Top 10 Places To Visit In Delhi

1.Qutub Minar

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. The tower has five distinct storeys, each marked by a projecting balcony and tapers from a 15 m diameter at the base to just 2.5 m at the top. The first three storeys are made of red sandstone; the fourth and fifth storeys are of marble and sandstone. At the foot of the tower is the Quwwat-ul-Islam Mosque, the first mosque to be built in India. An inscription over its eastern gate provocatively informs that it was built with material obtained from demolishing '27 Hindu temples'. A 7 m-high iron pillar stands in the courtyard of the mosque. It is said that if you can encircle it with your hands while standing with your back to it your wish will be fulfilled.

The origins of Qutab Minar are shrouded in controversy. Some believe it was erected as a tower of victory to signify the beginning of the Muslim rule in India. Others say it served as a minaret to the muezzins to call the faithful to prayer.

No one can, however, dispute that the tower is not only one of the finest monuments in India, but also in the world. Qutab-ud-din Aibak, the first Muslim ruler of Delhi, commenced the construction of the Qutab Minar in 1200 AD, but could only finish the basement. His successor, Iltutmush, added three more storeys, and in 1368, Firoz Shah Tughlak constructed the fifth and the last storey.

The development of architectural styles from Aibak to Tughlak is quite evident in the minar. The relief work and even the materials used for construction differ. The 238 feet Qutab Minar is 47 feet at the base and tapers to nine feet at the apex. The tower is ornamented by bands of inscriptions and by four projecting balconies supported by elaborately decorated brackets. Even though in ruins, the Quwwat Ui Islam (Light of Islam) Mosque in the Qutab complex is one of the most magnificent structures in the world. Qutab-ud-din Aibak started its construction in 1193 and the mosque was completed in 1197.

Iltutmush in 1230 and Alla-ud-din Khilji in 1315 made additions to the building. The main mosque comprises of an inner and outer courtyard,decorated with shafts and surrounded by piller. Most of these shafts are from the 27 Hindu temples, which were plundered to construct the mosque. It is, therefore, not surprising that the Muslim mosque has typical Hindu ornamentation. Close to the mosque is one of Delhi's most curious antiques, the Iron Pillar.

Facts About Qutub Minar
1.Tallest brick minaret in the world
2.Surrounded by historical monuments
3.The (almost) foray into Bollywood
4.Standing strong
5.Quwwat-ul-Islam Masjid

Importance
The Qutub Minar is a towering 73 meter high tower built by Qutub-ud-Din Aibak in 1193. The tower was built to celebrate Muslim dominance in Delhi after the defeat of Delhi's last Hindu ruler. This tower is the highest tower in India, complete with five storeys and projecting balconies.

Best Time To Visit
Qutub Minar remains open on all days of the week, and the visiting timings are from 7:00 am to 5:00 pm. The best time to visit this monument is during the winter season, when the weather is cool and pleasant for sightseeing.

2.Akshardham

'Akshardham' means the divine abode of God. It is hailed as an eternal place of devotion, purity and peace. Swaminarayan Akshardham at New Delhi is a Mandir – an abode of God, a Hindu house of worship, and a spiritual and cultural campus dedicated to devotion, learning and harmony. Timeless Hindu spiritual messages, vibrant devotional traditions and ancient architecture all are echoed in its art and architecture.The mandir is a humble tribute to Bhagwan Swaminarayan (1781- 1830), the avatars, devas and great sages of Hinduism. The traditionally-styled complex was inaugurated on 6 November 2005 with the blessings of HH Pramukh Swami Maharaj and through the devoted efforts of skilled artisans and volunteers.
Each element of Akshardham echoes with spirituality – the Mandir, the Exhibitions and even the Gardens.
The Akshardham mandir has over two hundred murtis, representing many of the spiritual stalwarts over many millennia. The spiritual premise of Akshardham is that each soul is potentially divine. Whether we are serving the family, the country our neighbors or all living beings the world over , each service can help one move towards divinity. Each prayer is a call towards improving oneself and moving closer to God.
A visit to Akshardham is a spiritually enriching experience. Whether it is in realising the power of prayer, in feeling the strength of non-violence, in being aware of the universal nature of Hinduism’s ancient principles, or just in admiring the beauty of God’s abode on Earth –- each element has a spiritual significance.

