New Delhi

Location

The capital of India lies in the latitude 28.38 N and longitude 77.12 E. It is placed on the western end of the Gangetic plain.

History

Delhi has always been a melting-pot of cultures. Evolving from eight successive cities, starting from 1060 AD to 1911, Delhi encompasses the spirit of many civilizations. Known as Indraprastha in the Mahabharata, the city served as the historic capital of the Indian subcontinent. It later came under the control of the Mughals who made India their home and added their indigenous influences to the already rich Indian canvas. Their impact is vividly seen in the architecture, cuisine, art, jewelry, literature and more. Grand monuments created by the Mughal dynasty can be discovered across Delhi. The most prominent amongst them are the Red Fort, Qutub Minar and Humayun Tomb. The dawn of the British Raj brought with it many new developments of the imperial power. The wide streets of New Delhi offset the narrow alleys of Old Delhi. Connaught Place became the shopping hub for international expats. Today, Delhi's ancient monuments co-exist with splendid shopping malls, packed with the Louis Vuittons' of the world. The Hauz Khas village is perhaps a perfect example of this great Indian paradox as many designer brands and posh cafes sit comfortably next to the Hauz Khas monument. THE

Cuisine

Delhi is a foodie's paradise. It is not only rich in Mughlai cuisine, arguably the capital's favourite, but also in many international gastronomical delights. Italian and Thai restaurants have mushroomed across the city, and the latest entrants to join the dining experience are Japanese, Vietnamese and Lebanese varieties of restaurants. Fast food made inroads into India's daily life long ago and the world's renowned outlets are merely a phone call away. Restaurants dedicated to the Satvik way of life are also found in South Delhi. You can find many shops with a lavish vegetarian menu however there is no compromise on taste. Chandni Chowk is famous for its street food and stalls, which serve many types of paranthas, rich local delicacies. For a taste of India head to Dilli Haat in South Delhi. At the far end of the complex, one can find stalls dedicated to the cuisine of each Indian state.

Language

The language barrier in Delhi is minimal as it is one of India's most progressive metros. Most people are bilingual and speak Hindi and English with ease. Even if someone cannot speak English fluently, he or she will most likely understand it well enough. Even people with little or no formal education like taxi drivers, auto rickshaw drivers, shopkeepers etc. are used to visitors from all over.

Attractions

Delhi has more monuments and palaces than one can count easily. Every few kilometers one comes across a grand Tomb or testament the country's great history. According to a recent survey, “amongst all the monuments in Delhi the Qutub Minar is the most visited”. It left behind The Red Fort, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Another crowd pleaser is Humayun's Tomb another UNESCO World Heritage Site. Built in 1570 it has many tombs where the Mughal royals are buried. Read more
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Delhi is always buzzing with activity however a trip can be easily organized personalized to your interest. Festivals like Diwali and Dusshera fall in October or November while Holi falls in March. People interested in Global or Asian film festivals, food festivals, major sporting events and such can check schedules online to plan their visit. Since summer in Delhi is hot, the period of May to July is considered 'low season'. The ideal time to visit is between August to March as the weather is pleasant enough for people to take long walks, and spend time visiting monuments and markets. Spring is in full bloom during late February and March and this a perfect time to enjoy this historic city at its vibrant best. THE FESTIVALS Delhi attracts people from all over India due to its employment opportunities. As a result, religious festivals and unique events from across the country are celebrated here with great gusto. Eid is celebrated three times a year, and the Eid celebrations at Jama Masjid are rare sights to behold. Holi, Diwali,Christmas and Dussehra are celebrated by virtually every home and are important occasions to form new bonds within the community. Big and small Diwali melas (fetes) are organized in many areas where the local park turns into a makeshift amusement park. The biggest and most fascinating spectacle is the Ram Leela. A parade depicting the victory of Rama over Ravana goes through a section of Old Delhi around the time of Dusshera. A huge fete is organized in the area where food, rides and games are available for everyone to enjoy. An annual affair which binds the country together is the Republic Day parade. Held on the 26th of January every year, this parade is a matter of great pride for the nation and visitors can easily buy tickets to see the parade up close. Music and film festivals have gathered immense popularity in the city of late. Such festivals are frequently held across South Delhi and their details can be found in popular newspapers. (Is it possible to give an approximate date when the key festivals are held during the year?)