In this post, you will be delivered all the knowledge necessary to create the perfect Delhi itinerary. We recommend a Delhi trip plan of at least 2 days, but it’s impossible to see all the wonders of Delhi in even a full week. Read on and learn the best way to tour Delhi for the time you have available. Whether you’re doing a Golden Triangle Tour or using Delhi as your transit hub to India – you can’t help but fall in love with the wonders of Delhi.
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Why You Need to Visit Delhi, India
The longest-standing National Capital in the world, Delhi is a summary of all that you will see in India. Whatever you know about Delhi will crumble to its feet once you set foot in the National capital of India. Contrary to news reports and rumors, Delhi is at the potpourri of melting cultures, dialects, religions and races living together as a whole to rise with development and progressive mindset.
From its crumbling old forts to lavish green parks, cable wire-laden narrow streets of Chandni Chowk to swanky new shopping malls – Delhi will surprise you at every roundabout. This is a city of ‘Mesmerizing Contrasts’ – There are four-lane highways that open up to small but cutesy boutique shopping alleys and the fanciest of bars located right adjacent to ancient Mughal minarets.
It is a universally loved destination that is best explored from October to March. The days are pleasantly warm but nights can get quite chilly and foggy. It is also fairly easy to travel to Delhi with direct flights from most cities around the world.
Delhi Railway Station is well-connected to the Indian Rail Network and a good number of six-lane National Highways that lead to the epicenter of the city. Traveling within the city is seamless because of the well-spread-out Metro network and mobile app-based cabs available at your beck and call. For shorter distances, you always have e-rickshaws and auto-rickshaws to rely on.
So let’s lay out a guide using out countdown method – 5 things to do in Delhi, 4 things to eat and drink in Delhi, 3 places to stay in Delhi, 2 must-click Instagram spots and 1 insider Delhi travel tip.
Things to Do in Delhi
Planning out a Delhi sightseeing itinerary, you can expect to soak in all the aromatic spices, cultural diversity, Mughlai curries, old forts, crowded bars and delectable cuisines from around the country in one trip. Delhi is always bustling with social events, food festivals, concerts, musicals, theater shows and comedy shows that you will never be bored of, not even on a Monday night. The wide variety of entertainment options make it a good holiday destination for families and solo travelers and also couples looking to explore the nightlife. Nonetheless, here are the top 5 unmissable things to do in Delhi which you can weave into the perfect itinerary.
Gawking at Old monuments
History fan of not, Delhi has a plethora of monuments both ancient and modern that will call out to you the minute you set foot at the Delhi Airport. Take a walk around the world-famous monuments of Red Fort, Old Fort, Jantar Mantar, Humanyun’s Tomb, Qutub Minar and Jama Masjid to witness the historic brilliance that Delhi houses. You can also join the extremely popular weekend heritage walk organized by learned tour guides to explore the of-beat heritage sites that seldom make it to the main itinerary.
Bar Hopping at Night
Delhi’s magnetic nightlife is beyond excellent. Lush bars and expensive nightclubs are playing the most iconic and catchy Bollywood, Punjabi and pop dance numbers to keep you thumping all night. The Connaught Place is filled with upstate bars and pubs serving lip-smacking local and international cuisines along with fun cocktails.
Places like Dear Donna, My Bar, Diablo and Social CP are some of the most popular bars in Delhi with a variety of music genres playing in the background. For a supreme nightclub experience, walk into the nightclubs situated at 5-star hotels in Central CP or simply drive to Aerocity. Privee, Playboy, BW, Toy Room, Imperfecto Shor and Dragonfly Experience are some of the must-visit night clubs in Delhi.
Delhi Street Food Walks
Delhi is famous for its street food which can be experienced best in Old Delhi. You will feel like a kid in a candy store when you enter Chandni Chowk and Chawri Bazaar. For a quick meal in Old Delhi, you can choose between street food stalls serving mouth-watering local dishes like aloo chaat, chole bhature, matar kulcha, aloo tikki, cheela, bharwa gol gappe and dahi papdi. For the non-vegetarian lovers, Amar Colony in Lajpat Nagar, Bengali Market in CR Park and Jama Masjid in Old Delhi can be your pit stops for tantalizing street food delights. Delhi Street Food is a soul healer.
