My last few days in India were fairly unremarkable. I traveled from Agra to New Delhi, where I did a bit of shopping and checked out some Delhi tourist attractions.
I stopped by the Sikh temple Gurudwara Bangla Sahib. Similar to the Golden Temple in Amritsar, this beautiful temple shimmers in the sunlight and is situated over a large water reservoir. People come to bathe in the holy waters and everyone has to walk through a shallow trough of water to clean their feet before entering.
The temple also serves meals to thousands of people every day, every one from rich businessmen to children living on the street with no other source of nutrition. Everything is run by volunteers and I was told that there is a huge state-of-the-art kitchen with AC (!).
Humayun’s Tomb is a UNESCO World Heritage Site is sometimes referred to as the “Little Taj Mahal”. It is also a Mughal tomb, and was built in 1569-70. Just like the Taj Mahal, the entrance fee to Humayun’s Tomb is very pricy for non-Indians! I paid $5 for my ticket, which doesn’t seem like much, but the cost for a local is $0.20!
Just like the Taj Mahal, seeing Humayun’s Tomb is worth the expensive entry fee. At first, I thought that the main attraction was one of the large secondary monuments:
Turns out, that was just a warm up for the main tomb, which houses Humayun, his wife, and several other Mughal royals.
One night, I celebrated my birthday a little late with an amazing dinner at Indian Accent at the Manor Hotel. It is rated in the top 5 restaurants in India and one of the top 50 in all of Asia! It was definitely a little chichi, but the food was beyond amazing – very thoughtfully prepared and flavorful. The menu was extensive, so I ordered the seven course tasting menu and left the decisions in the chef’s hands. This was an excellent choice! The staff was wonderful and when they found out it was my birthday they gave me a champagne toast and an extra serving of gelato. Obviously the best way to this girl’s heart!
Paharganj Market is one of the the best places in New Delhi to find everything that is on your India shopping list. For me, that included tiffin boxes for Pat, loose tea, and gauzy fabric to use as a shawl and headscarf in Morocco for our honeymoon.
I also found an amazing seamstress who was able to turn my Varanasi silk into a bridal robe for my upcoming wedding – in less than 24 hours! She charged me 500 rupees (about $10 USD) for the task. I was so happy with the results. She was able to create exactly the robe I had in mind with just a few photos from the internet and some hand waving from me.
The other market I shopped at was Chandigar Market in Old Delhi. Although it is extremely hectic to navigate, it is the place to find Indian exports – everything from textiles to camera parts to . I had a mission – to find edible silver leaf that is traditionally used on Indian sweets. I had the address of a wholesaler that I found online, but finding it was an adventure! It also turned out that the seller had wholesale gold and silver leaf as well, so I stocked up. The gold leaf has really come in handy for wedding preparations.
I also bought a little extra edible silver leaf as well as decorative gold and silver leaf. I created a little Etsy store for myself to try to sell it. I hope you’ll check it out!