Red Fort or lal qila as it is more popularly known is a masterpiece of architecture and one of the most haunting spots for tourists from both India and abroad. Before the mutiny of 1857, the fort presented an altogether different picture from what it presents today because only about one-fourth of the imposing structure is accessible to visitors with the rest of the area being under the control of the Indian Army, which continues the occupation begun after the uprising of 1857 was suppressed.
In 1858, a large number of palaces in the fort were demolished, many of the taikhanas (basement rooms) sealed and massive barracks constructed for the soldiers.
In Delhi one of the most frequently visited tourist spot, Qutub Minar was built in 1199 by Qutub-ud-Din. The sultan's successor and son-in-law, Iltutmish, completed it. The purpose of building this beautiful monument is not very clear, as some believe that it was built as a tower of victory to signify the beginning of the Muslim rule in India , while others say it served as a minaret to the adjoining mosque and was used by the muezzins to call the faithful to prayer. It is 72.5 meters high and one has to climb 379 steps to get to the top. The diameter of the base is 14.3 meters while the top floor measures 2.7 meters in diameter.
After the succession by his son Humayun, the first Mughal Emperor, Babar, who ruled in India for a decade but was expelled. Eventually he took refuge with the Safavid shah of Persia , who helped him regain Delhi in 1555, the year before his death. Humayun's Persian wife, Hamida Begum, supervised the construction from 1562-1572 of her husband's tomb in Delhi . The architect, Mirak Mirza Ghiyuath, was Persian and had previously designed buildings in Herat (now northwest Afghanistan ), Bukhara (now Uzbekistan ), and elsewhere in India . The location chosen for the building on the bank of the Yamuna River adjoins the shrine of an important Sufi Chistiyya order saint, Nizam al-Din Awliya. The Mughals particularly venerated the Chistiyya; Humayun's son, Akbar, would build his new palace at Fatehpur Sikri next to the shrine of another saint of the Chistiyya order.
This gigantic structured gate of 42 metres high is set at the end of Rajpath, perhaps the most beautiful area of New Delhi with plush green lawns in the backdrop. It is mostly used as popular picnic spot during the winters and equally popular as a relaxation area during the summer evenings. Designed and built by Lutyens, it was originally called All India War Memorial in memory of the 90,000 Indian soldiers who died in the campaigns of World War I, the North-West Frontier operations of the same time and the 1919 Afghan Fiasco. On the walls of the structure are inscribed the names of all the soldiers. An eternal flame called Amar Jawan Jyoti that runs on gas was lit in 1971 to honor the martyrs. During the night, it is intensely floodlit and the fountains nearby are lit up with colored lights. Close by is the canopy which once became controversial and under whose red sandstone roof was the marble statue of King George V which has been shifted from there. The canopy was also designed and built by Lutyens.
Completed in 1998, this is a complex of temples. Built on a hilly place this temple is dedicated to the Lord Krishna and was built by the Hare-Rama Hare- Krishna cult followers. This complex is elegantly built and is one of the largest temple complexes in India . Currently the main attraction of the temple is the Robort who enact and preach the Gita.
The Bahai Temple
Completed in 1986, the Bahai temple is set amidst pools and gardens, and adherents of any faith are free to visit the temple and pray or meditate silently according to their own religion. The structure is in lotus shape so it often called the Lotus Temple . The view of the temple is very spectacular just before dusk when the temple is flood lit.
Jama Masjid is declared as the largest mosques in India among all other mosques and the final architectural extravagance of Mughal emperor Shah Jahan. It's also known as 'Masjid-i-Jahan Numa', 'Jahan' means 'World' and Numa means 'Visible'. It is situated a little distance from the Red Fort. It was designed as Emperor Shahjahan's principal mosque. The sprawling esplanade, which separates it from the arterial road, is a fascinating leisure ground.
The splendid mosque built by Muhammad Ali Shah in the typical Mughal style with two minarets and three domes, lies to the west of the Hussainabad Imambara and is entirely free from pseudo Italian art then in vogue in Lucknow . Mohammad Ali Shah started the construction of this splendid mosque in 1840 but his wife Begum Malika Jahan finally completed it after his death. It is the country's largest mosque, built in 1656, where thousands of Muslims offer prayers.