Facts About Akshardham
1.Opened 6th November 2005
2.Constructed by Bochasanwasi Shri Akshar Purushottam Swaminarayan Sanstha (BAPS)
3.Inspired by HH Yogiji Maharaj (1892-1971 CE)
4.Created by His Holiness Pramukh Swami Maharaj
5.More than 300,000,000 volunteer hours went into making the complex
6.Over 8,000 volunteers from across the world participated in building it
7.Mandir built from intricately carved sandstone and marble
8.Exhibitions on Hinduism, including Bhagwan Swaminarayan's life and teachings such as prayer, compassion, and non-violence.
9.Open gardens, water bodies and step-well styled courtyard

Importance
The record was presented for Akshardham as the World's Largest Comprehensive Hindu Temple (certificate). The certificate states, "BAPS Swaminarayan Akshardham in New Delhi, India, is the world's largest comprehensive Hindu temple. It measures 356 ft (109 m).

Best Time To Visit
6pm to 7pm

3.Humayun's Tomb

Humayun’s Tomb, Delhi is the first of the grand dynastic mausoleums that were to become synonyms of Mughal architecture with the architectural style reaching its zenith 80 years later at the later Taj Mahal. Humayun’s Tomb stands within a complex of 27.04 ha. that includes other contemporary, 16th century Mughal garden-tombs such as Nila Gumbad, Isa Khan, Bu Halima, Afsarwala, Barber’s Tomb and the complex where the craftsmen employed for the Building of Humayun’s Tomb stayed, the Arab Serai.

Humayun’s Tomb was built in the 1560’s, with the patronage of Humayun’s son, the great Emperor Akbar. Persian and Indian craftsmen worked together to build the garden-tomb, far grander than any tomb built before in the Islamic world. Humayun’s garden-tomb is an example of the charbagh (a four quadrant garden with the four rivers of Quranic paradise represented), with pools joined by channels. The garden is entered from lofty gateways on the south and from the west with pavilions located in the centre of the eastern and northern walls.

The mausoleum itself stands on a high, wide terraced platform with two bay deep vaulted cells on all four sides. It has an irregular octagon plan with four long sides and chamfered edges. It is surmounted by a 42.5 m high double dome clad with marble flanked by pillared kiosks (chhatris) and the domes of the central chhatris are adorned with glazed ceramic tiles. The middle of each side is deeply recessed by large arched vaults with a series of smaller ones set into the facade.

The interior is a large octagonal chamber with vaulted roof compartments interconnected by galleries or corridors. This octagonal plan is repeated on the second storey. The structure is of dressed stone clad in red sandstone with white and black inlaid marble borders.

Humayun’s garden-tomb is also called the ‘dormitory of the Mughals’ as in the cells are buried over 150 Mughal family members.

The tomb stands in an extremely significant archaeological setting, centred at the Shrine of the 14th century Sufi Saint, Hazrat Nizamuddin Auliya. Since it is considered auspicious to be buried near a saint’s grave, seven centuries of tomb building has led to the area becoming the densest ensemble of medieval Islamic buildings in India.

Humayun’s garden-tomb is built on a monumental scale, grandeur of design and garden setting with no precedence in the Islamic world for a mausoleum. Here for the first time, important architectural innovations were made including creating a char-bagh – a garden setting inspired by the description of paradise in the Holy Quran. The monumental scale achieved here was to become the characteristic of Mughal imperial projects, culminating in the construction of the Taj Mahal.

Humayun’s Tomb and the other contemporary 16th century garden tombs within the property form a unique ensemble of Mughal era garden-tombs. The monumental scale, architectural treatment and garden setting are outstanding in Islamic garden-tombs. Humayun’s Tomb is the first important example in India, and above all else, the symbol of the powerful Mughal dynasty that unified most of the sub continent.

Facts About Humayun,s Tomb
1.Humayun’s Tomb Houses 100 Tombs inside the Complex
2.Humayun’s Tomb is the First Ever Garden Tomb Built in India
3.Made by a Wife for her Husband
4.Humayun’s Tomb Interiors
5.Humayun’s Tomb Dome Height
6.Humayun’s Tomb was Completed in 8 Years
7.Humayun’s Tomb was the Inspiration Behind Taj Mahal
8.Declared as UNESCO World Heritage Site

Importance
This tomb, built in 1570, is of particular cultural significance as it was the first garden-tomb on the Indian subcontinent. It inspired several major architectural innovations, culminating in the construction of the Taj Mahal.

Best Time To Visit
open from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m.

