Many first-time visitors choose to do the Golden Triangle in India, as it provides a fantastic glimpse into the country's culture. It encompasses the capital, Delhi, and other major cities, Agra and Jaipur. There are also tours of varying lengths available, allowing you to spend as much or as little time exploring the sights as you like. Here are some of our best travel tips to ensure your trip goes smoothly:
Whilst most of the upscale hotels are in New Delhi, most of the shopping destinations are still located in Old' Delhi. Fortunately, moving between the two neighbourhoods is made easy by the abundance of taxis. The stores sell stationary, bangles, saris, sweets, silver, leather and so on!
Similar shops are grouped together in informal markets Asia's largest hardware market is at Chawri Bazaar and Ajmeri Gate; Asia's largest paper market is at Chawri Bazaar; the cloth market is at Chandni Chowk; the fireworks market is at Paiwalan; and the kite market is at Lal Kuan.
Don't be surprised if you're invited to sit on mattresses placed on the floor in Old' Delhi if you're shopping for fabric, saris or silver. This is the traditional way of doing business. Feel free to also accept their offer of hot tea you aren't obligated to buy anything, even if you do enjoy a cup.
If you're planning on visiting the mosques, ensure that you're wearing modest dress. It is also important to remember that Old' Delhi can be a dusty and hot area, so ensure that you dress accordingly. And always remove your shoes before entering a mosque.
We recommend being cautious when it comes to eating street food whilst touring the Golden Triangle in India. Instead, you should stick to restaurants and hotel eateries where the kitchen standards are closely monitored and more likely to be first rate.
Ensure that your camera has a memory card that holds lots of photos, as you'll want to take lots. Always ask permission before taking a close-up of an individual; you will find that most Indians are happy to be photographed, as they like to have a look after you take it!
You'll find the Red Fort just across the road from the old market. When you visit, ensure that you've left yourself plenty of time to explore the beautiful buildings and gardens within the fort. We generally recommend two hours, however, you might like to take longer.
India's tailors are famous for being able to copy almost any garment, even from just a photograph! They're also fairly inexpensive, so many people like to stock up. Men can purchase a custom-made dress shirt, for example, for around $25. It'll take around 24 hours to complete.
The two biggest luxury hotel chains are Taj and Oberoj both will equal or even surpass what you would expect to find in terms of service and accommodations at the Four Seasons, Ritz or Park Hyatt hotels in western countries (such as Australia, the US and much of Europe).
We hope that you find the above travel tips handy if you have decided to travel to the Golden Triangle in India. Whilst a lot of the tips relate more closely to Delhi, you will find that many of them are also applicable in Agra and Jaipur. At the end of the day, we recommend following your tour guide's lead and asking them any questions that you may have for the best possible experience.