You have to admit that life would be pretty boring without some digression from the bogus old ways, right? We have five such places which are different than your regular monuments and gardens. Although these places are quite famous on a foreign tourist’s radar, several locals haven’t really explored them yet. Now if you desire some sightseeing in Delhi with a dash of newness, then hop on the wagon.
Out of condiments? Visit Asia’s largest spice market
India is rightfully known as the “exotic land of spice.”Being Asia’s largest wholesale spice market, Khari Baoli is a trove of condiments. We Indians cannot make do without spices because they add flavor and fire up our taste buds. This place traces back to the 17th century when it was just known as a salt water step well (yes, pretty old, huh?). Today, Salt is not the only spice you find here! This place is perfect for those who like to experiment with food and flavors. Located at the western end of Chandni Chowk, Khari Baoli usually escapes the radar of most travelers to Delhi. Not just spices, you can buy a host of other things as well – flowers, sweets, hair-care products and so on. Once you enter this area, your senses will be greeted by the smell of various grains of diverse shapes and colors- chili, nuts, unrefined spices, salts, pulses, rice, herbs and dry fruits. You can reach here through the means of metro by getting down on the Chandni Chowk station and taking an e-rickshaw from there. This place also poses as a remarkable representation of the antiquity of resources of our country. And did you know that this place is quite a popular spot for international instagrammers who come to Delhi?
Enter a world of “qawaali, kebabs and magic”
Ever heard about the ecstasy and electric atmosphere created by Sufi music? Well, now is your chance to head over to the Nizamuddin dargah and be a part of the magic. Nizamuddin Dargah in Delhi is the dargah of one of the world’s most famous Sufi saints, Nizamuddin Auliya. He was one of the most revered saints of all times and people from all walks of life visit this dargah. Located amidst narrow lanes and crowded markets, this place was featured in a number of Bollywood films including Rockstar (2011), Delhi 6 (2009) and Bajrangi Bhaijaan (2015). We can reach this place by taking the metro to Pragati Maidan and then an auto will take us to the destination. Every Thursday night, this place is filled with people who come to lose themselves in the essence of Sufi music and delicious food items. We have to agree that Amir Khusrau’s qawaali and Sama still has the city under its spell, huh?
Witness the ‘change of the guard ceremony’
If you think that the Buckingham Palace has good ceremonies, just visit Rashtrapati Bhavan and see our very own change of the guard ceremony, on Saturdays. This ceremony still remains an unknown attraction in the city of Delhi. The Change of Guard ceremony is a military tradition whose origins are lost in antiquity. The ceremony consists of an awe inspiring procession. As the troops march ahead on the beats of the Army Brass Band, it is truly a mesmerizing sight. From time immemorial, guards and sentries at palaces, forts and defense establishments change periodically. This is to enable a fresh body of troops to take charge. This ceremony is thus, as important as it is fascinating!
Marvel at the work of Delhi folk artists!
The struggling artists have turned the public wall spaces and walls of Delhi into giant canvasses. The flyovers, metro stations, apartment walls in colonies and other places exhibit murals and graffiti inspired by folk and tribal art. “Suddenly, dull residential areas in the centre of the capital, with their typical box-shaped, whitewashed government housing, have come to life”, as a feature in the Hindustan times had described this phenomenon. The area around Lodhi Road, which has one of the capital’s oldest markets, is also the country’s first public-art area. “A lot of artists are turning into open gallery like graffiti and wall art as a medium, to display their creativity in open spaces and make it visible to a far larger audience than they would ever get in a gallery,” Yogesh Saini, founder, Delhi Street Art (DSA) said. And true enough, these new ways of expression are presenting art has taken the world by rage. So, make sure that you get a good view of these places featuring the genius of the street artists. Everyone loves a little splash of color sometimes, right?
Experience the uniqueness of the Indian Habitat Center
The largest and the most comprehensive Convention Centre in the country should be on your to-visit list! This place has a club with 58 rooms, a health spa, six restaurants and several performance venues for cultural and entertainment programmes. It is the capital’s premier cultural/entertainment destination with an array of prime cultural activities happening throughout the year. Ranging from quality theatre, movie festivals, dance and music renditions, talks and workshops to kids activities, this place has it all. One of the most striking aspects of the India Habitat centre is its library. And if you hear your stomach growling, just go eat your fill at the ‘Eatopia’ and other such themed restaurants. The library, the ponds, the amphitheatre, the stein auditorium and the visual arts gallery- all of these places are at your disposal in the Indian Habitat Center.
“If you want to shop- go to Connaught place or Sarojini and if you want food then reach Chandni Chowk!” Isn’t this the standard speech given by most of the locals whenever you want some advice on local attractions? But the places mentioned above, completely follow the offbeat and non- regular policy. So, enough with the same markets and monuments, it’s time to explore the city of Delhi with a new perspective. There are so many undiscovered places in this small city. All we have to do is pull up our travelling socks and visit these places!