a heritage hotel today. A stunning feat of architecture, the building has beautifully preserved its history and heritage, evident around every corner. The fort lies on a majestic plateau, tucked amid the ancient Aravalli ranges, offering stunning views of the landscape.
Experience the magic of having a Hindu Temple wedding for your once-in-a-lifetime occasion! Indian wedding ceremonies are full of rich details but can have a Western twist too. You’ll be dressed in colorful finery – men in dashing ‘sherwanis’ and women in radiant ‘sarees’ – traditionally a red/red-white sari. Many rituals and customs take place, henna/mehndi decorate the brides hands and feet, garlands are exchanged, walks around the fire are taken and song or musical performances follow.
Celebrate the festival of lights! Diwali/Deepawali means an Array of rows of Diyas/Lamps. Of all the Indian festivals, Diwali is the most glamorous and eagerly enjoyed by people of all religions. Its magical aura radiates an atmosphere of joy and festivity, and is the highlight of the Hindu calendar. Experience this celebration with a local family, light oil lamps with them to illuminate their home and commemorate Rama’s return from exile. Light Firecrackers and exchange delectable sweets.
Jump into the hustle and bustle of Old Delhi on a fascinating and comfortable cycle rickshaw ride! Sit back, relax and observe as your rickshaw wallah weaves you through the narrow, popular lanes, amidst the swarming masses of people. Your local guide will highlight all the different sections of the market as you breathe in the wonderful aromas of the spice market, the largest in Asia, and the wafts of burning incense from nearby stalls. There’s a sense of the medieval in these bazaars, and items for sale range from the colorful to the quirky, from bangles and silver jewelry to herbal potion concoctions. Supported by your local guide, this is undoubtedly one of the best and most thrilling ways to experience traditional Delhi!
The National Rail Museum is a fascinating ‘window’ to India’s Rail Heritage, with its well maintained compilation of rare trains, steam locomotives, carriages, saloons, coaches and other railway artifacts. See both live exhibits, and working/non-working models in its indoor gallery, each marking a particular era of progress. Children can enjoy a toy train ride around its grounds. View antique signals, train toilet fixtures, model trains, train seats through the ages and a vintage fire truck.
Put on your dancing shoes and shake a leg Bollywood-style! Don colorful costumes and participate in a special dance workshop designed for dance enthusiasts! The Namaste India Dance Workshop is a two-hour crash course on three different Indian dance styles – Bollywood, Bhangra and Dandiya (folk dance). Your first hour is spent learning the steps of Bollywood dance, while the next two half hours will be dedicated to Bhangra and Dandiya respectively. Afterwards, record your newly learnt skills on a two-minute video produced just for you. The video will be privately uploaded to Youtube so you can share it with select loved ones upon you return.
Explore the sights, sounds, and distinct flavors on this day-long culinary journey through Old and New Delhi. Dive into the thriving street food scene of India’s capital, which brings together influences aplenty from neighboring regions. Sample up to 25 different types of dishes while you whistle-stop from one legendary eatery to another in the bustling streets of Old Delhi. As you walk, appreciate various architectural and cultural landmarks including Jama Masjid and India Gate. See the daily grind and a plethora of ingredients at Khari Baoli, Asia’s biggest wholesale spice market. At Gurudwara Bangla Sahib, meet the volunteer-driven community kitchen which feeds more than 10,000 people every day! Remember to take multiple helpings of Butter Chicken – a world-famous dish invented in a restaurant in Central Delhi. End your tour watching travel mementos being snapped up by the dozen at Connaught Place. A tea-tasting detour is also available on request.
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