We bet you didn't know these interesting facts about Delhi
Delhi, the capital city of India, is a bustling metropolis that seamlessly blends a rich historical legacy with the vibrant energy of a modern urban center. With a population of over 20 million people, it is one of the most populous cities in the world. Delhi serves as a major political, cultural, and commercial hub, offering a diverse range of experiences to its residents and visitors.
As a local living in Delhi, I'm excited to share some fascinating and lesser-known facts about New Delhi, the vibrant capital city of India:
Rich Historical Significance
New Delhi, inaugurated as the capital of British India on February 13, 1931, is known for its rich historical heritage. However, what many people may not know is that Delhi has been continuously inhabited for over 2,500 years, with evidence of settlements dating back to the 6th century BC.
India's Largest Mosque
The iconic Jama Masjid, located in Old Delhi, is not only one of the largest mosques in India but also one of the largest in the world. Built by Mughal Emperor Shah Jahan, who also built the Taj Mahal, the Jama Masjid can accommodate up to 25,000 worshipers at a time.
A City of Multiple Capitals
Delhi has served as the capital city for various empires and dynasties throughout history.
It has been the capital of at least seven different civilizations, including the Pandavas in the ancient epic Mahabharata, the Mughals, and the British.
Asia's Largest Wholesale Spice Market
Khari Baoli, located in Old Delhi, is Asia's largest wholesale spice market. It has been in operation for centuries and offers a mesmerizing array of spices, herbs, dry fruits, and other culinary delights. Exploring this bustling market is an aromatic experience like no other.
Delhi's Street Food Paradise
Delhi is a food lover's paradise, renowned for its diverse and delectable street food. From mouth-watering chaats like golgappas and aloo tikkis to savory kebabs and the famous butter chicken, the city offers a tantalizing range of flavors that will satisfy any palate.
The Iron Pillar of Delhi
Located in the Qutub Complex, the Iron Pillar of Delhi is a remarkable engineering marvel. Standing at over 7 meters tall and weighing more than 6 tons, the pillar has been standing for over 1,600 years without rusting or corroding, despite being made of pure iron. Its corrosion resistance is still a subject of scientific study and curiosity.
New Delhi is known for its well-planned architecture and wide, tree-lined avenues. In fact, the city has one of the highest green cover percentages among major cities in the world.
The peaceful avenues, especially during spring when the trees are in full bloom, offer a serene and refreshing atmosphere amidst the bustling city.
A Hub of Education
Delhi is home to some of India's most prestigious educational institutions, including the University of Delhi, Jawaharlal Nehru University, and the Indian Institutes of Technology (IIT Delhi).
Students from all over the country flock to the city for its excellent educational opportunities.
Cultural Melting Pot
Delhi is a true reflection of India's diverse cultural tapestry. People from various states and regions across the country have made Delhi their home, resulting in a fusion of different languages, cuisines, traditions, and festivals. This amalgamation of cultures makes Delhi a captivating and inclusive city.
The Festival of Lights
Diwali, the festival of lights, is celebrated with great enthusiasm in Delhi. The entire city comes alive with stunning decorations, colorful fireworks, and the aroma of festive delicacies.
The markets and streets are adorned with decorative lights, making it a magical time to experience the city's vibrant atmosphere.
Home to a Living Fort
Tughlaqabad Fort, located in South Delhi, is a massive fortified structure built in the 14th century. What makes it unique is that the fort is still inhabited by a community of people who have made their homes within its ancient walls. Walking through the narrow lanes inside the fort provides a glimpse into a living history.
Beneath the bustling streets of Delhi lies a network of mysterious underground tunnels. These tunnels are believed to have been used by ancient rulers and emperors for various purposes, including transportation, escape routes, and secret meetings. While some tunnels have been discovered and explored, many others remain undiscovered, adding an air of intrigue to the city's history.
The World's Largest Comprehensive Human DNA Forensic Laboratory
Delhi is home to the world's largest comprehensive human DNA forensic laboratory. Established in 2011, the laboratory plays a crucial role in solving criminal cases, identifying missing persons, and establishing paternity through DNA analysis.
Tucked away in the heart of the city, Delhi Ridge is a sprawling forest area that covers over 7,700 hectares. It serves as the green lungs of Delhi, providing a habitat for various wildlife species and acting as a natural barrier against desertification. This hidden gem offers nature trails, bird watching, and a peaceful retreat from the urban chaos.
National Handicrafts and Handlooms Museum
Located near Pragati Maidan, the National Handicrafts and Handlooms Museum showcases the rich diversity and craftsmanship of traditional Indian art forms.
The museum houses an impressive collection of textiles, pottery, paintings, jewelry, and other exquisite handicrafts from different regions of India, offering a glimpse into the country's cultural heritage.