Go Budget Shopping In Local Bazaars
Delhi houses the top-most international designer brands from around the world. The plush malls of DLF Emporio and Promenade in South Delhi can excite you a little but nothing beats the remarkable experience of shopping at the local flea markets.
In South Delhi you will also find Dilli Haat. It’s an open-air food plaza and craft hall that’s operated by the Delhi Tourism and Transportation Development Corporation. Entering requires a paid entry fee of $100IRN, so many people prefer shopping where there is no entry.
Popular all across the world, Sarojini Nagar Market in Delhi will make you want to hoard up entire season’s clothing at unbelievable prices. Flea markets like GK M Block, Janpath and weekly local bazaars are a hit amongst shopping lovers. You can also shop for local artefacts and handicrafts at Dastkar Nature Bazaar in Chattarpur Delhi Haat in INA and PitamPura.
Religious Delhi City Tours
Delhi is also home to some of the world-famous temples like Gurudwara Bangla Sahib, Kalkaji Mandir, Hanuman Mandir, Akshardham, Lotus Temple and ISKCON Temple. Book private tours or go exploring on your own, these prayers of worship will impress you with their divinity, architecture and sheer faith that millions of people have in them.
Browse availability and rates of these great activities and others on GetYourGuide.
Instant ticketing confirmation, cancel up to 24 hours before your activity and get your tickets sent right to your mobile device!
The Best Things to Eat and Drink in Delhi
Food and drinking will never be a problem in Delhi even in the dead of the night. With food delivery apps and physical restaurants and dhabas open till late, you have one less thing to worry about when planning a holiday to the National Capital. Check out our top food recommendations in Delhi.
Alkauser’s Galouti Kebabs, Chanakyapuri
You don’t have to travel to Lucknow to taste the melt-in-your-mouth Galouti Kebabs. Nestled in the posh locality of Chanakyapuri, Alkauser’s Galouti Kebab Serves delectable Galouti kebabs with Varqi Paratha is a wholesome meal to enjoy by yourself.
ITC Bukhara, Pandara Road
For authentic North Indian food like Butter Chicken, Dal Makhni and Lachha Paratha you have to make a trip to the bustling Pandara Road. Luxury fine dining restaurant ITC Bukhara serves some delicious North Indian dishes that will blow you away. For a more budget-friendly dinner, you can step into Gulati Restaurant in CP and leave with a stomach full of desi ghee.
The oldest-known South Indian restaurant in Delhi called Saravan Bhavan still serves some of the most delicious South-Indian food like Dosa, Uttapam, Vada and Sambar. Busier on weekends and breakfast timings, this restaurant is best visited during lunchtime.
Roshan Di Kulfi, Karol Bagh
Lachha Tokri served at Roshan di Kulfi is a flavour fest in your mouth. A chatpata mix of all Indian flavours in one tokri makes it different from any other served in the city. Started as a Kulfi parlour, Roshan Di Kulfi has now expanded into a full-blown eatery in Karol Bagh.
Places to Stay in Delhi
You are only one search away from landing in the most-notorious neighbourhoods of Delhi. Do not go by the popularity of ‘Paharganj’ while booking your stay in Delhi. Instead keep in mind your budget, itinerary and comfort while scrolling through Booking.com or Airbnb. Surprisingly Delhi is best explored when you’re living at homestays with local families. Most AirBnbs in Delhi are part-hotels and part-family homes that welcome foreign tourists with an open heart. Depending on your budget, our top 3 choices would be:
The Roseate, Gurgaon
Madpackers Hostel, Hauz Khas
Located in the natural suburbs of Hauz Khas forest, Madpackers Hostel boasts an ultra-cool rooftop garden and lounge for you to chill and sway under the starry night sky. It is one of the best backpackers hostels in India. The cosy common room is a great place for you to meet up with fellow budget travellers and explore Delhi together.
Must-Capture Instagram Spots and One to Be Wary of
Undeniably, Delhi is one of the most-Instagrammable cities in the world. Delhi is a photographer’s delight during the dead of the night and calm before the sunrise. Your Delhi trip is incomplete without at least 10 Instagram-worthy shots on your camera. Tough to choose amongst so many but here are our favorite picks.
