8 Reasons Why I Hate Delhi

Dirty? Check. Over-crowded? Check. Will I go back? Not anytime soon…

1) It’s easy to fall foul of a scam

Some tourists manage to stay out of trouble, but for many more (me included), being scammed in Delhi is difficult to avoid.

From the airport taxi driver keen to persuade you that your hotel is full, closed down or in a dangerous area, to the unscrupulous, pushy tour agent intent on making a fast buck by re-writing your itinerary for you, the touts are everywhere and you’re their target.

A top tip – if anyone asks you if you’ve been to Delhi before, it’s always better to say yes even if you’ve never set foot on Indian soil….

Don’t accept the first price you’re given. Photo: Matthew Winterburn

2) People are too polite to help…

It’s seen as impolite in Delhi to say you don’t know where something is, so trying to get a straight answer as a tourist can be impossible, particularly when you’re busy running the gauntlet of touts who intentionally want to send you off-track.

As a tourist in India you will stand out, and you will almost certainly be approached countless times by people who want to send you off to their friend’s shop/restaurant/hotel.

This is not only tiring, it means you quickly end up being wary of anyone who crosses your path, which is a real shame when there are some locals who genuinely want to help you.

Ask for help, but don’t expect a straight answer. Photo: Gilus_pl

3) ….but they’re lacking in good manners

You don’t have to wander very far before you stumble across a man urinating against a wall or spitting on the street.

It’s something that might raise eyebrows elsewhere, but not in Delhi. Look closely, and you’ll see the tell-tale, red spit-stains from paan all over the pavement: a Betel leaf parcel most commonly filled with either powdered tobacco or areca nuts and spices, chewed throughout India as a palate cleanser, breath freshener and mild stimulant.

Although the government of Delhi prepared guidelines ahead of the 2010 Commonwealth Games for residents – warning them not to spit in public or urinate – any good manners seem to have left along with the athletes.

Watch where you walk, there’s a paan stain near you. Photo: Rahul Chhiber

4) Even bad accommodation is expensive

I stayed in some stunning Havelis (private mansions) in Rajasthan that were a complete bargain.

Although you expect hotels in any capital city to be more expensive, in my opinion, $65 a night for a dark, dirty, cold room with no hot water and filthy towels was horribly overpriced.

There might be some decent options in Delhi, but you have to search hard to find them.

Will there be hot water? Photo: EvanLovely

5) Driving is an extreme sport

Even after a long night flight and no sleep, there was nothing about my first Delhi taxi ride that made me want to drift off.

Lanes are painted on the road but completely ignored (my record spot was seven jostling vehicles across three lanes); cars switch lanes erratically with a loud ‘hoooooonk’ rather than an indicator, tailgating comes as standard practice and my driver was more interested in simultaneously chatting to me (“where are you from? Ah Englaaaand…verrrrry good country…first time in India?”), smoking, talking on his mobile and fiddling with the radio than driving.

Truly a white-knuckle ride.

Try a different route if you need to get somewhere in a hurry. Photo: kds1505

6) The winter fog can wreck your plans

The persistent fog that hits India’s capital every winter is a well-known Delhi phenomenon and its effect is far-reaching, with the power to totally disrupt your vacation.

Last year, at least 60 flights were either delayed or canceled and more than 50 trains delayed during a heavy bout of fog, with thousands of people stranded at railway stations and airports.

The fog comes every winter. Photo: Daveybot

7) It’s downright dirty

Most big cities are a bit grubby, but with the pungent stench of sewage, rotting fruit on the ground and the shocking landscape of a never-ending sea of litter as you pull out of Delhi’s train station, India’s capital city is a depressing assault on the senses.

Plastic waste in particular is a massive environmental problem, and it’s a common sight to see cows, pigs and stray dogs chomping through piles of garbage on the roadside.

Litter, litter, everywhere. Photo: Raaf

8) It’s claustrophobic and over-crowded

As a Londoner, I’m used to cramming myself onto public transport in rush hour with hundreds of thousands of commuters but Delhi is in a whole different league – with a population of 15 million people, just walking down the street feels claustrophobic and overbearing.

What’s more, the 10 million or so buses, trucks, cars, auto rickshaws and motorbikes that crowd the city’s roads every day mean getting anywhere takes three times as long as you expect.

Delhi: a good place to be if you’re feeling lonely: Photo: Mckaysavage

Have you experienced a different side to Delhi? Which city tops your most-hated list? Post your comments below and let me know!

If you liked this you might also like: My 8 Favorite Spiritual Places in the World.

Main image: Delhi Bus by DSLR Neil

81 thoughts on “8 Reasons Why I Hate Delhi”

  1. well let’s hope our Indian”FRIENDS” dont label you as an ISI agent. ;) I shared this article with my Indian class mate and he went totally berserk.

  2. Fortunately you can avoid Delhi and move on asap to great destinations in India where these issues don’t drive you crazy :)

  3. The article provides detailed descriptions, but I think many cities in developing countries are like Delhi. The red spit-stains from paan can be seen in most cities in South Asia and Southeast Asia. (Paan is a medicine in these regions, but after it became commercial and was added something like lime, these stains have been appearing.)

