25 Must See Places in Delhi With Family
Delhi is a city steeped in history, having been continuously inhabited since the 6th century.It is a city that has been razed by invaders and then resurrected many a time in history. Delhi is a city as well as a Union Territory of India, a city whose name is usually interchanged with the Indian Capital New Delhi. But the fact is that New Delhi is a part of Delhi.
Delhi is a place where the past rubs shoulders with the present and the future, a city which with its vibrant and pulsating character is in many ways a microcosm of India. Delhi is a treasure trove of sights and experiences and is a must visit destination for visitors to the country as well as domestic travelers.
Delhi has much to offer to every member of the family and leaves them asking for more. The tourist attractions in Delhi are guaranteed to touch the core of every travelers’ heart and ensure that they cherish the memories for a long, long time. So when you head out for your family holiday tour in Delhi, here is a list of 25 must see places in Delhi that you should not miss. This list of must see places in Delhi is in random order and by no means is it any kind of ranking.
Must see places in Delhi
1. Gandhi Smriti
“Generations to come will scarce believe that such a one as this ever in flesh and blood walked upon this earth.” These were the words that the great scientist Albert Einstein used to describe Mahatma Gandhi, who is revered as the “Father of the Nation”, by India.
So it is indeed befitting to start one’s’ Delhi experience by visiting Gandhi Smriti which is a museum dedicated to the memory of Mahatma Gandhi. Gandhi Smriti was formerly known as Birla House and was the residence of the famous industrialist family, the Birlas. This is the place where the Mahatma spent his last days before falling to an assassin’s bullets.
The Museum houses various artifacts associated with the life and death of Mahatma Gandhi. The Eternal Gandhi Multimedia Museum is also housed in the same premises. The exact spot where the Mahatma was assassinated in the grounds of the then Birla House on his way to his evening prayers is marked by a memorial known as, The Martyrs Column. The structure stands poignantly over a spot where time itself must have stood still on that fateful day January 30, 1948, barely 5 months after India attained its independence. Gandhi Smriti is definitely a must see places in Delhi.
2. Raj Ghat
On the banks of the Yamuna river, in secluded and peaceful surroundings is a simple square platform crafted in black marble and decorated with floral designs. This memorial marks the place where Mahatma Gandhi was cremated after his death. A few minutes spent in silence remembering the values of Truth and Non-Violence that the man stood and died for is going to remain etched in one’s psyche for posterity. Near the Raj Ghat are also situated the memorials to various other Indian leaders as well. A visit to the capital of India would remain incomplete without visiting this must see places in Delhi.
3. India Gate
A massive archway that soars to a height of 42 meters, the India Gate is a war memorial that was designed by the architect who is also credited with the design of New Delhi, Edwin Lutyens. Architecturally India Gate has been compared to the Arc De Triomphe in Paris as well as the Arch of Constantine which is situated between the Colosseum and Palatine Hill in Rome. India Gate was constructed as a tribute in stone to the over 80,000 soldiers of the Indian Army who sacrificed their lives in the First World War. The names of 13,300 soldiers including many British are inscribed on the walls of India Gate. A smaller structure to honor the soldiers who died during the Pakistan war of 1971 was later constructed. This is known as Amar Jawan Jyoti or Flame of the Immortal Soldier. Lush green lawns surround India Gate which is brilliantly illuminated as the sun sets on the western horizon. During the summers the lawns are a popular spot for families to spend their evenings. Definitely one of the must see places in Delhi.
Lush green lawns surround India Gate which is brilliantly illuminated as the sun sets on the western horizon. During the summers the lawns are a popular spot for families to spend their evenings. Definitely one of the must see places in Delhi.
4. Qutub Minar
The Qutub Minar is a landmark of Delhi, not only because of its impressive height and dimensions but also because of its intriguing history. It is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and one of the must see places in Delhi. The Qutub Minar is a 5-storey tower built of red sandstone and marble, each storey has a balcony and the structure tapers off towards the top. The Qutub Minar towers to a height of 240 feet and has a width of 47 feet at the base which tapers off to 8 feet at the top. The construction of the Qutub Minar was initiated by Qutb-Ud-Din-Aibak and later completed by his successor Iltumish. Why the Qutub Minar was built has been ascribed to different purposes that include it being a victory memorial. Some versions say that it was a tower for the Muezzin to call the faithful to prayer. Near the Qutub Minar is situated what is supposed to be one of the oldest mosques in India. The lawns and ruins of ancient structures around the Qutub Minar lend it an intriguing charm and make it one of the top attractions in Delhi.