Lodhi Art District
Some 20 meters away from the refreshing Lodhi gardens, Lodhi Art District is India’s first open-air art district. Spend an hour or two walking around beautifully painted stretches of walls of the Government houses as you click some Instagrammable shots. The best way to explore this area is by walking or on a cycle in the early morning when it’s not as crowded. Lodhi Art District is one of the best places to visit in Delhi to fill your social media feed!
Agrasen Ki Baoli
Situated in Connaught Place, Delhi most-remarkable subterranean marvel, Agrasen Ki Baoli is an Instagrammer’s living dream. Originally built as a stepwell for washing clothes and shower, the tiny monument has become a cool hang out spot for the young generation that take some mind-boggling Instagrammable shots. You can avoid a huge crowd at the spot by walking in early in the day or leaving late in the evening.
Be Respectful When Visiting India Gate
One place you may want to visit, but isn’t ideal for your instagram feed is India Gate. It’s a stunning war memorial that was erected after World War I to commemorate the 80,000 Indian soldiers who perished in the war. While it’s in a lovely location, just along the eastern edge of the Rajpath located in New Delhi, it’s a somber monument. If you’re acting in a manner that doesn’t reflect the solemnity of a war memorial, it’s an instagram fail.
Insider Delhi Travel Tip
Delhi is chaotic, busy, and much polluted but this has nothing on its charm as a heritage city. While traveling in Delhi, you have to be utterly careful of your bags, mobile phones, and wallets because the busier areas of Old Delhi are also homes to notorious pick-picketers. Prevent any losses by carrying little cash in your wallet and a cashless pay system like Google Pay or PayTM in your mobile phone.
Delhi tourist places are crowded on all days at all times. However, if you start early in the day for your day tours and Old Delhi walks you can catch some lesser-known sides of the city to boats to your friends. Delhi also has some amazing getaways nearby. You’ll want to consider planning your time to include day trips. At the very minimum, save time for the Taj Mahal, which you surely want to explore when you visit this beautiful city. It can even be planned as one of many fantastic weekend getaways from this city – there’s no shortage of places to visit from this extraordinary region of India.
Search availability and rates for a day trip to the Taj Mahal from Delhi. Book online to guarantee a spot with instant confirmation, and free cancellation up to 24 hours in advance.
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This post was written by Sydney of Routeprints
I love dancing, history, beer and exploring the hidden places. Travelling is my life as it always gives me a new experience and makes me stronger. To date, I have traveled to more than 25 countries and my favorite one is India.
This Post Has 13 Comments
I was supposed to be in India this month, so this post got me feeling nostaglic for a place I haven’t been. Saving this since I’ll be there definitely next year! I love the street art!
Oh no 🙁 I’m so sorry to hear that Pam, I hope you make it back sometime soon. India is just a magical place to visit, there’s nowhere like it on Earth.
I visited Delhi years ago. (More than 10 ) but sadly my visit was concentrated on Agra, mainly Taj Mahal. Would love to come and stay longer in Delhi.
Oh, that’s still a great trip – I loved visiting Agra and seeing the Taj Mahal. I think it can be done in 1-2 days though, simply because there’s so much more to do and see in the area 🙂
I’ve never been to India, so read your post with great interest. There are so many places I’d like to see in New Delhi, visiting the local bazaars being one of them. A great itinerary packed full of detail.
Thanks Lisa! You’ll love India, I hope you get to experience it some day. It definitely takes a little getting used to – but you’ll fall in love.
I’ve been dying to go to India and Delhi has always been on the list. These tips are so helpful especially the one about getting around and being careful with your things. The food looks so good! I can’t wait to try out some day.
I’ve only been to Bangalore, India which is in the south. Would love to visit Dehli in the future. I’m intrigued to try the street food, see street art (I never knew how colorful Lodhi Art district is), and wander around to soak in everything.
An informative and detail guide to Delhi. A perfect guide for total beginners especially the need to be respectful at India Gate. Your picture of the food is mouth-wateringly delish!
It is an excellent guide to Delhi, very detailed and helpful in trip planning. I have been to this city twice so far. I spent more than a week there and would love to come back again someday. Delhi is the city of contrasts, with unique culture and architecture. I love walking the streets of Old Delhi and eating street food. I love the colors of bazaars. My favorite places are the Lotus Temple and Lal Qil’ah.
This is the perfect guide to Delhi. I’ve never been to India, but I felt as though I was traveling there through your post. The murals and artwork work are amazing. Thank you for your post!
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