  4. I agree, I hate Delhi but Mumbai (Bombay) is even Worse!!

    Go to Kerala or Up into the mountains

  5. I think hate is too strong a word. You have to change your expectiations in India. Delhi has such a rich history (with Hindu, Muslim, Jain and English influences) that the place is fascinating. The loud traffic and driving practices are true of all big Indian cities and can be wearing. However Delhi has hidden treasures that are worth finding. Red Fort, Qutab Minar, Humayun Tomb, Jami Masjid, the various Hindu & Jain temples and some great vegetarian restaurants. Try it.

  6. I think it is nice to see a travel article that isn’t all “roses and wine” about any country.

    Nice to see “the other side of the story” from the images that the CVB’s are putting out.

  7. Wow. Sounds like somebody has never been in a major urban city in South Asia before. Seriously, the way that Indians are talked about in this article is disturbing and totally disrespectful. Major us/them mentality here and tons of assumptions made about the locals and about the tourists. Sad to see something like this published anywhere other than a personal blog.

  8. Just stay at home then!! You think your life is so perfect?
    India is incredibly poor and can do very little to solve most of its problems. Approcahing this with your attitude does nothing to help cultural understanding of the difficulties faces by countries such as India.

  9. It’s a shame Tripbase is allowing people to publish such hateful and disrespectful posts on their website.
    I’d advise you never to go out of your 5 star resort next time and share your precious space with clean white ‘civilized’ people.

  10. I didn’t see this as an insult to the Indian people – it was specifically about the city of Delhi. Just as in my home country (USA) I can assure you there are both great places and very crappy places. From reading this article, I did not get the idea that there’s something wrong with India as a whole or with Indian people.

  11. I’ve recently come to the conclusion that India may be too crowded for me. Dirty hotels and the other things mentioned in this article don’t bother me that much because I figure it’s part of the experience of traveling. If I wanted to shield myself from all of these things, I would just stay home.

    The other commenters in this article should realize that people have a right to their own opinion. If you don’t like this persons opinion, then don’t read the article. :)

  12. Oh and I am sure Delhi was charmed by your arrival…

    @Ordinary Traveler “If you don’t like this persons opinion, then don’t read the article. :)” REALLY?! That just isn’t the way it works my friend!

    I didn’t know that I would hate this article until I read it, though the title did set my teeth grinding, and although I think this is an ugly piece drivel and I am glad that I took a few moments to indulge in the obnoxious musings of the author… makes every other blog I will read today look like Pulitzer contenders.

  13. @Joshy – I just don’t think people need to attack the author in the way they are doing in the comments. There is a better way of debating your opinion, no? I don’t agree with the post, but that doesn’t mean I’m going to tell the author they are a horrible person for feeling the way they do. To each his own, I guess.

  14. Each point Ricki makes can be made about any main city in India or Asia. Quite unfair to hatchet job Delhi, a city that is in parts overcrowded, dirty, polluted. But most parts of Delhi are not overcrowded, have been cleaned up and are safe to walk and enjoy ancient and modern architecture, good shopping, great food, and above all the most welcoming and cheerful of people.
    It’s been said about India that you either love it or hate it. Or you love it and hate it.
    India is a land of contrasts, – intense beauty and garbage cluttered streets, immense wealth and abject poverty, overcrowded large cities but solitude found in many parts of southern or northern India.
    Embrace it all. Of all countries, India really gives you your money’s worth of memories and experiences.
    We’re planning our third trip already. India, we have fond memories of your colour, culture and those large smiles on eveyone, including those trying to scam us!

  15. As George said above, this kind of article does nothing to further understanding/compassion for others, which is really kind of the crux of travel, or it should be anyway. This totally comes off as selfish. There is nothing wrong with stating the realities of where you travel (ie not everything needs to, nor should, be rosy), but how about some thoughtful commentary? It’s really self-centered to only look at it from your own viewpoint, why you were uncomfortable. “They’re lacking in good manners”?!? Holy christ. This is a lot of people’s home for eff’s sake; what is the point of this? I suspect it’s only to draw eyes in. Sad.

  16. I think that when you author a post such as this you are opening yourself up to everything that follows. If Ricki didn’t see this coming than she is even more short sighted than the post paints her to be.

    I also suppose that this is the type of blog I would expect to see in some other, more obscure corner of the blogosphere, not on Tripbase.

    If I published a post Entitled “8 reasons why New York Sucks” you can be damn sure I deserve whatever ire I provoked.

    I am sure the author is a nose enough person but what she published here is worth a jab or two, it’s crap. You have to be ready for a little shit to hit the fan when you are flinging poo.

  17. I am glad you won’t be going to Delhi again. Delhi doesn’t need or want tourists like you. You seem to be a typical tourist who doesn’t have any clue about India or Delhi. You have absolutely no (inter) cultural understanding.
    Posting snaps of some areas of Old Delhi doesn’t mean that the whole of Delhi is dirty and filthy.
    Stay at home, Ricki and revel in the ‘good’ manners of your country people.

