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Delhi in One Day (Custom Tour)

 

It's definitely going to be whirlwind tour. The best option is to hire a car for full day with driver. Most monuments open at sun rise. So, if you start early, you can cover more ground. This itinerary can be started at any point for the round trip based on the location of your hotel.

 

Don't try to cover everything, you just can't do it, Delhi is a big and widely spread city. Start you day with Jama Masjid if possible at sun rise.

 

Ask your driver to drop you there and pick you up from the Red Fort entrance. Make sure you have the driver's mobile number handy, in case you lose track of each other. This is the largest mosque in India and the southern minaret of the masjid offers a splendid view of the Meena bazaar, Red Fort, Chandni Chowk even as far as the Rashtrapati Bhawan in Central Delhi.

 

After Jama Masjid, take a man-ridden cycle rickshaw to Red Fort. Right opposite the fort entrance, you'll find a brick red color temple i.e. Jain Temple, if you wish to visit it, try after Red Fort. Red Fort is going to take a good 1.5 to 2 hours.

 

Hopefully by now it would be 11 am. So ask your driver to take you to Haldiram's Connaught Place (opp. Shankar Market) if you want to try Indian Brunch. If you're scared of Delhi Belly, visit nearby Pizza Hut for a slice or two.

 

Now ask your driver to take you to India Gate through Parliament House and Rashtrapati Bhawan (President House). Stop over at India Gate for a photo shoot and a small stroll. Try some ice-cream at one of the mobile kiosks.

 

Hop into the car and head straight to Humayun Tomb. It's one of the three UN Heritage Sites and presumed to be the first blueprint of the Taj Mahal.

 

The complex encompasses the main tomb of the Emperor Humayun, which houses the graves of his wife, Hamida Begum, and also Dara Shikoh, son of the later Emperor Shah Jahan. It represented a leap in Mughal architecture, and together with its accomplished Char Bagh garden, typical of Persian gardens, but never seen before in India, it set a precedent for subsequent Mughal architecture.

 

Enough of history. Time to head for divinity. A 30 minute drive will take you to Swami Narayan Akshardham Temple. More than a religious spot, it's an architectural masterpiece. The temple, which attracts approximately 70 percent of all tourists who visit Delhi. The complex features a large central monument crafted entirely of stone, exhibitions on incidents from the life of Swaminarayan and the history of India, an IMAX feature, a musical fountain, and large landscaped gardens.

 

Will easily absorb 1.5 to 2 hours. The food court is a good place to refuel with vegetarian snacks and drinks.

 

After Akshardham head to the breadthtaking lotus shaped Bahai Temple, which has won numerous architectural awards and been featured in hundreds of newspaper and magazine articles. Be ready for a piece of solitude, since you'll be asked to silently remember your God in the Inner chamber. (If the sun has already set, straightaway go to Dilli Haat skipping Qutab Minar).

 

It's finally time to visit Qutub Minar, the world's tallest brick minaret with a height of 72.5 meters (237.8 ft). The Qutub Minar comprises several superposed flanged and cylindrical shafts, separated by balconies carried on Mugarnas corbels. The minaret is made of fluted red sandstone covered with intricate carvings and verses from the Qur'an.

 

You must visit, the nearby Iron Pillar is one of the world's foremost metallurgical curiosities, standing in the famous Qutub complex. According to the traditional belief, anyone who can encircle the entire column with their arms, with their back towards the pillar, can have their wish granted. Because of the corrosive qualities of sweat the government has built a fence around it for safety.

 

If you still have some energy left, head to Dilli Haat. It's open till 10 pm and gives you great opportunity to taste some Indian fares and buy authentic handicrafts. There are as many as 62 stalls located within the complex. Craftsmen from different corners of India come over here to showcase their products. The products are reasonably priced, though you can still bargain. The shops and stalls are allotted to the sellers for 15 days and is then rotated so that other sellers get an opportunity to exhibit and sell their products.

 

Enough! This hectic day will definitely guarantee a sound sleep. Time to rush to your hotel.