Delhi for 14 hours, what should I do?
November 6, 2017 6:53 PM   Subscribe

At the end of a business trip I will have a 14 hour stop over in Delhi, next Sunday. I have never been to India before and I love museums, cultural landmarks and generally sightseeing and I'd like to go somewhere to pick up gifts for my family. Tell me where to go and how to get there!

Possibly relevant: I am a woman travelling alone, and I get lost very easily.

What should I see?

What should I know about getting around Delhi safely?

What should I know about getting back to the airport in time for my flight at 1 am?
posted by keeo to Travel & Transportation around India (4 answers total)
It's been almost ten years since I was there but getting to the airport was a taxi arranged by my hotel. In your case, I would hire a cab at the airport to take you around Delhi for the day.

As for where to go for gifts I would recommend the shops around the concentric circles of Connaught Place. Their new Metro has a station in the park in the middle.
posted by Rash at 9:09 PM on November 6, 2017

This may be a stupid question, but do you have an Indian visa? If not, I'm not sure you're getting out of the airport in Delhi. Ask me how I know (involves getting to Heathrow and being asked, "where's your Indian visa?" and nearly shitting myself because I'd spent years living and traveling in the Euro/Schengen zone where such things are not an issue).
posted by Emperor SnooKloze at 9:31 PM on November 6, 2017 [1 favorite]

If you can sort out your tourist visa, my strong suggestion would be to book a one day tour through Viatour or some similar agency. I could give you tons of advice about taking the rail from the airport into the city and how to get around, but if it is your first time, and you are prone to getting lost easily, the low hassle approach would be an arranged tour. You could do a car/guide with them, or have a guide meet you at the airport and hire a taxi together (cheaper).
posted by ersatzkat at 5:23 AM on November 7, 2017

As noted above, you need a visa. Also understand that driving in Delhi can be very, very slow. Definitely hire a tour guide, driver, and car to meet you at the airport. This is very easy to do and inexpensive by Western standards. I'd look a bit extra for a company that will work for a single woman traveling alone; it's not a big deal, but I'd imagine it'd be more comfortable with a woman tour guide. FWIW our American travel agent hired Amber Tours for us and they were great.

The two tourist things in Delhi we did that I liked the best.. One was a visit to the Grand Mosque along with a rickshaw tour of the streets of Old Delhi. The other was Qutb Minar and the other archaeological sites there. I believe the latter is relatively close to the airport.

There's also a modern shopping mall / tourist complex in Gurgaon near the airport. We stayed at the Oberoi Gurgaon and there was stuff nearby. I don't know much about it, and it wouldn't be nearly as fun as going to traditional old Delhi stuff, but it is convenient.
posted by Nelson at 7:59 AM on November 7, 2017

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