10 Iconic Attractions and Places to Visit in Delhi

Delhi Attractions are Rich in Historical Sites and Gardens

View of Qutub Minar and the Ruins of Qubbat-ul-Islam (Dome of Islam) Mosque in Qutb Complex, Mehrauli, Delhi, India
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Delhi, the capital of India, has a rich history. The city is dotted with spellbinding mosques, forts, and monuments left over from the Mughal rulers that once occupied the city. The contrast between rambling Old Delhi and well planned New Delhi is immense, and it's interesting to spend time exploring both. If you feel in need of some relaxation, just head to one of Delhi's flourishing landscaped gardens.

Here's a list of the top attractions and places to visit in Delhi. The great thing is that many of them are free! (And can easily be reached by Delhi's Hop On Hop Off bus). Or, take one or more of these popular Delhi Tours.

Got children? Also have a look a these 7 Fun Things To Do in Delhi with Kids. Like walking? Check out these Top Walking Tours in Delhi. And, once you've seen enough monuments, try these 15 Offbeat Things to Do in Delhi.

We also have handy itineraries for 48 hours in Delhi and one week in Delhi.

01 of 10

Red Fort

Red Fort, Delhi.

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Address
Netaji Subhash Marg, Lal Qila, Chandni Chowk, New Delhi, Delhi 110006, India
Phone
+91 11 2327 7705

Delhi's most famous monument, the Red Fort, stands not only as a powerful reminder of the Mughal era India but also a symbol of India's struggle for freedom. It was build by fifth Mughal emperor Shah Jahan, when he decided to shift his capital there from Agra in 1638. The fort's turbulent history includes being captured by the Sikhs and the British. To take your imagination back to the ancient era, a one hour sound and light show of the fort's history is held each evening.

  • Location: Opposite Chandni Chowk, Old Delhi.
  • Entry Cost: Foreigners, 500 rupees. Indians, 30 rupees. Free for children under 15 years.
  • Opening Hours: Sunrise until sunset. Closed Mondays. 
02 of 10

Jama Masjid

Jama Masjid, New Delhi
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Address
Meena Bazaar, Jama Masjid, Chandni Chowk, New Delhi, Delhi 110006, India

Jama Masjid is another marvelous treasure of the Old City, and it's one of the largest mosque in India. Its courtyard can hold an incredible 25,000 devotees. The mosque took six years to build, and was completed in 1656. A strenuous climb to the top of its southern tower will reward you with a stunning view (albeit obscured by metal security grills) across the rooftops of Delhi. Be sure to dress appropriately when visiting the mosque or you won't be allowed in. This means covering your head, legs and shoulders. Attire is available there.

03 of 10

Chandni Chowk

Chandni Chowk, Delhi.

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Address
16 Urdu Bazar Road Infront of Jama Masjid Gate No.1, Gali Bhairo Wali, Bazar Matia Mahal, Kalan Mehal, Kababiyan, New Delhi, Delhi 110006, India
Phone
+91 11 2326 4981

Chandni Chowk, the main street of old Delhi, is a shocking contrast to the wide, orderly streets of New Delhi. Cars, cycle rickshaws, hand-pulled carts, pedestrians, and animals all compete for space. It's chaotic, crumbling and congested, but completely captivating as well. As one of the oldest and busiest markets in India, its narrow winding lanes are full of inexpensive jewelry, fabrics, and electronics. For the more adventurous, Chandni Chowk is an excellent place to sample some of Delhi's street food. The renowned Karim Hotel, a Delhi dining institution, is also located there.

  • Location: Old Delhi, near the Red Fort and Jama Masjid.
04 of 10

Swaminarayan Akshardham

Temple, Akshardham, Delhi, India
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Address
Noida Mor, Pandav Nagar, New Delhi, Delhi 110092, India
Phone
+91 11 4344 2344

A relatively new attraction, this massive temple complex was built by the BAPS Swaminarayan Sanstha spiritual organization and opened in 2005. It's dedicated to showcasing Indian culture. As well as the astonishing architecture of the pink stone and white marble shrine, the complex includes sprawling garden, sculptures, and boat ride. Allow plenty of time to explore it thoroughly -- at least half a day. Do note that cell phones and cameras are not permitted inside.