  18. I had the worst time in Delhi, endlessly being directed by men in uniforms to ‘official’ travel agents, none of whom seemed to be able to sell me a train ticket to Agra for less than 500% of the asking price.

  19. Perception is reality. When we travel, what we really see is ourselves, — and nowhere is this more true than India. This writer was seeing Delhi through her own lens –and as someone who has spent many months in Delhi recently, and loved it, I can say her lens need cleaning.

  20. You clearly did no research before making this trip. India is not a place to be traveled without knowing what you’re getting into. Once you know what to expect, many of the things you listed could have been avoided. It’s like going to Mexico and drinking the water then getting mad when you get sick.

  21. As someone who was born and brought up in Delhi. I would say that I felt the article was written in quite a disrespectful way. I have been living in the US for about 15 years and go back to Delhi every other year so I do have a perspective from both sides.
    It’s true that traffic is nuts and there are a lot of people… But you probably should be expecting that in a city of 15 million people.
    Also, posting pictures of Old Delhi and the worst areas to convince people is quite unprofessional. One could as easily post pictures of some absolutely beautiful gardens or buildings with great architecture and history.
    Delhi fog isn’t as bad when you compare it to snowstorms in other countries. I live in Boston and can tell you that 60 flights in the winter is not bad at all… We have that many canceled in a few hours. Maybe you should try and get out more.
    I’m quite surprised that Tripbase would allow such an article to be posted on their website. This type of a blog belongs on a personal blog if anything.

  22. Sounds like travel in interesting places is not for you.

    All those things you ‘hate’ are also the very reasons why many of us travel so I suspect you need to stay very close to home (altho’ wherever home may be is bound to be thought weird, strange or rude in many ways by other cultures. “what? you wipe your arse with paper and don’t wash it? incredible!”

    Travel is not home, I love the very differences that challenge me. I remember leaving India once saying to myself I’ll never return! of course I did ( and will again )

    The thing you need to know about India is you will love it, hate it, be amused, angry, fascinated, admire and so on – ALL IN ONE HOUR! if you can accept that about ANY county then you will make a traveller – not a tourist.

  23. People like you honestly make me mad ..If you don’t like India , stay at home ! We don’t want rude and disrespectful tourists here . Our cities are beautiful and Delhi is no exception ..Just taking pics of the worst areas of Delhi doesn’t make it a dirty city . The richest cities in the world have slums and homeless people .Did you even see New Delhi ? Or Gurgaon ? Or Red Fort and all the amazing monuments ? Such a horrible and insulting post.
    As for the fog , it can’t be helped . Delhi has a lovely winter . I wish you’d delete your stupid post .

  24. I’m also delighted to hear you won’t come back ..We don’t need people like you . Stay home and enjoy your lovely clean country with civilized people !

  25. Ah, but all of these things combine with the wonderful, awe-inspiring things the author failed to mention to make India the beautiful, complex land of extremes that it is. Traveling is ALL ABOUT experiencing the cultural norms of a place, even if they are completely different – even opposite – from the what one may now as “good.” In fact, one of my favorite things about my trip to India was the fact that it challenged my own perception of the world and what is “normal.” It saddens and infuriates me that a person would not only go to such a beautiful, diverse place with a mind that is not just narrow, but sealed shut – and then turn around and make the entire world wide web aware of how close-mindedness can ruin what should be a life-changing experience. Truly shameful.

  26. Mmm, it’s so nice to see the backlash of the other people commenting on this article because I completely agree with what they are all saying. Its hard for me to take you seriously if you say you “hate” a city – especially if you mention NO good aspects of it at all!!! That’s harsh and very close-minded. Please, India is a million times different from your precious London and I could list a lot of things I don’t like about London but I won’t do that. I honestly think traveling is a privilege and should be treated with an open mind. It wouldn’t have been bad if you said “well, Delhi isn’t for me and I won’t be going back – but I guess I can see how other travelers would appreciate the city”. Of course it’s dirty. Of course it’s overpopulated. Of course people will treat you differently because you’re White. If you didn’t know this going into it, you shouldn’t have gone to India at all. You were obviously not in the right mindset to travel, let alone travel to India. I really hope you consider rereading your article and seeing how your comments could come across as insulting, especially on a traveler’s website!

  27. As surprised as i was at reading the reasons the author mentions here for her ‘hatred’ for the city, I do believe every person is entitled to their opinion, and thus this post would have been more suited to Ricki’s own personal blog which this site is not. It would even be acceptable had the reasons stated here been revealing or even informative. Just saying Delhi is overcrowded and filled with touts etc are facts you could have known even before entering the country and thus prepared yourself. But you didn’t and this shows that your expectations from India were entirely different but which could’ve nonetheless been met at an expensive resort at one of the coastal cities with no interaction with anything really ‘Indian’. Strangely all the factors you mentioned here (except perhaps the fog bit) could also describe Egypt. and yet tourists flood the country year after year, and something tells me they are much better prepared or informed than you were.