4.Lodhi Garden

Lodhi Gardens is a sprawling green park located in the heart of Delhi. It houses the mausoleums of two Delhi Sultanate rulers, namely Mohammed Shah and Sikander Lodhi, along with other structures. Boasting of impressive architecture and impeccable natural beauty, the garden and the structures within it echo the national capital’s illustrious tryst with history. The architectural heritage of around 500 years and the serene green setting make Lodhi Gardens a prime attraction in Delhi. Make sure to book your hotels in Delhi in an area that gives you easy access to this green oasis.
Lodhi Gardens aka Lodi Gardens traces its history back to 1444 when the tomb of Mohammed Shah, a Sayyid Dynasty ruler of the Delhi Sultanate, was erected here by his son and the last ruler of the dynasty, Ala-ud-din Alam Shah. Another significant tomb located in the area is that of Sikander Lodi from the Lodi Dynasty, which was built in 1517 by his son Ibrahim Lodi. Several other structures were also built here during the rule of the Sayyids and Lodis. When Emperor Akbar occupied the throne of Delhi, he made use of the Lodhi Gardens area as an observatory and stored records in a library built for this purpose.

Over a period of time, the area around these tombs developed into two villages. It was only in 1936, when the British were in power, that the villagers were removed to renovate the garden. Lady Willingdon, the wife of Marquess of Willingdon (the then Governor General of India) landscaped the area and turned it into an attractive garden. The garden was officially inaugurated in 1936 and was given the name Lady Willingdon Park to honor her efforts.

When the country gained independence in 1947, it was renamed as Lodhi Gardens. In 1968, the garden underwent re-landscaping by Joseph Stein, an American architect who also established a glasshouse in the garden.

Architecture
Lodhi Gardens cover an area of over 90 acres and houses many 15th-century structures that display spectacular architectural beauty. The mausoleum of Mohammed Shah features Islamic and Hindu architectural styles. Designed with eight small domed structures or chattris, each adorned with a lotus finial, ornate pinnacles at the corners, a huge central dome, and an octagonal chamber, the tomb is a sight to behold.

The mausoleum of Sikander Lodi draws inspiration from Mohammed Shah’s tomb. Built in the Indo-Islamic style, it also features an octagonal design with a central dome, but without any chattris. The mausoleum stands as an enclosed edifice with a domed entryway and has Mughal architectural designs on its walls. It is considered to be the first enclosed garden tomb in India

Things to do in Lodhi Garden
1.Guided Walking Tour
2.Health Awareness
3.Tomb of Muhammad Shah Sayyad
4.18th Century Mosque
5.Sheesh Gumbad
6.Sikandar Lodhi’s Tomb

Importance
Lodhi Gardens aka Lodi Gardens traces its history back to 1444 when the tomb of Mohammed Shah, a Sayyid Dynasty ruler of the Delhi Sultanate, was erected here by his son and the last ruler of the dynasty, Ala-ud-din Alam Shah.

Best Time To Visit
lodi Garden is always a pleasure to visit but spring is the best time to visit, full of flowers and songs of birds. And if you can go in the morning then it is hard to leave the place.

5.Chandani Chowk

Chandni Chowk, is one of the oldest and busiest markets located in central north Delhi. It is believed to be the largest wholesale market in Asia. This market has some of the most well-known Indian-wear shops in the capital. Right from daily-wear sarees to bridal sarees, suits and lehengas, Chandni Chowk is truly the hub of the latest fashion at the most affordable prices. The speciality of the market lies not only in its affordability but also the modernity of patterns, designs and styles on the dress items. That is not to say that stores offering traditional ethnic Indian textiles and embroideries cannot be found. There are also many accessory shops in this market dealing in precious and semi-precious metals and stones.
Chandni Chowk is said to be established when the Mughal emperor Shah Jahan laid the foundation of Shahjahanabad, which was set to be the capital amongst the cities he ruled. It was initially shaped as a square at the centre of which was a pool that shimmered in the moonlight which is what the market is named after. The shops around the bazaar were arranged in a half moon pattern around the square.
Common folklore says that Shah Jahan had Chandni Chowk built so that Jahan Ara could buy whatever she wanted. Chandni Chowk acted as a common, commercial gathering place for traders and merchants of all industries who would flock to the capital from all around the country. In the early days, the bazaar was best known for its silver merchants. This portion of Chandni Chowk’s history has sparked the debate that the market has been named after the trade of silver since ‘Chandi’ is the Hindi word for silver.
The reflecting pool and the half moon pattern of the shops have long been replaced by the numerous shops trading in raw cloth, readymade apparel, gold as well as silver jewelry, decorative items, as well as food stuff, electronics and others.

