India – North vs South
India as a country spans a large area. On the map of Asia, one can spot it sprawled. The large area means a large population, which includes a diverse number of ethnicities and hence, culture. Two cities that truly define the culture of the region they are located in, are Delhi and Bangalore. Way up north you find Delhi and down in the South, in Karnataka, is Bangalore (or Bengaluru).
Delhi is the epitome of Northern India, with its Hindi dialect and culture, you have got a lot to explore there. This is because there is old Delhi and the New Delhi. In New Delhi, you find manicured islands, painted curbs, billboards and sign ways, a modernized, urban city ready to grip you in its heat in the summers and a flurry of activity throughout the year. In old Delhi, it is a history buff’s haven. There are Mughal buildings tied close together, and taking a trip to all is a sight for sore eyes. If you are travelling by plane, the Delhi airport will leave you way too impressed. Ready to greet you in the arrivals lounge are a variety of food options, so if you have slept through the flight, push off hunger through the very affordable eateries here! You can also book a cab from the lounge to take you to your destination!
You will step out into New Delhi from the airport so as you travel in your car, you can tour along the roads leading to the residence of the President and the Prime Minister. You can also take a trip to Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium, the one that hosted the 2010 Commonwealth Games!
Shop and Eat
- Connaught Place should definitely be on your list and you can shop all you want, right there. From The Body Shop to Indian brands, you have it all. The whitewashed architecture is a far cry from teetering skyscrapers so it is an enjoyable experience. It is recommended that you wear comfortable shoes as Connaught Place is sprawled over a number of blocks and you might want to walk your way around it.
- As you feel hunger pangs after your purchasing, step into Haldirams right there. From delicacies like Soan Halwa and Kaju Katli, you also get to stuff on every kind of chaat, and slurp on beverages. The rose lassi is particularly tasty.
- Too much of branded shopping can also be heavy on your pocket. Don’t worry, Sarojini Nagar has much cheaper option for clothing. Items that have defects but produced by brands find themselves in this flea market. They are thus available at much lower rates.
Qutb Minar, Humayun’s tomb, Alai Darwaza, and the very famous Jamia Masjid are all in old Delhi. The legacy behind their architecture is readable on marble plaques and for a pure tourist experience, they are excellent sites.
- Tourist guides are not allowed but at the Qutb Minar site, you can buy an audio recording for yourself in different languages. For as little as Rs. 10, you can visit each site!
- The Red Fort must also not be missed out at all! A fresh walk through the greenery, with your eyes gazing at their enchanting architecture will leave you wanting for more. Do carry a camera which is sufficiently charged as it can be assured that you will be clicking away at everything here!
- Right near Jamia Masjid is the infamous Chandni Chowk. The streets are particularly crowded with people heading for the mosque or leaving it. It is a busy street with a number of shops and small motels that were previously inhabited more when the rush was less. One thing about Old Delhi that should be experienced specially over here is the cycle rickshaw. Allow yourself an adventure ride on this peculiar vehicle of the past! For a small fee, you can cross the street and explore avenues.
- Food options are limitless everywhere in this city, and Karim’s is excellent at Chandni Chowk. Seekh kebabs with onions, biryani, malai boti with yummy parathas are all good for a gluttonous meal. It is claimed by the old restaurant that the ancestor of the owner worked in the Mughal kitchens.
Delhi is a boiling pot of cultures and people, it is an amazing place to tour!
Bangalore in south India is the IT hub of the country. Yet, the abundance of greenery there makes it a peaceful, enjoyable place. The Hindi dialect here is different from the North, you find the Hyderabadi Deccan dialect here spoken by people. The airport is quite some distance from the main city, so you can just catch a nap lasting half an hour before you reach your destination. Bangalore has a lot of shopping and sight-seeing options so keep your belt fastened!
Shop and Eat
- For shopping, Commercial Street is an excellent place. Here you can explore a lot of Indian brands, such as West side and even bargain at independent shops. The market opens at around 10 so you can easily land yourself early there to avoid getting caught in the rush, and get parking space for your vehicle. Indian clothes are abundant here, with the Mysore Saree Udyog offering every kind of cloth with every kind of embroidery. You get chundri, banarsi, silk, you name it and they have it.
- For a scrumptious snack, head towards Anand Sweets on Commercial Street for chaat and buttermilk, an ideal combo!
- For luxury shopping, the famous UB City offers high-end brands and even the Sublime Art Galleria that you can walk through.
- If you want to go for handicrafts, the Cauvery Emporium on M.G. Road is a good option.
- Brigade Road is right there, and this street offers Western clothing and brands to no limit. You even have shops here giving you computer accessories.
- Krispy Kreme on the same street gives you the right sugar dose in doughnuts to keep you active! You can also find Nilgris there, a supermarket which has many branches and this one is one of its largest.
- Keep walking and find the Balal Residency, a few minutes’ walk away from Brigade Road. Their restaurant, Palm Grove offers the crispiest dosas and the fluffiest of idlis. You can revel in South Indian cuisine at this comfortable place.
- Bangalore has very good cinema halls in its shopping malls so you can easily drop in for a show at any time! You can take a trip to The Forum at Koramangala also for some more shopping and a movie.
- Whitefield, which is quite some distance from the main city, offers a wide variety of shopping opportunities since you have both the Orion Mall and Phoenix Marketcity situated there.
History and Culture
- For a walk through Bangalore’s history, visit the Bangalore Metro station near Brigade Road. You will find an all-in-one experience. Traverse through the city by taking a ride on the Metro railway! It is a fascinating experience.
- The Lal Bagh is one historical site that you can visit all around the year. It has an immensely large collection of flora, with a nursery where you can buy pots and plants for yourself. Flowers and flowers will beckon you to go further into the gardens of this wonderful, scenic place.
- For an early morning stroll, the Cubbon Park is ideal. Lush green walkways that span a large area are reinvigorating.
Bangalore is a serene and enjoyable place to be as compared to the more active vibes of Delhi. Just do not miss out on eating the thalis in either Delhi or Bangalore! Bon voyage!