Apart from being the political and administrative center of India and its prestigious capital, Delhi is also one of the most visited tourist places in the country due to it cultural and historical significance.
It is home to marvellous monuments that are special to the heritage of India, bustling shopping streets and complexes, museums, and arts and science centres that attract people from different parts of the world.
Delhi is the one place to visit if you are keen to witness a perfect synthesis of food, art, culture, fashion, and history.
This article explores the top tourist attractions in Delhi and the activities that you can do here. Let’s dive in!
Top 12 Places to Visit in Delhi in 2023 and Things to Do
1. India Gate
When in New Delhi, it is inevitable to visit one of the top tourist attractions in the country, the India gate.
It is a World War 1 memorial that overlooks the city of Delhi and commemorates the soldiers of the British Indian army who succumbed to the war.
Designed by Sir Edwin Lutyens and built in 1931, this tourist destination in Delhi formally known as Kingsway attracts thousands of people every year due to its intricate architecture and historical importance.
You can see the names of 13,300 servicemen both Indian as well as British being displayed on the gate of this 42m tall monument.
Under the memorial archway, you can spot the Amar jawan Jyoti or the Flame of the Immortal Soldier which commemorates the soldiers who lost their lives in the 1971 Indo Pak war.
The Republic day parade is a prestigious event that happens every year on January 26th in front of the India gate with numerous floats and marching bands that create a patriotic atmosphere in the place.
- Location: Eastern end of the Rajpath
- Things to do: Spend time picnicking, explore the architecture of the building, learn about its history, attend the light show, visit the National Gallery of Modern art, go on a Segway tour
- How to reach: Take an auto or bus after exiting the Central Secretariat metro station.
- Best time to visit: February-April, August-November
- Timings: 9 am to 5pm
- Nearest railway station: Pragati Maidan Railway Station (2 km)
2. Akshardham Temple
Visit the Akshardham temple in Delhi that is famous for the exhibition of traditional Hindu culture.
You get a glimpse of Indian culture and architecture by visiting this religious place on your trip to Delhi this year.
Built in traditional Nagara style, this temple is a marvellous work of architecture with 234 beautiful pillars, 9 domes and 20,000 sculptures of Indian spiritual personalities like musicians and deities.
Located in eastern Delhi along the banks of the Yamuna river, this famous temple is a treat to the soul as well as the eyes, as you get to witness a theme based garden and a beautiful Sahaj Anand water show here.
You get to experience the timeless messages of Hinduism through the three exhibitions that are held in the temple namely Sahajanand Darshan, Neelkanth Darshan and Sanskruthi Darshan.
The latter is an Akshardham boat ride which is open from 10 am to 8 pm.
- Location: Noida Mor, Pandav Nagar
- Things to do: Enjoy the water dance, watch the exhibitions, take a tour of the temple, meditate in the surroundings, listen to the hymns and chants, go on a boat ride in the temple lake.
- How to reach: Travel to Akshardham metro station and walk to the temple gate
- Best time to visit: October-November
- Timings: 10 am to 6:30 pm (closed on Mondays)tr
- Nearest railway station: Mandawali-Chander Vihar (3 km)
3. Red Fort
The Red Fort is one of the most important places to visit in Delhi, especially for architecture lovers.
It is said to have housed the Mughal dynasty for more than 200 years, as they lived there until 1857.
It is a place of historical importance as it was not just the residential place of the Mughal emperors, but was also the political and cultural centre of the dynasty, and has a new museum complex presenting Indian history over the past 160 years.
The construction of this building made of red sandstone was commissioned in 1638 by emperor Shah Jahan when he decided to move his capital from Agra to Delhi.
The architectural style of the building and the garden design have won this monument the label of a UNESCO heritage site.
It reflects the Mughal style of architecture and planning and also the later British military use of the forts, and presents a clean culmination of Islamic, Hindu, Persian, and Timurid traditions.
Diwan-e-Khas (Shah Mahal), Diwan-e-Aam(Hall of Public Audience), and the Rang Mahal are important attractions of Red Fort.
- Location: At the end of Chandni Chowk, Netaji Subhash Marg
- Things to do: Go on a guided tour, explore the bath area, sleeping rooms, and halls of the Red Fort, visit the Meena Bazaar, explore the New Museum Complex, visit Jama Masjid, enjoy the local cuisine from Karim’s
- How to reach: Exit from the Lal Qila Metro Station from Gate 4 and walk towards the left
- Best time to visit October to February
- Timings: 9:30 am to 4:30 pm (closed on Mondays)
- Nearest railway station: Old Delhi Railway Station (4 km)
4. Connaught Place
If you are looking to visit a place in Delhi which is abundant in shops, markets, hotels, and stores that that sell necessary amenities, Connaught Place or CP is the place to visit.
