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Family Vacations with Kids: Delhi – A Fascinating City

 
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Located on the banks of the Yamuna, Delhi has plenty to see & do, from monuments to theme parks and city squares
| Places to see | Shopping in Delhi |
| Temples in Delhi | Reaching there | Excursions |

Delhi, a city with myriad facets has been enticing visitors through ages. With its rich cultural heritage, history, human diversity & political importance, Delhi has made millions hearts aspire & dream about it. The city has always exerted a fascinating charm on kids, as they can relate to the history they read in the pages of history books. It’s one of the favorite cities for family vacation, not only because, the capital of India has both political & historical importance attached to it, but also because it has plethora to experience.

Located on the banks of the Yamuna, the city has plenty to see & do, from historic monuments, national museums, religious places, city squares, monuments of political importance to zoo, theme parks & loads of nearby getaways. While parents can unwind themselves by sight-seeing, shopping, eating out & night life, kids can be happy having fun at the theme parks & to see history alive. It is also a place where families can spend time doing variety of activities together. Parents can accompany their kids to the pools & water rides of theme parks besides guiding them in historical monuments. Besides running around in the green parks of India Gate and Lodi Garden, kids can also learn many new things from the planetariums, the fascinating historical anecdotes, the light & sound shows at monuments. Learning with fun not only makes the trip memorable, but interesting too for the kids.

Delhi, the political powerhouse of India, narrates the city's Mughal past, Old Delhi, through the narrow lanes of Chandani Chowk, passing through formidable mosques of Jama Masjid to the Red fort. Representing the colonial style of architecture, India Gate, the Parliament & the Connaught Place still inspires the kids & parents alike. Besides its monumental heritage, the city also has numerous fairs & festivals to keep the travellers interested and engaged. Places like Dilli Haat, usually hosts one or the other festival. If that’s not enough yet, parents can relax with the soothing cultural programmes at various Embassies and classical programs organized by Spic Macay.

Delhi is also a shopper's paradise where you can buy almost anything from anywhere in India. Besides shopping, one can take a day trip to Agra & Fatehpur Sikri. If time permits, you can go for two - three day excursion to Jaipur or Shimla as well.

Places to see in Delhi
Monuments & Museums
in Delhi
Firoz Shah Kotla
Safdurgunj Tomb
Rashtrapati Bhawan
Open to public in February only
Lotus Temple
Apr-Sep: 9:00a.m. to 7:00 p.m.
Oct-Mar - 9:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.
Admission is free and the temple is closed every Monday. Few Movies are shown in the Information Centre everyday, related to the Bahá'í Faith.
Archeological Museum
9 am- 5 pm Daily
National Rail Museum April-Sep. 9.30 am to 7.00 and Oct- Mar. 9:30 am to 5 pm.

Nehru Museum & Planetorium
9:30 am to 10:30 pm.
Additional shows on Sundays and holidays in Hindi- 10:30 am to 3:00 pm

National Children's Museum
9.00am To 5:30 pm
National Gallery of Modern Art
10:00am To 5:00 pm. It’s closed every Monday. There are no entrance charges

Red Fort: More popularly known as the Lal Quila, stands strong on the banks of the river Yamuna as an irregular octagon. This red sandstone fortress surrounded by a wall of about 2.4 kms in circumference was a grandiose display of pomp and power of the Mughal era. Every year some landmark political speeches take place on the occasion of Independence Day on 15 August. Tickets to the fort are available from the ticket kiosk opposite Lahore Gate (the main gate). Each evening (except Monday) a one-hour sound-and-light show re-creates events of India's history, particularly those associated with the Red Fort.

Purana Quila: With massive walls and three gateways, Purana Qila was the site of ancient Indraprastha. Just beyond the Sher Mahal, is the Qila-i-Kuhran Mosque, or Mosque of Sher Shah.

The legendary Prithviraj Chauhan ruled from here till he was defeated by Abdali in the battle of Panipat. There's a small archaeological museum just inside the main gate where admission is free. Also, there’s a new light & sound show every evening.