Near the Qutub Minar is situated what is supposed to be one of the oldest mosques in India. The lawns and ruins of ancient structures around the Qutub Minar lend it an intriguing charm and make it one of the top attractions in Delhi.
5. Red Fort
The Red Fort is another monument that has been declared as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The Red Fort, which literally translates into Lal Quila in Hindi was the epicenter of power during the Mughal rule in India. The Red Fort was built by the Mughal Emperor Shah Jahan in the year 1639. The massive red sandstone walls of the fort once enclosed the residences of the Mughal royalty and were the center of events that influenced the region. Today various museums and a Mughal styled garden are housed within the precincts of the Red Fort. Historically the Red Fort is an icon of sorts of India, this is where the last Mughal Emperor Bahadur Shah Zafar was put on trial by the British.
In modern times, on the 15th of August, which marks India’s Independence Day, the Prime Minister addresses the nation from the ramparts of Red Fort. The importance of Red Fort cannot be underlined and it is no doubt one of the must see places in Delhi.
6. Humayun’s Tomb
Humayun’s Tomb is another UNESCO World Heritage Site situated in Delhi. It is the tomb of the Mughal Emperor Humayun that was commissioned to be built by his first wife Empress Bega Begum and was completed between 1569-70. Besides the tomb of Humayun, the monument also houses the tombs of various Mughal Emperors and the Empress Baga Begum herself. The monument is embellished by beautifully landscaped Persian style gardens. The beauty of this Mughal structure assumes an ethereal glow against the setting sun.
7. Purana Quila
Delhi is known for being the site of seven cities that span time in history. One of the cities referred to in mythology is the glittering city of Indraprastha which is mentioned in the great Indian Epic, Mahabharata. Indraprastha was the capital city of the Pandavas. Purana Quila is thought to have been built on the site where once stood the magnificent Indraprastha. Purana Quila which literally translates to, “Old Fort”, was built by Sher Shah Suri sometime around the year 1545. Today the ruins of the old fort stand in silent grandeur amidst lush green foliage.
The Purana Quila erupts into brilliant life in the evenings as a spectacular Sound and Light Show covering the history of Delhi across the Seven Cities in time starting from Indraprastha to present day Delhi comes to life. Purana Quila which is very close to Humayun’s Tomb is indeed one of the best places to see in Delhi.
8. Jama Masjid
Jama Masjid is one of the largest mosques in India. Its courtyard can accommodate more than 25,000 people. The mosque is built with red sandstone and white marble and is a pleasing architectural marvel. Three aesthetically built domes flanked by two minarets that rise to the sky presents a beautiful and symmetrically perfect monument. The Jama Masjid was built by the Mughal Emperor Shah Jahan and completed in the year 1656. Jama Masjid is one of the tourist attractions in Delhi with immense historical value.
9. Jantar Mantar
The Jantar Mantar in Delhi which roughly can be interpreted as to mean Calculation Instrument is one among 5 similar structures constructed by Maharajah Jai Singh II of Jaipur during the period between 1724 and 1735. The other Jantar Mantars can be found in Jaipur, Varanasi, Mathura, and Ujjain.The primary purpose of these intriguing structures was to calculate time by studying the movement of the sun and compile astronomical tables. A visit to the Jantar Mantar in Delhi is a sojourn into the advanced mind of the builders of the structure as early as the 18th century. The Jantar Mantar is a mandatory feature in any Delhi travel guide worth its salt.
10. Lotus Temple
A visit to the Lotus Temple in Delhi is definitely one of the things to do in Delhi. The unique architecture of this temple of the Bahai faith draws visitors in multitudes. The temple is built in the form of a lotus with 27 free standing marble petals arranged in groups of three to form nine sides. Nine doors open into a central hall which can accommodate about 2,500 people. In these times when intolerance is rife in the world, the Lotus Temple is an oasis of peace, welcoming people irrespective of religion and faith. A spiritual experience that one must go through when in Delhi.
