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Things To Do In Golden Triangle (India)
The Golden Triangle is a popular tourist circuit in the northern part of India. With three cities, namely Delhi, Agra and Jaipur at almost equidistant points from each other, this triangle becomes a tourist hub, especially for foreign visitors. With its rich cultural and historical influence, monuments and bazars, foods and artefacts, the golden triangle becomes one exciting place to be in. There are a hundred things to do in the Golden Triangle and much more to soak in. Read on to find out!
Day tour of ‘Dilli’
Dilli, as Delhi is better known as, is a vivid painting of old lanes and highways, crumbling havelis and monuments, roadside stalls selling paranthas and chic cafes serving frappes. Dilli is the place to explore at leisure. However, the day-tour around Delhi in a day is quite famous and helps you cover some of the most coveted sights. Start your day with sunrise at India Gate, soak in the peace of namaz at Jama Masjid, then head to view the Qutub Minar and Red Fort. Spend a long lunch scouting Chandni Chowk for Mughal and Punjabi delicacies, shop from Sarojini Nagar, travel the length and breadth of the city by Delhi Metro and end your day by the India Gate again for the mesmerising lights that brighten it.
Chandni Chowk is an old bazaar which was created by Emperor Shah Jahan himself. This market was thronged by Turkish, Chinese and Mediterranean merchants over 3 centuries ago. Today it is a haven for food lovers, antique lovers, book nerds and idyllic shoppers who want to peruse old and new timeless pieces at length in the crowded streets.
Nai Sarak is a popular book shopping paradise where you can find everything from Ayn Rand to E. L. James, Tin Tin to Gone with Wind, all spread on the rug-covered street sides. Some merchants also sell books by weight, which is a pretty great bargain. Chor Bazar or the thief's market is literally filled with items that are either stolen or second-hand. From electronics to home decor, you can find everything here. Chatta Chowk is the place for women to shop for jewellery, cosmetics, clothing, personal care items etc. Do stop by at Parathawali gali to eat some of the best parathas (stuffed, fried bread) and other local fare.
The Taj Mahal
The iconic sight of Taj Mahal is literally a thing to do in itself. Even before you have walked down the garden to the main entrance of the Taj, a long leisurely soaking of your eyes with this white monument is all that is needed to feel peace, love and throbbing tragedy in the air.
Take a round of the monument, which is also one of the 7 wonders of the world. Built in memory of his beloved wife by a grieving king, Taj Mahal represents love in all its ugliness when it is gone, as well as its beauty in what it leaves behind. Nothing anyone can write will prepare you for this feeling. Because it is a feeling. Do not miss on it.
Fatehpur Sikri Tour
Fatehpur Sikri was the stronghold of Mughal rule and abode of the Emperor until Akbar’s reign. Situated 35 km away from Agra, the Fatehpur Sikri fort houses a lot of small palaces within its lap. Including the Diwan-e-khaas, Diwan-e-aam, Birbal’s house, Panch mahal (women’s palace), Palace of Marium-uz-Zamani (Jodha bai) and Jama Masjid. A tour of these places will take half your day. The other half you can spend in the peace of Salim Chishti’s tomb.
Hawa Mahal Tour
Hawa Mahal or the Palace of Winds is a beautiful palace built by Maharaja Sawai Pratap Singh in 1799 for the women of his house. There are around 953 windows in this palace, laced with lattice work, made to keep the insides airy and cool through all the seasons. The royal women used this place to peek out into the world without coming out.
While in Jaipur, this pink sandstone structure should be your first stop and rightly so. It also doubles up as a great spot for amazing holiday pictures.
Elephant ride at Amer Fort
The Amer Fort is one of the strongest surviving symbol of Rajputana history. Built and inhabited by the Rajput Royals of Amer at one point in time, this fort is also said to be the home of Jodha bai, the Rajput queen of Emperor Akbar. It is situated 13 km away from the city of Jaipur. Amer Fort is also know as Amber Fort, named after Amba mata, a deity revered locally.
It has four main gates and the ramparts and ramps up to this palace-fort built on a hill can be traversed by foot or on the back of an elephant. These elephant rides become a royal experience and take you up to the palace as if you are the king coming home after a long sojourn.
Shopping at Jaipur Bazars
Shop at Johri Bazar for some of India’s best collection of precious and semi-precious gem stones, jewellery and studded handicrafts. The popular leheriya and bandhini fabrics are also widely available here. Tripolia Bazar is another marketplace to shop for lac items. Go to Mirza Ismail road for traditional Jaipuri print blocks, pottery and blue pottery. Bargaining is the way to go when picking things up in Jaipur. A circuit of these streets is going to leave you heady with the amount of colours and objects you see, as well as bring the shopaholic in you great pleasure.
One famous souvenir to take back from Jaipur is the traditional Rajasthani mojari or closed toe ballerina shoes. You can find these easily at Nehru Bazar in Jotwara.