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New Delhi Travel Guide:

Agra, the land of the Mughals, holds a special place in the hearts of seasoned travelers and first-time visitors alike. Nestled on the fertile banks of River Yamuna, this city drew the attention of the mighty Mughals, who made it their capital and left a legacy of stunning architecture that millions throng to see till today. The many monuments and ruins and the bustling everyday life of Agra, gives visitors a vivid glimpse in to the grandeur and history of the Mughal dynasty. Though best known for the Taj Mahal, Agra is home to many other stunning structures like the majestic Agra Fort, Fatehpur Sikri and Sikandra, many of which are recognized as UNESCO World Heritage Sites.

New Delhi
Gate way

Getting Around
Auto rickshaws and cycle rickshaws are easily available from almost all parts of the city. Horse carts or tongas are also available. It is advisable to take the pre-paid auto rickshaws or negotiate and agree the fares with the drivers in advance. Air-conditioned cars can also be hired from travel agencies for full- or half-day sightseeing.

Tourist Traps in the City
Agra is swarming with touts and self-made guides offering tours of Taj Mahal, Agra Fort and other major tourist attractions. First time visitors to the city should handle all unsolicited requests from guides, hotels booking agents, shopkeepers, or taxi drivers with a firm no. Be especially wary of ‘art experts’ who offer to show you local artisans at work. While such a demonstration would be interesting, most are followed by aggressive requests for sale. Again, a firm ‘no’ will work.

Local Custom
While at Agra, tourists are expected to respect the local customs that include dress restrictions. While visiting Taj Mahal and other religious shrines, visitors are expected to wear clothing that covers their upper arms and legs – this is especially applicable for women. Footwear is to be taken off outside before entering places of worship.

As the city of the Taj Mahal, Agra is filled with memorabilia and souvenirs that try to replicate the marble and inlay work of this monument. One can easily get their own Taj Mahal and choose from a wide range of finely crafted jewelry, carpets, and leather goods as well.

While in Agra, keep in touch with the outside world through cell phones, Internet access, or the wired phone services.

Delhi, officially National Capital Territory of Delhi (NCT), is the largest metropolis by area and the second-largest metropolis by population in India. It is the eighth largest metropolis in the world by population with more than 12.25 million inhabitants in the territory. There are nearly 22.2 million residents in the greater National Capital Region urban area (which also includes Noida, Greater Noida, Ghaziabad, Gurgaon and Faridabad along with other smaller nearby towns). The name Delhi is often also used to include urban areas near the NCT, as well as to refer to New Delhi, the capital of India, which lies within the metropolis. Although technically a federally administered union territory, the political administration of the NCT of Delhi today more closely resembles that of a state of India with its own legislature, high court and an executive council of ministers headed by a Chief Minister. New Delhi, jointly administered by both the federal Government of India and the local Government of Delhi, is also the capital of the NCT of Delhi.

Delhi was laid out to the south of the Old City which was constructed by Mughal Emperor Shah Jahan. However, New Delhi overlies the site of seven ancient cities and hence includes many historic monuments like the Jantar Mantar and the Lodhi Gardens.

Calcutta was the capital of India until December 1911 during the British Raj. However, Delhi had served as the political and financial centre of several empires of ancient and medieval India, most notably of the Mughal Empire from 1799 to 1849. During the early 1900s, a proposal was made to the British administration to shift the capital of the British Indian Empire (as it was officially called) from Calcutta to Delhi. Unlike Calcutta, which was located on the eastern coast of India, Delhi was located in northern India and the Government of British India felt that it would be easier to administer India from Delhi rather than from Calcutta. On December 12, 1911, during the Delhi Durbar, George V, the then Emperor of India, along with Queen Mary, his Consort, made the announcement that the capital of the Raj was to be shifted from Calcutta to Delhi, while laying the foundation stone for the Viceroy's residence in the Coronation Park, Kingsway Camp.

The foundation stone of New Delhi was laid by King George V and Queen Mary at the site of Delhi Durbar of 1911 at Kingsway Camp on December 15, 1911, during their imperial visit. Large parts of New Delhi were planned by Edwin Lutyens (Sir Edwin from 1918) and Herbert Baker (Sir Herbert from 1926), both leading 20th century British architects, and the contract was given to Sobha Singh (later Sir Sobha Singh). Lutyens first visited Delhi in 1912, and construction really began after World War I and was completed by 1931, when the city later dubbed "Lutyens' Delhi" was inaugurated on February 13, 1931, by Lord Irwin, the Viceroy. Lutyens laid out the central administrative area of the city as a testament to Britain's imperial aspirations.

of 2005, the government structure of the New Delhi Municipal Council includes a chairperson, three members of New Delhi's Legislative Assembly, two members nominated by the Chief Minister of National Capital Territory of Delhi (NCT) and five members nominated by the central government. The current Chief Minister of the NCT is Sheila Dikshit. According to the Indian constitution, if a law passed by Delhi's legislative assembly is repugnant to any law passed by the Parliament of India, then the law enacted by the parliament shall prevail over the law enacted by the assembly.

New Delhi is governed through a municipal government, known as the New Delhi Municipal Council. Other urban areas of the metropolis of Delhi are administered by the Municipal Corporation of Delhi. However, the entire metropolis of Delhi is commonly known as New Delhi in contrast to Old Delhi.Utkrisht Raithwal and Varun Barot are the new vice president and presidents

Being a planned city, New Delhi has numerous arterial roads, some of which have an iconic status associated with them such as Rajpath, Janpath and Akbar Road. In 2005, private vehicles accounted for 30% of total transportation demand for the Delhi metropolitan area. Road construction and maintenance is primarily the responsibility of NDMC's Civil Engineering Department. Underground subways are a common feature across New Delhi. As of 2008, 15 subways were operational. In 1971, the administrative responsibility of the Delhi Transport Corporation (DTC) was transferred from Municipal Corporation of Delhi to Government of India following which DTC extended its operations to New Delhi. In 2007, there were 2700 bus stops in New Delhi, of which 200 were built and maintained by NDMC and the rest by DTC.

The Delhi Metro, constructed and operated by the Delhi Metro Rail Corporation (DMRC), connects the city with the rest of the metropolis of Delhi. Under an agreement with NDMC, DMRC can acquire land for the construction of metro rail and stations in New Delhi without any financial implications. NDMC is also constructing multi-level parking systems in collaboration with DMRC at various Delhi metro stations across New Delhi to increase parking space.The New Delhi Railway Station which is the main railway station in Delhi, is the second busiest and one of the largest stations in India connects Delhi with the rest of the country.

Indira Gandhi International Airport (DEL) is the primary aviation hub of Delhi. In 2006–07, the airport recorded a traffic of more than 23 million passengers, making it one of the busiest airports in South Asia. New US$1.93 billion Terminal 3 will handle an additional 34 million passengers annually. Further expansion programs will allow the airport to handle more than 100 million passengers per annum by 2020. Safdarjung Airport is the other airfield in Delhi used for general aviation purpose.