India’s capital city has a rich history that has been carefully preserved and rebuilt in some circumstances. If you want to learn more about the city’s history and culture, we’ve put together the only list of the must-visit attractions in Delhi you’ll need for your trip. Delhi has been the seat of several kingdoms since the 12th century. Each ruling dynasty left its own distinct legacy, though the Mughals and British in particular had a significant impact on the city’s art, architecture, religion, customs, and cuisine. As a result, the capital city is bursting with various cultures, with monuments, museums, cafes, and attractions dedicated to each.
Must-Visit Attractions in Delhi
The Red Fort
Shah Jahan erected the majestic Red Fort in 1648, and it stood as the seat of Mughal sovereignty until 1857. This magnificent building, surrounded by a moat and enclosed by massive red sandstone walls, spans more than two square kilometers and is crescent-shaped. The impressive main entrance, the Lahore Gate, is so named because it faces Lahore in Pakistan, whereas the emperor used the even grander Delhi Gate for ceremonial processions.
Visitors enter through the Lahore Gate and arrive at Chhatta Chowk, a 17th-century covered bazaar where they may buy silks, jewelry, jewels, and silverware, as well as souvenirs and food. The Red Fort’s Naubat Khana once housed the emperor’s musicians, and its beautiful galleries still retain many intriguing musical instruments like kettledrums, gongs, and cymbals. The exquisite white marble of Diwan-i-Am, the Hall of Public Audiences, where the emperor would welcome his subjects, is also worth visiting.
Humayun’s Tomb, a magnificent garden tomb built in 1570, was the first mausoleum to be erected in the magnificent Mughal style that would become synonymous with the time, laying the groundwork for following Mughal architectural breakthroughs, like the Taj Mahal. While it is best known as the final resting place of Emperor Humayun, India’s second Mughal ruler, more than 150 members of the Mughal family have also been interred at this UNESCO World Heritage site.
Jama Masjid is one of India’s largest mosques, with a capacity of 25,000 people. It is also Emperor Shah Jahan’s final construction project before his demise. The Mughal monarch had lofty goals when he began construction on the Jama Masjid. He named it the Masjid-i-Jahan-Numa, which translates to “mosque commanding vision of the globe,” because it was 30 steps above street level.
One of the must-visit attractions in Delhi, The complex of this Hindu temple is so large, and the building so elaborate, that touring it properly would take at least a half day. Over 10,000 years of Indian history and culture are retold in Akshardham Temple. The 11-foot-high statue of 18th-century Yogi Swaminarayan and the 20,000 gods and goddesses carved onto the temple are the temple’s principal attractions.
Mahatma Gandhi was cremated at Raj Ghat on the banks of the Yamuna river after his assassination in 1948. An eternal flame burns night and day next to a basic black marble pedestal placed over the cremation area. The park’s simplicity and tranquility instill a sense of calm in visitors.
Gurudwara Bangla Sahib
The 18th-century Gurdwara Bangla Sahib, Delhi’s most prominent Sikh house of worship, is located near Connaught Place and is well worth a visit. The Sarovar, a spectacular pool in the centre of the compound, as well as the famed gold dome and flagpole, are all highlights.
The large temple building itself, as well as its art gallery and a small museum dedicated to the history of the Sikh religion, are also noteworthy. Visitors are always welcome, and an excellent meal is provided at no cost in the large Gurdwara Kitchen—all that is required in exchange is that your hair be covered and your shoes be removed (free headscarves and shoe storage are provided).
The Lotus Temple
The majestic Bahá’ House of Worship, commonly known as the Lotus Temple because of its nine sides and gorgeous center dome, is a work of art. The entire construction is made of white concrete and marble, and it looks as delicate as the blossom it is modeled after. It almost appears to be about to bloom as it rises from the surrounding nine pools of water. The temple, which was built in 1986, has received over 70 million visitors, making it one of the world’s most visited attractions (interestingly, this remarkable place of worship has no idols, religious pictures, or outward symbols of religion).