A Unique Book Market
Daryaganj, in Old Delhi, is home to one of the largest second-hand book markets in India. Every Sunday, the streets transform into a haven for book lovers, with vendors lining up to sell a vast array of books at affordable prices. This bustling market attracts avid readers, collectors, and students in search of literary treasures.
The Delhi Photo Festival
Delhi hosts the biennial Delhi Photo Festival, which brings together renowned photographers, artists, and enthusiasts from around the world.
The festival showcases a diverse range of photographic works and promotes visual storytelling, pushing the boundaries of traditional photography.
Home to India's First Metro Rail System
Delhi holds the distinction of being the first city in India to introduce a modern metro rail system. The Delhi Metro is not only a lifeline for commuters but also an architectural marvel with its aesthetically designed stations and eco-friendly features.
It has become an integral part of the city's infrastructure, connecting different parts of Delhi and its satellite cities.
The World's Largest Spice Auctio
The Azadpur Mandi, located in North Delhi, is not only Asia's largest fruit and vegetable market but also the world's largest spice auction market.
It serves as a hub for trading and distributing a vast variety of spices, making it a crucial center for the spice industry.
The Hauz Khas Complex
Hauz Khas, a trendy neighborhood in South Delhi, is famous for its vibrant nightlife and bustling cafes. However, it is also home to the Hauz Khas Complex, which houses a medieval water tank, an Islamic seminary, and numerous historical monuments. This unique juxtaposition of ancient ruins and modern hangouts adds to the charm and allure of the area.
UNESCO World Heritage Sites
Delhi is home to three UNESCO World Heritage Sites. These include the Qutub Minar, a towering minaret built in the 12th century, the Red Fort, an iconic Mughal fortress, and the Humayun's Tomb, a magnificent mausoleum and a precursor to the Taj Mahal.
Delhi is a shopaholic's dream destination. From bustling street markets like Sarojini Nagar and Janpath, where you can find fashionable clothing at bargain prices, to upscale malls like Select Citywalk and DLF Emporio, which house luxury brands, Delhi offers a diverse shopping experience for every budget and taste.
Lush Green Spaces
Despite being a bustling city, Delhi boasts several green spaces and parks. The iconic Lodhi Gardens, Mughal Garden, and Nehru Park offer serene retreats amidst the urban chaos.
These spaces are popular among locals and tourists alike for leisurely walks, picnics, and enjoying the city's pleasant weather.
Delhi showcases a blend of architectural styles spanning centuries. From the ancient architectural wonders of Qutub Minar and Jama Masjid to the modern marvels like the Lotus Temple and Akshardham Temple, the city is a treasure trove of architectural diversity.
Thriving Arts and Cultural Scene
Delhi is a hub of arts and culture, with numerous art galleries, theaters, and cultural centers. The National Gallery of Modern Art, India Habitat Centre, and the National School of Drama are prominent institutions that promote and showcase various art forms
More interesting facts about New Delhi
Delhi is a city of contrasts, where old and new coexist harmoniously. Strolling through the narrow lanes of Old Delhi, with its ancient havelis and bustling markets, and then exploring the modern architecture and luxury shopping destinations in New Delhi, is like experiencing two different worlds in one city.
Delhi is a city of festivals and celebrations. Throughout the year, various cultural and religious festivals are celebrated with great enthusiasm. From Diwali, the festival of lights, to Holi, the vibrant festival of colors, and Eid, the joyous celebration for Muslims, Delhi's festive spirit is contagious.
Did you know that New Delhi became the capital of India in 1911? The British decided to shift the capital from Kolkata to Delhi, and since then, it has been the heart of the nation!
Delhi is a paradise for bird lovers, as it hosts a diverse range of bird species. In fact, after Nairobi, it has the second-highest number of bird species, making it a haven for birdwatching enthusiasts.
The Delhi Metro is not only an efficient mode of transportation but also one of the largest metro networks in the world, spanning a distance of nearly 277 km. It has significantly reduced traffic congestion and pollution by encouraging people to use public transportation.
Delhi's street vendors and hawkers add a vibrant touch to the city's charm. From street-side food stalls serving piping hot snacks to roadside vendors selling colorful trinkets and handicrafts, interacting with these local entrepreneurs provides a glimpse into the everyday life and entrepreneurial spirit of Delhi.
The Delhi street markets are a haven for antique book collectors. Places like the Sunday Book Market in Daryaganj and the sprawling flea markets of Chor Bazaar offer a vast collection of rare and vintage books. Explore these markets to find literary treasures and expand your book collection.
With 11 political zones and 95 police stations, Delhi takes its law and order seriously. The extensive police presence ensures the safety and security of the city's residents and visitors.
