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hot, hot, hot...

sunny 42 °C


I read the guide books, watched the documentaries, yet nothing truly prepared me for Delhi in flesh. ‎It’s quite simply an assault on the senses, not to mention on your social conscience: the sweltering ‎heat, the acrid pollution, the squalor, the stench of raw sewage, the noise, the frenetic pace, the ‎chaos, the overcrowding and the sheer poverty. Of course, I knew to expect dire living conditions ‎but the reality of being in a country where nearly 40% of people live below the poverty line still shocks. ‎It’s a far cry from our sanitised, tarmacked western world and not for the faint hearted.‎

But then again, there’s the colour, the vibrance, the buzz, the beating pulse of the 18 million people ‎who call Delhi home. Sacred cows meander alongside graceful women in beautifully vivid saris. Auto ‎rickshaws battle their way through Delhi’s incessantly honking traffic, And my favourite thing of all, the ‎food.... I’ve decided to go veggie for the most part but I promise you this is no sacrifice, India is a ‎vegetarian’s dream: Okra, aloo, gobi, dhal, saag, palak, paneer, chickpeas, samosas, koftas, naan, roti, ‎chapati, puris, dosas, thali...the list is endless... all cooked a hundred different ways in a magical ‎combination of spices. I can’t wait to do a cookery course!‎

My favourite Delhi sound bite:‎

‎“Please lady, I just want to be your friend – not your sleep friend – just your good friend”‎

Where we stayed:‎
Wood Castle, Karol Bagh. Double rooms from £35 a night with breakfast and pick up. Simple, clean and ‎friendly staff. The posher hotels are in Connaught place and lots of backpackers stay in Paharganj ‎‎(but be warned, it’s pretty squalid). Delhi accommodation is expensive compared to the rest of India ‎

Where to eat:‎
Alpha Spice, Karol Bagh (about £5 per head with beer): Delicious north Indian cuisine with live music on ‎Wednesdays. Saravana Bavan, Connaught Place and Karol Bagh

Must do's:‎

Old Delhi, Connaught Square (currently a building site as they are renovating for the commonwealth ‎games in October 2010), a trip on the Delhi metro, a ride on an auto-rickshaw, countless shopping ‎bazaars

Get used to:
The heat, the smell, the dirt, being stared at, saying no ‎

Posted by Jules79 02:33 Archived in India Tagged backpacking

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