India Gate: Was built by Lutyens to honor the Indian soldiers who died in World War I & the Afghan wars. The imposing 42 metre high structure, originally called All India War Memorial has an eternal flame (Amar Jawan Jyoti) in the midst of the huge lush green lawns to honour the memory of the Indian soldiers. India Gate prominently located in the vicinity of Rastrapati Bhavan is thronged by visitors during the hot summer evenings & cold winters afternoons of Delhi by virtue of its lush green lawns.

Qutub Minar: Built by Qutub - ud - din in 1199 A.D, the tallest brick minaret is situated in the southern part of the capital. The 73 mts high tower has a mosque at its base and has five distinct storeys, each marked by a projecting balcony. It tapers, like something out of a fairy tale, from a 15m (50ft) diameter at the base to just 2.5m (8ft) at the top. The first three-storey are made of red sandstone, the fourth and fifth storeys of marble and sandstone. In front of the Qutub Minar there is an iron pillar which is believed to be built in the 5th century, but has not caught rust ever since.

Humayun's Tomb: Built by Haji Begum, the wife of Humayun, the structure is one of the best examples of Mughal Architecture. Humayun's wife is also buried in the red and white sandstone, black and yellow marble tomb. This squat building with high arched entrances, topped by a spherical dome and surrounded by formal gardens – is considered the predecessor of the magnificent Taj Mahal of Agra. The entry in the complex is free on Friday.

Jama Masjid: Is one of the largest mosques of India. Jama Masjid, completed in 1658 has three gateways, 4 angle towers and two 40 m high minarets and is constructed of alternating vertical strips of red sandstone and white marble. The main entry point is Gate No 3 and the mosque's courtyard can hold as many as more than 25,000 people. The stunning Jama Masjid mosque is the largest in India and the final architectural magnum opus of Shah Jahan.

One can climb the southern minaret with a minimal fee and have a bird’s eye view of Delhi. From the top of the minaret, one can see that the Jama Masjid, Connaught Place and Sansad Bhavan (Parliament House) are in a direct line. Visitors should remove their shoes at the top of the stairs. Admission to mosque is free and all can enter the mosque but must take precaution to take off your shoes and make sure that you are properly dressed before entering.

Jantar Mantar: Set within the garden of stately palms, Maharaja Jai Singh made daily astral observation for seven years before embarking on these stone constructions. He discarded the usual instruments of brass and built these massive ones in masonry which are used to the movements of stars. This observatory, together with the one at Jaipur, is the finest examples of observatories modelled on the general pattern.
 
Temples in Delhi
Akshardham Temple
9 am to 6 pm (closed on Monday)
Iskon Temple
7am to 8pm. Open on all days.
Chhatarpur Temple
Open on all days at all time.
Preferred Timings: Prayer time in morning & evening.

Excursions from Delhi
Parks & Entertainment
National Zoological Park of Delhi - Timings: 9.00 am- 4.30 pm. Admission Fee: Indian citizen: INR 5 / Foreigner: INR 10. Photography & Video charges extra.
Lodi Garden
Fun & Food Village
Adventure Island
Buddha Jayanti Park

Agra: Just about 200 Kms from Delhi lies Agra, the once capital of Mughals. The city has retained the Mughal fever and is famous for Taj Mahal, which was built by Shah Jahan in memory of his beloved queen Mumtaz Mahal. Taj is one of the most extravagant monuments ever built for love & is considered one of the 7 wonders of Earth. The whole structure is built with white marble and is surrounded by fountains & gardens.

