Delhi Journals

Delhi’s Hidden Treasures

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A June 2008 trip to Delhi by phileasfogg

Daryaganj Sunday Book Bazaar Photo, Delhi, India More Photos
Quote: Most visitors in Delhi experience the more obvious of the city’s charms. Here’s a quick countdown of Delhi’s hidden gems—some even unknown to residents.

Jain Bird Hospital

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Attraction

Jain Bird Hospital Photo, Delhi, India
Quote:
The Jain Bird Hospital’s a quaint little place you could easily miss—despite its location in Chandni Chowk, one of Delhi’s busiest neighbourhoods. I’d lived more than ten years in Delhi before I got to know it existed.Jainism emphasizes the sanctity of all life, a tenet that’s exemplified most basically in vegetarianism. The respect for life can go to extremes, with some Jain sects wearing muslin `masks’ over their mouths and noses, so as to not inadvertently inhale insects. It’s therefore not really surprising that one of Delhi’s largest and most important Jain temples should have, as part of the temple complex, a hospital dedicated to healing birds.I visited on a hot day in April, a...Read More

Member Rating 3 out of 5 on June 9, 2008

Jain Bird Hospital
Next to Jain Lal Mandir, Netaji Subhash Marg, Chandni Chowk
Delhi, India 110006
011 23280942

Kinari Bazaar

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Attraction | "Naughara and Kinari Bazaar"

Kinari Bazaar Photo, Delhi, India
Quote:
Chandni Chowk—the `Moonlight Square’ of Old Delhi—is the epitome of exotic India. It’s actually exotic enough to leave even most Indians wide-eyed. And Kinari Bazaar is Chandni Chowk at its glittery, colourful best. This is a long, very narrow street, which snakes its way through Chandni Chowk. Kinari (which literally means `edging’) is the embroidered or woven strip of cloth, often with gold or silver thread worked into it, which is used to edge saris and other items of women’s garments in India.And although most shops in Kinari Bazaar sell kinari, that isn’t all. They also sell just about every conceivable thing you could need to decorate yourself, a stage, a temple, a weddin...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on June 9, 2008

Kinari Bazaar
Naughara, Chandni Chowk
Delhi, India

Neela Gumbad

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Attraction

Neela Gumbad Photo, Delhi, India
Quote:
Neela Gumbad (literally, `blue dome’) is often applied—erroneously—to the blue-domed tomb that stands at the intersection of Lodhi Road and Mathura Road. This, however, is Subz Burj, and though it is a striking building, it’s not the Neela Gumbad. The Neela Gumbad lies deeper within Nizamuddin, south-east of Subz Burj. To get there, take the road towards Gurudwara Damdama Sahib. Go past the northern wall of Humayun’s Tomb Complex, past Bharat Scouts and Guides Association and the Gurudwara, until you reach a large, blue-domed structure sitting atop a platform. This is the Neela Gumbad.The Neela Gumbad was built in 1624-5 as the mausoleum for a nobleman named Fahim Khan. Abdur Rahim Kh...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on June 9, 2008

Neela Gumbad
Behind Humayun's Tomb Complex, Nizamuddin East
Delhi, India

Sundarwala Burj

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Attraction

Sundarwala Burj Photo, Delhi, India
Quote:
The dargah or tomb of the Sufi mystic Hazrat Nizamuddin Auliya lends its name to the area known as Nizamuddin. Also, like the tombs of other Muslim holy men, Nizamuddin’s dargah is believed to impart sanctity to the area around—which is why the neighbourhood is crammed with the tombs of the rich and powerful. Emperors and pretenders, princesses and poets: all lie buried around about. As do some unknowns.The Sundarwala Burj is the tomb of one such unknown—a nobleman, obviously, since the tomb is richly decorated; but someone unidentified, nevertheless. It’s an early Mughal building, probably of the 16th or 17th century, and is fairly small: just about 4 metres on each side of its squar...Read More

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on June 9, 2008

Sundarwala Burj
Sundar Government Nursery, Nizamuddin East
Delhi, India

Daryaganj Sunday Book Bazaar

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Attraction | "The Daryaganj Sunday Book Bazaar"

Daryaganj Sunday Book Bazaar Photo, Delhi, India
Quote:
The area known as Daryaganj is along Netaji Subhash Marg, one of the main roads leading from New Delhi into Old Delhi. This is an important business district, and home to the head offices of some of India’s leading publishers and book distributors. Whether that has a bearing on Daryaganj’s main attraction for bookworms like me is a question—but what really matters is that for anybody who loves books, this is the place to be on a Sunday morning. Any Sunday morning. Because, come rain or shine, through scorching summers and bitter winters, dozens of book sellers set up stalls—often just an old tarpaulin stretched out on the pavement—all along Netaji Subhash Marg, and sell books.The Daryaganj Sunday B...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on June 9, 2008

Daryaganj Sunday Book Bazaar
Netaji Subhash Marg, Daryaganj
Delhi, India

Zeenat-ul-Masajid

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Attraction

Zeenat-ul-Masajid Photo, Delhi, India
Quote:
Some of old Delhi’s most interesting mosques—the Sunehri (`golden’) Masjid near the Red Fort, the Fatehpuri Masjid at the end of Chandni Chowk, the Masjid Mubarak Begum, and the now-extinct Akbarabadi Masjid—owe their existence to noblewomen. Another such mosque is the relatively little-known Zeenat-ul-Masajid, named for Zeenat-un-nissa Begum, the daughter of the Mughal emperor Aurangzeb. Zeenat-un-nissa Begum commissioned this mosque in 1707, and was later buried within the complex of the mosque. After the mutiny of 1857, the British destroyed her tomb.That, by the way, was only the start of trouble for the Zeenat-ul-Masajid. The mosque lay in the critical Daryaganj Cantonment area and in the days...Read More

Member Rating 3 out of 5 on June 9, 2008

Zeenat-ul-Masajid
Ghata Masjid Road, Off Ansari Road, Daryaganj
Delhi, India