5 Ways to Spend a Day in South Delhi’s Mehrauli
Mehrauli, earlier known as Mihirawali, is an ancient district of the national capital of India, Delhi. Lying in South Delhi, it’s situated next to Vasant Kunj and near Gurgaon. Mehrauli is among the seven old cities of Delhi, and the abode of great legends and history. Its historical structures blend Hinduism, Islam, Jainism and what not.
Reside in the southern peninsula of India? Just catch a flight, say, from Bengaluru to Delhi, and prepare to witness Mehrauli’s profound history in less than 3 hours!
Once you land, here are 5 great ways you can spend a day in the city.
Be Stunned by the Qutub Minar
Did you know it’s one of the three UNESCO World Heritage sites of Delhi? Now that your Bangalore to Delhi flight has landed, start exploring Mehrauli from this ancient monument. Soaring 73m from the ground, it has five storeys with projecting balconies. The lower three storeys are crafted in red sandstone, the other two are in marble and sandstone. Qutab-ud-din Aibak constructed this tower of victory in 1193 after conquering Delhi’s last Hindu kingdom.
Next, visit the Quewat-ul-Islam Mosque at the Minar’s foot. It was the first mosque erected in India. Don’t swoon over the inscription on the Eastern Gate reading that “27 Hindu temples” were demolished in the area! Walk to the famous Iron Pillar standing 7m from the mosque’s courtyard. As per local belief, encircling it with the hands while sticking the back to it can grant one’s wishes!
Stop at the Alai Darwaza
It’s the primary gateway from the southern section of the Quwwat-ul-Islam Mosque. The first Khilji ruler of Delhi, Alauddin Khilji created it in 1311 AD. It was the first mosque constructed in Delhi after the Islamic conquest of the country. Amaze yourself with its architectural excellence.
Pray at the Yogmaya Temple
This temple was one of the targets of Aurangzeb’s exploits but survived them. Lying behind the Qutub Minar, it’s believed to have been constructed by Yudhishtra, the eldest Pandava brother from the legend of Mahabharata. The Ancient shrine is dedicated to Goddess Yogmaya (Parvati) and is the home to her stone image. She was believed to be born of Yashoda, the foster mother of Lord Krishna, in the incarnation of his sister, Vindhyavasini. Supposedly, the section of Delhi lying outside Indraprastha was earlier named Yoginipur after this shrine. Visit it and enrich your ears with these stories!
Visit the Ahinsa Sthal
It stands on a low hill where Mehrauli Badarpur Road intersects Aurobindo Marg. “Ahimsa Sthal” translates for the “site of non-violence”. This serene place is called so since it exhibits a 14-feet statue of the peace-loving Lord Mahavira created in the mid-1980s. This has made it a holy place for Jains. Immerse yourself in tranquillity by visiting this place.
Explore the Jamali Kamali
Erected in red sandstone and marble, this heritage site dates back to 1528-1529, and lies in the Ancient Mehrauli Archaeological Park. Legend says the place is haunted by the Delhites. However, it showcases the beautiful tombs of the Sufi saints who lived here when the Lodi dynasty ruled during the pre-Mughal era. Due to its haunted story, you may be advised not to wander here in the dark. Go on to absorb its serene vibes in the day!
After covering these milestones, savour some scrumptious Delhi street food or irresistible dishes at any popular restaurant in Mehrauli. Delight both your soul and appetite before you board your flight back from Delhi to Bengaluru!