(October 27, 2014) New Delhi
We’ll have until dusk to complete all the visits remaining in
Delhi. Our flight to Maldives is scheduled to leave at 6:40 PM.
Our hotel is located close to Mehrauli
archaeological park and with
good communications with the airport. The rest of our highlights and
the hotel are close to metro stations of the same line, the yellow one
The spots marked at map are:
0- Hotel Silver Ferns
1- Conaught Place and Jantar Mantar
2- Bangla Sahib Temple
3- India Gate
4- Rashtrapati Bhavan
5- Humayun's Tomb
6- Lodi Gardens
7- Lotus Temple
8- Mehrauli Archaeologycal Park
9- Indira Gandhi International Airoport
We leave the hotel nearly 11:30h, after a good
breakfast where we’ve found, between the jam portions, one with a
vegetable mix which turned out to be the spiciest I’ve never tasted.
Who does take that for breakfast?
It’s late, but we arrived late last
night, so we must focus on the main attractions we want to visit. We
reach the Metro by Saket station and find modern and clean facilities
where we get our single tickets in form of tokens by 16 Rs each. These
tokens are like plastic coins machines can read to access just by
approaching them and, at the exit, they’re introduced and kept by the
machines. We leave in “Central Secretariat” station, after nine stops
from our origin.
Once in the street we stop the firs rickshaw we see. My idea
was getting a deal for all our visits today but, as this driver doesn’t
speak English, I can barely manage to be taken to India Gate by 20 Rs.
The area is fenced and it must stop in a busy
avenue so we can walk to it by the wide path with park at both sides.
It is crowded and, as today is Monday, I think it may still be holydays
India Gate is a relay huge arch. We explore the
area and the fountains in the park while walking back to the avenue
through the grass.
We’re talking when I realize there is nobody
around us and shouts we were hearing were addressed to us. People are
stopped on an imaginary line we’ve clearly passed and a man with white
shirt is yelling at us asking in English if we’re deaf. I can see two
military men with machine guns between us and the avenue we were going
to. I understand we must go back to the imaginary line, but I can’t
understand why. Once with the people I ask about to them and I get a
simple “Prime Minister” as answer which allows me to understand what is
happening: there is a security line set around the avenue, which is now
cut to the traffic, because the Prime Minister is going to pass by it.
After some minutes we see a limousine with big
cars in front and behind, all of them black, pass by the avenue. It’s
over, we are free to go now. India is a noisy country, did the security
man really expect we could distinguish his shouts for us among the
When the traffic is back in the avenue we take a
rickshaw and this time we’re able to bargain for the rest of our
visits: 500 Rs for going to Rashtrapati Bhavan Presidential Palace
nearby, then go to Rajghat (Gandhi memorial we couldn’t see our first
day), then to Humayun’s Tomb and finally to be delivered on any station
in the Metro yellow line, which we’ll use to come back to the hotel.
We quickly cover the distance on this wide and
long avenue to the palace to take a quick look at it from the beautiful
It’s 1 PM when we reach Rajghat. We find a couple
of military men guarding the closed entrance. I’m confused as I checked
this place is opened every day, but not today. When I ask about it to
the guards they answer a short “V.I.P”. So Prime Minister, who has
already made us wait before, is visiting Gandhi memorial with a guest.
What I don’t understand is it makes it to be closed until tomorrow
morning at 9 AM!
This means all we can see from outside is all
we’ll see from this place. My fears now are for the next visit:
Humayun’s Tomb. I can only hope V.I.Ps don’t want to go there too.
We get there after a 30 minutes ride on which we’ve passed
along Purana Qila, which walls we’ve been able to see from Mathura Road.
Humayun’s Tomb is actually a funerary complex.
After paying 500 Rs for the two tickets we explore first Isa Khan’s
Tomb, a beautiful circle mausoleum.
Then we pass by other minor tombs until reaching
the Gate to Humayun’s Tomb, which recalls to Taj Mahal’s, as the
mausoleum itself can do too. This was built before, though.
We enjoy the sight of this monument which we like
that much as per using it as header of all the site pages of this
travel. Then we go up and inside to see the simple interior.
This complex is very beautiful but time goes by
really fast and it’s 2 PM, so we walk back to the entrance to meet our
rickshaw for the last ride.
Now it only must deliver us on any metro station
belonging to yellow line, but the driver seems not knowing which
stations are in one line or other. I suggest “Central Secretariat”, as
it was the one we arrive from and is close to city highlights, but he
ends taking us to “Jar Bagh” after asking to another driver.
We are in the station at 2:40 PM and our time is
consuming but still we let the hotel station pass to leave at the next:
Qutub Minar. This station is above the street and we can see the
popular minaret quite far. The drivers waiting for customers confirm we
cannot go by walking and we take one to the entrance to Qutb
Archaeological Area by 100 Rs.
We get another two more ticket by 250 Rs each to
get into the place some minutes after 3 PM. It must be a quick visit
Once inside we easily locate the huge and ancient minaret at the
left of the complex. IT’s beautiful, with all the carvings over the
heterogeneous brown hues.
We take our pictures for a while, looking after getting as
less people as possible because, again, this place is full of local
visitors. It’s also full of doves flying all around.
We explore the rest of the area with magic spots with its combination
of beauty and old. Somehow, we meet again here the surprising
popularity of my wife and people wanting a picture with her take time
which was already short. Even a family makes her take the youngest
child to be in a picture with all together.
When we leave the place it’s close to 4 PM and all we
must do now is leaving the country. We walk through the massive offer
for rickshaws and go where the taxis are parked across the street.
Before reaching it, a man is asking me if I need one, I answer yes and
ask for rate to go to our hotel, taking our baggage and deliver to
airport. 1000 Rs he says and I take the deal without second thoughts.
Remember a taxi provided by the hotel to the airport is 1500 Rs by
In just a few more than one hour we are at airport. We check in our
baggage and are finally free. Our flight leaves in one hour and forty
minutes so we finally got the time to lunch. The big breakfast has
allowed us don’t need it before. We eat some samosas at the same hall
watching the movement of the travellers around. The airport hall is
still dressed for Diwali.
Everything goes fine and, at 6:40 PM we leave India to Colombo.
Sri Lankan airplanes are comfortable, with good entertainment and food.
At Colombo airport we have time enough to explore the bunch of gift
shops and purchase some samples of the famous tea of this country.
It’s around 2 AM when we reach Maldivian airport crazy about
getting the bed. We follow everybody to get into the ferry to Male
paying less than one dollar in local money (10 Maldivian Rufiyaa) we’ve
got from an ATM at the hall.
When we arrive at the capital city of this country, and on despite of
the dark of the night, I can read, just in front of the quay, and in
white neon, the name of our hotel: Nasandhura Palace.
We are grateful now of choosing a hotel at this location and we get the desk for our last task of the day.
We get one of that good news which is also bad: we’ve got a message
from Kuredu with the time of our flight to the island, so I avoid any
hassle of calling tomorrow to know it. The bad part is we must be at 8:25 AM on counter 59.
But we still get another problem: they cannot read my credit
card. It is fine, as I’ve just used it to get cash, so we show
that cash to pay but we’re told local money is not accepted! I offer to
pay in euros, but we’re told they don’t accept euros either. It seems
only dollars are accepted, so we’ve got a lack of options here. The
woman understands that and calls, on despite of the time, to the
manager to be allowed paying in euros, but an incredibly bad exchange
Anyway, room is fantastic and we need to take advantage of it at once as is going to be jus a few hours here.