Delhi has the highest number of automobile registrations in the entire country. The roads are bustling with a variety of vehicles, reflecting the city's active and fast-paced lifestyle.
The walled city of Old Delhi is adorned with historical gates, and you can still find five of the original 14 gates standing today. These architectural gems offer a glimpse into the city's rich past and are worth exploring.
The iconic Qutub Minar, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, stands tall in Delhi. It is the tallest brick minaret in the world and attracts tourists with its intricate carvings and stunning architecture.
Office space in Delhi comes at a premium, and the city ranks fifth globally in terms of expensive office spaces. Finding affordable office spaces here can be quite a challenge, requiring thorough research and negotiation skills.
The bustling markets of Delhi are a shopaholic's paradise. From the famous Chandni Chowk in Old Delhi, known for its traditional wares and delectable street food, to modern shopping malls like Select Citywalk and DLF Emporio, Delhi offers a diverse shopping experience catering to every taste and budget.
Every day, over 1.4 million people head to work in New Delhi. The city's bustling streets are filled with professionals rushing to their offices, creating a vibrant and energetic atmosphere.
Indira Gandhi International Airport in Delhi is a major aviation hub in South Asia. With numerous domestic and international flights operating daily, it connects the city to destinations around the globe.
Delhi is home to the International Toilet Museum, a unique attraction dedicated to raising awareness about sanitation and hygiene. It showcases the evolution of toilets and their significance in improving public health.
The Delhi street markets are not just about shopping; they are also a culinary delight. Places like Paranthe Wali Gali in Old Delhi offer a tantalizing array of stuffed parathas, while Karim's near Jama Masjid is renowned for its mouth-watering Mughlai cuisine. Exploring these food havens is a gastronomic adventure.
New Delhi's grandeur owes much to the renowned British architect Edwin Lutyens, who planned this part of the city. That's why it's often referred to as Lutyen's Delhi, with its wide boulevards and majestic government buildings.
Delhi's street art scene has been flourishing in recent years. Walls across the city have been transformed into colorful murals, depicting various themes, from social issues to cultural heritage. Taking a street art tour is a unique way to explore Delhi's urban artistry.
Delhi is a melting pot of different cultures and cuisines. The city boasts a wide range of regional Indian delicacies, from the rich flavors of North Indian cuisine to the aromatic spices of South Indian dishes. Food lovers can embark on a culinary journey, exploring the diverse culinary landscape of Delhi.
Delhi is a city of hidden gems and lesser-known attractions. Beyond the popular tourist spots, there are many offbeat destinations waiting to be explored. From the serene tranquility of the Garden of Five Senses to the architectural marvel of Agrasen ki Baoli, these hidden treasures offer a unique and immersive experience.
The Lotus Temple, completed in 1986, is a mesmerizing architectural marvel and the only place of worship for the Baha'i community in South Asia. Its lotus-shaped structure and tranquil ambiance make it a must-visit spiritual destination.
Delhi's architectural beauty extends beyond historical monuments. Modern landmarks like the Akshardham Temple, with its intricate carvings and stunning light and sound show, and the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium, known for its unique roof structure, showcase the city's contemporary architectural prowess.
Safety is a top priority in Delhi, and the city boasts over 50 fire brigade stations with more than 3,000 dedicated firefighters. Their prompt response and bravery ensure the well-being of the city's residents.
Sports enthusiasts will be delighted to know that Feroze Shah Kotla Stadium in Delhi is one of the oldest stadiums in India, after Kolkata's Eden Gardens. It has witnessed numerous iconic cricket matches and is a must-visit for sports fans.
Delhi takes environmental sustainability seriously, and its entire public transport system relies on compressed natural gas (CNG) as a clean fuel alternative. This eco-friendly initiative contributes to reducing pollution levels in the city.
The Delhi street markets are a treasure trove for bargain hunters. From trendy clothes and accessories to traditional handicrafts and home decor items, these markets offer a wide variety of products at affordable prices. Bargaining skills are a must to get the best deals!
Delhi is home to a thriving street fashion scene. From trendy youngsters flaunting the latest fashion trends to traditional attire like colorful sarees and intricately embroidered kurta-pajamas, the city's fashion diversity is truly remarkable. Observing the unique fashion sense of Delhiites can be a fascinating experience.
Delhi's historical monuments come alive during festivals and special occasions. The iconic Red Fort is the focal point of Independence Day celebrations, with the Prime Minister's speech and a grand flag hoisting ceremony. Witnessing the grandeur of these celebrations against the backdrop of historical monuments is a truly memorable experience.
In a bid to promote sustainable and eco-friendly transportation, Delhi's high court is exploring the possibility of reintroducing trams in the city. A comparative study with electric buses is underway to evaluate the feasibility of this nostalgic mode of transportation. If trams make a comeback, it would add a charming touch to Delhi's already bustling streets.
