Tag Archives: Delhi

Delhi Diaries: Qutub Minar Night Tourism

Bringing to you another gem of Delhi— Qutub Minar

Qutub Minar is a UNESCO world heritage site which holds the title of being the tallest brick minaret in the world standing tall at 72.5 meters. It is known for its history, glory, architecture, verses from the holy Quran inscribed on the walls. But what is little known about it, is it’s splendour at night. I have been wanting to visit this iconic monument ever since the Archaeological Survey of India decided to promote night tourism here.  It was for the love of this travel series, that I and my friend Madhu Lilothia decided to visit Qutub Minar on a full moon night to capture its beauty (in our camera) for our readers.
A visit to this iconic monument on a moonlit night will leave you spellbound. 
I suggest you reach the Qutub before sundown since a few areas are  restricted during the night tourism. And once the sun sets and the monument is illuminated, soak yourself in the romance that will fill the entire place.  The lights will lend a romantic vibe to the opulence of this architectural heritage . It is a photographer’s delight. Just walk around and drown yourself in the magnificence of this place.

How to reach: Qutub Minar is part of the Mehrauli Architectural Park in South Delhi. It is on the yellow line of the Delhi metro from where you can take an auto. Uber and Ola cabs will drop you directly at the monument. There is ample parking if you decide to go by your own vehicle.

Ticket: Rs 40 for Indians and Rs 600 for foreign nationals. It is open on all days from 7 am till 10 pm.

Deepika Pawar is a native of New Delhi, India. She is a Counsellor and Family Therapist in private practice. She is ‘a gypsy at heart’, a wanderer and travel enthusiast, who loves to explore new places.

Delhi Diaries- Garden of Five Senses

Delhi has a beautiful or rather a colourful charm when flowers are in full bloom. It is an ideal time to visit some gardens around this time.

Garden of Fives Senses is a beautiful garden spread over 20 acres in Saket, Delhi. There are theme areas like Khaas Bagh on the lines of the Mughal Gardens, herbal garden, pool of water lilies. The other highlights include sandstone elephants, sun clock, stone crafted students reading their books, amphitheater and the replica of the Mexican Mayan Labna Arc. I suggest that the best time to visit this place is during the Annual Garden Tourism Festival.

Once you have seen the garden and taken selfies with the sun kissed flowers, head straight to “Champa Gali” which is just 850 mts away (5 mins drive) for a scrumptious meal, refreshing coffee. Champa gali has its own charm with numerous Cafetarias with different themes welcoming you.

How to reach: Garden of Fives Senses is in south Delhi and the nearest metro station is Saket from where you can take an auto rickshaw. Else Ola and Uber cabs can drop you directly till the garden.

Deepika Pawar is a native of New Delhi, India. She is a Counsellor and Family Therapist in private practice. She is ‘a gypsy at heart’, a wanderer and travel enthusiast, who loves to explore new places.





Clean windows, plain, glass, open, close, bright,

Light, shaded, paned, shuttered, blinded, boarded,

Rusty, dirty, smoky windows.

Broken, shattered, run down windows

Windows that protect and hide,

a mirror to the world outside

and sometimes to the world within

unraveling layer by layer, revealing,

A tool for introspection and scrutiny,

A glance into a soul, full of secrets and smokescreens,

Evasion, denial, half-truths

Windows, they tell it all.  

PS: The photograph is a view of the shops on Ponte Vecchio (old bridge) across the Arno River, in Florence, Italy.

PPS: Like the poem? If so do check out my poetry and short story collection ‘Under the Shade of the Banyan Tree’

The Girl at the Window

windows 2-001

Safdarjung Tomb, Delhi, India

The Girl at the Window


I see her everyday

At the window of her house

Her face lurking in the shadows

Finding cover in the veil of secrecy

Obscurity in a shroud of seclusion

But her beauty is not hidden from me


She’s a princess

From a faraway exotic land

I know not her name

Yet she has become a part of my life

My daily scenery

And I miss her now that she is gone

Delhi – The city of the big hearted.

delhi haat

Dilli or Delhi Haat : An open air food plaza and craft bazaar located in New Delhi, India.

New Delhi is India’s capital city.


Dilwalon ki Dilli

‘It’s a jungle out there and Delhi is one of the scariest!’

Or so they say… but to us Dilliwaalah’s (Delhiites), it is one of the most wonderful cities in the world. We embrace fondly both its beauty and its craziness. And we endlessly reminisce and sing its glory.

We wait patiently in the perennial traffic jams honking our horns every 10 seconds to make certain that someone hasn’t fallen asleep at the wheel. We squeeze through narrow streets and jostle with 100s of other shoppers in Chandni Chowk  (moonlit market) to get to our favorite halwai (sweet seller) or Chaat (savory) shop. We haggle incessantly in the sabzi mandi (vegetable market) over a few rupees and demand free dhaniya (cilantro) and mirchi (hot peppers). Precariously perched, we ride the cycle rickshaws for cheap and then wonder how the poor hauler makes ends meet. We chomp on our golgappas (puffed crisp pooris with tamarind sauce) with devout passion and chat fervently over our aloo (potato) chaats (freshly prepared savories).

We shamelessly flaunt our rich in their comfortable bungalows in the upscale neighborhoods of the south as well as our poor in their slums in the east. We consider ourselves progressive and argue for intellectual freedom yet revert blindly to inane traditions when it comes to the crunch.

But despite all our failings, when it comes to heart, no one has one like us.

India Unveiled

Where do I begin? I ask myself. I have to begin somewhere.

I want this section to serve as a mini primer on India. I do not deem to be an expert, rather I’m often humbled by my profound ignorance.

Therefore, please take it as my point of view on various matters and do not hesitate to pitch in with corrections, suggestions, questions, doubts etc. Remember that this place is a two way street where we inform and educate each other.

Some facts:

India or Bharat भारत < Sankrit (descended from the emperor Bharata) is a country located in South Asia.

It is the seventh largest country in area and the second most populous country with over 1.2 billion people.

Capital: New Delhi
Largest city: Mumbai

Official languages include Hindi and English plus there are 22 other recognized languages.

It  is the largest democracy in the world.

Yet despite its massive presence, it is a mystery to many. Those in the west still consider it a land whose peoples and cultures remain mostly exotic and alien.

They recognize it as a place that exports engineers, doctors, Bollywood movies, Chai tea, curry and the philosophy of Yoga to the rest of the world. It is a country where cows stand in the middle of the road undisturbed and people pray to numerous Gods including one who dances to destroy and create (Lord Shiva,) and one who has the face of an elephant (Lord Ganesha.)

It is a lot more than that.

India is a land of extremes– of pristine beauty and unbearable filth; of mind boggling wealth and unspeakable poverty; of embracing tolerance and shocking violence. Yet what sets it apart, what pulls everyone to it above and beyond anything else is something that I can only define as a divine mystique, leaving those who discover it with an inner peace which no other place could ever give.

That is India to me.


A group of school children on a trip to the Red Fort (Lal Qila) Delhi, in December.