Old Delhi was the capital of India for a considerable period of time. Many dynasties and civilizations have governed over the city and each has left its mark.
Delhi, the old and the new, is a unique mixture of harmonized features and characteristics and in the same time different and distinctive. A lot of affordable tours to India would have some visits in Delhi.
Many people around the world are fascinated with the Indian culture, the habits of the people, and the matchless customs that are difficult to find anywhere else in the wide world. Delhi has a wonderful collection of Islamic, Hindu, Sikh, and Buddhism monuments that are rather hard to be all viewed in one trip. We will discover some of the historical monuments of Delhi.
The Jama Masjid Mosque
The Jama Masjid is one of the most attractive Mogul architectural arts in India and the country’s largest mosque. The Jama Masjid mosque is one of the highlights of Delhi that is added to travel packages to India. The open courtyard of the Jama Masjid Mosque is sizeable enough to host around 25,000 people in the same time, especially during the Friday prayer and assembly.
The mosques, as many other remarkable buildings in India, was constructed by Shah Jahan, the Mogul Sultan accredited for erected the marvelous Taj Mahal in Agra.The construction works Jama Masjid Mosque took around 12 years to be completed and it was finished in 1656 with the contribution of around 5000 workers and builders.
The mosque was titled in the beginning as Masjid El Jahanuma, or the Mosque offering views over the world. Many tourists who travel to India coming from different regions in the world admire the architecture of this marvelous mosque.The huge structure of the Jama Masjid stands on one of the hill of ShahJahanabad and the guests can view the Red Forest in the Western direction and if they look downwards, they can see the busy streets of Old Delhi.
The entrance gate located in the Eastern, southern, and northern section of the Jama Masjid mosque is featured with its sandstones distinctive with their red color.
Off course, as many Islamic buildings all over the world, the guests have to take off their shoes before entering inside the mosque and proper dress code is essential as well.The first thing that attracts the eyes of the guests once they enter the mosque is the three huge marble domes that dominate the main prayer hall and the group of arches located above the Mihrab that indicates the direction of Mecca.
In each of the corners of the open prayer hall, there is an attractive minaret with a marble head and it is recommended to climb the minaret situated to the south of the main sanctuary for wonderful views of the city of Delhi.A while colored shrine, located in the Northeast corner of the mosque, hosts some relics of the prophet Mohamed including his sandals, foot prints, and hair from his beard. This section of the mosque is often visited by many Moslems who spend their vacations in India.
The Chandni Chowk was once a canal hosting some of the best bazaars in Asia and also the main passage in Delhi. This would be the best place for tourists who spend their holidays in India to buy gifts and souvenirs.In the middle of the 19th century the British forces have paved the way over the canal and today many minibuses and different types of transportations wonder around the street.
Near the Red Fort and at the Eastern edge of the Chandni Chowk, the Jain Temple of Lal Mandir is located. It is not as astonishing as the Jain Temple located in Rajasthan but it contains some remarkable details.The birds’ hospital linked to the temple reflects the concepts of Jain stating that life will be rescued if the humans heal injured birds. Many of the concepts and habits of the, locals interest tourists who travel to India.
The Raj Ghat
When the Delhi was founded by Shah Jahan in 1638, the Eastern section of the city bordered with the Yamuna River and this was why he constructed a number of Ghats, or steps going down to the water.The Indians have been using Ghats for a long period of time for multiple reasons including bathing, washing clothes, and for worship and funerals as well.
One of the most famous Ghats in Delhi, looking more of a park than just a Ghat, is the one located to the East of the India Gate, a landmark of Delhi that is often included in many tours to India. This was where Mahatma Gandhi cremated after his murder in the year 1948. The memorial of Mahatma Gandhi is located nearby and it welcomes a large number of visitors everyday and people from all over India mention his name every Friday prayer.
There is also the Gandhi Memorial museum that displays some of his photographs and writings. The museum also shows a number of films about his life and political achievements in some days of the week.To the North of Raj Ghat, many memorials are located for Jawaharlal Nehru, his daughter, Indira Gandhi, and his grandson, Rajiv Gandhi. These memorials are rarely included in any tours to India but the travelers can always go visit them on their own.
The Firoz Shah Kotla
Firoz Shah, who ruled over Delhi from 1351 till 1358, supposedly has constructed his capital Firozabad, which is included in some custom tours to India.
Today, only some of the structures remain of this city that seems like it was more of a neighborhood than a whole city. The remaining buildings of Firozabad Includes the ruins of the Firoz Shah Kotla, the fortified residence of the sultan Firoz Shah.What the guests can view today include the decorated gardens of the palace and the Ashokan Pillar that was made out of colored sandstones, a rare example of architecture to be found dating back to the 14th century.
Other monuments to the North of the Red Fort
The road leading to the north of the Red Fort has some of the historical sites of Delhi that are rarely included in any group tours to India. These sites include the Lothian Cemetery that functioned as the burial site of workers of the East India Company from the beginning till the middle of the 19th century.
There is also the Saint James Church that is featured with its white baroque façade. The Church was built in 1836 by James Skinner, the son of a Scottish company owner and a Rajput princess. To the North of the church, there is the East India Company Deputy Residence which now serves as the office of the chief engineer of the Indian Railway services.
The Kashmiri Gate, located to the north of the Church of Saint James was where the Mogul Sultan would leave Delhi to go and enjoy the summer in Kashmir.
The Qudsia gardens, that are still remarkable, reflect how marvelous the gardens that were established by Queen Qudsia in the middle of the 18th century.