  28. You can’t expect that every city in the world will be adapted for rich country visitors. What you’ve seen is the reality of many many paradises…like Punta Cana in Dominican Republic, like Cuba, like South Africa, South America, etc. It’s part of the culture and their daily way of living. Maybe the article’s tone is quite offensive and that’s why people reacted.
    Lala from Bs As.

  29. I don’t like the way how you speak about Delhi. You’re not a good traveller. I think better you stay at your home and don’t go to others countries.
    Your mind is not open and you are negative …that’s why you see delhi like this.
    I don’t say Delhi is one paradise, but the all world had change you know, even in the clean Switzerland , people spit and urinate on the street even they have a place to do !!!
    I leave in Switzerland so I know !!!!

  30. I lived in New Delhi for one year. I used to take the bus to work and I was robbed 5 times. They were so sneaky I still don’t know how they cut into my duffel bag I had carried on my shoulder. I did get my credit cards back because they won’t allow Indians to use credit cards. I was followed down the street by men all the time. If you don’t wear saris or salwar khameez you are harassed. Do we do that in the USA? I WAS STAYING AT A HEALTH SPA AND THE MANAGEMENT STOLE THINGS FROM MY ROOM AND I EVEN BOUGHT THEM A MATTRESS. You can’t even trust a health spa.

  31. i am an indian but living in nepal from my childhood .now i am moving to delhi for few years and i dont have any idea how delhi is? plz give me sugestion
    @martina jnas do you still live there

  32. @Martina Jnas: Sad to hear about your experience. But I don’t agree with you when you say that “If you don’t wear saris or salwar khameez you are harassed.” I was born and raised in India (Bombay) and now living in Los Angeles. Firstly, I think you should have read about the dangers and annoyances of living or being in India, especially for a non-Indian. It’s not just you who may have been harassed, but it’s every Indian woman who may have gone through this. But you have to realize that it’s the culture of every country that sets it apart from other. And by asking a question like :Do we do that in the USA? – is stupid because you are comparing apples with oranges. There are a lot of things that Indians don’t do what Americans do, so it’s best not to compare! As an avid traveler I can say that there are so many places in the world which may not be clean, which may have scammers and which may be impolite, but that’s a country’s culture and if you don’t like it, stay away. As a traveler you just have to be wary of the country you’re visiting and try and make the best of that. Safe travels!

  33. @Martina Jnas: Everything you described can be found in the major US cities, and the racial targeting most especially in small town USA (ie the lack of saris, etc.. ). Go walk in Compton (Los Angeles), the scent of urine in the alleys and deserted doorways is rank. Even so, beauty can be found /anywhere/ by anyone who simply wishes to look for it.

    @everyone: Go back up and look at those seemingly ugly pictures the “author” collected from around the internet. #1, see the beautiful little girls in their colorful saris. #2, the colorful (personality not skin) gentlemen kindly posing for a picture for the tourist. #3, the beauty is everywhere! Look at the complex network of lines! Look at all the /real/ people of India carrying on an ordinary day. Trying looking /into/ the picture, not just at it.

    Oh, and the giant pile of garbage is obviously a recycling station. It’s tacky to take photos out of context like that.

  34. Author is very right in describing true picture of Delhi. People here really dont have any culture or manners. There is no cleanliness. System is so bad and crime rate is so high. Very unsafe for froreigners.

    Good article.

  35. Im sorry you had to suffer this. Perhaps if you got your head out of your ass and a little more than 10 bucks in your pocket you might’ve been able to visit the part of Delhi outside one area called chandni chawk which we ourselves dont like. (ps. thats the wholesale market of north india)
    I would then like to hear about the Delhi where you were afraid to step out cause Lamborghinis, Astons to tart with and end with Mercs and BMWs or goto places which makes a king’s palace look like a s*it hole.

  36. The author of this blog has deliberately shown the WORST images of Delhi taken in the worst, poorest areas of Delhi. I have lived in London too and – seriously outside the few posh areas of London (knightsbridge, mayfair, south kensington, belgravia etc.) almost all of the UK is also one big ugly S*ITHOLE. Yes it doesn’t stink or smell like India but it’s pretty bad for many other reasons too – go to Hackney, Brixton, and lots of areas in East London there is quite a pile of litter and shit there to – this guy is complaining about scammers and touts in Delhi – well in the poor areas of UK – forget scammers and touts – you have dangerous racists and murderers walking around with big butcher knives hidden under their clothes. UK Is a violently criminal country – look up the United Nations official statistics on crime in UK – it is the highest in the developed world and per capita violent crime is much higher in UK than in India.

