Delhi is the perfect setting to unleash your candid camera cravings. The fabulous narratives unspooled by Delhi’s many avatars are a compelling insta worthy, frame by frame, takeaway wherever you roam. Season in and season out Delhi’s iconic insta images hold the promise of being embraced by humongous followings by culture buffs all over the world.
Chandni Chowk: From Asia’s largest spice market, Khari Baoli, to the squiggly lanes of Dariba lined with jewellery shops, Chandini Chowk is a paradise of contrasts and conundrums. The play of shadow and light and the fast changing mood of the streets as the day unfolds will enthrall and delight every step of the way. Steeped in history and heritage, Jama Masjid, Fatehpuri Masjid, Jain Temple, Sisganj Gurudawra, Kotwali… will grab your shirtsleeve to have you spend hours grabbing the magical nuances of both past and present.
Paharganj: This backpacker ghetto of the ‘Flower Children’ of the early 70s, offers eyeball grabbing vignettes of instant delight as you trawl the crowded streets and shadowy tenement blocks. Soak up the intimacy, the unparalleled inclusivity of the rich atmospherics of this chaotic bazaar, where the tourists and beggars rub shoulders while side-stepping, unwieldy carts, rickshaws and racing autos. Marvel afresh every time as you find fresh subjects in the arteries of this lively bazaar where people still live in the shadows of the past, while muscling their way through the chaos of the 21st century.
Rashtrapati BhavanThe robust lines of the Viceroy’s Palace, now home of independent India’s President, still capture the nuances of the imperial posturing of the British, who came in as traders and stayed on to rule India for 200 years. The unmissable grandeur of an illuminated Rashtrapati Bhwan during the Republic Day celebrations is totally worth a capture for posterity.
Humayun’s TombIn the luminescent light of a pearly dawn when the early morning air is filled with sleepy birdsong, this last resting place of Mughal Emperor Humayun unfolds the poignancy of the troubled life of this dreamy ruler. A UNESCO World Heritage Site, the serene tomb basks in the perfection of its symmetrical lines and architectural beauty amidst formal gardens that once overlooked the Yamuna River.
Dargah NizamuddinThe beloved Sufi Saint Nizamuddin Auliya, mentor of Delhi poet Amer Khusrau, is a living legend in the maze of lanes, across the road from Humyuns’ Tomb. Thursday night are livened up by Sufi music gatherings, featuring many verses written by the poet in praise of the saint. From flower sellers to kebab and biryani eateries, the Dargah area is a canvas of delights for your lens. Come here for the annual Holi in March, when celebrations are conducted only with flowers.
Agrasen ki BaoliThe architectural and engineering marvel that is this ancient water reservoir on Hailey Road, near Connaught Place, is totally clickable from many angles. Be here in the early hours to capture the grand stairway of 103 steps to the waterline.
Lodi GardensAwash with lush verdure, ancient monuments and jogging trails this early morning walker’s hotspot offers some of the most unique insights into the lives of Dilliwallahs. From fashion icons to politicians, from housewives to corporate executives types this great lung of Delhi, envisaged in the Raj days as Lady Willingdon’s Gardens, is healthy Delhi’s go-to morning hub.
Sunder NurseryA welcome culture and health hub, this is Delhi’s newest hangout place. Through the day it’s easy to capture the young and the restless, the oldies and the goldies take full advantage of this gorgeous garden setting located close to Humayun’s Tomb.
Soak in the Bohemian vibes of the treasured present day art scene of Delhi where street artists grab your attention with their take on contemporary life in all its wondrous moods. Join the hip and happening Dilliwallah on a culture high trawling the Lodhi Colony Art District near Mehr Chand Market, where the modern wall art both delights and confounds the viewer while celebrating the outpourings of the graffiti artist from around the world.
National Rail Museum
Over 166 years of rail history of India are captured in this superb museum which has on display some of the most fascinating trains that just beg to be embraced by your lens. Original life size exhibits at this open air gallery include steam, diesel and electric locomotives apart from the exotic collection of royal saloons, wagons, carriages, armored trains, rail cars and a turntable. Check out the oldest working steam locomotive— Fairy Queen. Vintage exhibits also include the Prince of Wales saloon, Mysore Maharaja Saloon and Fireless steam locomotive...
There’s a silent deeply emotive connect between the camera and food for insta junkies. For them there’s some instinctive desire to freeze frame on some tempting offering. Decode Delhi’s food world in the eat streets of Chandni Chowk, Jama Masjid, Dill Haat or some swanky restaurant in town.
The love affair between the camera lens and the many faces of Delhi continues to be nourished by insta buffs from all over the world. Do your bit by keeping this an evergreen passion for travellers and residents alive for years to come.