If India is the country of your expat dreams but you’re not sure where to settle then read all about its top three cities.
As India’s capital, Delhi is a legacy of the past but also a city modernising for the future. It is a major travel gateway into the nation and part of the overland route across Asia. Old Delhi was a capital of Muslim India from the 12th to 19th centuries and historical monuments, forts and mosques can still be found there. New Delhi, the Imperial city, was made India’s capital by the British.
Delhi is also known as Yoginipura, or the Fortress of Yoginis (meaning female divinities).
Hindu, Punjabi and English are all spoken in Delhi, with English being the official language of business.
Delhi is the industrial hub of northern India and the nation’s third largest city.
One of the world’s most eye-catching architectural structures can be found in Delhi. The Lotus Temple, made of marble, cement, dolomite and sand, is shaped to look like a lotus flower. The totally unique space welcomes visitors from all religions and offers a safe space to contemplate and meditate.
Delhi’s iconic 33 metre high Red Fort is built of red sandstone and has towered over Old Delhi since the 1700’s. The Fort stands now as a monument to the power of the Mughal emperors.
The National Museum, in Janpath New Delhi, is home to thousands of Indian artefacts and art works. The Museum has a wide range of exhibitions, from one showing the evolution of Indian scripts and coins to another focussing on Buddhist art.
As the most populous Indian city and the capital of the city state of Maharashtra, Mumbai is a hectic, bustling metropolis full of noise and colour. Mumbai is known for its thriving night-life, tourist appeal and being India’s commercial hub.
Mumbai was formally known as Bombay.
The Bollywood film industry is based in Mumbai.
The main language spoken in Mumbai is Maratha, although as an international city many other languages also form part of the city’s dialogue and English is both widely spoken and understood.
The Gateway of India monument was built when Britain governed India and was designed to commemorate the visit of King George V and Queen Mary. The gateway has a rather ironic history as it was built to welcome a British monarch but also used as an exit for when the last British troops left the city.
Very few monuments stand testament to the British rule in India. Of those that do, the Prince of Wales Museum is probably the most impressive. The building itself blends both English and Indian styles of architecture and inside there are a range of exhibitions, including Indian miniature paintings, Tibetan art and natural history.
If you’re a fan of beaches then no visit to Mumbai would be complete without checking out the Chowpatty Beach. This stretch of sand and sea is a hotspot of festivities, with a carnival like atmosphere at night. At Chowpatty you can sample some local street food, ride a camel, have a go on a merry-go-round and mingle with a heady mix of tourists and locals.
This is a city with several nicknames, including the ‘Silicon Valley of India’ and the ‘Garden City.’ Bangalore has built up quite a reputation for its IT sector and is fast becoming an important financial and cultural centre.
Bangalore has the most bars of any city in Asia.
There are more engineering colleges in Bangalore (21) than in any other city in the world.
Bangalore was the first city in India to have electricity, and now has the highest number of software companies of any Indian city.
If you like interesting architecture and royal residences you’ll love Bangalore Palace. Built in 1887, the palace was inspired by the English Windsor castle and built in a mock Tudor style – complete with turrets and battlements. The Palace has been open to the public since 2005 and has extensive grounds to wander in.
When you’ve got young children to entertain an attraction like the Crazy Waters Amusement Park is a godsend, and a perfect way of keeping them busy for several hours. The water park has several different water and non-water based rides, giant slides and an on sight restaurant.
Bangalore KR Market is one of the city’s busiest markets and a riot of colour and smells. The market takes place within the Tipu Sultan Palace and is well worth checking out.