    There are beautiful areas of Delhi too – like Chanakyapuri, Defence Colony, Vasant Vihar, Westend, Golf Links, Jor Bagh, Sunder Nagar and many more – why then this gentleman has focused on showing the shit from old delhi’s poorest streets in a deliberate attempt to Paint all of India in a bad light?? Speaking about bad hotels – has any of you tried staying in a hotel in London lately? £100 for a shitty single room with roaches is quite common in London too. There are hardly any people in UK – it’s a small country with a small population and most of the country is empty unlike India which is bursting with people. In my opinion Delhi and London are very similar – there are the GOOD and BAD areas…but Delhi is safer when it comes to violent crimes, there are petty criminals in delhi who will steal your wallet or take u for a ride…but in UK there are very dangerous violent criminals who will take a knife and kill you – I lived in the poshest areas of London and have walked past police enclosed streets where people had been stabbed and killed even in the poshest areas. The past year there were several stabbings even on Oxford street – the busiest shopping street in London and in a prime central location…I remember a stabbing inside a Mcdonalds over glass of water…gang violence and teenage stabbings are OUT OF CONTROL in UK…so is the Yob culture and racism….at this point I’d much rather live in India than live in England. If you don’t believe me just read all the news out of England – most of it is stabbings, killings, mindless murders, racist attacks, police racism, institutional racism etc…. British like to paint a very good picture of their country to the rest of the world – but the reality is TOTALLY different…there are SOOOOOO many ghettos all over England….if you went to cities like Blackpool and Liverpool now or Bradford….the dirt of Delhi look like heaven compared to those filthy cities…they are another level of filth full of criminals walking around freely. Many people are leaving UK because of the crime there – more than 300,000 Brits expatriate each year and only very desperate poor 3rd world people want to live in Britain now or wealthy criminals trying to escape their countries…no one else is attracted to that country anymore. Even rich Indians avoid it now once they find out what’s happening there.

    I am no big fan of Delhi either – but sorry this blog is totally BIASED – the images of Delhi are one-side of the story – deliberately the worst parts of Delhi – all of Delhi DOES NOT look like that at all…, in fact a small part of it looks like that.. most of it is clean enough with big expensive houses and lots of big expensive cars. South Delhi is bigger than all of London and just as expensive now to buy a house – the lifestyle is much better, and people in those big houses of delhi don’t throw garbage outside. I’ve yet to meet a Brit who wasn’t critical of India and stuck up about Britain – they simply can’t get over the fact that they were kicked out of India and are losing their status in the world…what is Britain today – nothing but a little dog of America wagging its tail….

  37. hahahahahaha…sounds about right…but you just listed most of the bad things bout delhi…do you wanna start counting the good ones…atleast you wont get shot for no reason (new jersey) , wont be racially abused (oz) , wont get mugged in broad daylight at knife point(london).im indian but born and brought up in LA….ive been to delhi a couple of timea for weddings…i agree wit all above listed things…but what about all the forts you can visit….worlds biggest electronics market(palika bazar)….a cup of tea that will cost you two cents! no gun violence…and my friend there is rampant touting but also every person will refer you to their friends shop.hotel etc as they feel they can get you discounts or special treatments etc..my gf complained to eternity whb she visted the first time then appreciated it more the second time round….delhi my friend is a fine scotch….not a jagerbomb!

  38. I think u are fool. That is why you faced so many problems in India which actually don’t exist. I think you should stop travelling. You know why? – Beacuse u can’t.

  39. As a white person staying in Pahar Ganj, this is exactly the impression you get of Delhi. I am sorry, but the first two points he made are dead on.

    I am an anthropologist and yes cultural understanding and compassion is extremely important when traveling to another country – but it should be on both sides. In certain parts of Delhi you are stalked by over-priced rickshaws, travel agents who are preying on your vulnerability as a traveler, and hoards of young men who think because you are wearing blue jeans it is alright to grope your private areas with no recourse from any sort of police authority.

    That said, there are amazing parts of Delhi. No other city in the world has the scattering of Lodhi-Mughal monuments juxtaposed amongst the modern anti-Colonial modern architecture. The food is perhaps the best in the world from the momos on the street-corner to the fancy boutique restaurants of Hauz Khas Village. The public transportation makes what is available in most United States cities look pitiful and antiquated. Not to mention the world’s largest democracy is housed right in the center.

    It’s a city that is extremely determined, people can be friendly but you have to be careful. And when you have a good day in Delhi, it’s like having the best day ever. Those days where everything falls into place and goes your way and you don’t feel like you’ve gotten ripped off you really feel more like a winner than anywhere else in the world.

    I also think, in the author’s defense, that nothing, no matter how much one mentally prepares his or herself as an American coming to this place for the first time can truly be prepared. In many ways it is like visiting another planet compared to most American cities. I don’t say that in judgment positive or negative, it’s just the way it is. Delhi, especially Old Delhi and Pahar Ganj, is very much a “baptism by fire” experience. People say you either hate Delhi or love Delhi, but I truly feel that there is a middle ground one can achieve.

  40. Wow, interesting views on Delhi! I am currently deciding whether to move there or not after having been offered a position in a Delhi-based ad-agency and have heard both good things and bad (as can be said about any place in the world), and I thought this post was an interesting summary of the “cons” of living there.

