Delhi is the capital city of India and a massive metropolitan city with over 25 million people. Delhi is according to many the city in India with the best street food. I agree with that but I would just like to point out that it also happens to have the worst TRAFFIC!!. A simple trip to the mall that should take you 30 mins tops could lead to two hours in traffic!.
In Delhi I stayed at Paharganj, located in central Delhi and is very popular with tourists especially the backpacking crowd. To the west is the New Delhi railway station which makes it convenient. At first when the Taxi driver turned into the Paharganj street I was very skeptical and kept asking him `are you sure we are in the right place?`. I also wondered if Tripadvisor had been wrong.
The street is an actual market bazaar with shops everywhere, people selling their wares on the street, cows causing traffic, both human, cars and rickshaw/Tuk Tuk.It looked like something I had only seen on T.v. Maybe how movies depict Chinatown. Busy. I was however pleasantly surprised when I got to the hotel, Hotel Hari Piorko which turned out to be a pretty nice place. If you are in the area you should definitely go for a massage here. The lady that does the massages here is so nice!.
Paharganj main Bazaar like any other market place in India is full of sellers who will call you out, start by asking your nationality and then ask you to go see their shop. There are also tourist travel agents who will try to get you to book something with them and will even tell you of the tourists that just booked with them from the `US`, which in most cases is a marketing gimmick. Then there is the worst kind , Rickshaw drivers. Before Delhi my experience with Rickshaw drivers was somehow okay but in Delhi it was HORRIBLE.
We got into a Rickshaw and asked the driver to drop us of at a particular place which he well agreed. So imagine the how angry we were when the stupid guy took us instead to his friends tourism office. On getting there we were obviously expected and the Rickshaw driver was getting his cut for taking us there despite us not agreeing to anything. As a tourist I will just warn you that while in Delhi, trust no one!. If you are going somewhere make sure you inform the rickshaw driver, tell him to not even think about taking you to a `Govt tourist office`, make sure your google maps are working and last but not least scream & shout for help if you have to.
I also learnt the hard way about asking for directions when the guy I asked took me to a `Govt tourist office`. SHIT. I was so annoyed. Have you ever heard any bad experiences with Rickshaw /tuk tuk drivers? If so I would like to hear all about it!.
Moving on from the horrible bad experiences, Delhi is a nice place to do your shopping. Connaught place for brands like, NIKE, Reebok, Puma, Adidas, Calvin Klein, Levis, H&M, Van Heusen, and much more. Palika Bazaar for good affordable clothes, erm its like the Kenyan version of Eastleigh but better stuff. Then Paharganj for all your hippy touristy stuff, meditation bowls, dream catchers,indian tea,herbal products and much more.
I did not explore much of Delhi and had a very short stay, I did not get a chance to look around much. That does not mean that Delhi is a horrible place, i was just unlucky and so you should definitely visit Delhi when you are in India, There are great sights to see in Delhi like the Lotus Temple, The Gate of India, The Red fort, Hamayuns temple and many other sites. I still would love to give Delhi another shot and would like to hear from you guys if you have any recommendation and Advice. Don`t forget to enjoy various dishes offered, indian food is as diverse as the indian people:-).
Thank you guys for reading this post. Cheers.