Facts About Chandni Chowk
1.Lanes which are endless
2.Yore Architecture present in Chandni Chowk
3.Harmony among people
4.Indulgence
5.A commercial hub
6.Best thing to visit Chandni Chowk
7.Dariba Kalan
8.Camera Market
9.Natraj’s Dahi Bhalle
10.Meena Bazaar

Importance
Chandni Chowk is one of the oldest and busiest markets in Old Delhi. This vibrant market came to existence when the fifth Mughal Emperor, Shah Jahan, shifted his capital from Agra to Shahjahanabad, now Old Delhi, in the mid 17th century.

Best Time To Visit
Most of the shops open by 10 am. So any time after that is good to visit it. You can try at around 4 pm.

6.India Gate

India Gate, official name Delhi Memorial, originally called All-India War Memorial, monumental sandstone arch in New Delhi, dedicated to the troops of British India who died in wars fought between 1914 and 1919. India Gate, which is located at the eastern end of the Rajpath (formerly called the Kingsway), is about 138 feet (42 metres) in height India Gate is one of many British monuments built by order of the Imperial War Graves Commission (later renamed Commonwealth War Graves Commission). The architect was Sir Edwin Lutyens, an Englishman who designed numerous other war memorials and was also the principal planner of New Delhi. The cornerstone was laid in 1921 by the duke of Connaught, third son of Queen Victoria. Construction of the All-India War Memorial, as it was originally known, continued until 1931, the year of the formal dedication of New Delhi as the capital of India. Lutyens declined to incorporate pointed arches or other Asian motifs in his design but strove instead for classical simplicity. The result is often described as similar in appearance to the Arc de Triomphe in Paris. On the rooftop above the archway is a broad shallow domed bowl that was intended to be filled with flaming oil on ceremonial occasions. No fires have been set on the rooftop in recent years, but four eternal flames are now sheltered at the base of the structure. The flames demarcate the Amar Jawan Jyoti, a small monument that has served as India’s tomb of the unknown soldier since 1971.
Most of the place-names in the dedication were theatres of operation in World War I, but the Third Anglo-Afghan War is also singled out. The names of individual Indian soldiers—more than 13,000 of them, according to the Commonwealth War Graves Commission—are inscribed in smaller letters on the monument.

Architecture
Sir Edwin Lutyens, who designed the India Gate, was a leading war memorial architect and was also a member of IWGC. He built it as a secular memorial free of any religious association or cultural ornamentation. Also, Lutyens wanted the monument to be a classical one, so refused to incorporate any Asian motifs such as pointed arches. The architectural style of India Gate is that of a triumphal arch and is often compared with the Arc de Triomphe in Paris, the Gateway of India in Mumbai, and the Arch of Constantine.
Situated in the middle of a hexagonal complex, the structure is 42 meters tall and 9.1 meters wide. The whole structure is made using yellow and red sandstone which was brought in directly from Bharatpur.
About 150 meters towards the east of the India Gate, there is a canopy that was built in 1936 as a tribute to former Emperor of India, King George V. There used to be a marble statue of George V, but it was removed due to opposition from some political parties after India’s independence. Currently the statue is located in Delhi’s Coronation Park.
India Gate also houses a small structure called Amar Jawan Jyoti, which consists of a marble pedestal with a cenotaph on its top. The cenotaph has the words ‘Amar Jawan’ written on all four sides in golden letters and also has a reversed rifle, capped by a soldier helmet, installed on it. The structure is surrounded by permanently burning flames fueled by CNG on all the four sides.

Things to Do at India Gate
1.Every evening, this imposing structure is lit up with spotlights, making it one of the top tourist attractions to visit in Delhi during nights.
2.The huge lawns surrounding the gate are a favorite spot for people to enjoy basket picnics, play cricket or indulge in kite flying.
3.The Children’s Park located near the gate is a great place to spend some time with your kids.
Rajpath, the boulevard on which the monument is located, is where many people, both young and old, come for early morning walks.
5.Within a kilometer of India Gate, you will find Andhra Bhavan, one of the iconic restaurants in Delhi known for its lip-smacking traditional food.
6.The Pandara Road Market, which is also located within walking distance of India Gate, is an amazing food market to experience Delhi’s street food flavors.

Facts about India Gate
1.The names of the soldiers inscribed on India Gate include a female staff nurse who died during the war.
2.It is said that the empty canopy behind the India Gate symbolizes the British retreat in India.
3.Sir Edwin Lutyens also designed other important monuments in India including Viceroy House which is now known as the Rashtrapati Bhavan.

Importance
It stands as a memorial to 84,000 soldiers of the British Indian Army who died in between 1914 and 1921 in the First World War, in France, Flanders, Mesopotamia, Persia, East Africa, Gallipoli and elsewhere in the Near and the Far East, and the Third Anglo-Afghan War.

