Sunday, 16 January 2011

New Delhi

During our time in India we passed through the bustling, crazy, metropolis of New Delhi three times. The city can roughly be divided into two parts, 'New' Delhi and the Old City.

New Delhi was planned by the British in 1911 and reminded me more of Paris than London, with wide tree lined boulevards. The planned and formally laid out city provided a welcome antidote to the red sandstone forts we had been visiting. It also provided some respite from hawkers that can become overwhelming at times.

We visited India Gate a couple of times. I particularly like the picture above that my sister managed to take of me.

We spent some time in the Parliamentary district. The President's House (formerly the home to the Governor General) was enormous. Despite - at the time it was built - India being a colony of the UK it must be over a hundred times bigger than Number 10 and multiples larger than Buckingham Palace. Having a bigger office than you boss can't have been bad!

Unfortunately we couldn't get close to the Parliament itself as it is behind a huge security cordon. The bureaucratic buildings were as impressive as President's House.

We also visited Ghandi Smitri which is the site where Ghandi was shot. I know very little about Indian history, Ghandi and the independence movement. It was excellent to learn (a little) of the history about Indian independence.

New Delhi isn't completely devoid of historical buildings. We visited Humayun's Tomb and also Lodi Gardens that contained some temples. There were two slums on the site of Lodi Gardens before the Governor General's wife (Lady Willingdon) ordered them to be cleared to create a park in the 1930s. It's a beautiful park, but it doesn't exactly make you proud to be British!

The final attraction we visited in Delhi was Nehru's Museum & Library. Nehru was the first Prime Minister of India and the former PM's residence now contains a museum charting Indian independence and some artefacts of Indian governments.

The Craft Museum is also worth a mention which contained many interesting Indian fabrics, prints, paintings and handicrafts. (No photos allowed unfortunately.)

My Delhi photos are split across two albums here and here.


  1. I quite enjoyed our short time in Delhi. There's a nice restaurant on the rooftop of the Metropolis Hotel, spent a bit of time up there chowing on local food & beer

  2. Hehee, I love the photo of you jumping Richard!

  3. Great photos. I have been warned that Delhi is a bit overwhelming and possibly the least nice of the cities. Does that chime with your experience?

  4. Delhi was the only 'big' Indian city that we visited, so I can't really compare it to Mumbai and Calcutta (for example). I wouldn't say it was any more overwhelming than Jaipur or Agra, but there definitely were lots of hawkers. "Don't go that way it's closed!", "I'll take you to a good bazaar!" etc..

  5. The India Gate is the national monument of India[citation needed]. Situated in the heart of New Delhi, it was designed by Sir Edwin Lutyens. Built in 1931, the monument was inspired by the Arc de Triomphe in Paris, which in turn was inspired by the Roman Arch of Titus. Originally known as the All India War Memorial, it is a prominent landmark in Delhi and commemorates the 90,000 soldiers of the British Indian Army who lost their lives in World War I and the Third Anglo-Afghan War. It is composed of red and pale sandstone and granite.

    Delhi taxi