Delhi: Gateway to India

Delhi has a reputation as being a “fly in-get out” city…and I won’t dispute that, however there are some special sights to see there.

I was pretty sure that when I booked my flight from Kathmandu to Delhi that I chose a window seat because I knew there would be spectacular views of the Himalaya. Somehow though I only realised that I had a centre seat when I boarded the plane (which was a chore in itself). So believe me when I tell you that it was incredible
Queueing for an ATM in Delhi. I was almost run over by a cow when waiting here. India made the surprise move of banning the 500 and 1000 rupees notes overnight in order to try to combat ‘black money’. They also limited ATM withdrawals to 2500 rupees. So some days my main activity is withdrawing cash from ATMs 
Insane fog (smog?) in the early morning in Delhi at the Red Fort
Inside the Red Fort
The walls and gates were immense and highly impressive
The red sandstone was quite striking
The Jama Masjid, the largest mosque in India capable of holding over 20,000 worshippers. While the country is predominately Hindu, approximately 14% of the population is Muslim which equates to roughly 170-180 million people, approximately equal to the population of Pakistan


Jantar Mantar: huge, confusing devices for measuring astronomical features
Weird and wonderful structures
India Gate


Lots of nice monuments and tombs are located in the peaceful Lodhi Gardens
A great place to hang out apparently
At the Raj Ghat. This is the cremation site of Gandhi
I may be smiling (I can’t help it for photos) but in the end I was so pestered by school boys here asking every five seconds “what is your name”, “what country” that I had to leave and find the sanctuary of the Gandhi Museum
You can learn a lot about the life of Gandhi here. I was surprised to find the robe he was wearing when he was assassinated and two of the bullets that killed him
The Lotus Temple or the Bahá’í House of Worship is located in south Delhi. I would say it’s a modern architectural wonder. I was very intrigued to learn more about the Bahá’í faith


The grounds are impressively maintained
There are something like 7 million Bahá’ís worldwide of which 2 million are in India
The religion is a young one, starting in the 19th century, with its origins in Persia. The Báb was the herald of The One. He was promptly imprisoned and then executed. The One was Bahá’u’lláh. The Bahá’í faith believes that there is only one god and that each religion is only a different manifestation relevant to each culture and time. Once you strip away the cultural differences and non-essential practices, the core principles of each religion is the same. As such there are few ceremonies and requirements of followers of the religion. There are currently only seven houses of worship worldwide and they seem stunning. I was also intrigued by their emphasis on science over religion, the equality of all people and the hope for one language for all the people of the world. Keen to learn more



Next up: Amritsar and The Golden Temple


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