Best Time To Visit
Since this iconic monument is situated on an open square, there are no timing restrictions as such. The monument is open all day on all days of the week. However, the best time to visit India Gate is between 07:00 PM and 09:30 PM.

7.Mughal Garden

Spread over a vast expanse of 15 acres, Mughal Gardens has often been portrayed, and deservedly so, as the soul of the Presidential Palace. The Mughal Gardens draw its inspiration from the Mughal Gardens of Jammu and Kashmir, the gardens around the Taj Mahal and even miniature paintings of India and Persia.
Sir Edwin Lutyens had finalized the designs of the Mughal Gardens as early as 1917, however, it was only during the year 1928-1929 that plantings were done. His collaborator for the gardens was Director of Horticulture, William Mustoe. Like the building of Rashtrapati Bhavan have two different styles of architecture, Indian and western, similarly, Sir Lutyens brought together two different horticulture traditions together for the gardens, the Mughal style and the English flower garden. Mughal canals, terraces and flowering shrubs are beautifully blended with European flowerbeds, lawns and private hedges.
In Christopher Hussey’s The Life of Sir Edwin Lutyens, Sir Lutyens’ wife has written that the garden was a “paradise.” She added, “…flowers are set in such masses, producing a riot of colour and scents, that, when, with the fountains playing continually, there is not the least sense of stiffness. The round garden beyond beats everything for sheer beauty and is beyond words."
The Mughal Gardens had up till now been opened for the public only during the annual festival, Udyanotsav, held in the months of February-March but Mughal Gardens, which forms the third Circuit of Rashtrapati Bhavan tour, will now be open for the public from August till March.The prime attractions of Udyanostav 2016 were Tulips and Primulas.
Rose remains a key feature of the Mughal Gardens even today. The Gardens boasts of growing 159 celebrated varieties of roses which blossom primarily in the month of February and March. They include, Adora, Mrinalini, Taj Mahal, Eiffel Tower, Modern Art, Scentimental, Oklahoma (also called black rose), Belami, Black Lady, Paradise, Blue Moon and Lady X. The Mughal Gardens also include roses named after people of national and international fame such as Mother Teresa, Raja Ram Mohan Roy, Mr. Lincoln, John F. Kennedy, Jawahar, Queen Elizabeth, Christian Dior amongst others. Arjun and Bhim, from the Mahabharata, also find place in the presidential palace.
Apart from roses, tulips, Asiatic lilies, daffodils, hyacinth and other seasonal flowers beautify the gardens of Rashtrapati Bhavan. There are more than seventy varieties of seasonal flowers including exotic bulbous and winter flowering plants. The garden also grows 60 of the 101 known types of bougainvilleas. Edging and flowering of flower beds is done with alyssum, daisy, pansy etc. The grass that covers the garden is the doob grass, which was originally brought from Calcutta (now Kolkata) when the Mughal Gardens was being planted. The Gardens has almost 50 varieties of trees, shrubs and vines including Moulsiri tree, Golden Rain tree, flower bearing Torch Tree and many more. At present over three hundred permanent and casual employees are deployed for the development and maintenance of the gardens of Rashtrapati Bhavan.
The vast grounds of the President’s Estate are not only used for leisure and recreation. Its occupants have ensured that the open space of the Estate is utilized in an efficient manner. Starting from C. Rajagopalachari, who was the first Indian resident of Rashtrapati Bhavan, each resident of the Rashtrapati Bhavan has contributed to the vast Estate in their own manner. During the time of C. Rajagopalachari, a portion of the grounds was used to cultivate wheat, as a gesture to address the problem of shortage of food in the country. President Kalam had contributed by making Herbal Gardens, Tactile Gardens for the visually handicapped, Musical gardens, Bio-Fuel Park, Spiritual and Nutrition garden and more. The Bonsai Garden and nature trails in Rashtrapati Bhavan were President Pratibha Patil’s contribution along with Project Roshini which aimed at making the President’s House an environment friendly habitat by efficient use of resources and use of renewable energy sources. Rainwater harvesting for recharging groundwater in the presidential estate was done by President K.R. Narayanan in collaboration with the Centre for Science and Environment.
Mughal GardenThe most remarkable expression of democracy has been opening up of the gardens and grounds for the public. Circuit three of the tour takes us through the pristine Mughal Gardens of Rashtrapati Bhavan that have been designed as three successive terraces. It is said that the large geometrical designs of the garden can only be appreciated from the first story of the building. First being the Rectangular Garden, followed by Long Garden and finally the Circular Garden.

