The hotels in delhi can be broadly divided into 3 major cateogaries,
Budget Hotels or B&B lodging – The cheapest options are hotels in Paharganj - close to the central business district of Delhi (Connaught Place) and the New Delhi Railway Station. The second option for budget accommodation is Karol Bagh with similar hotels as Paharganj. These hotels are mostly used by backpackers and the budget traveler and don’t always give you what they promise. They are not very highly rated in the city and so a review about these hotels is not possible.
3 star/ 4 star hotels – This kind of lodging is the most popular among the traveler since it provides a nice clean and decent accommodation in safe neighborhoods. Connaught Place has a no. of 3 star hotels with prices ranging from Rs. 3000/ night to Rs. 10000/ night. Its advisable to read traveler reviews before booking a hotel though.
5 star/ Luxury hotels – These is the most expensive and sought after hotels by the luxury traveler and each hotel has its own distinct characteristic and hospitality. Most of the 5 star hotels and resorts have their own websites for bookings and you can contact them through your travel agents for good deals too. But, do always check the websites mentioned below for good deals on hotels and travel.
Websites for hotel bookings:
There’s an old saying the whoever establishes a new city at Delhi will lose it, and this has come true every time, i.e. 8 times already
1st Delhi - the Hindu kingdom of Delhi, near Qutb Minar (12th century)
2nd Delhi -Ala-ud-din founded “Siri”, built near present day Hauz-Khas (late 12th century)
3rd Delhi – Tughlaqabad, entirely ruins
4th Delhi – Jahanpanah, near Qutb Minar (14th century)
5th Delhi – Firozabad (today remains an Ashoka Pillar and the traces of a mosque where Tamerlane prayed during his attack of India)
6th Delhi – Purana Qila, near present day India Gate, created by Sher Shah
7th Delhi – shifting the mughal capital from Agra by Shah Jahan (17th century), mughal heritage largely preserved
8th Delhi – British India (in the context of Bengal championing Indian independence, moving the capital of the British India from Calcutta was announced in 1911 but construction was not completed until 1931, when the “New Delhi” was officially inaugurated, just to be “lost” 16 years later, together with the independence in 1947).
If you want to dedicate a bit of time (a day, week or month) there are lots of organisations that need volunteers for their educational programmes.
For INDIAN projects > GAPGURU IS A GOOD SOURCE >
the "Gapyear" directory has lots of interesting info >> http://www.embassyworld.com/embassy/India/India2.html
but also contact the indian embassy or consulat in your homecountry they will point you in the right direction.
If you are in a guest-house, hotel, also look at their noticeboards, as there are generally lots of ads on there requesting help.
Fondest memory: ... sitting down in a square with my painting pad and some colouring pencils and drawing cartoon animals for the children which flocked by and all got one paper.
I then tried to teach them right there and then the A B C drawing things that were word associations... that's the "rough guide to education" I guess... but it was fun and I did that throughout my journey and had some incredible encounters with kids who.... even though they never set foot in a school had a natural wisdom and were hungry for knowledge...
MY TIP: When you travel, go to the next shop and stock up on painting materials and hand them out to the kids ... I never give money but try to do something more positive. And also show the children how to draw or write.... it's great fun for them and you get to know a culture much better than from your hotel room and tour bus :)
Everyone can help like this, it just takes a bit of courage and creativity :)
Well... not really the favorite thing..... but a necessary one nevertheless.
One thing I did before leaving the UK, I noted down all the emergency numbers of the places I went to, including embassy or consular offices... and boy... did THEY come in handy, so here's the delhi list...
EMERGENCY TELEPHONE NUMBERS (DELHI)
Commissioner of Police
Police Headquarters 3352678
DCP Security 6885001(O) 4603727(R)
DCP Traffic 6198928(O)
Chanakyapuri Police Station 3011100, 3012003
Parliament Street Police Station 3361100, 3542700
Tughlak Road Police Station 3014878, 3012100
Tilak Marg Police Station 3382100
Fire Service 101
Accident & Trauma 10999
(Be warned, some of those lines are going to private house-holds, and you might have to wait a long time to actually have someone pick up)
The best way in case of emergency is, contact your embassy...
India Embassy directory
Fondest memory: Leaving the 48 degree dusty city for the monsoon ridden Nepal...
This is THE tourist information office in Delhi despite what people might say to you. I got caught up in a scam when I first arrived and was taken to one of many so called tourist offices but this is the real one. Inside, its all air conditioned with a large area with nice seats. I went in to enquire about how to get to the Qutb Minar and how much it would cost if I took an auto rickshaw. They said that I could take one from the pre-paid stand right outside and that it should cost Rs70 (which it did).
