Having only three days to explore the sprawling city of Delhi, my last day was a mish-mash of temples, markets, gardens and shops- anything I could fit in. I wouldn’t recommend this approach to the city- if the unrelenting heat doesn’t wear you down, the traffic soon will, with the average Delhiite treating the city’s streets like a rally racing track.
That said, there is a lot to see. First stop was the Lotus Temple, suggested to me by my driver.
Located in Kalkaji, New Delhi, the building was like no other that I saw in the city; its clean, smooth facade painting a distinct silhouette against Delhi’s backdrop of crumbling Mughal-era monuments and colonial landmarks. The temple, which is a Baha’i place of worship, is open to all faiths, resulting in the huge crowds which were evident when I visited. Luckily, there was a place to cool off from the sweltering heat…
As the temple is a place of worship, we had to leave our shoes behind…
….and collect them on exit from a peculiar underground cloakroom, accessible through a small window in the ground. Only in India!
Next up was the Lodi Garden, a 90 acre park featuring a spectacular array of tombs, local wildlife and expansive lawns.
Other than the Taj Mahal, this was probably the most inspiring location I have visited so far on this journey. I cannot articulate the serenity of the gardens, especially in contrast to the bustle of Delhi…it was honestly like being in my own personal paradise and my only regret is that I couldn’t spend whole day there. As mentioned, the location is home to a wide range of local wildlife, especially birds.
I’m not exactly an animal lover (I’m more likely to get excited by the wings of an aircraft than those of a bird), but I actually had a good time trying to spot the park’s various species.
(From left: Kawaa/House Crow, Squirrel and Tota/Green Parakeet)
This random dog (one of many) also took a liking to me…
Additionally, the site is home to some stunning buildings including the tomb of Sikander Lodi and a mosque dating to the 15th century.
A space of true quality…
So, there you have the delightful. Stay tuned for the Delhi-cious!
Lotus Temple (Bahá’í House of Worship)
Bahapur, Kalkaji, www.bahaihouseofworship.in