Delhi is famous for its rich historic landmarks, bustling markets like Chandni Chowk, and diverse cuisine, ranging from street food favorites like chaat and kebabs to fine dining experiences.
New Delhi is the diverse capital city of India found in the northernmost part of the country. It is a city belonging to Delhi, a larger territory. However, the two terms are exchangeable and can often get confused! Flowing through it is the Yamuna River, creating entrancing scenery and the opportunity for the fresh foods Delhi is famous for.
What Is Delhi Famous For?
Delhi is famous for its mouth-watering street foods, whose recipes have been preserved for generations. To no surprise, it is the proud home of the largest Asian spice market, which contributes to the unique flavors of its cuisine. Additionally, Delhi is known for its impressive monuments, many of which were inspired by the Mughal Empire.
History, Culture, And Traditions Delhi Is Known For
The Original Capital
When asked what is Delhi is famous for, you may say for being the capital of India. However, this has not always historically been true. In 1931, Delhi gained its official capital title. Unofficially, it had been the capital since 1911.
Before this, for over a century, it was Calcutta. During the reign of colonial Britain, George V, the Emperor of the British Empire decided it was time for change. According to him, it was more accessible and better economically.
Derived from the Hindi language meaning enameling, meenakari is an ancient art form. It includes adding gold statement jewelry such as long earrings or flashy necklaces, to make them more eye-catching.
Usually, these pieces are worn at affluent events such as weddings or traditional celebrations. You can often find them at markets within matching sets in a variety of colors and designs.
One of the strangest things Delhi is famous for is its bizarre museums.
If you are searching for a fun day out, be sure to check out the Sulabh International Museum Of Toilets. This explains the history of sanitation throughout the world. Another unique example is Shankar’s International Doll Museum, with a collection of over 6,500.
Similarly, the Museum of Illusions is a great attraction to bring children to, consisting of captivating holograms and whacky artistry. Nevertheless, there are also cultural and historical museums where you can learn plenty of fun facts about India.
Delhi is prone to earthquakes because of its location on the boundary of two tectonic plates that can shift. As a result, it is close to a major fault line, making it a rather hazardous place to live.
Perhaps the most catastrophic earthquake in Asia was in 1948, which destroyed the Bahai Temple in Turkmenistan, one of the two Bahai temples on the entire continent. Only one now stands, known as the Lotus Temple, in Delhi.
Largest Spice Market In Asia
Gadodia Market on Khari Baoli Street is the largest spice market in Asia. As soon as you enter the vicinity, you will be entranced with the familiar waft of herbs. These are key ingredients to make some of the most fragrant dishes Delhi is famous for.
Aside from spices, you can find wholesale nuts, herbs, and teas. While it serves merchants that are searching for affordable bulk prices, it also draws regular shoppers who enjoy the variety of foods.
Encapsulated By Gates
Once upon a time, Delhi was protected by 14 gates. Because of the sheer size of the city, it was necessary to guard its civilians and riches.
Unfortunately, only 4 gates are preserved: Ajmeri, Lahori, Delhi, and Turkman. They are each located at varying sites defending different structures. Perhaps the most valuable is the Delhi Gate, which towers over the Red Fort. Vising this historic Indian landmark is one of the most popular things to do in Delhi.
Districts And Areas Delhi Is Famous For
Chanakyapuri is a lively district in Delhi named after Chanakya, an influential Indian philosopher.
It is best known for Nehru Park, a large and family-friendly green space. This beautiful park is dedicated to the first Prime Minister of India, Jawaharlal Nehru. Scattered around it are flowers, tiny statues, and benches – the perfect place to relax amidst the bustling capital.
As we mentioned, Delhi is famous for its many museums. The National Rail Museum is one of the interesting attractions, demonstrating the history of locomotives.
Connaught Place is a popular district to visit regardless if you are with friends or traveling solo. It is a contemporary industrial hub filled with affluent landmarks and energetic restaurants.
The most distinctive structure here is Jantar Mantar, home to the largest stone sundial in the world. It was built with the purpose of measuring the size of planets and the length of days.
Furthermore, it is home to Janpath Market, a bustling market with an array of foods and fashion pieces. It’s a great place to shop for some famous Delhi things and trinkets to take home with you.
Hauz Khas is a trendy village adored by the younger generation. The modern restaurants and relaxing cafes here are a perfect contrast to the crowded landmarks Delhi is known for. Additionally, it is acclaimed for being culturally diverse.
You can find most of the famous traditional food in Delhi in Hauz Khas, which is renowned for its gastronomy. Whether you are craving a juicy kebab, filling curry, or a sweet treat, this village has it all.
In the heart of Delhi, you can find Gole Market, a historic neighborhood.
The area is densely packed with many religious landmarks of the city. Take a trip to the Sikh holy site, Gurudwara Bangla Sahib. It was built in honor of the eighth guru and therefore is of great importance.
Located next to the Gurudwara is the Sacred Heart Cathedral. Whilst Hinduism is the predominant religion, Delhi is multicultural and values a range of beliefs.
Landmarks And Architecture Delhi Is Famous For
The visually impressive India Gate was constructed in 1931 to honor the soldiers of the Indian Army who fought in World War I.
An estimated 70,000 Indians died during this time. Ultimately, India is famous for having one of the biggest war graves in the world. It is otherwise known as Delhi Memorial for this reason.
The Duke of Connaught, Prince Arthur of the United Kingdom, laid down the first stone of the memorial.
Red Fort is undoubtedly one of the most visited landmarks in Delhi. Furthermore, it is the largest monument in the city. It was first opened in 1648 during the Mughal Empire, on the orders of Emperor Shah Jahan. The Prime Minister of India typically holds his speech here on Independence Day.