88 Janpath. Open Mon-Fri 9am-6pm & Sat 9am-2pm.
the one funny thing about delhi i found was the funny road signs, which are all around delhi.
for instance in this photo you will find a tree in the middle of the road, well we all know its a tree from a distance. who are the fools who need to come close to the tree to read the sign stating that it is indeed a tree and not a building.
Favorite thing: Deewali or Diwali or Deepawali, the festival of lights, symbolizes the victory of light over darkness. Deewali is a festival of joy, splendor, brightness and happiness. It is celebrated with great enthusiasm by all Indians all over the world. The uniqueness of this festival is its harmony of five varied philosophies, with each day to a special thought or ideal. People celebrate each of its five days of festivities with true understanding, it will uplift and enrich the lives.
my hotel arranged for sightseeing around the city one of the best places i would say is the red fort in old delhi
Fondest memory: evenings at hotel ajanta roof top restaurant where they have rajasthani dances, bangles and henna tattoos with a nice view of the city ,it has a good ambience
Favorite thing: When Andy buy cigarettes, I was with him and I heard the dialogue this way " Do you have Marlboro please? " reply " Do you want original Marlboro or.....? " reply " How much is original and how much is the...ermm not-original? "
Favorite thing: This picture is an overall view of the Paharganj Main Bazaar, its a long jampacked street with both sides shops and tourists in within together with billions of Indian peoples. Along the street, there are many small yet narrow alleys, those are interesting and has to be explored. Cheap guesthouses are blended in within, they are not individual hotels, most of the guesthouses were semi-hidden with only a walkway and the lobby are deep inside.
Favorite thing: Internet services is too easy and too many in Paharganj area but not all the machines are fast, some are slow, average charges are 20-30Rs an hour, some would provide CD burnings but some don't understand what is a CD burning. Tourists need not worry about internet services, its very easy thing.
Favorite thing: Of course New Delhi is not only about roadside vendors and Paharganj, this is a picture I snapped from one of the modern part of this city, I went there to make reconfirmation of my air ticket at one of these buildings. Couldn't recall the name but was quite big and many cars around, typical metropolitan look. Later I had my lunch here at a roadside vendor, nice foods.
It's amazing how many beautiful buildings there are in New Delhi. Even among the ordinary buildings, there's a graceful quality that seems to ooze out of the walls. Of course, like any other major city in the world, there are lots of really dreadful looking houses and structures as well! But it's negated by the greenery and beauty which swathe large parts of the city. Really intriguing is the manner in which large, modern pieces kind of mesh with the old Mughal pieces. All in all, an architectural odyssey that holds sway over you in a way you'd least expect.
Fondest memory: Be mesmerized by Lutyens' Delhi - a fascinating collage of buildings, residential structures and national heritage monuments. Including the President of India's official address - Rashtapati Bhavan. As well as the addresses for all the Embassies in New Delhi. As beautiful as it gets.
"Dilli ki Sardi" is a phrase that's known and loved all over India. Hell, there's even a Bollywood song about the concept! Exactly translated, it comes out as the Cold of Delhi. But the real meaning goes much deeper than that. It's about the magical season that sweeps in across Nothern India starting October-November. It's about the overcoats and mufflers being added to the jeans and short skirts. And most evocatively, it's about that sense of adventure which only beautiful cold weather brings about. Enough to leave even the first-time visitor singing praises about Dilli ki Sardi :)
Fondest memory: Step out onto the streets. Feel the cold lash across your face, as you stop in for a roadside chai. Drop into a few conversations with people huddled around a hastily convened bonfire. Experience how amazing roasted peanuts and Indian fast food (bhel, pav bhaji, wada pav) taste when the weather's biting. Unforgettable!
As with most major cities in India today, Delhi too has sprouted its own suburban sub-culture - and it goes by the name of Gurgaon. Roughly an hour from the heart of Delhi, Gurgaon offcially comes under the State of Haryana. Minor detail however, since almost all the multinational companies and residents in the area will staunchly refer to themselves as Delhi-ites :) You'll be amazed at the number of shopping malls, multiplexes and boutiques that are spread out across Gurgaon. It's like you can hardly walk a step without bumping into a new structure or development. The area's got some really nice pubs & nightclubs as well - most of which, as usual, yours truly forgot to photograph :))
Fondest memory: There are a large number of towering residential complexes here. Thankfully, many of them have been designed and laid-out very elegantly. What's nice is that there are many farm-houses interspersed between these skyscrapers. It gives an interesting dimension to the Gurgaon experience.