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9 Best Things To Do In Delhi

A large red tomb from the Mughal empire

9 Best Things To Do In Delhi

Here is our list of the best things to do in Delhi, we hope you agree! Delhi is India’s capital city and part of India’s Golden Triangle along with Agra and Jaipur. Delhi’s an exciting but sometimes daunting place to visit. One thing’s for sure… Delhi is not for the faint-hearted!

Humayun's Tomb in Delhi

Things To Do In Delhi

There’s a lot to see and do here including some incredible religious sites and forts. It’s also home to the country’s parliament and official residence of the president of India.

A Word of Warning

Before we get started, we thought it was important to warn first-timers here about the unglamorous side to Delhi. This isn’t designed to put anyone off visiting, it’s an amazing place. But we do think it’s good for first-time visitors to be prepared for the crazy side.

There are a lot of scams and cons designed to target tourists, so you need to be careful. A lot of people will approach you and ask a lot of questions.

They usually try to get you to visit a “Tourist Office”, which you want to avoid. We never listened to their advice as we had already been made aware of these scams. But these places are not tourist offices as you could probably guess.

Anyway, on with our list of the very best things to do in Delhi.

A girl sitting in the doorway of a sandstone tomb in Delhi

9 Best Things To Do In Delhi

1. Red Fort

A couple sat on a wall by a red sandstone building

The Red Fort in Delhi is an absolute must visit site. It was built by the great Mughal Emperor Shah Jahan, who was also responsible for the Taj Mahal. It’s one of the many UNESCO World Heritage Sites you can visit in this ancient city. The Fort is located in the area now known as Old Delhi.

The Fort has a huge surrounding wall made of red sandstone which gives it its distinct colour and name. Inside the walls, there is a beautiful blend of both Mughal and Persian architecture. There is a lot to see inside including a beautiful garden, grand gates, pavilions, courtyards, museums and a bazaar style market.

The entrance fee for foreign visitors is 550 Rupees, or 500 if you pay by card. We’d suggest allowing at least 2 hours to explore the whole fort.

2. Humayun’s Tomb

Red Mughal tomb with a large water feature

Humayun’s Tomb is an incredible mausoleum for the Mughal Emperor Humayun. The Tomb is the first of its kind in many ways. The tomb was the first building to use a vast amount of red sandstone and the first extravagant burial site for a Mughal Emperor.

This grand tomb inspired the tradition that reached its peak with the mighty Taj Mahal. The entrance fee for Humayun’s Tomb is 500 Rupees for foreign tourists.

Tip: The tomb is incredibly photogenic from most angles. But it looks truly unique when shooting directly at the corners.

3. Lodhi Gardens – Most Peaceful Spot in Delhi

If you’re looking for a slice of tranquillity amongst the craziness of Delhi, then Lodhi Gardens are perfect! It was hard to believe we were still in one of the busiest places in the world as we walked around the peaceful park.

The Gardens hold plenty of wildlife to see and photograph including birds, butterflies, and squirrels. There are also a load of ancient buildings, tombs and a mosque to explore. The other great thing is it’s totally free for anyone to enjoy.

Tip: Go here in the middle of the day when most things to do in Delhi are super busy. Also, it’s a nice place to break the day up, and it’s up to you how long you spend here.

4. Explore Old Dehli – Guided or Self-Guided Walking Tour

Two men walking down a busy Delhi street

Walking around the crowded streets of Old Delhi is one of the best things to do in Delhi. We opted for a guided walking tour. There are a lot of options for guided tours some free and some paid. Of course, the ‘free’ tours aren’t really free, it’s customary to tip at the end based on your satisfaction.

We booked an Old Delhi free walking tour. It’s nice to get some background and history on the area from a local. However, if you’d prefer to go self-guided then it would be easy to navigate your way around. We were shown temples, markets and good places to get street food.

5. Grab Some Street Food in Old Delhi

A busy Indian street

While exploring Old Delhi you should definitely try some of the delicious street food! We’d definitely recommend trying some vegetable samosas and some jalebi for dessert. Indians don’t do flavour by halves and jalebi is no exception. It’s a kind of deep fried batter/syrup and it’s insanely sweet!

6. India Gate

India Gate is a triumphal arch, similar to the ‘Arc-de-Triomphe’ in Paris. It commemorates the Indian soldiers that lost their lives in the First World War. In the surrounding park there are also some paddle boats to rent on a small lake.

Tip: It’s good to come here as the sun is going down when they light the monument up. We saw it lit with the colours of the Indian flag, although some days it’s just white.

7. Rashtrapati Bhavan

The president of India's official residence at sunset

The Rashtrapati Bhavan is the official residence of the President of India. It’s an impressive colonial era building which has elements of both British and Indian architecture. It’s not possible to go into the palace but it’s impressive from the outside.

This is a good place to visit just before India Gate as it’s not far. You can actually see the gate from outside the palace. It was around a 25-minute walk through the parks. If you’re feeling tired or it’s hot you can always get a tuk tuk, make sure you haggle on the price!

8. Jama Masjid

A three domed red mosque in Delhi

Okay we’ll admit there’s a lot of red sandstone, Mughal buildings on this list. But if it’s not your kind of thing, we’re guessing you wouldn’t be reading a guide on things to do in Delhi!

The entrance fee is a bit expensive for this one at 500 Rupees per person. This puts it on par with the Red Fort and Humayun’s Tomb which are much better value for money. If you’re going to skip one thing, we’d probably suggest this. However, we really enjoyed our visit here and for an extra 100 Rupees you can also climb the minaret. It boasts incredible views over the mosque itself and the rest of Delhi.

9. Lotus Temple

An impressive white lotus shaped temple

Lotus Temple is definitely worth seeing if you can fit it in to your Delhi itinerary. It once held the Guinness World Record for being the most visited religious building in the world. It’s by far the most recent attraction on our list as it was only built in 1986.

The temple is a place of worship for the Baha’i faith, which teaches the values of all religions. This means the temple is open to people of all faiths, creeds and beliefs. The added bonus is it’s completely free to visit!

9 Best Things To Do In Delhi

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