11. Parliament House
The Parliament house is the power center of India. It is a circular building modeled on the Ashoka Chakra which can be found on the Indian flag. The majestic building was designed by Edwin Lutyens and Herbert Baker, the construction was completed in 1927. The building is surrounded by beautiful gardens and is bounded by sandstone railings that are reminiscent of the Stupa of Sanchi. Close to the Parliament House is situated the Parliament Museum which is interactive in nature and documents India’s freedom struggle.
12. Rashtrapati Bhavan
The Rashtrapati Bhavan is the official residence of the President of India. The grand structure was again designed by the architect duo of Edwin Lutyens and Herbert Baker and construction was completed in the year 1929. In pre-independence days the structure was designed as the residence of the British Viceroy of India. The Rashtrapati Bhavan consists of a huge mansion of 340 rooms that house the residence of the president, offices, and guest rooms. Visiting heads of states are housed in the Rashtrapati Bhavan. The Presidential estate spans over an area of 320 acres and includes enchanting gardens built in the Mughal style.
One can plan to visit the Rashtrapati Bhavan as it is indeed one of the top attractions in Delhi. The grandeur and majesty of the Rashtrapati Bhavan make it one of the must see places in Delhi.
13. National Rail Museum
The romance of trains over history comes alive in the National Rail Museum. It is definitely a place to give wings to childhood fantasies and for kids to have a rollicking time. The museum which spans an area of over 10 acres traces the heritage and history of the Railway system in India. The museum has both outdoor and indoor exhibits which include Diesel Simulator, Steam Simulator, among others. Some of the fascinating displays include a monorail that used to run between 1906 to 1927, the world’s oldest working steam locomotive, and many other fascinating exhibits that are designed to thrill.
There is also a toy train to delight kids and ferry them across the museum grounds.If you are in Delhi with kids and wondering what all to include in your itinerary, then the National Rail Museum is definitely one of the best attraction in Delhi for you.
14. Heritage Transport Museum
The Heritage Transport Museum may not even figure in most people’s list of things to do in Delhi as it is located about 75 kilometers away from Delhi. However traveling to the museum is definitely worth it. The museum takes you on a fascinating journey to the beginning of time when Man invented the wheel and opened up a whole new vista of transportation which ultimately shrunk the world and brought it closer. The Museum chronicles the evolution of transportation from the simple bullock carts to the supersonic jets of today through original exhibits and interactive displays. The Heritage Transport Museum is sure to capture the imagination of the entire family. Definitely one of the must see places in Delhi.
15. National Science Centre
The National Science Centre opens the doors to the fascinating world of Science in spectacular fashion through its Science Museum that is spread over 6 galleries filled with interactive exhibits. The museum is a complete education in a fun way for kids and adults alike. A magic tap from which water gushes forth without any apparent inlet, a harp which creates music when one simply moves one’s hands are some of the exhibits that are going to fascinate the visitors. A visit to the National Science Centre would definitely figure as one of the fun places to visit in Delhi, albeit with a generous dose of learning.
16. Shankar’s International Doll Museum
A museum that houses over 6500 dolls from across 85 countries, that is what Shankar’s International Doll Museum.The unique museum was started by the famous Indian political cartoonist K. Shankar Pillai. The main collection of dolls is about 150 Indian costume dolls made in the museum’s own workshop. These dolls capture the culture and ethos of regions across India in beautiful detail. Besides these dolls from across the world stand as a mute testimony to the richness of their respective cultures. Definitely, a visit to this unique doll museum holds the promise of an unforgettable experience.
17. Bal Bhawan
The Bal Bhawan in Delhi is a must visit place, especially if you are traveling with kids. The place is a veritable treasure trove of experiences and activities that the kids will enjoy. Bal Bhawan houses a Children’s Museum, a mini Zoo, an aquarium, a Science Park and a hall of Laughing Mirrors. Besides these activities like painting, clay modeling, woodwork, and aero modeling among others are organized on a regular basis. Kids would also love to take a ride on the toy train that chugs along within the campus of Bal Bhavan.
