Urban Greens > Delhi
What makes you fall in love with your city?
Is it the fast pace of life? Is it the feeling that the city is a mini-version of the world, compressed in a form that you get all the flavours of many, many cuisines in one place? Is it the tall buildings and the glitz? Or is it the culture, or the people?
We’ve realised that even though living in metropolitans can be an exhausting ordeal, we barely even manage to scratch the surface of the city, of the history and of the charm of gems hidden in plain sight.
For us, a major part of what makes a city beautiful is the carefully tended to urban greens, the carefully preserved historical monuments and the old buildings that tell tales of war, love , disease and triumph to the current generation.
Here’s a small list of our favourite gems in Delhi, places that are perfect for a solitary stroll, for lazily hanging out with friends, or a cozy picnic date. Hope you get a chance to discover these places, or rediscover them from a new perspective, every time you visit.
Lodi Gardens: A peaceful and relaxing abode for a walk, a yoga session or a cozy picnic, this place not only carries a few eras of Delhi’s history in its folds but also is one of the rare historical places, which are living. This can be a place for history Buffs to admire the Lodi era tombs and mosques, for architects to study the architecture of that time, for artists to get inspiration from the splash of colors every spring.
Deer Park, Hauz Khas: A variety of birds, historical monuments, and the Hauz Khas lake are all the right reasons to head to Deer Park for a winter picnic. The green cover at this park, the history of the Hauz Khas Fort and the cozy cafes nearby are the ingredients of a perfect day out.
Sunder Nursery: Sunder Nursery, formerly called Azim Bagh or Bagh-e-Azeem, is a 16th-century heritage park complex adjacent to the Humayun's Tomb, a UNESCO World Heritage site in Delhi. Sunder Nursery contains fifteen heritage monuments and houses over 300 types of trees, making it Delhi's first arboretum! You can go on a photographic exploration of the six heritage sites here, or walk around the 30 acres of the Biodiversity Zone. Just make sure you have your walking shoes on and you are all set for a perfect day in the sun.
Qudsia Bagh: This hidden gem of a park located near Kashmiri Gate houses the remains of a shaahi (royal) masjid and other ancient structures, giving it a very rustic look (and a peek into its glorious past state). This one’s a good bet when you want an uncrowded, relaxing spot to escape from the city's bustle and soak in that all-important winter sun.
Okhla Bird Sanctuary: A hit for all the Noida-dwellers, this is a perfect place to chill with your picnic blankets and baskets. Do not forget to carry your cameras along, since winter is the time of the year when you will spot plenty of migratory birds here.
Sanjay Van: A sprawling urban forest area covering over 700 acres, this is a perfect place for a short hike. This forest park is a great place to spot local flora and fauna, including dancing peacocks and native trees. There are also organised forest walks every weekend which can be a delight for nature lovers.
Qutub Minar: Almost as old as the history of the Delhi Sultanate, the iconic Qutub Minar, the world's tallest brick minaret, dominates the skyline of Delhi. Standing 73 foot tall, this five-storeyed tower, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, remains one of the most magnificent buildings of India from the medieval era. This is a perfect spot for a weekend picnic with the kids, an educational and cultural experience along with the natural beauty of the lush greens that surround the Minar.
Humanyun’s Tomb: The last refuge of Mughal Emperor Humayun reminds rather of a luxurious palace, than a tomb.Located in the eastern part of Delhi, Humayun’s tomb is one of the best preserved Mughal monuments. This spellbinding mausoleum is the first example of Mughal architecture in India, and was also the Inspiration of a wonder of the world ,the Taj Mahal. Humayun’s tomb is a great spot to visit with your loved ones, and witness a living record of human history.