It is also a place where the headquarters of many popular Indian firms are located, making it one of the top tourist attractions in Delhi.
Connaught is named after Prince Arthur, the first Duke of Connaught and the construction of this important location was completed in 1933.
It is one of Delhi’s financial and cultural centre and is home to art galleries, cinema theatres, toy shops, and similar places that provide you with a wide range of activities to enjoy.
But the Connaught Place is not just all glitz and glam as you can head to nearby religious places like the Hanuman temple for a meditative experience.
The Gurudwara Bangla Sahib also offers a similar serene atmosphere for people who wish to stay away from the loud crowds.
- Location: Rajiv Chowk
- Things to do: Catch up on a movie at Odeon, visit Jantar Mantar, enjoy a cultural event held by ICCR (Indian Council for Cultural Relations), walk along the Gurudwara Bangla Sahib, shop at Ram Chander & Sons
- How to reach: Travel to Rajiv Chowk metro station and walk to the Connaught Place
- Best time to visit: October to December
- Timings: 10 am to 8:30 pm
- Nearest railway station: Shivaji Bridge (0.96 km)
5. Qutub Minar
A discussion on the top places to visit in Delhi will not be complete without the mention of the world famous Qutub Minar, which was built in the 12th century by Qutub-ud-din Aibak.
It is a part of the Qutub complex in north Delhi and is easily accessible with the Qutub Minar metro station located right near it.
It is a 5-storied monument with a height of 73 metres and is made of red sandstone and marble, and all the credit for its beauty is to be given to its Indo Islamic style of architecture.
This top tourist attraction in Delhi has projecting balconies and an iron pillar in the courtyard that elevates its Indianness.
Another feature that adds to the beauty of this famous monument in Delhi is a spiral staircase of 379 steps which is said to be inspired from the Minaret of Jame in western Afghanistan.
You can also see historical monuments like Quwwat Ul mosque around this tower.
One can go on a guided tour of the building to see the different inscriptions in Parso-Arabic and Nagari that are inscribed at different parts of the tower.
- Location: Mehrauli, South Delhi
- Things to do: Explore the buildings and nearby monuments, visit the Iron Pillar and the Quwwat Ul mosque, shop at the local markets, visit nearby restaurants
- How to reach: Take a yellow line Delhi metro towards Qutub Minar Metro station and take an auto to the Qutub Minar complex
- Best time to visit: November to January
- Timings: 7:00 AM to 9:00 PM
- Nearest railway station: Old Delhi Railway Station
6. Lotus Temple
Number six on our list of top places to visit in Delhi is the Lotus Temple, which is dedicated to the Bahai prophet baha’u’llah.
The design of the temple is in the form of a lotus flower in white colour and is open to people of all religion and caste.
The detailed architecture of the building is an oasis of peace and serenity as this Lotus-shaped temple is a perfect spot to meditate and relax in.
It was built in 1986 and was designed by Iranian architect Fariborz Sahba who chose the design of the Lotus since it was a common symbol in popular religions like Hinduism and Buddhism.
There are 27 Lotus petals in totals that are in clusters of 3 to form the 9 sides of this famous monument.
Tourists are greeted by beautiful gardens and calming ponds at the entrance of this top tourist destination in Delhi.
The prayer hall which has a capacity of 2500 people where prayer meetings are held uplift the spiritual vibe of this place.
- Location: Bahapur, near Nehru Place
- Things to do: Meditate, explore the temple, walk along the gardens, attend a prayer meeting in the prayer hall, visit Dilli Haat, shop at Sarojini Nagar
- How to reach: Travel to Kalkaji Mandir metro station which is 500m away from the temple
- Best time to visit: October to March
- Timings: 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM (closed on Mondays)
- Nearest railway station: New delhi railway station (14.9 km)
7. Chandni Chowk
Another place to visit if you would like to go sightseeing in Delhi is the ever popular Chandni Chowk which is one of the oldest and busiest markets in Delhi.
You can buy anything under the sun from this major attraction in Delhi including clothing, jewellery, herbs, spices, dry fruits, stationary items books.