18. Nehru Planetarium
The Nehru Planetarium is situated in the salubrious and lush surroundings of Teen Murti House which was once the residence of India’s first Prime Minister, Jawaharlal Nehru. The Planetarium takes one to the scintillating world of astronomy and you feel your spirits soar as you watch shows about supernova, pulsars and shooting stars from the Solar System and the Milky Way. The Planetarium has about 5 shows and is closed on Mondays. Besides these shows, the Planetarium also organizes programs and quizzes on astronomy and space.
19. The Garden of Five Senses
This is a garden that strives to ensure that one has an immersive experience of nature utilizing all the 5 senses. Built over an area of 20 acres the sprawling garden is divided into different themed sections including a section based on Mughal Gardens. A recent addition to the Garden is a replica of the Mexican Mayan Labna Arc. The garden also has numerous food and crafts outlets and has become a center for cultural activities by organizing various dance programs and food festivals. The Garden of Five Senses is definitely an experience that is an indulgence for the senses and should be one of the must see places in Delhi.
20. The Kingdom of Dreams
The Kingdom of Dreams which is located in Gurgaon near Delhi is indeed a miniature India. It is a place that gives you India like nothing else. The culture, cuisine, arts, music, and dance of India can be experienced in spectacular fashion under one roof. The tastes and flavors of different regions are brought to a single place in the midst of live street performances, dazzling musicals, Bollywood themed extravaganzas and experiences that are the stuff of dreams. The Kingdom of Dreams is a place where the dreams of the entire family blossom into dazzling reality.
21. Dilli Haat
An open air food and crafts plaza in a village like atmosphere is what Dilli Haat is all about. It simulates the rustic atmosphere of a village and one can buy handicrafts and other items ranging from wood carvings, footwear, textiles, brassware, and gems among others. The Dilli Haat is a nice way to get an experience of the rustic feel of the country and also taste some authentic cuisines. It is run by DTTDC. If you love food and love to shop then this is one of the must see places in Delhi.
22. Worlds of Wonder
An ideal candidate in the list of fun places in Delhi, the Worlds of Wonder is an amusement park, water park and a Go Karting track all integrated into one theme park. With more than 20 themed rides and numerous water slides, the Worlds of Wonder is an ideal place to have a day of family fun. And when one gets hungry after all the activities, there are 10 themed eateries to satiate ones’ appetite. The Worlds of Wonder is located in Noida near Delhi. This is definitely one of the must see places in Delhi.
23. Birla Mandir
One of the largest Hindu temples in Delhi, Birla Mandir is also known as Lakshmi Narayan temple after the deity to which it is dedicated was built in 1939 by the industrialist J.K.Birla. The temple is dedicated to the Hindu God Vishnu together with his consort Lakshmi. The temple has historical importance in the sense that it was inaugurated by Mahatma Gandhi. The temple is built in an area spanning 7.5 acres and is one of the popular tourist destinations in Delhi.
The Akshardham which is a massive temple complex in Delhi is a spiritual and cultural center of the Swaminarayan sect. It is a place that brings alive the culture, spirituality, and architecture of India alive in spectacular fashion. Akshardham is said to attract 70 % of all tourists who visit Delhi, so obviously, it ranks high on most peoples’ list of top places to visit in Delhi. The temple which is located in the center of the complex is built as per the ancient tenets of Indian Vastu Shastra. The complex also has a water show, a thematic garden, an IMAX film show on the life of Swaminarayan and much more. Akshardham is undoubtedly one of the must see places in Delhi with the entire family.
25. ISKCON Temple
This temple dedicated to Lord Krishna and part of the International Society for Krishna Consciousness is definitely a must visit place in Delhi for a unique spiritual experience. The teachings of the Bhagavad Gita come alive through a unique sensory experience that uses robots and light effects with dramatic audio effects. The Hindu mythology Ramayana is brought alive through the paintings of ISKCON devotees from across the world. A Quadro scope brings to life the teachings of the Bhagavad Gira through a maze of hundreds of monitors.
Delhi, the pulsating and vibrant capital of Incredible India is a treasure house of experiences of different flavors and aromas, a mosaic of history, science, adventure, fun, and culture. We are sure Delhi is beckoning you with open arms to come and experience it to the full.
Have you been to Delhi? Which is your favorite place in Delhi? Did you find our travel guide on must see places in Delhi useful? Do let us know in the comments section.
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