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Delhi is said to be one of the oldest existing cities in the word. It is a vast city full of architectural wonders, where history, culture and tradition juxtaposed with modernity. It has been the capital of at least eight major civilizations, stretching back thousands of years — and all of them have left behind monuments, tombs, forts and other treasures. Delhi caters a wide range of tourist attractions – from historical monuments to modern architectural marvels, from traditional bazaars to mega malls and from parks to spiritual centers. It is very important therefore to plan ahead. Here are some suggestions that would help you with your plan. The great thing is that many of them are free:
1. India Gate Located at the centre of New Delhi stands the 42 m high, an archway in the middle of a crossroad. Almost similar to its French counterpart, it commemorates the 70,000 Indian soldiers who lost their lives fighting for the British Army during the World War I. At night it glows warmly under floodlights, and the gardens that line its boulevard are a popular place to enjoy a warm summer’s evening.
Lodi Gardens provides a serene retreat from city life, and is the place to come if you’re feeling tired and worn out. The Garden were built-in 1936 by the British around the tombs of the rulers of 15th and 16th centuries. The 90-acre Garden is an excellent place to relax, walk, jog and enjoy the beauty of nature. The National Bonsai Park situated in the Gardens is yet another attraction.
The tomb was built-in 1570, and houses the body of the second Mughal emperor, Humayun. It was the first of this type of Mughal architecture to be built-in India, and the Mughal rulers followed it up with an extensive period of construction all over the country. The tomb is part of a greater complex that’s set amongst beautiful gardens.
4. Bahai (Lotus) Temple The Bahai Temple is commonly referred to as the Lotus Temple, as it’s shaped like a lotus flower and is the last of seven Major Bahai’s temples built around the world. Made out of white marble, the temple belongs to the Bahai Faith, which proclaims the unity of all people and religions. Everybody is welcome to worship there. The tranquil gardens and ponds surrounding the temple are also a great place for a relaxing picnic.
Qutab Minar is a soaring, 73 m-high tower of victory, built-in 1193 by Qutab-ud-din Aibak immediately after the defeat of Delhi’s last Hindu kingdom. This tallest brick minaret in the world, is an incredible example of early Indo–Islamic architecture. Some believe that it was made to signify victory and the beginning of Muslim rule in India, while others say it was used to call the faithful to prayer. The tower has five distinct stories, and is covered with intricate carvings and verses from the holy Quran. There are also a number of other historic monuments on the site.
Red fort is one of the great historical monument of India. It was built by the fifth Emperor of Mughal dynasty Shahjahan in 1638 when he transferred the capital from Agra to Delhi. The walls were designed to keep out invaders, now they mainly keep out the noise and confusion of the city. Its beautiful architecture and historical significance attracts many visitors every day. Inside is you will see the Drum House, the Hall of Public Audiences, the white marble Hall of Private Audiences, the Pearl Mosque, Royal Baths and Palace of Color.
This great mosque of Old Delhi is the largest in India, with a courtyard capable of holding 25,000 devotees. The mosque took 13 years to build, and was completed in 1650. A strenuous climb to the top of its southern tower will reward you with a stunning view across the rooftops of Delhi. Be sure to dress appropriately when visiting the mosque or you won’t be allowed in. This means covering your head, legs and shoulders. Attire is available there.
This temple is the world’s largest Hindu Temple. The construction was completed in the year 2005 which brilliantly showcases the essence of India’s ancient architecture, traditions and timeless spiritual messages. In the 12 acres of land, you will find the temple, museum, several parks and a huge cultural center that throws light on the traditions and customs followed in India. You can go boating in the water canals here.
A visit to Gandhi Smriti will show you the exact spot where Mahatma Gandhi, affectionately referred to as the Father of the Nation, was assassinated on January 30, 1948. He lived in the house for 144 days up until the time of his death. The room that he slept in, kept exactly how he left it, and the prayer ground where he held a mass congregation every evening are both open to the public. Plenty of photos, sculptures, paintings, and inscriptions are also on display.
Among most popular places to visit in Delhi is the Jantar Mantar, an ancient celestial observatory built by Maharaja Jaisingh of Udaipur in 1794 on the main Parliament Street at Connaught Place. The instruments at Jantar Mantar are undoubtedly fascinating for their ingenuity however the high-rise buildings around have obstructed accurate observations.
11. Rashtrapati Bhawan It is a very renowned place of Delhi. The Rashtrapati Bhavan is something to definitely visit in Delhi. It has rich history as people believe that it was the palace of viceroys of India at British period. At present the president of this country live in this house. The building has a royal impression that still looks new. It was designed by Edwin Lutyens. You will be surprised to know that the entire construction of the building took 19 years. There is a small garden attached with this building which is open for public.
Built in 1939 and inaugurated by Mahatma Gandhi, Birla Mandir is in reverence to Lord Narayana and Goddess Laxmi. One of the major attractions in Delhi and frequented places, Birla Mandir is a true testimony of India’s unity in diversity philosophy. The temple is open to visitors of very faith.
Situated in the heart of Connaught Place, the present Gurdwara was once a bunglow of Mirza Raja Jai Singh – hence giving its name Bangla Sahib. A sacred place with its deep-rooted history dating back to the Mughal Emperor Aurangzeb, the Gurdwara is known to have saved the residents of Delhi from a severe epidemic. Even today, this impressive Gurdwara attracts devotees from afar to take a dip in the holy water here to heal them from suffering.
I hope that the above information will help you in coming up with a wonderful travel itinerary.