Delhi City Tours are essential for the green traveller who wants to explore the historic capital of India and to witness first hand its rich and diverse culture. The National Capital Territory of Delhi is the eighth largest metropolis in the world and is the political hub of India.
Delhi has a vast amount to offer so it's important to plan your trip carefully before you arrive. One question you may want to ask yourself is do you want to go off and do your own thing or will you be looking to take one of the many tours on offer.
Delhi city tours on offer
One such tour is the Home Cooked Delhi, which will give you an opportunity to try real Indian cooking, learn about the ingredients and techniques and to understand the cultural importance of the local cuisine. This unique experience culminates with an evening meal with an Indian family. The tour itself will be with an English speaking guide, lasts around 5-6 hours and will also take in the local markets.
Ghandi's Delhi No Trip to Delhi would be complete without a tour which teaches the life and philosophies of India's most famous son. Despite being assassinated in 1948, Mahatma Ghandi's philosophy of peaceful demonstration is still valued today and his legacy will last forever. This tour explores his life, teachings and tells stories of this courageous man's life. Including a trip to the Ghandi museum, this tour is a must for anyone serious about learning about Indian heritage and culture.
Getting around on your Delhi city tour
For travel, the Delhi Metro comes highly recommended and is a testament to eco-friendly transport. Having won awards from international organisations, including the United Nations, for its environmentally friendly construction, its regenerative braking system is just one of a host of different methods employed by Delhi Metro to ensure that it is one of the most eco-friendly in the world. The metro trains are regular, as often as every 3 minutes during busy periods, and run from 6am to 11pm.
While taking a trip on the Delhi Metro, don't forget to admire the surroundings. With the wide variety of stunning murals designed by art students and school children portraying Indian life, there is much to more to the Metro than just a form of transport.
Architecture and markets on your Delhi city tour
Dating back to the time of the Mughal Empire, the Red Fort is an important part of Indian history as well as a stunning piece of architecture. Over the years, the building has deteriorated somewhat and much of the interior has been stripped; however, the red sandstone and green lawns still combine to make this an attractive site. If you can time your visit to the Fort in the evening you may catch the light and sound performance which lasts for around 90 minutes. If you are planning on holidaying in Delhi in August be sure to make a trip to the Fort on the 15th, as this is when the Prime Minister gives his Independence Day speech.
Some people prefer to do as much as possible on foot and the Bazaar Walk in Old Delhi will give a perfect opportunity to visit some of the busiest and best markets in Delhi as well as Hindu Temples and Churches. The markets include the Kinari Bazaar, which specialises in weddings, and Dariba Kalan, a market known for its silver. The tours run twice a day at 9am and 3pm.
Alternatively, there is the Dilli Haat market. Located in the centre of Delhi the Dilli Market is a work of art in itself. This beautiful market offers a wide variety of stalls with various demonstrations on a daily basis.
If you like designer clothing, but don't want to pay inflated UK prices, then take a stroll to the Khan Market. This marketplace specialises in fashion, so why not take the time to have yourself a designer suit or dress made at a fraction of the cost in the UK, while at the same time contributing to the local economy. Located near the India Gate, this is one of the more upmarket bazaars, so you're not so likely to find a bargain here as you might in the other markets, but it's still definitely worth the trip.
A good base for your Delhi city tour
For the green traveller looking for accommodation in Delhi why not try out the Mantra Amaltas in South Delhi. The hotel itself is close to many of the commercial and shopping areas and is a part of the Green Initiative. With everything from rain water harvesting to a range of energy conservation solutions in place, it's an ideal place for the eco-tourist to lodge.
If you are looking for something a little more affordable in Delhi then perhaps you may want to consider the Kuldeep Friends Hostel. Don't let the name of the place fool you either; despite being called a hostel, it's more along the lines of a basic hotel room, with internet access and a reasonable standard of cleanliness and is located only 5 minutes from the train station.
Delhi is a city with a rich and colourful history which can be witnessed through many of its tours, markets and architecture. With the improvements made for the 2010 Commonwealth games, the transport system has been vastly improved so it's much easier to get around. The green traveller will find many walking tours and ways to contribute to the nations emerging economy, which will leave you wanting to go back for more.
Photo credit: By abdphoto flickr