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Debating Delhi versus Mumbai • We Blog The World

Debating Delhi versus Mumbai • Tour Travel Hotels

Let’s face it: For some travelers, Delhi vs. Mumbai isn’t much of a contest. This is the case in two main situations.

In some cases, travelers simply don’t want anything to do with India’s monstrous mega-cities – they prefer the beaches of Kerala or Goa, or the tea plantations of Darjeeling in the Himalayan foothills. This article will not be about these people, as much as we love them.

The more open-minded strayers, of course, want to spend time in an Indian megalopolis – they’re just worried that they can’t handle two. If this second group includes you, I wrote today’s post to help you make a decision. And maybe, to overcome your anxiety and visit both Delhi and Mumbai!

Why travelers to India are confused

I feel like I’ve spoken to more than a few weary travelers comparing Mumbai to Delhi, even when their trips are still in the early planning stages. They assume these two cities will be extremely populated and plagued with all the smells, sounds, and poor air quality that come with any place with such a crowd. The bad news? This assumption is true to some extent, and quite important for people who haven’t traveled much to developing countries like India.

What I think travelers don’t realize is that a few days in Delhi or Mumbai even though neither ends up being your cup of Chai, are precisely as enjoyable as the preparations you make to get there. For example, although Delhi is not known as one of the most walkable cities in the world, investing in comfortable shoes for women or men can help isolate yourself from its traffic (for which it is infamous). when walking between tourist attractions that are relatively close to each other. .

Delhi vs Mumbai: differences (and similarities)


Mumbai and Delhi are both rightly renowned for their terrible traffic and the chaotic way the local drivers navigate it. Although Mumbai and Delhi have urban rail networks, my tips for getting around are the same in both cases: stay in a hotel near the attractions you most want to visit; walk as much as possible. In Mumbai, for example, this may involve staying in southern Bombay, from which you can walk to India Gate and get on the boat for Elephanta Island.

Urban landscape

Another way to compare Mumbai and Delhi is to see how the two cities are organized. Mumbai, as far as most travelers are concerned, occupies a number of colonial-era skyscrapers (and ultra-modern skyscrapers) concentrated on a relatively small peninsula jutting out into the sea. Delhi, on the other hand, it is both less centralized and more extensive, with historic attractions such as the India Gate and Qutb Minar scattered amid its seemingly endless urban centers.

Landscape and climate

As I mentioned in the previous paragraph, downtown Mumbai (at least the part you are likely to visit) is located along the coast, although it is part of the Arabian Sea it is not particularly idyllic. Mumbai has a humid and hot climate, with months between June and September around torrential rains daily. Delhi, on the other hand, sits on a vast arid plain except for heavily polluted areas. Yamuna River; he experiences scorching sunny summers and cold winters to the bone.

Cuisine and culture

The good news, when it comes to comparing Mumbai and Delhi RE: food, is that both cities are filled with all kinds of Indian food. One key difference is in the types of street food you find. In Mumbai, you might find a spicy and crispy dish. masala dosa or vada pav (fried vegetable sandwiches), while Delhi is famous for chaat, savory snacks that you could describe as Indian tapas. In terms of the broader culture, flamboyant Bollywood is ubiquitous in Mumbai; Delhi is generally more traditional (and Muslim).

Nearby destinations

Delhi is popular not only as a destination in itself, but also as a place that travelers base themselves before visiting the Taj Mahal, generally accessible by night travel. For Mumbai, it’s a bit trickier, at least in terms of the destinations most travelers actually want to visit. While the city of Pune is relatively close, nor is it particularly popular; Goa looks nearby on the map, but actually requires a very long train ride or somewhat inconvenient (albeit cheap) flight.

Alternative Indian megacities

I have personally found a lot to love in both Mumbai and Delhi over the years, but I can understand if you are put off by either or both. Here are some other major Indian cities you might consider visiting:

  • Calcutta: Also known as Calcutta, the capital of West Bengal is one of the most colorful and complex cities in India
  • Hyderabad: Although it is landlocked and relatively far from other tourist attractions, this city is an architecture lover’s dream
  • Amritsar: Located not far from the border with Pakistan, this Sikh town is famous for the magnificent Golden Temple
  • Chennai: This southeastern coastal city, once called Madras, is the center of Tamil culture in India
  • Jaipur: The “pink city” of India is the hub of the state of Rajasthan and the gateway to the mysterious Thar Desert.

Want to ditch the debate between Mumbai and Delhi altogether and go somewhere relaxing?

FAQ: Travel to Mumbai and Delhi

Is Mumbai Better Than Delhi?

Mumbai is superficially more interesting and worth a visit than Delhi for some Indian travelers, given its seaside location, South Bombay chic, and the city’s generally more cosmopolitan feeling. However, it is difficult to make a value judgment and say that one is “better” than the other.

Is Mumbai more expensive than Delhi?

Mumbai and New Delhi are extremely cheap by global standards. You can stay in three or four star hotels for around $ 50 per night; Five-star hotels can also be rented at low rates, but not as cheap as those you’ll find in Southeast Asian cities such as Bangkok and Kuala Lumpur.

Is Delhi Safe for Women?

Delhi has a reputation as a hub for sexual assault – and it’s not entirely unjustified. High-profile sexual assaults by Western social media influencers have made this perception of the Indian capital even more pronounced, perhaps to an unfair degree. While I want to avoid commenting too much on this question, given that I am neither a woman nor a crime specialist, it is safe to say that women traveling alone in Delhi should be vigilant.

The bottom line

I cannot guarantee that this article will make it easy for you to choose between Mumbai and Delhi. I have a lot of love (and, of course, some hate!) For each of these Indian megacities, as they seem very similar to me in my opinion, having visited both on several occasions. I hope my words have nuanced where other bloggers only offer hysterical and hysterical statements. Like India as a whole, these complex cities demand careful consideration, as long as you can possibly find yourself in one or the other.

Robert schrader

Robert Schrader is a travel writer and photographer who has traveled the world independently since 2005, writing for publications such as “CNNGo” and “Shanghaiist” along the way. His blog, Leave Your Daily Hell, offers a mix of travel tips, destination guides, and personal essays covering the more esoteric aspects of life as a traveler.

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