  • Location: National Highway 24, near Noida Mor, New Delhi.
  • Entry Cost: Free. However, tickets are required to view the exhibitions.
  • Opening Hours: 9.30 a.m. until 6.30 p.m. (last entry). Closed Mondays.
Continue to 5 of 10 below.
05 of 10

Humayun's Tomb

Humayun's Tomb
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Address
Mathura Road Opposite Dargah, Nizamuddin, Nizamuddin East, New Delhi, Delhi 110013, India
Phone
+91 99583 68602

If you think Humayun's Tomb looks a bit like the Taj Mahal in Agra, that's because it was the inspiration for the Taj Mahal's creation. The tomb was built in 1570, and houses the body of the second Mughal emperor, Humayun. It was the first of this type of Mughal architecture to be built in India, and the Mughal rulers followed it up with an extensive period of construction all over the country. The tomb is part of a greater complex that's set among beautiful gardens.

  • Location: Nizamuddin East, New Delhi. Near the Nizamuddin train station, off Mathura Road.
  • Entry Cost: Foreigners, 500 rupees. Indians, 30 rupees. Free for children under 15 years.
  • Opening Hours: Sunrise until sunset, daily. It's best viewed in the golden light of the late afternoon.
06 of 10

Lodhi Gardens

Delhi's Lodi Gardens
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Address
Lodhi Rd, Lodhi Gardens, Lodhi Estate, New Delhi, Delhi 110003, India
Phone
+91 11 2464 0079

Lodhi Gardens provides a serene retreat from city life, and is the place to come if you're feeling tired and worn out. The vast Gardens were built by the British in 1936 around the tombs of 15th and 16th century rulers. Joggers, yoga practitioners, and young couples all enjoy this park.

  • Location: Lodhi Road, not far from Humayun's Tomb.
  • Entry Cost: Free.
  • Opening Hours: Daily from sunrise until 8 p.m., but Sundays are particularly busy.
07 of 10

Qutab Minar

Qutub Minar complex.
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Address
Mehrauli, Seth Sarai, Mehrauli, New Delhi, Delhi 110030, India
Phone
+91 11 2469 8431

Qutab Minar, the tallest brick minaret in the world, is an incredible example of early Indo–Islamic architecture. It was built in 1206, but the reason remains a mystery. Some believe that it was made to signify victory and the beginning of Muslim rule in India, while others say it was used to call the faithful to prayer. The tower has five distinct stories, and is covered with intricate carvings and verses from the holy Quran. There are also a number of other historic monuments on the site.

  • Location: Mehrauli, south Delhi.
  • Entry Cost: Foreigners, 500 rupees. Indians, 30 rupees. Free for children under 15 years.
  • Opening Hours: Sunrise until sunset, daily.
08 of 10

Gandhi Smriti and Raj Ghat

Gandhi Smitri, Delhi.

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Address
Near Birla House, 5, Tees January Marg, Tees January Road Area, Motilal Nehru Marg Area, New Delhi, Delhi 110001, India
Phone
+91 11 2301 2843

A visit to Gandhi Smriti will show you the exact spot where Mahatma Gandhi, affectionately referred to as the Father of the Nation, was assassinated on January 30, 1948. He lived in the house for 144 days up until the time of his death. The room that he slept in, kept exactly how he left it, and the prayer ground where he held a mass congregation every evening are both open to the public. Plenty of photos, sculptures, paintings, and inscriptions are also on display. You can also visit his memorial at Raj Ghat.

  • Location: 5 Tees January Marg, central New Delhi.
  • Entry Cost: Free.
  • Opening Hours: 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Closed Mondays.
Continue to 9 of 10 below.
09 of 10

India Gate

India gate, New Delhi, India, Asia
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Address
Rajpath, India Gate, New Delhi, Delhi 110001, India
Phone
+91 11 2336 5358

The towering archway of India Gate at the center of New Delhi is a war memorial, built in memory of the Indian soldiers who lost their lives fighting for the British Army in World War I. At night it glows warmly under floodlights, and the gardens that line its boulevard are a popular place to enjoy a warm summer's evening. There's also a fun Children's Park that's ideal for kids.

  • Location: Rajpath, near Connaught Place, New Delhi.
  • Entry Cost: Free.
  • Opening Hours: Always open.
10 of 10

Bahai (Lotus) Temple

Lotus Temple, Delhi.


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Address
Lotus Temple Rd, Bahapur, Shambhu Dayal Bagh, Kalkaji, New Delhi, Delhi 110019, India
Phone
+91 11 2644 4029

The Bahai Temple is commonly called the Lotus Temple, as it's shaped like a lotus flower. It's particularly pretty at night, when it's attractively lit up. Made out of concrete covered in white marble, the temple belongs to the Bahai Faith, which proclaims the unity of all people and religions. Everybody is welcome there.

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10 Iconic Attractions and Places to Visit in Delhi