Facts About Mughal Garden
1.The lotus shaped fountains
2.250 varieties of roses
3.Udyanotsav
4.Evergreen Fragrant Shrubs
5.Symbolism
6.Best Bonsais Country
7.Variety Of Climbers
8.Doob Grass
9.Rare Green Rose
10.Peacock's Abode

Importance
The fountains and water-chutes of Mughal gardens represented the resurrection and regrowth of life, as well as to represent the cool, mountainous streams of Central Asia and Afghanistan that Babur was famously fond of.

Best Time To Visit
Mughal Garden is open for public visit only in the months of February and March when the flowers are in their full bloom. In Mughal Gardens Udyanotsav is a month long festival celebrated every year from February to March.

8.RASHTRAPATI BHAVAN

Rashtrapati Bhavan, home to the President of the world’s largest democracy, epitomizes India’s strength, its democratic traditions and secular character.
Rashtrapati Bhavan was the creation of architects of exceptional imagination and masterfulness, Sir Edwin Lutyens and Herbert Baker. It was Sir Lutyens who conceptualized the H shaped building, covering an area of 5 acres on a 330 acre estate. This mansion has a total of 340 rooms spread over four floors, 2.5 kilometres of corridors and 190 acres of garden area.
Painstaking efforts of thousands of labourers including masons, carpenters, artists, carvers, and cutters saw the completion of this masterwork in the year 1929. Originally built as the residence for the Viceroy of India, Viceroy's House as it was then called, has metamorphosed into today’s Rashtrapati Bhavan. From being a symbol of imperial domination and power, it is today emblematic of Indian democracy and its secular, plural and inclusive traditions. Former President of India, Shri R. Venkataraman has rightly said, “Nature and man, rock and architecture, have rarely collaborated to so fine a purpose as in the fashioning of the magnificent Rashtrapati Bhavan.”
When constructed, it was called the Viceroy’s House. The name changed to Government House on August 15, 1947 when India became independent. Finally, its name was changed to Rashtrapati Bhavan during the term of President Dr. Rajendra Prasad.
The Rashtrapati Bhavan has served as a home to Viceroy Lord Irwin and subsequently to other Viceroys of India till Lord Mountbatten, the last British Viceroy and the first Governor-General of independent India in 1947. Lord Mountbatten administered the oath of Prime Minister to Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru under the Central Dome of Rashtrapati Bhavan in 1947. C. Rajagopalachari, the first Indian Governor-General also took oath under the Central Dome on June 21, 1948 and became the first Indian to reside at the Government House, as it was then called.
The grandeur of this majestic presidential palace, however, was humbled by the very modest gestures of Rajagopalachari. Finding the Viceroy’s room too royal to stay, he shifted to smaller rooms (now called the Family Wing of the Rashtrapati Bhavan) for his personal use. This has been followed by all subsequent residents of the Bhavan. The erstwhile Viceroy’s Rooms have been converted into the Guest Wing for stay of Heads of State and Government and their delegations. As the first president of India, Dr. Rajendra Prasad took Rashtrapati Bhavan as his abode in the year 1950 after assuming office.
Little known is the fact that Mahatma Gandhi, much before the political heads of independent India, was an early visitor to the newly constructed Viceroy’s House. The Viceroy had invited him for a meeting which was met with dissent by Winston Churchill. Nevertheless, Mahatma Gandhi carried with him salt to add to his tea as a mark of protest against the British Salt tax. The series of meetings between Mahatma Gandhi and Lord Irwin finally culminated in the famous Gandhi Irwin pact that was signed on March 5, 1931.
Rashtrapati Bhavan has since independence hosted defence investiture ceremonies, swearing in of its leaders, honoured its bravehearts and achievers, has heard the speeches of world leaders, signed pacts and treaties with various countries, celebrated India’s Independence and Republic Day functions along with other festivals.
The gate of Lutyens’ masterpiece Delhi which he described as “one complete organism, perfect and inseparable” have now been opened for the public on the initiative of Former President of India, Shri Pranab Mukherjee since August, 2012.
The journey through this work of art is divided into three circuits. Circuit 1 covers the Main Building and Central Lawn of Rashtrapati Bhavan including its premier rooms like the Ashok Hall, Durbar Hall, Banquet Hall, its Drawing Rooms and many more. Circuit 2 consists of the tour of the Rashtrapati Bhavan Museum Complex, while Circuit 3 promises the tour of Rashtrapati Bhavan’s famous gardens- The Mughal Gardens, Herbal Garden, Musical Garden and Spiritual Garden.

