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India - We tour Delhi: Days 3 and 4: 14 Magical Days in India: #3

Updated: Aug 14, 2022

Our first destination was the incredible Akshardham Swaminarayan in New Delhi.

This is the largest Hindu house of worship, needing approximately 12,000 craftsmen working 24hrs/day for 5 years to complete. The structure is supported by 148 full sized hand-carved elephants. Swaminarayan Akshardham's mandovar, constructed of sandstone and marble, is the largest, most intricately carved mandovar built in India in the last eight hundred years. This temple opened its doors in November 2005.

The photograph above was taken with a telephoto lens from a hill outside of the complex. It was the only photo I was able to take as cameras, personal items, and shoes were not allowed on the premises. Once you tour the temple, I highly recommend that you have a photo taken by one of the temple photographers.


To see photographs and learn more about this wonderful place, please go to:


This is a site not to be missed if you are in the Delhi area.


After our extensive temple tour, we headed to the old city of Delhi. Our first stop was the Mosque, the Jama Masjid of Delhi. It was commissioned by the Mughal Emperor Shah Jahan, between 1650 and 1656, and is one of the largest mosques in India.

Shoes are removed upon entrance to the complex and the stone tiles can get very hot. This is why socks come in handy to afford some protection from the searing ground.

The main prayer hall, made of red sandstone with 15 marble domes was the way we entered the complex

The main prayer hall, made of red sandstone with 15 marble domes was the way we entered the complex

Next stop on our tour - Chandni Chowk


This 17th century market where rickshaws abound, is a go to place for spices, jewelry, saris, stationary, and food in a way that brings people together. Really together.


Motorcycles, rickshaws , tuk-tuk, auto rickshaws and cars can all be seen on these roads. Good luck trying to drive here if you are an American driver.


goods for sale in the middle of the street, tuk-tuks abound, not a street to be driven on by a non-expert

No this is not a pedestrian mall, and no it is not closed to vehicular traffic. Navigating these roads on foot or by tuk-tuk cab is the way to go.


Photograph of a bull siting near a motorcycle and a group of men

This bovine casually rests amid the energetic bustling of an animated marketplace. Long considered to symbolize “the caregiver”, one who offers more than receives in return, cows are revered throughout India. The docile nature of these creatures inspires the virtues of gentleness, strength, and a connection with nature.


Next stop Gandhi Smriti


Built for the Birla Family business tycoons, it eventually became home to Gandi, and the area where he spent most of his adult life. The raised footprints mark the path Gandhi walked towards his assassination.

From ancient and historic we now see modern Architecture but with curves and form


The Lotus Temple, a Baháʼí House of Worship, built in 1986, with its 9 sides formed by 27 marble petals, arranged in groups of three, is one such place. As the name suggests, it evokes the image of a Lotus flower. A prominent attraction in New Delhi, it is open to all, providing a quiet venue for self reflection or meditation regardless of religion.


Beautiful reflecting pool, shaped like a foot according to the designer, to symbolize the lasting imprint left by great souls. While it is magnificent, it does not look like a foot to me.  Must be where the term “square foot” came from.

Beautiful reflecting pool, shaped like a foot according to the designer, to symbolize the lasting imprint left by great souls. While it is magnificent, it does not look like a foot to me. Must be where the term “square foot” came from.


On day four, after a 3 am wake-up call two days in a row for site tours, jet-lag finally set in big-time. Rising comfortably late in the morning, and craving Panipuri, we set off into Delhi for lunch with friends. Following their recommendation, we gathered at Haldiram restaurant and shared a smorgasbord of the famous Indian street food without actually worrying about buying it on the street. Face it, you can get a really good hot dog from a street vendor in NYC, but if you don't know who that guy is, you'll just end up feeling like a dog. On the other hand, this lunch was amazing. After that, we were off to Janpath market.

If I had a full-sized suitcase, I would have had a hard time resisting. I guess that’s another reason that my husband always reminds me to travel light.


So many beautiful things to buy. Haggling is expected in all the street markets and most shops. When first given a price, begin 50 - 60% lower. As negotiations go on, and you’ve been refused your final offer, start to walk away. If at that point the vendor relents, you’ve gotten a better deal than when you started. Don’t feel guilty, the seller is still making a profit either way.. .


Next Indian destination - Rajasthan


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