Posted 16 February 2023 in Art and Festival

12 places to explore the art and culture of Delhi 

Delhi has been the seat of power for several ancient and Medieval dynasties throughout the years. Delhi’s history spans the entire chronological length of Kuru empire in 1200 BCE to the mighty Mughals and later the imperialist British who ruled this city till 1947. However, the Delhi of modern-day India is unlike anything that was witnessed by these rulers of a bygone era. With towering skyscrapers and bustling shopping malls of New Delhi, this city has come a long way from its glorious past and is rapidly stepping into an even more promising future.

There are several places worth visiting in Delhi -

1. Red Fort

The Red Fort, also known as Laal Qila, is one of the most famous places to visit in Delhi. It used to be the main residence of the emperors of the Mughal dynasty. The architectural style of the Red Fort is unique. It is a combination of Persian, Islamic and Indian designs. To this day, the tradition of hoisting the Indian flag by the Prime Minister at the Red Fort on 15th August is followed, which was first started by Jawaharlal Nehru.

2. Qutub Minar

A UNESCO World Heritage Site, Qutub Minar is a minaret that is a part of the Qutub complex. It is believed to be built during the Delhi Sultanate era. However, there is a controversy whether the Qutub Minar was built after the Sufi saint Qutbuddin Bakhtiar of the 13th century or after Qutb-ud-din Aibak. Twenty-seven Hindu and Jain temples of this area were demolished during the construction of Qutub complex. The base of those temples serves as the foundation of the complex.

Read more - Fifteen UNESCO World Heritage sites in India you should visit at least once

3. Jama Masjid

One of the largest mosques in India, Jama Masjid was built by emperor Shah Jahan of the Mughal empire between 1650 and 1656. It is well known for the amount of money spent to build it. Emperor Shah Jahan spent Rs 1 million during that time to construct the entire structure. Jama Masjid consists of two minarets, three domes of Islamic style and three great gates. 

4. Agrasen ki Baoli

Agrasen ki Baoli is a step-well that is believed to have been built by King Agrasen. However, no concrete evidence is there to prove this stance. It is protected by the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI). 

5. Jantar Mantar

Jantar Mantar is a monument of astronomical importance. It was built by the then Maharaja of Jaipur, Jai Singh II, whose intention was to update and revise the tables of astronomical importance and calendars. Jantar Mantar was primarily used as an observatory. It was used to trace the movements of the sun, moon and other celestial bodies. 

6. India Gate

India Gate is a war memorial, erected in the memory of 90,000 Indian soldiers in the British Indian Army of colonial India who died during the First World War.

Read more - An Ode to India's Freedom: 8 Historical Monuments to Visit during Republic Day

7. Rashtrapati Bhavan

The President of India officially resides at Rashtrapati Bhavan. It was built by Edwin Landseer Lutyens, a British architect, between 1912 and 1929.

8. Lotus Temple

Lotus Temple is a temple of Bahá’í faith. One of the most popular tourist destinations in Delhi, the temple is famous for its lotus-like structure. It is an architectural marvel and has won many awards for it.

9. Akshardham Temple

With architecture that is reminiscent of the glorious past of Delhi, this temple built in 2005 is one of the largest temples in the world. It is indeed a modern marvel that can match the feats achieved by the Maurya and Gupta rulers of ancient Delhi. Hence, it has become a popular tourist and pilgrimage destination in modern-day Delhi. 

10. Select Citywalk

This massive 1,300,000 sq ft shopping complex was built in 2007 and represents one of the achievements of modern Delhi. While shopping destinations like the Chandni Chowk market built in 1650 may have the old-world charm, Select Citywalk has a futuristic outlook into what Delhi has become today.

11. Garden of Five Senses

One of the creations of Delhi Tourism Transportation Development Corporation, this 20-acre park is covered in lush greenery and can be the perfect picnic spot for you and your family during your visit to Delhi. This modern park, which is a stark contrast to the Medieval Lodhi Gardens, is open from 9 am to 7 pm.

12. Waste to Wonder Park

Built recently in 2019 by Delhi Municipal Corporation, it contains replicas of the seven wonders of the world. However, they are unique because of being made entirely with waste products. It is truly a sight to behold as it represents Delhi’s commitment to sustainability while stepping into the future.

Travel tips

Some tips to ensure a smooth journey are listed below:

  • When going shopping in Delhi’s famous markets, bargaining skills come in handy.
  • Metro is the best way to travel around avoiding the traffic.

How to reach Delhi?

Delhi is accessible by all modes of transport. It is well connected by numerous flights, buses, trains and even shuttle services. Let us explore how Delhi can be reached by each mode of transportation.

  • By air: Delhi Airport, that is, Indira Gandhi International Airport is one of the busiest airports in India. Regular flights connect Delhi with all the major cities of India like Kolkata, Mumbai, Surat, Hyderabad and Bengaluru. Even for offbeat places, flights are usually available at Indira Gandhi International Airport. 
  • By rail: Northern Railways has its headquarters in Delhi. The city is served by the following railway stations: Old Delhi Railway Station, Nizamuddin Railway Station, Sarai Rohilla Railway Station, Anand Vihar Railway Station and New Delhi Railway Station.
  • By road: The Delhi-Gurugram expressway (NH8) connects Delhi to Jaipur and is a part of the Golden Quadrilateral that connects all the metropolitan cities of India by road. There is also the Delhi-Noida flyway that connects Delhi with the suburban region of Noida. Similarly, the Delhi-Faridabad skyway (NH 44) connects Delhi with Faridabad in Haryana.

Climate in Delhi

Summers in Delhi are extremely hot and dry. Temperatures in summers can be as low as 24°C but usually reaches 40°C as well. The city experiences harsh winters, with the average seasonal lowest often reaching 8°C. The average temperatures during the monsoon season in Delhi can be as high as 35°C. However, the light to moderate showers during this season help to bring the temperature down to 26°C on some days. 

When to visit Delhi?

The months between December and February form the best time to visit Delhi. This is the winter season, so it is the perfect time to avoid the scorching heat of summers and explore all the historical and modern marvels that Delhi has to offer.

Read more - Dilli ki sardi: Here’s why Delhi winters are worth all the hype

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