Delhi is a place, which serves as a testament to India’s glorious historical past. As the famous poet Mirza Ghalib once wrote, “The world is the body and Delhi is its soul”. Delhi is indeed the essence of India that reverberates with rich historical significance through its imperial monuments and regal architecture. The richness of Delhi is well reflected in the grand historical monuments through its majestic architectures. If you plan to visit Delhi, then the historical monuments are a must see. The monuments take you down the history and give you a glimpse of its royal heritage. The monuments highlight the dynamism, cultural wealth and rich traditions of Delhi. Doesn’t matter how much you read about these monuments, the majesticity of these repositories cannot be fully described in words. Thus, visiting these monuments is the only way to experience and appreciate the architecture. If you plan to visit Delhi, then exploring this article should help you know more about the monuments to visit.
Red Fort or the Lal Quila is the largest and the most famous monument of Old Delhi. This fort is one of the extravagant and glorious monuments of the Mughal architecture, erected by the great Mughal Emperor Shah Jahan between 1638 AD and 1648 AD. As per the records, Shah Jahan built this monument with the ambition of empowering the Mughal Emperor. But unfortunately his powers were seized by his son Aurangzeb before he could move his capital from Agra to Delhi. This magnificent fort has two entrances, one is called the Delhi Gate and the other is the Lahore gate. The must see places inside the fort are - Rang Mahal, Mumtaz Mahal, the Hammam, Khas Mahal and Diwan-e Khas. Every year the Prime Minister of India addresses the nation from Red Fort on Independence Day. If you plan a vacation in Delhi, then don’t forget to visit this glorious Mughal architecture for a riveting experience.
India Gate or The All India War Memorial is a majestic high arch of 42m situated in the middle of Delhi, close to Connaught Place. Built by the British Edwin Lutyens in commemoration of Indian soldiers who sacrificed their life in World War I and the Afghan wars, the foundation for this arc was laid on February 10, 1921 and the gate was completed in 1931. The best time to visit India Gate is during evening, when the mobile vendors attract huge crowds with their typical Indian fast food delights such as bhelpuri, pakodas, fruit chat and other foodstuffs.
Qutub Minar in Delhi is the most spectacular architecture of Mughals and is one of the largest towers in the world. This Mughal structure was initiated by Qutub-ud-din Aibak, the founder of Slave Dynasty in 1192 and was later completed by his son-in-law Iltutmish. The inscription at the base of the minaret tells about the history of Qutub Minar. This exclusive red brick and stone structure is a great example of Indo-Islamic Afghan architecture. Other structures inside the Qutub Minar are Quwwat-ul-Islam, Alai Minar and the tomb of Iltutmish. The manicured garden around the Qutub Minar is the most preferred leisure spot in Delhi. This structure is 15 km to the south of Delhi and the best time to visit this place is between October to March. So don’t be surprised if you see a great number of tourists’ guides wandering near Qutub Minar during winter!
Raja Jai Singh II of Jaipur built Jantar Mantar, the noteworthy astronomical observatory, in the year 1774. Jantar Mantar is an outstanding and inquisitive creation, which has the set of instruments that can graph the lane of universe. The periphery of the building consists of four instruments called the Samrat Yantra, the Ram Yantra, the Jayaprakash, and the Mishra Yantras. The entry to this amazing observatory is free and is open for public from 10 am to 6 pm.
Lotus Temple in Delhi is an outstanding construction of Bahai faith. Located on Bahapur Hills at Kalkaji, this fascinating feat of modern-day architecture was established in the year 1986. The half-opened lotus temple, made of beautiful white marbles, cement, dolomite and sand, promises a soothing, calm and tranquil experience. The credit for this stunning design goes to Persian architect from Canada Fariborz Sahba. The outstanding part of the temple is the wide central hall where people sit and meditate for long time. If you plan to visit Delhi then don’t forget to steal a glimpse of this amazing creation.
Jama Masjid, the biggest mosque in India is located near Sadar Bazar in old Delhi. The Masjid was built by Shah Jahan in 1650 and was completed after six years. The outstanding white marble and sandstone Jama Masjid stands on a rocky elevation and looks at you proudly with its magnificent beauty. The main eastern entrance, which was once used by emperor himself, remains close on most of the days. The visitors can enter the mosque both from the northern and southern gates.
Humayun’s tomb, also famous as Humayun Ka Maqbara, is one of the renowned world heritage sites, which hold the remains of famous Mughal emperor Humayun. This massive mausoleum, commissioned by Humayun's wife Hamida Banu Begum, stands as an exemplary work of Mughal architecture, clearly inspired by Persian art. This remarkable red sandstone structure, located in Niazmuddin East, has undergone extensive restoration works over the years, but still continues to charm the visitors with its architectural brilliance.
The Parliament House or the Sansad Bhavan may come across as any other administrative buildings to you, but don’t let that deceive you. This massive building, that stands tall at the end of Parliament Street, was designed by Herbert Baker and was initially named as the Circular House. This massive structure with voluminous corridor and massive pillars truly is a monumental feat of artisanship. Just get a permit from the reception office on Raisina Road to take a walk down the Lok Sabha, Rajya Sabha, and the famous library of course.