An interesting Delhi fact is that Red Fort was initially white! Originally, the building was made from white limestone but later painted red to mask the natural degradation.
Gurudwara Bangla Sahib
The Gurudwara Bangla Sahib is a sacred Sikh place of worship, known as a gurudwara. It was built in 1783, and has had extensive renovations, especially after World War II. The purpose was to dedicate the shrine to the eighth Sikh Guru.
Arguably the most significant structural quality of the building is the golden dome, called a gumbad. The gurudwara overlooks a pond and houses both an art gallery and a school.
Humayun was the powerful second king of the Mughal Empire. Although he was born in Kabul, his final resting place is in Delhi.
The tomb, which was built in 1570, is amongst one of the most famous things in Delhi to visit. This is because it was the first garden tomb in India, located in a 27-hectare complex with an array of additional tombs for Mughal royalty.
There are elaborate beams, colossal pillars, and intricate floor designs.
Whilst many things to do in Delhi are centered around trade and industry, Lodi Gardens is a serene natural landmark. The green space is peppered with aromatic flowers and trees, as well as a lotus pond. Be sure to look out for the pink bougainvillea trees, that are truly picture-perfect.
In addition to being surrounded by nature, they are overlooked by several monuments. Famously, this includes Shish Gumbad, which is poignantly lined by graves for the unidentifiable. You will also find Mohammed Shah’s Tomb here.
Jantar Mantar is considered to be one of the seven wonders of India. Directly translated, it means ‘instruments used to calculate.’ It is an anatomical site made up of a collection of 19 instruments, built by King Sawai Jai Singh II in the 18th century.
Delhi is known for having the largest stone sundial in the world, the Samrat Yantra. As the sun changes position throughout the day, the rod casts different changes.
Food Delhi Is Famous For
Indian food is often praised for its fragrance, variety, and health benefits. Chole bhature, fried bread with curry, is considered to be the most popular food in Delhi.
The chole element refers to a chickpea curry, whilst bhature is a fluffy deep-fried bread. They are eaten together, often for breakfast.
This dish is usually accompanied by yogurt for a refreshing touch.
Chaat comes from the Hindi word to snack.
Essentially, it is a combination of foods thrown together to create a unique dish. Originally, this meant fried dough, potatoes, and chickpeas. However, the recipe has been adapted, and you can find an array of variations such as rice or chutney.
You are most likely to find chaat at markets. This is where most of the famous food in Delhi is also served in a traditional manner at affordable prices.
Paranthas is a flatbread that is eaten as a side to other dishes. It originates from South Asian countries and has been around since 1000AD. Traditionally, Mughal emperors would pair it with ghee, a fatty butter.
In Delhi, paranthas are popularly stuffed with pickled vegetables such as beetroot. It can be eaten with lassi, a type of yogurt drink. Alternatively, you can try it with curries or omelets.
Surprisingly, kebabs originated from Central Asia! Whilst many believe that they were invented in Turkey, others state they come from Samarkand, an ancient Persian city.
Nevertheless, kebabs are a staple in every country and have become increasingly popular since their invention. In India specifically, there is a huge variety in the way they are served. Seekh Kebab is the most popular kebab Delhi is famous for, comprised of lamb spiced with masala and chili.
Desserts in India are relentlessly underrated because of their savory competitors. However, some of the most famous food in Delhi is sweet treats, the most prominent being gulab jamun.
These dough balls are made with milk and flour before being topped with a syrupy coating. The main constituents of this glaze are rosewater and cardamom, creating a rich nuance.
Although you can find Gulab Jamun at markets, it is also eaten during celebrations such as Eid ul-Fitr and Diwali.
Famous People From Delhi
Shah Rukh Khan
Shah Rukh Khan is an actor primarily taking on roles in Hindi movies. The artist born in Delhi is famous for being the King of Bollywood due to his long career. He began his descent into the industry back in 1988 and has achieved multiple awards since.
Overall, he has won Best Actor in a variety of awards shows at least 8 times. Khan has starred in romantic comedies, thrillers, and more, proving his range.
India is often considered to have the best cricket team in the world. Many athletes have contributed to their success, Virat Kohli being one of them.
In 2008, Kohli joined the national team as a right-handed batsman. Almost a decade later, he took on the responsibility of captain.
Kohli and his wife, Bollywood actress Anushka Sharma, are prominent celebrity figures. Aside from their work, they are philanthropists and regularly attend galas and charity events.
Nandita Das is a globally-recognized actress and filmmaker. She attended the well-known university that Delhi is famous for, the School of Social Work. Additionally, she attended Yale in Connecticut.
Das has starred in countless movies that have aired in 10 different languages, helping her become a worldwide success. She has both directed and acted in movies, as well as narrating audiobooks.
Because of her inspiring life, Das has given speeches at many events, as well as being the face of eminent campaigns against racism.
Shahid Kapoor is an actor and celebrity figure in India. He was born in New Delhi and has been active since 1997. Since then, he has managed to build an image in the media, earning a multitude of loyal followers.
Kapoor’s early work was heavily centered around being the romantic interest, however, in recent times has starred more so in thrillers. An example of this is the movie Haider, for which he won Best Actor.
Discovering More Things Delhi Is Famous For
Delhi is known for an abundant array of attractions, from historical monuments to an exciting culinary scene. This buzzing city serves as a timeless testament to India’s rich heritage while continuing to make future strides. It is constantly changing, thinking of creative new attractions whilst preserving the old ones.
There are opportunities to get lost in the chaos of the markets, as well as peaceful trips to the parks. Whether you’re a history enthusiast, a foodie, or an avid film fan, prepare to soak in the unique charm and allure of this iconic city that inspires with its interactive museums, touching monuments, and divine foods.