    To fellow commenters who seem “offended” by the fact that someone DARED not say only good things about Delhi….. get a grip! Take the post for what it’s worth. Even if you absolutely LOVE Delhi and totally disagree with the post, there’s no reason to be aggressive and tell the author all the reasons why they’re a complete idiot for not having enjoyed Delhi. You have the right to like Delhi. The author has the right to NOT like Delhi, whatever their reasoning might be. I live in Paris and rather enjoy it, however, if I saw an article like this about Paris, I would completely understand the author’s critiques on Paris’ weaker points (as there are indeed several!) even if I didn’t 100% agree with them. Obviously the bad things/ photos of the sketch areas of Delhi are included in the post…. it’s called “8 Reasons Why I Hate Delhi”, NOT “An Unbiased List of Pros and Cons of Delhi”. A person posting something called “8 Reasons Why I Love Delhi” likewise would only post pictures of nice areas and talk about good experiences. Take it for what it’s worth people, there are two sides to every coin and in the internet era we are lucky to be able to be exposed to a multitude of opinions and views on various topics! It’s OK to not agree, but can’t we all stay civil!?

  41. Mr.author Why are you singling delhi out by posting only one side of its info much like what slumdog millionare did about mumbai. U should give both sides of it. And now places like gujarat are at par with most european nations search “vibrant gujarat”

  42. Never been to Dehli, but thank you for being honest! I absolutely hated Istanbul for a huge variety of reasons and every time I try to bring them up people always tell me to be more open minded, less judgemental, blah blah blah. But sometimes a city just rubs you the wrong way. The whole world is not perfect and you don’t have to like everywhere. So everyone on here just needs to get over themselves.

  43. My friend-I’ve been living in this hell(thank god not my house) since i was born and I encounter this daily. I Have my own set of standards in cleanliness and it is very irritating to see. This will not change at all not probably till we get more advanced and educated. I will shift to some other country once i’ll have money in my hand. Delhi and Mumbai tops my list of “the most dirtiest” and Don’t forget about “BIHAR” and “BIHARIS”….. you must have a report on them too.

  44. You know you really should make a distinction between Old Delhi and New Delhi. Though both are the part of the same city they actually are worlds apart.

  45. Hi,

    Seems this guy is good enough only to roam in downtown area’s where most of places are crowded.. Go and see other part of delhi mate.. seems you only seen old delhi.. hehe bad for u..

  46. Thanks for the article.
    For those who criticise the author, I must say that I see nothing wrong with sharing his view. We, as adults and travelers, understand than these problems are not exclusive of Delhi and probably there are many cool features that are not mentioned. I guess that if he talked like that about my city I would feel bad about it, but I also know that people don’t take someone else’s opinion as being the plain truth.

  47. Perfect discription of delhi.

    Why do all the indians here, reading the blog and criticizing the article or author. These are just comments from people, who had travelled here and mentioning their experience.
    And if you look at it closely, and look deep in to your heart, and not being a hipocrate, with urgent sense of nation love, every thing written in this article is aboslutely true. And this is what delhi is.. And trust me, its even worst than it mentioned here.. I have lived in US for years and now Delhi, we have no respect for tourist here… Admit the fact!!

  48. I have visited Delhi as both a tourist, first in 2007, and lived there for work, for 3 years, having just moved away. Much of what the author has written is true. It is definitely not a welcoming city, especially if you are a woman. Daily life, living and working there, can also be difficult and frustrating, but for other reasons. For me, Delhi’s biggest and most urgent issue is public health, sanitation and pollution. It’s a naturally dry, dusty city but now that the population has grown way beyond what is sustainable, there are some very serious problems that need to be tackled immediately: water shortages, contaminated water and all the associated health problems (typhoid, cholera, dengue to name a few), no real planning for how to deal with garbage, air and noise pollution. 30 years ago Delhi’s population was around 4 million, now it’s almost 18! The city just can’t handle it. Cars/motorbikes own the city-it is not good for pedestrians and there are not enough sidewalks/pavements.
    And yes, tourists are treated badly, and customer service is seriously lacking.

    @rjshah: you are seriously delusional if you think Gujarat is comparable to European countries. Other Indians would definitely agree with me on this.

  49. Hii…
    I live in delhi
    Here is the answers to your problems-
    1. Take a radio taxi from airport
    2. When you ask help from someone, first notice there shoes, You can easily take help from someone.
    3. Delhi welcomes everybody, people from country-side spits anywhere.
    4. India is famous for its hotel industry, yes its way too expensive, But take any hotel in janpat – taj, le, shangri-la
    5. If you are on back seat, you dont worry about traffic
    6. No solution to that.
    7. MCD has taken various steps to improve, And there is lot of improvements.
    8. Again delhi welcomes everybody,
    My own uncle want to shift to delhi
    (he is willing to sell his whole of 4 floors house in UP
    to buy single floor appartment in delhi which is very small)

