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Best things to do in New Delhi

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Where in the world: Asia  /  India  /  National Capital Territory of Delhi  /  New Delhi

Top 15 things to do in New Delhi

1. Humayun's Tomb

Marvel at one of the nation's most renowned mausoleums at Humayun's Tomb, a World Heritage Site displaying a fusion of both Mughal and Persian architectural features. Built in 1565 on orders from Akbar, the son of the Emperor Humayun, the mausoleum represents the first in a long line of "garden-tombs" that defined Mughal architecture over the following centuries. You can admire the intricate red sandstone and white marble construction, topped with an impressive dome, as you wander the extensive grounds dotted with shrines and monuments. Enter the memorial to get a glimpse of Humayun's final resting place. Many of the architectural designs used on the tomb and its surrounding buildings helped to inspire the Taj Mahal.
Suggested duration: 1h 30 min
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2. Qutub Minar

Surrounded by historic ruins, Qutub Minar represents the tallest brick minaret in the world, recognized as a World Heritage Site. Begun in 1200 and completed over the following two centuries, the tower stands at a height of 73 m (240 ft). Explore the surrounding archeological sites to discover many traditional funerary buildings, gates, mosques, and other temples. Wander the complex and admire the minaret from multiple angles, and you'll immediately notice its intricate, multi-hued sandstone brickwork and carvings arranged in semi-cylindrical patterns.
Suggested duration: 2h 30 min
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3. Akshardham

One of the largest Hindu temples in the world, Akshardham boasts a blend of different architectural styles and features. You'll find the temple decorated with nine separate domes of varying sizes, the tallest of which reaches a height of 43 m (141 ft). Enter through the main gate and admire the intricate carvings and reliefs on the exterior of the building, made with distinctive pink and white marble. Within, explore numerous exhibits dedicated to Hinduism.
Suggested duration: 4 hours
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4. India Gate

Standing astride the capital's grandest ceremonial road, India Gate pays tribute to the soldiers of the colonial Indian Army who lost their lives fighting for Britain in World War I. In the heart of the capital's main governmental district, the triumphal arch-style gate rises to a height of 42 m (138 ft) over the road below. Wander around the base of the gate to see the imposing stone structure up close, and be sure to look up at the cornices to see the inscriptions dedicated to more than 82,000 Indian soldiers who died fighting in Europe, Africa, the Middle East, and elsewhere between 1914 and 1919. Don't miss seeing the small memorial beneath the gate's archway, a flame dedicated to the unknown soldier.
Suggested duration: 1h 30 min
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5. Food Tours

Explore the exquisite Indian cuisine on a guided food tour in New Delhi. Discovering the architectural treasures of India's capital on foot, with an expert guide by your side, you'll visit a range of alley vendors and 100-year-old restaurants. If you wish to take a break from the busy city and visit its surrounding villages and farmhouses, a specialized tour will let you spend time dining with locals and sampling their traditional meals. These tours last from 3 to 12 hours, with some not available for children under the age of six.
Suggested duration: 4 hours
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6. Red Fort

With massive sandstone walls, Red Fort represents a major Mughal-era structure with a place on the World Heritage List. Built by Shah Jahan of Taj Mahal fame in 1648, the fort long served as an imposing center of Mughal power. Though you cannot explore much of the fort due to its importance as a military base, you can still marvel at the host of colonnades and pavilions that survived the colonial-era gutting by the British. You'll also get an up-close look at some of the watchtowers and defensive positions that punctuate the wall. Keep in mind that your entry ticket includes admission to the fort's internal museums.
Suggested duration: 2h 30 min
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7. Nature & Wildlife Tours

Suggested duration: 8 hours
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8. Gurudwara Bangla Sahib

Golden domes and ornate carvings accentuate the profile of Gurudwara Bangla Sahib, the site of some of the final acts of Harkrishan Dev, a Sikh guru. Originally constructed in the 17th century and largely rebuilt after World War II, the building lies on one edge of an extensive reflective pool. Explore the compound, wandering under arcade walkways on your way to the temple itself. Be sure to follow posted procedures before entering, which include washing your feet.
Suggested duration: 2 hours
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9. Rail Tours

Suggested duration: 8 hours
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10. Lotus Temple

Built to resemble a flower, Lotus Temple serves as a place of worship offering freedom of expression to all faiths. Marvel at the architecture used in the temple's construction, from the 27 petal-like marble structures that make up the exterior, to the soaring central hall within. Afterwards, you can explore the extensive temple grounds to get a good look at the "blossom" from multiple angles. Be sure to check the onsite information center for details regarding events and services at the temple, as well as the Baha'i faith itself.
Suggested duration: 2 hours
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11. Photography Tours

Suggested duration: 8 hours
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12. Gandhi Smriti

Pay a visit to Gandhi Smriti, the house where Mahatma Gandhi spent the last months of his life, before being assassinated here in 1948. Built in 1928 by a member of the esteemed Birla family, who often welcomed Gandhi into his home, the building was sold to the Indian government in 1971. Today it stands as a memorial and museum dedicated to the life of Gandhi and his last moments on Earth. Take a tour of the house and grounds to admire numerous items from his life, or view the "Martyr's Column," a monument marking the exact spot in the garden where he was standing when he was shot.
Suggested duration: 2h 30 min
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13. Jama Masjid

One of the largest mosques in India, Jama Masjid can accommodate up to 25,000 people at any given time. Built in the 17th century by Shah Jahan, the same Mughal emperor responsible for the Taj Mahal, the ornate mosque boasts three majestic gates, four towers, and two 40 m (131.2 ft) red sandstone and white marble minarets. While the entrance into the mosque is free, visitors must pay a camera fee and remove their shoes at the gate. Women are also required to wear a shawl, regardless of the rest of their attire.
Suggested duration: 2h 30 min
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14. Lodhi Garden

Have a picnic in Lodhi Garden among lush green trees and historic mausoleums. A popular yoga, meditation, and exercise spot, the gardens are sprinkled with 15th and 16th-century tombs of Mughal rulers and majestic domed monuments. Take a relaxing stroll or go for a jog, admiring the well maintained greenery and historic ruins along the way. Enjoy the tranquil atmosphere of the park, admire the lake and its eight-tiered bridge, and spot numerous birds and small animals.
Suggested duration: 1h 30 min
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15. Chandni Chowk

Experience the smells, sights, and sounds of Chandni Chowk, a lively and chaotic market in the heart of Delhi. Surrounded by historic buildings and monuments, the busy market stands out as one of the oldest in the area, dating back to the 17th century. Take in the dynamic atmosphere as you pass through the crowds, hunt for bargains, or just browse the array of shops, selling everything from traditional saris to spices and electronic goods. Besides shopping, a variety of street vendors and eateries offer popular local snacks and desserts for you to sample.
Suggested duration: 3 hours
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