Doubletree by Hilton – Gurgaon (New Delhi, India)
After breakfast I met my driver who will take me around New Delhi and Delhi to see many of the popular sites. I was asked what I’d like to see, and not having a preference, I said to take me to places that I should see.
Our first stop was Qutub Minar. This monument is from the 12th century and is a very popular site for the Indian people, and a UNESCO site. As it turned out, because it was Sunday, the lines to get tickets was very long so I took pictures from outside the fence rather than wait in line. I was okay with that and we drove to the next attraction.
The Lotus Temple was also very popular today but getting in was quick. I think I’ve seen a picture of the temple but was very impressed with the design and the size of the temple. You don’t realize how big it is until you get closer. Before you enter the grounds of the temple, everyone is expected to remove their shoes, which we did. The shoes were put into a bag and we were given a number so we could get the shoes returned.
The temple is a Bahá’í House of Worship who welcome all religions. It was a very nice place to walk around and we sat inside the main building for 10 minutes before leaving to retrieve our shoes. By this time I was getting hot since there wasn’t much shade at the temple, but was glad to get back into the car (a SUV) where the driver had cold water waiting for me.
Our next stop was the India Gate, a World War I memorial to the Indian soldiers who were members of the British Army. It looked similar to the Gate of India in Mumbai, but built for an entirely different reason.
After the driver managed to get out of the parking lot (very crowded) he drove me by the President’s House, which was formerly the Viceroy’s house before India independence. We didn’t stop because I was not feeling well due to the heat and was looking forward to returning to the hotel. My three-hour tour was now going to last five hours.
Once back in the hotel I was met by the concierge who arranged today’s tour. I mentioned the disturbance from last night when I saw me earlier and he assured me that the group of men had checked out earlier. An hour later a dessert plate arrived with an apology note. He met up with me again in the Executive Lounge to plan tomorrow’s trip to the Taj Mahal.
I will need to get up by 1:30 a.m. tomorrow morning. My driver to Agra will be ready to leave at 2:00. Maybe I’ll get a little sleep as we drive? We will see.