  50. I don’t know why people taking this article personally especially when nothing in this article is fabricated. People who are not liking this article are not tourist them self and thinking that this is a attack towards there home, I can assure you that this does not seem to be the case. As a tourist we know there every country has its good and bad but it does not stop tourism.
    As a tourist I also want to know all good and bad about the country in order to enjoy delhi.
    I tell you this article has helped me a lot while I visited Delhi. Because author gave some good advises for tourists but people not liking this article will not be able to see or understand that.
    1) It’s easy to fall foul of a scam : helped me to be more vigilant to have wonderful stay in Delhi.
    2) People are too polite to help…: I made shore I asked direction from at least 3 people to verify if I am on the right path and believe me this article was spot on.
    3) ….but they’re lacking in good manners : if you are mad about this then you know you have a duty to change people around you. Because it is the truth a clean city is what we can all appreciate but this article was help instead of thinking someone was shot on the street I understood that it could be pan 
    4) Even bad accommodation is expensive : may be through this article accommodation can be improved. It will defiantly be a foot in a right direction.
    5) Driving is an extreme sport : again very handy due to this I mostly did my best to rely on Delhi metro railways that inter connects to almost whole of Delhi. Saved me lot of time.
    6) The winter fog can wreck your plans : I was expecting flight delays so carried extra money on hand but luckily all was fine but if I had got stuck during a transit I would be better prepared.
    7) It’s claustrophobic and over-crowded : very important specially if you have medical issues or love your personal space. Good to know just in case if you start getting angry or start to think if people are pick pocketing you. To come down and know that is Delhi.

  51. Delhi is horrible. But why stay in Paharganj, of all places? It is like visiting New York and only going to Harlem.

  52. Seriously, you are the fool if you accept to pay 65 usd for a dirty room.
    All the photos you are showing are from Old Delhi, trying to fool other fool that all Delhi is like that.
    People like you don’t use their brain and travel with their wallet thinking India owes something to you.
    If a fool accepts to pay 65 USd for a hotel, it is your fault, if you accept to pay 500 INr for a ride on autorickshaw, it is your fault.
    No one is forcing you to pay, no one is forcing you to pay for a room without asking to see it. Blame yourself only.

  53. I would only say sorry my friend. I just want to say that I’ve been living here for past 20 years and only want to say, your hate seems like heaven to me. Hehe.. What can you expect from a city with 18 million people in it.. living together having developed some common ways of life. I am talking about a place where you can find temples, mosques, churches, gurudwaras, jain temples, buddhist monastries, parsi places of worships all packed in a single city. Unity in diversity. My dear friend, it is truely the “MINI INDIA” of India. And I everytime feel proud as an Indian when I see the my national flag dancing in air at Central Park, Connought Place(A place you haven’t visited :) :) ), NEW DELHI, The National Capital of INDIA.

    Hope You Visit here,and this time you visit me first and see how we Delhi’tes treat other people. Atithi Devo Bhavah :) :) May God bless and keep you safe and healthy :) :)
    My name : Shashwat Bhardwaj
    My City : New Delhi
    My Country: India

  54. My wife and I have been here now for 4 days. Everything the author has writen is true exceptr the pigs, I have not seen them yet.
    I think the author is quite honest and has not described all bad things here in Delhi. Lets start with Gandhi, one of India’s greatest hero’s. This man was surpressed by the British. India becomes independ, first thing that he states is that Indian better are on a higer evolutionaire state than negro’s.
    So he acts just like the British. In stead of creating Unity , he started separation. People with tonation are on a lower evolutionary level that people who are almost white. This is a tumor in this society.

    Second. Womens rights……this year 21 % increase of rapes. WTF is going on in this country. Is everybody lost ? I feel sorry for women to leave here.
    We walked into old Delhi where more than 80% is Muslim and even though Mohammed tells Muslim guys not to look at other women, They could not to resist and wanting to touch my wifes body parts. Schoolboys are following us and wanted to touch my wife. This is a sick society.

    People are illiterate. stupid and lying all the time. I will never come to this society ever again.

  55. “When we travel, what we really see is ourselves, — and nowhere is this more true than India. This writer was seeing Delhi through her own lens ”

    That’s one of those platitudes that sound really clever… but in reality mean nothing. You don’t need a special “lens” to see litter, dirt, overpriced rooms, crowds etc. You CAN see other, more beautiful things, too, and maybe the writer did see those other things; but not seeing all of the above would simply mean that the person has really, really poor observation skills and underdeveloped senses.

  56. As an Indian, born and raised, I take no offense to this article. I think it’s pretty dead on. Delhi sucks. And in India in general, if you are white and don’t have your wits about you, you’re going to get harassed. Bombay is worse. I was coming back from college one day a few years ago and saw a white girl being groped in the middle of a busy fruit market in 4 bungalows. There were three guys, two looking out and one with his hands on her. Nobody in the crowd responded or was trying to help far as we could tell. It was probably 3 pm in the afternoon. Me and the auto guy were at a stop light and ran towards the scene screaming when we saw what was going on and the three guys ran away. The girl was so scared, we wanted to help her back to get hotel or whatever but she didn’t trust us at all. Which was a fair reaction I’d say. I love India. There is a certain joy and grace here, a certain perspective to life that I appreciate. But at the same time there is a certain depravity innate to this culture that is disgusting. We’ve lost our values and are retaining dim aspects of our heritage.

  57. I have been recently returned from a trip to northern India. Mostly motorbike riding in the himilayans. We spent four days in Delhi.