Chandni Chowk is called Moonlight Square in English as there was a pond at the centre of the market which used to reflect the moonlight. It was later replaced by a tower in the 1950s.
During the Mughal era, processions used to pass through this famous place of great historical importance
It is also one of the biggest wholesale markets and attracts numerous locals and tourists alike due to the variety of items that you can buy from here.
You can get to buy things at the cheapest prices from popular shops in Chandni Chowk including Chawri bazar, Nai Sadak, Dariba Kalan, and Moti Bazaar.
Not only is Chandni Chowk a good place for shopping lovers, but is also an ideal food destination, as it has several shops that serve the best delicacies you can find in Delhi like kababs and papri chaat
- Location: Kaccha Bagh area, Old Delhi
- Things to do: Explore the items that the markets sell, visit the parantha Wali gali, indulge in yummy food from Natraj Chat and Dahi Balle
- How to reach: Get down at Chandni Chowk metro station and hire an auto rickshaw from Chandni Chowk road
- Best time to visit: October to March
- Timings: 9:30 AM to 8:00 PM
- Nearest railway station: Old Delhi Railway Station
8. Lajpat Nagar Market
Architecture, history, and culture is not just what the places to visit in Delhi have to offer. Delhi is also home to the most popular shopping markets and streets in the country including the famous Lajpat Nagar market.
It is a commercial centre located near South Delhi district and was named in honour of Indian freedom fighter Lala Lajpat Rai.
Lajpat Nagar Central Market welcomes visitors with an extensive collection of clothing and accessories. You can take home fabrics, shoes, ornaments, and bags of high quality and unique collections by shopping at this place.
You can even buy items sold by famous and high-end brands from this shopping market in Delhi.
Famous stores in Lajpat Nagar market include:
- Istri Vastr: fabrics and semi stitched suits
- KC Creations: Cotton blends, prints
- Krishna Fabrics: Muslin cotton
- Shubam: Indian ethnic wear
- Omara Womenwear: Indian ethnic clothes
- Location: South East Delhi
- Things to do: Check out the different varieties of clothing, shoes, jewellery, and home decor items, enjoy the local foods from Dolma aunty momos and Ram Laddu food corner, visit the lotus temple and Iskcon temple
- How to reach: Chandni Chowk metro (station name: Lajpat Nagar)
- Timings: Open 24 hours
- Nearest railway station: Lajpat Nagar Railway station (2 km)
9. Humayun’s Tomb
Humayun’s Tomb or Maqbera e Humayun is of the most commonly visited places in Delhi.
Humayun is a famous Mughal emperor of India who succeeded to the throne of Delhi in 1530. The design of the tomb was the brain child of a architect named Mirak Mirza Ghiyas who was invited by the emperor’s first wife Bega Begum.
The architecture of the building is in a traditional Mughal style and is made of dressed stone clad in red sandstone.
This top tourist attraction in Delhi is known as the “dormitory of the Mughals” as along with Humayun, 150 members of the Mughal dynasty are also laid to rest here.
The tomb stands in a place of utmost archaeological significance as it is centred at the shrine of the famous Sufi poet Hazrat Nizamuddin Auliya, after whom the place is named.
The construction of the tomb was completed in 1572 and was declared as a UNESCO World Heritage site in 1993.
- Location: Mathura road, Nizamuddin East
- Things to do: Take a look at the marvellous architecture and learn about the history of the monument, go on a guided tour, relax in the coming surroundings, stroll along the gardens, shop at the local markets, take amazing photographs
- How to reach: Travel to Jawaharlal Nehru metro station and take an auto from the exit
- Best time to visit October to March
- Timings: 6:00 AM to 6:00 PM
- Nearest railway station: Hazrat Nizamuddin Railway Station (56m)
10. Dilli Haat
Dilli Haat is the culminating point of crafts, food, and cultural activities and is a popular spot for gatherings.
This venture of Delhi tourism and Transportation Development Corporation is open on all days and sell a variety of items including fabric, sculptures, footwear, metal crafts, shoes, clothes, food items, etc.
While some shops in Dilli Haat are for a permanent period of time, stalls that sell handicraft items are allotted on a rotational basis for 15 days. This allows people to buy products at the most affordable prices since there are no maintenance cost for these temporary stores.
It is a place where urban clientele meets rural and traditional artistic talents, as you get to access ethnic products from sellers across the country.
