Visiting the Sights of Delhi – Part 2

The "red Taj Mahal" in Delhi. This i...

The “red Taj Mahal” in Delhi. This is the tomb of Mughal emperor Humayun and inspired the design of the Taj Mahal (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Akshardham temple, Delhi.

Akshardham temple, Delhi. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Swaminarayan Akshardham

Swaminarayan Akshardham (Photo credit: Stephen & Claire Farnsworth)

English: Humayun's Tomb in New Delhi, India: T...

English: Humayun’s Tomb in New Delhi, India: The tomb of Mughal Emperor Humaun in New Delhi, India. Architecturally, this building is considered to be the precursor of the beautiful Taj Mahal in Agra, built by the grandson of Humayun, Emperor Shah Jahan. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

English: Dome at Akshardham in Delhi, India

English: Dome at Akshardham in Delhi, India (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Akshardham Temple in Delhi, completed in 2005 ...

Akshardham Temple in Delhi, completed in 2005 and one of the largest Hindu temples in the world. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Delhi Akshardham in Delhi, India

Delhi Akshardham in Delhi, India (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Akshardham Temple

Akshardham Temple (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

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Much to our surprise, the fog had lifted, Delhi was dry and the sun was shining. We took this as a good omen!

Anyway, this is the fourth of our series of blogs on Delhi and in case you missed the earlier ones, here are the links:

Our first stop was the magnificent Humayun’s Tomb commissioned   by the widow of the second Mughal Emperor, Humayun, it is an outstanding monument in the Indo-Persian style, a precursor of the Taj Mahal. Construction started in 1565 and was completed in 1572, it took 20,000 men to build it, in only seven years. In 1993, the tomb was deservedly declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site. It was delightful to walk in the wintry sunshine in the beautiful gardens and admire the stunning architecture, then climb the steep steps and enter right inside the magnificent  marble tomb. {Open this link for some amazing  photos – ours’ will follow}.

Next stop was the breathtaking Akshardham Temple which is the one of the largest Hindu temples in the world. The temple opened in 2005 and  attracts 70% of all visitors to Delhi. The grand, ancient-styled, Swaminarayan Akshardham complex, was built in only five years with the help of  3,000 volunteers who in turn helped 7,000 artisans, often working round the clock. This modern day temple has amazing stone carvings,  paintings and huge marble elephant sculptures  adorning the outside. It showcases the essence of India’s ancient architecture, traditions and spiritual messages, a must-see when visiting Delhi. Security is very tight here, nothing must be carried inside, no cameras, bags, even mobile phones are forbidden.  {Open this link for some unbelievable  photos}.

 The final sight was Bangla Sahib Gurudwara, the most prominent Sikh house of worship in Delhi with beautiful golden domes reflecting in the sunshine. {Open this link for some spectacular photos}.We could not go inside as worship was in progress. Just outside the temple was a communal kitchen for the poor – here they would receive a free meal and was state funded. Also outside were four female volunteers and they were offering small pox vaccinations to children, a free service service provided by the government and the UNICEF.

We returned to our hotel for a few hours in the afternoon, then went out again to visit the Kingdom Of Dreams {open link for photos}.    The Kingdom is located in the next town to Delhi and brings a blend of India‘s art, culture, heritage, craft, cuisine and performing art, all with the technological wizardry of today. We saw a live stage  extravaganza of India’s biggest Bollywood musical  – it is called Zangoora (the Gipsy Prince) . To see some video footage of the musical open this link. Unfortunately, it was in local tongue and so we could not understand the story as there was no translation, but it was a musical  and we enjoyed the special effects and the dancing. The outside is in carnival style, with street dancing,  a food boulevard, arts, crafts and even a massage parlor. It is very commercialized but fun and distinctly Indian.  

We returned to our hotel about 10.30 PM to finish our packing, all our warmest clothes would be necassary because we were leaving for Kashmir next morning….

 

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6 responses

  1. Pingback: India: Innovative Education | pundit from another planet

  2. Pingback: Delightful Ancient Khajuraho India – a UNESCO world heritage site « Discover the Orient

  3. Pingback: Magnificent Mumbai India – Our Kind of Town – Part 1 « Discover the Orient

  4. Pingback: Delhi – our best photos « Discover the Orient

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