Facts About Rashtrapati Bhavan

  1. Rashtrapati Bhavan also known as Presidential palace is the second largest in the world after the Quirinal Palace, Rome, Italy.
  2. Took 17 years for its completion as its construction was started in 1912 and completed in 1929, around 29,000 people have worked.
  3. It has more than 300 rooms including the presidential office, guest rooms and staff rooms.
  4. It has strength of 750 staff, of which 245 are in the President’s Secretariat.
  5. It has been built using 700 million bricks and 3 million cubic feet of stones.
  6. It is built on Raisina Hill which was named after one of the two villages (Raisini and Malcha) and was cleared in order to build this mansion. It was constructed by an architect namely Sir Edwin Landseer Lutyens.
  7. Before Independence it was formerly known as the Viceroy’s House and is the largest residence in India.
  8. Every year in February Mughal Garden behind the Rashtrapati Bhawan is opened during the festival called Udyanotsav.
  9. It comprises of various gardens of different shapes such as rectangular, long and circular. Most mesmerising sight of them was the Circular Garden having terraced bowl flower beds blooming with various colours.
  10. Statue of Gautama Buddha which belongs to the golden age of art and culture during Gupta age around 4th-5th Century was there at the back of Durbar Hall of Rashtrapati Bhavan.
  11. The statue at which it is placed is same as that of the height of India Gate.
  12. One more impressive thing is the Banquet Hall of Rashtrapati Bhavan in which 104 guests can sit at one time. Not only it consists of secret galleries for the musicians, but the system of lights are amazing as they are situated over the portraits of former Presidents, which serves as a signal to the butlers about when to serve, when not to serve and when they have to clear the hall.
  13. In the Gift Museum of Rashtrapati Bhavan, the King George V’s silver chair of 640 Kg is there in which he sat at the Delhi Durbar in 1911.
  14. In the Marble Hall of Rashtrapati Bhavan some rare portraits and statues of Viceroys and British Royalty are there. And amazing is it displays the lifelike wax statue of our current President, Shri Pranab Mukherjee which was created by Asansol based artist.

Importance
Rashtrapati Bhavan, home to the President of the world's largest democracy, epitomizes India's strength, its democratic traditions and secular character. Rashtrapati Bhavan was the creation of architects of exceptional imagination and masterfulness, Sir Edwin Lutyens and Herbert Baker

Best Time To Visit
are Friday, Saturday and Sunday. Visiting days of Rashtrapati Bhavan Museum Complex (Circuit No.
are all days except Mondays. Visiting days of Rashtrapati Bhavan Gardens (Circuit No.
are Friday, Saturday and Sunday only during the months from August to March.

9.Lotus Temple

The Lotus Temple (also known as Kamal Mandir) in Delhi is a matchless architectural marvel and one of the prime tourist attractions of the National Capital. Shaped in the form of a spectacular lotus with white petals, it makes for a break-taking sight and attracts countless visitors throughout the year. Unlike most other places of worship, this temple or Bahai House of Worship does not allow ritualistic ceremonies and has no fixed pattern to conduct worship. A glorious symbol of oneness, this place of worship must be on your itinerary when planning a trip and booking your hotels in Delhi.
The Lotus Temple is a Bahai House of Worship, also known as Mashriqu’l-Adhkár, opened to the public in December 1986. Like all other Bahai temples, it is also dedicated to the oneness of religions and humanity. Followers of all religions are welcome to gather here to pray, worship, and read their scriptures. The Lotus Temple in Delhi is touted as one of the seven major Bahai Houses of Worship located across the world and the only one in Asia.

Architecture
Surrounded by lush green landscaped gardens, this lotus-inspired structure spreads across 26 acres of land. Made using white marble sourced from Greece, it comprises of 27 petals in the free-standing state. These petals are organized in groups of three to lend the structure a nine-sided circular shape, as has been indicated in the Bahai scripture. There are nine entrances that open to a huge central hall, which is about 40 meters in height. The temple has a seating capacity of 1300 people and can accommodate 2500 people at a time.

There are no altars or pulpits inside the Lotus Temple, which is a common feature of all Bahai Houses of Worship. The interiors are devoid of any statues, pictures, or image as well. An eye-catching feature of the temple is the nine pools of water located around the petals. They give the impression of a half-bloomed lotus in a water body and the whole structure looks spectacular when illuminated in the night.
This temple was designed by Fariborz Sahba, an Iranian-American architect while the structural design was done by Flint and Neill, a UK firm. Larsen & Toubro Limited’s ECC Construction Group undertook the construction work of the temple and completed it at a cost of 10 million dollars.

