After my short visit to Jaipur, I took the bus to the capital of India: Delhi. This metropolis is a truly fascinating place with its hustle and bustle of daily city-life in between the ruins and relicts of ancient glory! Unfortunately, I had only 1,5 days for a tour of its major sights, so I started immediately and took an autorickshaw to the Qutb complex. This large area is filled with monuments of which the Qutb Minar is the most imposing. The minarett was probably built around the end of the 12th century and with a height of almost 73 m it is still one of the tallest in the world! If you really want to appreciate the entire complex, you have to spend a few hours walking around the ruins. On the second day, I entered the city centre of Delhi and visited the Jama Masjid, India’s largest mosque. Its construction started in 1650 and today more than 25,000 worshippers can pray in its courtyard. Visitors can also climb one of the minaretts for a better view of the mosque and its neighbourhood! Close to the Jama Masjid lies the Red Fort, the palace of the Mughal emperors of India for almost 200 years. I did not have time for a thorough visit, but I still admired the place from the outside, standing in front of the Lahori Gate where the first prime minister of India, Jawaharlal Nehru, raised the Indian national flag as a sign of independence in 1947.
From the Red Fort, I took a taxi to the Raj Ghat, the place of cremation of Mahatma Ghandi on the 31 January 1948, one day after his assassination. Following on this, I visited the large complex of Humayun’s Tomb. This exceedingly beautiful park and majestic monument is the resting place of the Mughal Emperor Humayun, but also encompasses a number of other mausoleums. Close-by is also Safdarjung’s Tomb, a much smaller, but similarly appealing site.
While my stay in Delhi was too short to see all there is to this grand city, I already knew I would come back in the coming years. My flight home was on the next morning and took me via Dubai where I could see the newly built Bhurj Khalifa piercing the sky like a needle.