Agra also has the imposing Red fort built by Emperor Akbar. Near Agra is the Fatehpur Sikri which is also known as Red sandstone capital of the Mughal Emperor. This city is built in Red sandstone and has some of the best examples of Rajputana architecture in combination with Moghul architecture. To reach Agra there are conducted tours from Delhi as well as state transport buses ply from Delhi to Agra. There are train services also for Agra.
Read more on Agra
Driving directions from Delhi to Agra

Jaipur: The ‘pink city’ of India, the state capital of Rajasthan is not only famous for it’s historic splendor & magnificence but also because it’s the first planned city. It’s just 300 kms from Delhi and is easily accessible from Delhi. In Jaipur the culture, the tradition, the art, the architecture of Rajasthan appear in full bloom. The timeless Hawa Mahal, the magnificent City Palace, the Albert Hall, Jantar Mantar, Amber Palace, Jaigarh & Nahargarh Forts, Jal Mahal and many other places are worth visiting. Jaipur also acts as the corridor to other places in Rajasthan. One can take the conducted tour or train or state transport buses to get there.
Read more on Jaipur
Driving directions from Delhi to Jaipur

Shimla: Around 362 kms from Delhi, the capital of Himachal Pradesh is a major hill station in India. Splendid Shimla is also the tee off point for the rest of Himachal, with roads leading west to the Kangra and Chamba valleys, north to Kullu and Lahaul valleys, and east to Kinnaur and Spiti Valley. Apart from great colonial architecture in the form of monuments like the Christ Church, Viceregal Lodge, Gorton Castle and others, there are dozens of tiny places around which offer the most pleasant walks like Summer Hill, Prospect Hill, Chadwick Falls, Tara Devi, Chharabra and others.
Read more on Shimla
Driving directions from Delhi to Shimla


Reaching Delhi & Best time to go

By Air: All the major National and International airlines have their flights operating from Delhi's Indira Gandhi International Airport.

By Rail: The Indian Railway with their modern and organised network connects Delhi to all major and minor destinations in India. There are three important Railway Stations in Delhi namely New Delhi Railway Station, Old Delhi Railway Station and Hazarat Nizamuddin Railway Station.

By Road: Delhi is well connected by road to all major destinations in North India. The Inter State Bus Terminus (ISBT) are located at Kashmiri Gate, Sarai Kale-Khan and Anand Vihar. Delhi Transport Corporation and state transport corporations of the neighbouring states provide frequent bus services through Air Conditioned, Deluxe and Ordinary Coaches.

Local transport in Delhi: Prepaid Taxi & Auto are available from airport (Domestic & International), all Railway Stations and Bus terminals & other important places. Delhi Metro is new mode of transport in Delhi, which is clean, fast and efficient.

Best time to visit: Winters – October to March

Good places for shopping in Delhi
  1. Karol Bagh:  Famous for selling artifacts of Delhi
  2. Kinari Bazar in Chandni Chowk: Delhi's largest market dealing in wedding accessories
  3. Dariba in Chandni Chowk: Known as the silver market
  4. Khari Baoli – Asia’s largest wholesale spice market.
  5. Meena Bazar: Famous for Dhabas and food stalls serving Indian non-vegetarians delicacies
  6. Chawri Bazar: Specialized wholesale market of brass, copper and paper products
  7. State Emporium on Baba Khadak Singh Marg: Handicrafts of each state are on offer.
  8. Janpath Emporium: Jewellery and ritual objects. Good for souvenir.
  9. Dilli Haat: Permanent craft bazaar displaying handicrafts from across states. The only place where various cuisines of India are found within the same boundary.

About Delhi: Delhi Information & Fact File
Altitude 239 meters
Temp
Summer 46 (Max) & 30 (Min) Degrees Celsius
Winter 28 (Max) & 6 (Min) Degrees Celsius
Best time to Go November – March
Monsoon July - August
Summer April - June
Winter Dec – Jan
Clothes Cottons in summer and woolens during winter
Nearest Airport Delhi has an International Airport
Nearest Railway Station Delhi has 3 major Interstate Railway Stations
Bus Station Delhi has 5 Interstate Bus Terminus the largest one being at Kashmiri Gate.
Hospital & Doctor

Delhi has the best in Medical Facilities to offer at it’s various Govt. and Pvt. Hospitals

Places to see India Gate, Red Fort, Jama Masjid, Qutub Minar, Humayun’s Tomb, Lodhi Gardens, Rashtrapati Bhawan
   
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