This top tourist destination in Delhi erases regional boundaries as you get to relish foods from different parts of the world including Gujarati dhokla, Kebabs from Jammu, and Momos from Sikkim.
- Location: Sri Aurobindo Marg, Laxmi Bai Nagar
- Things to do: Shop for jewellery and handicraft, get your hair braided by women, try out authentic dishes from different states, try the Mehendi, know your destiny through tarot card reading.
- How to reach: The nearest metro station is Dilli Haat- INA interchange metro station
- Best time to visit: October to March
- Timings: 10:30 AM to 10:00 PM
- Nearest railway station: sarojini nagar railway station (3 km)
11. Hauz Khas
Hauz khas is a neighbourhood in South Delhi and is one of the most visited places in Delhi.
It puts together the most perfect combination of the historical and cultural significance of Delhi with modernisation through the numerous cafes and night clubs present here.
It is the one place you should visit if you are looking for a night of partying and clubbing and also meet local tattoo artists and designers. It also houses the Hauz khas Fort which is a historical monument that contains a mosque, and a tomb and is a popular tourist destination for school and college students.
The night life at Hauz Khas is unmatched due to the vibrant atmosphere of night clubs and bars like Moonshine, Hauz Khas Social, and Maquina.
Enjoy events like karaoke and Sufi nights with your friends and family when visiting Delhi by taking a trip to hauz khas.
You can also get access to the finest food options, restaurants, shops for jewellery and fashion items by visiting this famous place in Delhi.
- Location: Hauz Khas, South Delhi
- Things to do: Experience the nightlife by visiting the night clubs, bars, and restaurants, have some family time at Hauz Khas Social, enjoy Italian food at Mia Bella, relax at Shi Café (women-friendly café)
- How to reach: Get to Hauz Khas metro on the yellow line and take an auto to Hauz Khas village
- Best time to visit: October to March
- Timings: 10:30 am to 7pm (Monday to Saturday)
- Nearest railway station: Kailash Colony Station (5 km)
12. Jantar Mantar
Coming to the end of a list of places to visit in Delhi, on number 12 we have the observatory that is best for known for its expression of astronomy and cosmological concept- the Jantar Mantar.
This building is a must-visit place for astronomy lovers, as you get to see instruments like Ram Yantra, Jayaprakash Yantra, and Mishra yantras that were used to predict the movements of objects like sun, moon, and planets.
It takes back you to the medieval world and the scientific and technical concepts that were popularly used back in time Including the 14 architectural astronomical instruments.
Jantar Mantar is home to one of the world’s biggest stone sundials which measures the time of a day.
There are several places that you can visit near Jantar Mantar including Agrasen Ki Baoli, India gate and Connaught Place.
You can enter this observatory for a fee of ₹15 for Indian nationals and ₹200 for tourists, but you can indulge in free photography
- Location: Parliament Street, Janpath
- Things to do: Go on a tour of the observatory, learn about the instruments and their history , take pictures, go picnicking, visit nearby top tourist attractions like India Gate.
- How to reach: Patel Chowk on yellow line is the nearest metro station. Exit the station and hire an auto to reach Jantar Mantar.
- Best time to visit: November to March
- Timings: 9:30 am to 5:30 pm
- Nearest railway station: New Delhi Railway Station (2 km)
To sum it up, Delhi is the ultimate destination you need to have on your bucket list due to the abundance of historical and cultural places it is home to.
Let us know what you think about our take on the top places to visit in Delhi through your comments!
Frequently Asked Questions
2 to 3 days are sufficient to cover the top attractions in Delhi. While on the first day you can visit popular monuments like the Red Fort and India gate, in the subsequent days you can indulge in sightseeing and visiting markets like Sarojini Nagar.
The cost to tour Delhi will depend upon the number of days you wish to stay, your travel and accommodation options, and the places you would like to see. You can opt for tour packages that ranges from somewhere around ₹20k to ₹25K.
You cannot plan a trip to Delhi without including popular monuments like the Red Fort, India Gate, Qutub Minar, and Humayun’s tomb.
Delhi also has several destinations that allow for social gatherings, and cultural events including Dilli Haat, Connaught Palace, and Hauz Khas.
The best places to visit in Delhi if you are looking to shop include Lajpat Nagar market, Sarojini Nagar, Dilli Haat, Connaught Place, Paharganj, and Chandni Chowk.
The most economic way to travel in Delhi is by making use of the metro system. Also, opt for public transportation modes like buses and rickshaws and shared taxis that can save you a huge amount of money.