Facts about Lotus Temple
1.With around 4.5 million visitors per year, it is among the most visited structures in the world.
2.The temple is featured on a ₹6.50 postage stamp in India.
3.Fariborz Sahba chose the lotus symbol as it’s a common symbolism in Hinduism, Jainism, Buddhism, and Islam.
4.It is the first temple in the national capital that makes use of solar power.
5.Ardishír Rustampúr, a Bahai follower from Hyderabad in the Sindh province of Pakistan, donated his entire savings to fund the land purchase of the temple.

Importance
The Lotus Temple is a Bahai House of Worship, also known as Mashriqu'l-Adhkár, opened to the public in December 1986. Like all other Bahai temples, it is also dedicated to the oneness of religions and humanity. Followers of all religions are welcome to gather here to pray, worship, and read their scriptures.

Best Time To Visit
Lotus Temple is an ideal one to visit during the winter and spring time of October to March as the scorching heat of summers is not idyllic for travelling in Delhi.

10.Hauz Khas

The Hauz Khas complex located in Hauz Khas in southern Delhi has a water tank, an Islamic seminary, a mosque, a mausoleum and a pavilion which has been built around the urban village of Delhi. According to the medieval history of these monuments, they were constructed during the reign of the 13th century Delhi Sultanate. It is only part of Siri, Siri was the second medieval city of India (1296-1316) during the Allauddin Khilji dynasty of Delhi Sultanate. The origin of the Hauz special name comes from the Persian word "Hauz", which means "water tank" and "special" meaning "imperial" and "royal tank".

This water tank and reservoir were constructed by Khilji to supply the water of Siri residents. This tank was destroyed during the reign of Feroz Shah Tughlaq (1351-88). Many buildings present in the premises (mosque and madrasa) and tombs were made to ignore this reservoir. There is an L-shaped building towards the tomb of Firoz Shah, which shows the view of this tank.

Hauz Khas During the 61980s decade, Hauz Khas village was associated with domed tombs from the 14th to 16th century royal Muslims. Hauz Khas Village was developed as the residential co-commercial area of the upper class of the southernmost metropolis of India. Now this expensive tourism is the commercial area where many art galleries, rich boutiques and restaurants are present. Hauz is a lakes and ducks in a special lake, which remains a tourist attraction.

Excavation of this reservoir was done to complete the need for supply of water in a newly built fort built in Siri during the reign of Alauddin Khilji (1296-1316). After Khilji, it was originally known as Hauz-e-Alai. But during the reign of the Mughar Firoz Shah Tughlaq (1351-1388) of the Tughlaq dynasty, this reservoir was re-erected and the blocked entrance of the water was cleaned. The area of this tank is about 50 hectares (123.6 acres), which is 600 m (1,968.5 ft) wide and 700 m (2,296.6 ft) long, with a depth of 4 m (13.1 ft). When this tank was built, its storage capacity at the end of each monsoon was 0.8 Mcum. Now the shape of this tank has reduced considerably due to encroachment and silt, but its current condition is kept well.
Hauz Khas 7 Firoz Shah, who had his kingdom from the new state of Firozabad (now known as Firoz Shah Kotla) - was called the fifth city of Delhi. Firoz Shah was also called the most enlightened ruler of Delhi. Firoz Shah was also known for "a deep understanding of historical precedent and statement of dynastic validity and monumental architecture". He has been credited for the renovation of the new monument (many mosques and palaces) created by him, for innovative architectural style, irrigation works and old buildings like Qutub Minar, Sultan Clock and Suraj Kund. They also constructed two engraved columns of Ashok which were transported from Meerut and Ambala to Delhi. He built many monuments near the Haus Keshi south and east reservoir.

Facts about Hauz Khas Village
1.The domed tomb of Firoz Shah was built by the ruler himself.
2.The umbrella-like structures adorning the Hauz Khas Complex are believed to be the cenotaphs of the madrassa teachers.
3.Legend has it that Chor Minar was used by Alauddin Khilji to behead and exhibit the heads of thieves through its 225 holes.

Importance
In Urdu language, 'Hauz' means "water tank" (or lake) and 'Khas' means "royal", giving it the meaning — the "Royal tank". The large water tank or reservoir was first built by Alauddin Khalji (r. 1296–1316) (the plaque displayed at the site records this fact) to supply water to the inhabitants of Siri Fort.

Best Time To Visit
The Hauz Khas Complex is open from Monday to Saturdays from 10:30 AM to 7:30 PM. Normally a visit to the Hauz Khas village takes anywhere between 2 to 6 hours. The best time to visit this place is between the months of October to March as both the summers and winters in Delhi are very harsh