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February 16th 2016
Published: December 13th 2017
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Geo: 28.6137, 77.1834

Up at 5.40am, breakfast and on the bus at 8am.

First stop after tackling the crazy Delhi traffic to India's largest mosque, Jama Masjid. Shoes off, then walk around the mosque, interesting but not spectacular. One of the largest mosques in India & was built by Mughal emperor Shah Jahan completed in 1656 AD
Pickup our shoes then jump in a bike rickshaw thru the lanes & backstreets of Old Delhi & Chandi Chowk market. Absolute mayhem, riding up little alleyways stop, start then weaving in and out traffic. Stopped at market stall where they make Jimble??, a sugary crisp sweet. Little man working over a hot oil drum cooking the dough, right next door to a fireworks stall! Anything could happen.

On the way to Ghandih's memorial, past the President's huge house & diplomatic residences along the Rajpath. Drove past India Gate then stopped at Ghandhi's memorial garden.
Then to Cottage Industries Carpet business where lunch & tea was served whilst learning about rug making in Cashmire. Beautifully hand made rugs, exquisite quality.
Then to Humayen's Tomb, which was commissioned by Humayun's son Akbar in 1569-70, great architecture. Is of particular cultural significance as it was the first garden-tomb on the Indian subcontinent. It inspired several major architectural innovations, culminating in the construction of the Taj Mahal.

Making our way thru the crazy traffic to First city of Delhi, Qutub Minar, with amazing stone 73 metre Minaret. The first three storeys are made of red sandstone; the fourth and fifth storeys are of marble and sandstone. At the foot of the tower is the Quwwat-ul-Islam Mosque, the first mosque to be built in India. An inscription over its eastern gate provocatively informs that it was built with material obtained from demolishing '27 Hindu temples'. A 7 m-high iron pillar stands in the courtyard of the mosque. This was truly wonderful place, highlight of the day.

Back to hotel for quick freshen up then dinner at local Lucknow restaurant at the Kingdom of Dreams complex. Great bollywood venue, local dishes so too hot for Rob but enjoyed by all.
Back to Trident hotel 9pm for early start to Agra.

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