    I know it is safe to only express positive views about a cit, or at least offer a balanced opinion with positive comments.

    But how about we get real and tell it his it is. Sometimes things are just plain bad or wrong.

    For me Delhi is an environmental crime scene. I saw the most foul scenes of pollution and the city is like sprouting from a rubbish dump.

    I have been to many many countries, rich and poor but the impression Delhi left in me is disgusting. Sorry if this is your home, or if you have created a fake social media image that makes you too afraid to express a real opinion due to fear of being jumped on by the poliiticlly correct fake crowd. The truth is Delhi is filthy. I saw the red fort. pretty shameful upkeep. At least sweep the pavilion floors and get rid of rubble piles in the gardens. Full the pond with clean water. So much for world heritage site, national pride.

    In the city why don’t shop owners accept responsibility for dealing with trash and rubble just outside their store fronts. There are usually too many staff inside doing nothing, and a activating only when a customer appears. Suddenly there is a frenzy of wiping down and fiddling with stuff.

    I saw the new modern subway, airport and few other pieces of infrastructure. Yeah, great but not impressed. How can one be impressed with this when the rest of the city is embedded in toxic filth. The decision making process should be;. New airport, NO NO NO, we must spend this money to solve rubbish, sewagw problem. New Subway or sports stadium. NO NO NO. Clean up the toxic filth problem and then spend money on these treats. There are more billionaires in India than Just about anywhere else. They must be living in a state of deninal, as they move through Delhi from one luxury bubble of space to the next.

    I just ask that when the defenders of Delhi attack me, do it with the image of a toxic shit filled canal in the middle of a resident area, and use that image to balance out arguments providing just more excuses for a failing accross all Delh

    The ccupants, whether super rich or dirt poor. are all responsible. I

    I’ve been back home for a few days and still have the stench of Delhi in my nostrils and clothing. I’m not making this up. It’s the unpleasant truth. I had lots of awsome India experiences, particularly in the himilayans. Had some amazing food. But just like the new Delhi airport and subway, they should not be used the provide balance to the environmental crime that is Delhi city. No more excuses. Delhi needs to be fixed. Stop building more unnecessary crap and fix the problem. Come on Billionaires, come in man J the street, come on India, sort this shit out. I’d you don’t, you are living a life removed from reality. This can be fixed. Ok culturally aware, sensitive fake enlightened ones, whip away. You will feel better giving me a dressing down. Have fun occupying the moral high ground and tell me I have it all wrong.

  58. I don’t understand why most people are offended by this article. As an Indian who has travelled a lot to other countries, I agree with everything that this author has written. New Delhi is very dirty just like other Indian cities. The problem is that people lack civic sense. No matter how much the government does to battle pollution or improve infrastructure and health care, most people don’t give a damn about it and continue on dirtying the city and streets.

  59. Yeah par for the course. As an expat who has lived in Mysore for 15 years I sympathize.
    India has all the problems that 1.4 billion people bring to the table, which by any measure is immense.
    So, enjoy the good, ignore the bad, stay out of trouble, fly if you can and see Rastaban, The Taj, Manali you get the picture. All these are in Northern India so I wouldn’t venture south really. Not much here of interest. Goa? Yeah it’s ok, hippies and beaches ok. Hampi is cool in Karnataka, Pondicherry is also cool (next to Chennai) but these places are really if you are already in Karnataka or Tamil Nadu.
    I would like to see Ajanta which I haven’t yet. Also in Bihar go see Bod Gaya (where the Bhudda was enlightened) and you can see Varanasi. Both places require care so be careful. I don’t recommend taking the train from Calcutta to Gaya too many thieves on the train. When you sleep they will strike and cut your bag strap and jump off the train. Good luck going after them.

    See these places and then go somewhere tranquil like Bhutan or Sri Lanka.
    Both IMHO superior to India especially Sri Lanka.

  60. Guys if you are visiting India please have some saving because luxury will cost ya
    Stay in 5star hotels and live life king size
    Do visit all the places monuments, attractions and also keep in mind, it’s almost impossible for all the other nation to run and manage with this kind of diversity, race, religion and population
    if you want to experience poverty,
    Then don’t complain about it.
    it’s a harsh reality
    In India cheap is cheap and expensive means class

  61. Why u come to India, your countries are so beautiful; I have never been to Delhi due to all traits you mentioned above in your blog

  62. What is listed in this article is absolutely right. I have lived in Delhi for 3 years. I am an Indian and I have lived in pretty much every state in India but Delhi was a bad experience then and yaa nothing has changed since then, it has just become worse. Sure there are places like south Delhi, only crorepatis can afford to live here. If you can afford a hotel in an area like that then sure come to Delhi but otherwise travelling to Delhi is a bad idea I mean just look at the pollution level it’s crazy. We Indians ourselves think twice or thrice before travelling to Delhi so for a foreigner, well you get the picture. The only good thing that I loved about Delhi was the food. The places that have been listed by some of the people like red fort and qutub Minar etc are amazing but how can you explore when you can’t even breathe properly on the roads of Delhi.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *