India’s capital offers a long list of interesting sights. For your stay, you should therefore plan several days. Here you can find the highlights in Delhi and surroundings at a glance.
In 1911, New Delhi replaced the city of Calcutta as the Indian capital. New Delhi belongs to Delhi, the third-largest city in the world with more than 25 million inhabitants.
Delhi: the best sights
The Indian metropolis offers a variety of attractions from temples to museums to parks. Below I present you 17 interesting highlights.
The location of the Qutb Minar complex has historical significance. In the 13th century, the first Muslim mosque was built there after the conquest. Ruins today bear witness to this chapter of Indian history. Several mausoleums are also part of the complex. Since 1993, the complex is a World Heritage Site.
On the site is Qutb Minar. The renovated Victory and Watchtower served as a minaret. The original tower dates from the 13th century. With a height of 72 meters, this is one of the highest Islamic towers in the world. However, it is no longer accessible to visitors since a mass panic was caused by a power failure with several dead.
Address: Mehrauli, Seth Sarai, Mehrauli, New Delhi
Jama Masjid Mosque / Friday Mosque
The largest mosque in India is located in New Delhi’s Old Town. Translated, Jama Masjid means “mosque that looks to the world.” Built-in the 17th century, it is one of the largest mosques in the world. White and black marble was used for parts of the facade and the domes. Otherwise, the Jama Masjid mainly consists of red sandstone. More than 20,000 faithful find their place in the courtyard of the mosque.
Address: Meena Bazaar, Chandni Chowk New Delhi
The top points to the sky, under the petals visitors enter the building. The Lotus Temple is an impressive structure. The realization of the name explains itself when looking at the exterior facade by itself.
The special feature: believers of all religions gather here for prayer. The scriptures of all world religions are recited here. The Lotus Temple is one of seven continental Bahai temples. The Bahaitum is a religion that has its origin in Iran. All Bahai temples have nine gates in all directions. These symbolize religious openness.
Gurudwara Bangla Sahib-Temple
The golden dome of the Gurudwara Bangla Sahib temple can be seen from a far. The largest Sikh sanctuary in India was built in the 18th century. At the site of the temple, the Sikh guru Har Krishnan once proclaimed his teachings. In 1947, the temple was rebuilt and received its present appearance.
During the temple visit, the Sikh dress and behaviour rules apply.
Address: Ashoka Road, Connaught Place, Next to the Grand Post Office, New Delhi
Officially, the 42-meter-high triumphal arch bears the name India War Memorial. It is reminiscent of the British-Indian fallen soldiers of the First World War. More than 90,000 names of war dead are engraved in the stone of the gate. The imposing memorial is modelled after the French triumphal arch. In 1921, the building was designed by British architect Edwin Lutyens.
Address: Rajpath Marg India Gate, Delhi 110001
Presidential seat Rashtrapati Bhavan
The magnificent Rajpath Road connects India Gate to the east with the government district to the west. There is the President Rashtrapati Bhavan. Built between 1921 and 1929, the complex has a size of 130 hectares. The building, which was built for the then viceroy, has 340 rooms.
Unfortunately, the facility is not open to the public. It’s still worth taking a look at the building from the gate if you’re in the area. The former symbol of British colonial power testifies to the turbulent history of India.
The Mughal Gardens are part of the palace complex. A few days a year, they open their doors to visitors.
Address: Rashtrapati Bhawan, President’s Estate, New Delhi
The Lodi Gardens extend over an area of 360,000 square meters. The park includes several mausoleums of high-ranking personalities. For example, the tombs of Mohammed Shah IV and Sikandar Lodi. Both were once rulers of the Sultanate of Delhi and died in the 15th and 16th centuries.
The facility is spacious. Perfect for a walk and relax.
Address: Lodhi Rd, Lodhi Garden, New Delhi
Dilli Haat-week market
Strong colours in all variations, the smell of Chapati in the air and traditional handicrafts make the Dilli-Haat a weekly market an interesting destination. The street market opened in 1994. Meanwhile, the bazaar and food market have become a popular place for art and culture. The product range includes typically Indian saris, pottery, leather shoes and jewellery.
To visit the market, a small entrance fee will be fixed. The price level of the Dilli Haat is slightly higher compared to other markets. But the quality of many goods is usually better. Negotiation pays off.
Address: Kidwai Nagar West, Kidwai Nagar, New Delhi, Delhi 110023
UNESCO writes about the Humayun mausoleum, which has been declared a World Heritage Site. The tomb is dedicated to Nasiruddin Muhammad Humayun. He ruled the Mughal Empire India for over ten years. Between 1562 and 1564 began the construction of the mausoleum. It is located in the middle of the geometrically landscaped garden.
The mausoleum and the surrounding park, in which other buildings are located, are a small oasis of peace within Delhi. Must see!
Address: Opposite Dargah Nizamuddin, Mathura Road, New Delhi
In 1724, the Hindu Hanuman Temple was built. The building was commissioned by the Maharajas Mansingh and Jai Singh II. The temple is dedicated to the deity Hanuman, son of the wind and monkey god. Highlight of the plant is the 32 meters high Hanuman statue of the gods.
Note: The temple is heavily frequented on Tuesdays and Saturdays. On both days especially many devout Hindus visit the temple.
Address: 31, Shaheed Bhagat Singh Marg, Sector 4, Gole Market, New Delhi
Chandni Chowk / Moonlight Market
Delhi’s oldest and busiest market has a long history. Already in the 17th-century goods were sold in the moonlight place. The traditional bazaar has become famous as the venue for numerous Bollywood films. A visit to the Mega Market is an experience. Books, jewelry, fabrics, clothing, and electronics – the range offers all sorts of conceivable consumer goods. The division of the site into different market areas and categories helps with orientation.
If you are looking for something specific, you can check the position on the internet or on the spot. Otherwise, just start the adventure Chandni Chowk. But do not forget to take a break at one of the food stalls.
Address: 2573, Nai Sarak, Roshanpura, Old Delhi, New Delhi
Gandhi Smiriti Museum
Mahatma Gandhi fought for peace and equality. In 1948 he was the victim of an assassination attempt. Gandhi spent the last 144 days of his life at Birla House. Today this Gandhi Smiriti house is called and was converted into a museum. The exhibition informs about the life and work of the Indian peace fighter. On the grounds of the museum, the so-called “Martyr’s Column” recalls the place of the attack, Gandhi continues to inspire people around the world to peacefully resist racism and social inequality.
Address: 5, Tees January Marg, Near Claridges Hotel, New Delhi
Rajpath Boulevard / King’s Way
Every year on January 26, the Republic Day Parade takes place on Rajpath Boulevard. Rajpath is considered one of India’s most important streets, stretching from the official presidential seat to Delhi’s National Stadium. A great view of the boulevard offers you from Raisina Hill.
Red Fort / Lal Qila
The Red Fort stretches just under a kilometre on the eastern edge of the city of Delhi. Since 2007, the fortress and palace complex is a World Heritage Site. The gigantic structure was built in the 17th century on behalf of the Mughal emperor Shah Jahan. Over the next four centuries, Lal Qila was expanded, plundered and partially destroyed.
The fort attracts millions of visitors every year and is one of the most visited attractions in India.
Address: Netaji Subhash Marg, Lal Qila, New Delhi
20,000 exhibits, 12 collections, 3 floors: The collection of the Indian National Museum is extensive, the shown ranges from pieces from prehistoric times to the 21st century. Thematically, the museum covers art and history. Archaeological excavations, jewellery, paintings or household items make up the diversity of the exhibition.
The museum is huge. To see everything and get to know the background, you would need several days. Plan your visit in advance to make the most of your time.
Majestically, Akshardham blends into the landscape. After four years of construction, the complex, one of the largest temples in the world, opened in 2005. The temple is a masterpiece of contemporary architecture. It combines culture and spirituality. The complex includes a garden and exhibitions. How about, for example, a small boat trip on an artificial river?
Note that there are security checks in front of the plant. Unfortunately, cameras or cell phones are not allowed in the temple. There are secure storage spaces at the entrance. But even if you cannot take pictures, the temple is definitely worth a visit!
If you want to avoid the biggest crowd of people, you should visit Akshardham in the morning.
Address: Noida Mor, Pandav Nagar, New Delhi
Birla Mandir / Laxminarayan Temple
In 1933, the construction of the Laxminarayan Temple, commissioned by Baldeo Das Birla, began. The rich Birla family built several institutions and temples, thereby contributing to the development of India. That is why Laxminarayan is also called the Birla Mandir Temple. However, several buildings in India bear this name.
Six years later Mahatma Gandhi dedicated the temple. However, only on the condition that member of all castes would have access to the temple.
Sculptures, shrines, fountains and a garden can be seen next to the main building.
Address: Mandir Marg, Near Golmarket, Gole Market, New Delhi, Delhi 110001