Known as one of the oldest existing cities in the world the capital of India is truly seeped in history. Indeed it is the eclectic mix of history that makes Delhi stand out as a must see travel destination.
The vibrancy of the city shines through with cosmopolitan New Delhi offering the perfect companion to the exotic history of Old Delhi; cultures collide and create something perfect – a melting pot of ancient history, monuments and museums alongside a a modern city that embraces technology, luxury and change.
The rise in luxury accommodation throughout the city has been staggering, Delhi is fast becoming the destination of choice for the worlds seasoned travellers as well as India’s privileged; the Oberai is amongst the earliest of this new breed of hotel established back in 1965, opulent and yet calm the this hotel is an oasis of black marble, fountains and deep blue pools. The jewel in the hotels crown is the selection of first rate restaurants, most notably the rooftop oriental restaurant which is recognised as being one of the best in the city.
If it is quiet intimacy that you require then the Ahuja Residency offers understated elegance in what feels almost like a family home in a residential neighbourhood, the twelve rooms are all tastefully decorated with clever splashes of colour brightening the cool pale woods; the bright and airy feel continues up onto the roof terrace which is the perfect place to enjoy the freshly squeezed orange juice that is provided for all of the guests.
Delhi is the place to visit for the most varied selection of regional Indian foods, there is also a thriving culture of global dining but with such a huge choice of great Indian dishes to choose from there is no danger of ever becoming bored with the local cuisine.
Kainoosh is a modern interpretation of food from all around India and although the menu is themed as India through the ages each dish is given a makeover to give it a unique edge, there are plenty of recognisable ingredients with a few surprises added for good measure – this is a must visit restaurant that stands out amongst tough competition.
Swagath specialises in the cuisine of southern India, and its coastal influences are easily seen, seafood from the west coast dominates the menu; the premise is simple, you pick your sauce (from a huge mouthwatering selection) and then you choose from the fish, prawns or crab to create your perfect dish; always fresh and flavoursome it is a rare thing to find a disappointed diner.
Take a walking tour around Old Delhi, see the historic parts of the city in the capable hands of an experienced tour guide, these tours usually take no more than half a day and are quite gentle in nature; be sure to ask you guide to show you the spice market along with the ancient monuments and buildings – the colours and aromas are beyond compare.
Of all the ancient sights Humayun’s Tomb is amongst the most iconic and should not be missed, built in the 1500’s it is recognised as the first piece of Mughal architecture in the city and is seen as the building on which the Taj Mahal was modelled, although the Tomb is a warm red sandstone rather than the marble of its younger and grander relation.
Delhi has three distinct seasons and although the climate is usually described as humid and subtropical the winters can be quite cool, May and June see highs of over 40F and can be unbelievably hot, the rainy season then settles in until October and is best avoided.
The months of October to March are often seen as the best time to visit with cooler temperatures and plenty of festivals throughout the season – if you can arrange to be in the city during the festival of Diwali (usually early November) then the festivities are quite a sight to behold.