As I have said earlier in my post- Delhi,India, Delhi has seen the rise and fall of many dynasties.Due to this Delhi has many historical monuments that tell the untold stories of muslim rulers and british reign.For purpose of simplification , I will categorise the historical monuments into three broad classes-
- Monuments of Muslim rulers
- Monuments of British rule Others
Monuments built by Delhi Sultans- Muslim and Mughal monuments-
Purana Qila or the Old fort-
It is believed that old fort has been constructed at place where ancient city Indraprastha stood, there is no convincing evidence though. The old fort or Purana qila is one of the earliest Mughal monuments in Delhi. The boundry of this fort was build by the Mughal emperor , Humayun and the buildings were made by Sher Shah Suri, the emperor of Sur dynasty. The fort has got three gates and is surrounded by a ditch or small pond fed by river Yamuna.Although most of the buildings has now destructed but Sher Mandal and Qila-i-Kholina Mosque are two formidable buildings that has survived.
One of the formidable monuments of not only India but world, Qutub minar is located in southern Delhi. It also happens to be the tallest brick minaret in the world and one of the UNESCO world heritage sites.According to the Archaeological Survey of India, the place where Qutub Minar stands today was once occupied by about 27 Jain and Hindu temples.
Controversy surrounds around the origin of this world heritage site.The origin of this monument of Delhi has been variously debated.The various debate that surrounds Qutub Minar has been aptly described by wikipedia.
The purpose for building this monument has been variously speculated upon. It could take the usual role of a minaret, calling people for prayer in the Quwwat-ul-Islam mosque, the earliest extant mosque built by the Delhi Sultans. Other possibilities are a tower of victory, a monument signifying the might of Islam, or a watch tower for defense.
The nearby Iron Pillar is one of the world's foremost metallurgical curiosities, standing in the famous Qutub Complex. According to the traditional belief, any one who can encircle the entire column with their arms, with their back towards the pillar, can have their wish granted. Because of the corrosive qualities of sweat, people are no longer allowed to perform this act.
Red fort or Lal Qila-
Red fort one of the most magnificient palaces in the world was built by the Mughal emperor , Shah Jahan. Red fort or the Lal Qila also happens to be the place where the the key events of history has occured. The last Mughal emperor, Bahadur Shah Jafar was deposed by British at this fort. Red fort also evidenced the announcement of freedom of India by the first prime minister, J.L.Nehru.
The Red fort is called so because of the red stones from which it is built.Red Fort showcases the very high level of art form and ornamental work. The art work in the Fort is a synthesis of Persian, European and Indian art which resulted in the development of unique Shahjahani style which is very rich in form, expression and colour.
Some of the important buildings inside the fort are-
- Khas Mahal
- Naqqar hana
The Jantar Mantar of Delhi was built by Sawai Man Singh of Jaipur with patronage from the Mughal emperor. It is an astronomical observatory and the first of the five observatory built by Sawai Man Singh. The structures inside the Jantar mantar are infact instruments built to take a look at the celestial bodies.
Located near east Nizammudin.Like Qutub Minar and Red fort , Humayun's tomb is also a world heritage site. Built by the grieving widow of emperor Humayun , this monument is the first example of an excellent moghul architecture. Build by a Persian architect, the mausoleum looks similar to Taj Mahal.Surrounded by a large square garden, screened by high walls, with gateways to the south and west, the tomb is a square tower surmounted by a magnificent marble dome.
The tomb of Bahlol Lodhi, the founder of Lodhi Dynasty was built by his son Sikandar and is located near the Dargah complex in Chiragh Delhi. The mausoleum has five domes with central dome being the highest and largest.
The tomb's of other rulers of Lodhi dynasty lies at the Lodhi Garden, located 3 kms. of Humayun's tomb.he Lodi monuments add to the serenity of the environment of the gardens.
Safdarjung was the powerful minister during the reign of weak moghul emperor Muhammad Shah. It is a garden tomb and built in Mughal style.Infact it is the last of the mughal architectural work here in Delhi.The garden, in the style evolved by the Mughal Empire that is now known as the Mughal gardens style known as a charbagh, is entered through an ornate gate. Its facade is decorated with elaborate plaster carvings.
The most famous monument of Delhi and situated on Rajpath and was built to commemorate the Indian soldiers who died in World war1 and Afghan wars.Formerly called as the "war memorial" , this monument was built by Edwin Lutyens. On the top of the India gate following words has been inscribed in capital letter-
To the dead of the Indian armies who fell honoured in France and Flanders Mesopotamia and Persia East Africa Gallipoli and elsewhere in the near and the far-east and in sacred memory also of those whose names are recorded and who fell in India or the north-west frontier and during the Third Afghan War.The names of the soldier has been inscribed on the walls of this imposing structure. Beneath the arch of India gate there is Amar Jawan Jyoti, which is the unknown soldier's tomb. The Amar Jawan Jyoti was built in 1971.Today, it is customary for the President and the Prime Minister, as well as visiting Guests of State, to pay homage at the site on occasions of State ceremonies.
Rashtrapati Bhawan and the Mughal Garden-
Rashtrapati bhawan the hindi word for 'President's house' is the official residence of the president of India.Formerly it was called as viceroy's lodge as it used to be the residence of Governor general of India. Rashtrapati Bhawan has 340 rooms and it is the biggest residence of any President in the world.The Rose Garden in Rashtrapati Bhavan displays numerous types of roses and is open to public in February every year.
Built b y the famous british architect Lutyens, Parliament house is the seat of the Indian Parliament.Visitors are not allowed to go inside due to security reasons.
Designed as a circular structure, the House is 171 meters in diameter and about one-third of a mile in circumference. The two semicircular house chambers flank the Central Hall with its impressive dome. The building has a continuous open corridor on the first floor fringed with a colonnade of 144 creamy sandstone pillars. The exterior walls of red sandstone are carved in geometric patterns that echo Moghul jaalis. It is a marvellous piece of architecture which can be admired only from outside on account of security restrictions.
Teen Murti Bhawan-
Once it used to be the residence of commander-in-chief of British forces in India and after freedom it housed the first prime minister of India, Pt. Jawahar Lal Nehru. After death of J.L.Nehru, it was converted into a national memorial containing a museum and a library.The house gets its name after the Teen Murti (three statues) Memorial, which stands on its extensive grounds. The memorial was built in memory of the Indian soldiers who perished in World War I. The Bhavan is closed to public on Mondays and on all public holidays.
Other Monuments in Delhi-
A mega temple complex, one of the biggest and most intricate places of worship ever constructed, is drawing hordes of visitors and seems set to become a major tourist attraction.
This is the place where the mortal remains of Mahatma Gandhi was cremated.It is a place full of serenity and calm.A must watch for every tourist.
The place where the first prime minister of India was cremated.
A traditional village bazaar (market) where you will find handicrafts, foods and some traditional culture of India.
Delhi, India: General Information
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