Delhi's vibrant bazaars are a paradise for antique lovers and collectors. The narrow lanes of Old Delhi and places like Dilli Haat are known for their unique collection of antique jewelry, vintage furniture, and traditional artifacts. Exploring these markets is like stepping back in time.
The Delhi street food scene is not just about spicy chaats and kebabs. The city is also famous for its delectable street desserts. Indulge in delights like rabri falooda, kulfi, and jalebi, which are sure to satisfy your sweet tooth and leave you craving for more.
Delhi's street food scene is legendary. The city is known for its mouth-watering chaats, spicy golgappas, flavorful kebabs, and delectable sweets. Exploring the street food stalls and food markets is a culinary adventure that shouldn't be missed.
The Delhi Ridge, a forested area in the heart of the city, is a sanctuary for nature lovers. It provides a much-needed respite from the urban chaos, with its walking trails, serene lakes, and diverse flora and fauna. Explore the Ridge to reconnect with nature in the midst of a bustling metropolis.
Delhi is a hub for spiritual seekers. From the historic Jama Masjid and the tranquil Lotus Temple to the serene Bangla Sahib Gurudwara and the sacred ISKCON Temple, the city offers a range of spiritual destinations catering to various faiths. These places of worship exude tranquility and provide a space for introspection and solace.
Delhi's cultural scene is vibrant and diverse, with numerous art galleries, theaters, and cultural centers. The National Gallery of Modern Art showcases contemporary Indian art, while the India Habitat Centre hosts art exhibitions, music performances, and theater shows. The city's creative energy is truly inspiring.
Delhi's rich heritage is not limited to monuments and palaces; it is also preserved in its museums. The National Museum houses an extensive collection of art, artifacts, and archaeological treasures, providing a fascinating glimpse into India's past. The Crafts Museum showcases traditional crafts and artisanal works from across the country.
Delhi is a city that never sleeps, with a buzzing nightlife scene. From swanky bars and clubs in upscale areas like Connaught Place and Hauz Khas Village to lively music venues hosting live performances, there's always something happening after dark in Delhi.
Delhi's cultural diversity is celebrated through its diverse cuisine. From Punjabi delicacies like butter chicken and sarson ka saag to Mughlai dishes like biryani and kebabs, and the South Indian favorite, dosa, Delhi's culinary offerings cater to every palate.
Delhi is home to a thriving street photography culture. Its vibrant streets, colorful markets, and bustling neighborhoods provide a perfect canvas for photographers to capture the essence of everyday life in the city. Join a photography walk or explore the city with your camera to capture unique moments.
The Delhi Haat, a vibrant open-air market, is a haven for handicrafts and traditional art forms from across India. It's a one-stop destination to witness the rich diversity of Indian craftsmanship, from intricately woven textiles to hand-carved wooden artifacts. Don't forget to bargain for the best deals!
Delhi's architectural wonders are not limited to its monuments. The city is also known for its beautiful stepwells, or baolis. These ancient water reservoirs, such as Agrasen ki Baoli and Rajon ki Baoli, showcase impressive architecture and provide a glimpse into the city's water management systems of the past.
Delhi's street markets are a treasure trove for book lovers. Places like Daryaganj's Sunday Book Market and Nai Sarak offer a vast collection of new and second-hand books at incredibly affordable prices. Lose yourself in the stacks and discover literary gems from different genres.
The annual Delhi International Arts Festival showcases a vibrant tapestry of performing arts from around the world. Dance, music, theater, and other cultural performances take center stage during this month-long extravaganza, attracting artists and art enthusiasts from across the globe.
Delhi's street markets are not only known for shopping but also for their lively atmosphere. From street performers and musicians to traditional folk dancers, these markets come alive with vibrant cultural performances that add an extra layer of charm to the overall experience.
Delhi is a city that embraces all seasons. From enjoying the cool breeze of winter at Lodhi Garden or India Gate to escaping the scorching summer heat at the lush gardens of Mughal monuments, Delhi offers diverse spaces to enjoy the beauty of each season.
Delhi's cultural calendar is packed with vibrant festivals and events throughout the year. From the grand Republic Day Parade showcasing India's rich heritage to the colorful International Mango Festival celebrating the king of fruits, there's always something exciting happening in the city.
Delhi's street markets are a paradise for fashion enthusiasts. From trendy clothes and accessories to traditional ethnic wear, you can find a wide range of fashionable items at affordable prices. Indulge in some retail therapy and embrace the latest fashion trends without breaking the bank.
Some of the stones are limestone quarried from near the site, but the larger granite stones came from Aswan, over 500