There are destinations that are famed for their beaches, destinations that abound with mountains & hills and destinations boasting wondrous landscapes. But, what does Delhi boast? It barely possesses any natural attraction; over and above, it is counted among the most populous cities in the world. Still it finds a MENTION in the bucket list of every traveler. Wondering why?
Here are some reasons:
Image Source: The Hindu
Delhi is flanked by Yamuna River in the east and Aravali Range in the west and south, which makes it a traditional city. It has been ruled by powerful emperors, of whom the first ones were Pandavas and at that time Delhi was known as Indraprastha. Years passed and Delhi came in the hands of Mughals, who built mesmeric edifices and brought their unique culture to the town. After being pampered by Mughals for centuries, this splendid town came in the hands of British who introduced it to modern technologies.
Today, it is the capital city of India that unfolds stories of sacrifice, revenge and love before tourists. Be it the walls of old fort, mosques of Old Delhi or grandiose of Rashtrapati Bhavan, every old monument conceals tales that reveal themselves in front of true wanderers.
Being the center of government activities since British Raj, Delhi is turning out to be a cosmopolitan city. Since this city is inhabited by people from different backgrounds, it does not showcase a particular culture. You will find different communities practicing following different values, and at the same time respecting others’ principles too. Be it Diwali, Christmas, Eid or Guru Purab, every festival is celebrated here with great fervor, and people from different religions partake with equal enthusiasm in each one of them.
Delhi has seen the rulings of many dynasties and each of them strove to leave a mark of its successful reign on this splendid city. India Gate, Qutub Minar, Humayun’s Tomb and Jantar Mantar are some of those markings that still stand tall and amaze tourists with architecture that testifies the impeccable skills of artists of yore. These gigantic man-made attractions capture the attention of one and all, and offer you a glimpse into the past that is filled with perseverance of laborers and commitment of emperors. Each monument has a story to tell, which can only be heard in their walls, roofs, carvings and embellishments.
Among other renowned monuments in the city are Red Fort, Old Fort, Lotus Temple, Tughlaqabad Fort and Rashtrapati Bhavan.
Colors, zeal, warmth, faith and smiles are few important characteristics of every festival here. Since it is mostly inhabited by Hindus, Diwali stands as the most prominent festivals of the city. It is celebrated to welcome the homecoming of Shri Rama after spending 14 tough years of his life in forests with his wife and brother. During this festival, the whole city is drenched with lights and Hindus pay reverence to their deities – Ganesha and Lakshmi. People illuminate their houses with candles and exchange gifts with each other while praying for everyone’s happiness. Since Rama defeated Ravana during his exile, the festival is often seen as the victory of good over evil.
Eid-ul-Adha (also known as the Feast of Sacrifice) is another important festival of city. The festival is celebrated to honor the discretion of Abrahim to sacrifice the life of his first son, Ishmael, on God’s command. Eventually, his son was saved by God by providing Abrahim the lamb to sacrifice instead of his son. During this festivity, a large feast of food is prepared in houses, and relatives gather at one place to relish the spread and spend this auspicious day with each other.
The other festival that captures the attention of the entire city is Guru Nanak Jayanti, which is counted among the most sacred festivals of Sikhs. Guru Nanak, the founder of Sikhism, was the first guru of Sikhs, who was born in 1469 in Rai-Bhoi-di Talwandi (currently in Pakistan). The festival falls on the day of full moon in the month of Kartik and its celebration include early morning processions from prominent Gurudwaras (temples) in the city. These processions are carried out with great enthusiasm and include various performances by youngsters that let you peek into the rich culture of Sikhism. During this festival, people distribute food to poor and express their gratitude towards Guru Nanak by paying a visit to Gurudwaras and hosting religious meets in their houses. It is one of the most culturally rich festivals that give a strong message of following the righteous path.
You can’t overlook your taste buds. Feeding them brings oodles of pleasure and when you are in a place like Delhi; this pleasure turns into an unforgettable experience. From North Indian Food to Rajasthani dishes and international cuisine to quick local bites like samosa, shawarma & aloo chat, you have plenty of options to munch on. If time permits, roam the thin alleys of Chandni Chowk where the oldest flavors of Delhi reside. Deep-fried Paranthas are a favorite pick of all, followed by Kachori, Daal Ke Pakore, Lassi and Khurchen.
Another destination to treat your taste buds is Khan Market, where you will be spoilt for choices. Don’t miss rolls from Khan Chacha here or you will never know what it feels like to devour authentic kebabs. Other things to try out here are Cheesecake at Big Chill, Shrimp at Mamagoto and Burritos at Market Café. Some other places to pacify your taste buds in Delhi are Connaught Place, Hauz Khas, Pandara Road, Gol Market and Nehru Place.
You might say that you have many other reasons to visit Delhi and if this is the case, do let us know that reason in the comment box. And don’t forget to share this writing piece if you enjoyed reading it.