Lodhi Garden is one of the most famous parks of Delhi located between the Khan market and Safdarjung's tomb. This is very popular among the people of posh south delhi for morning walks, jogging, mediation and yoga. In morning you will find many eminent personalities of Delhi taking a stroll in the park. Though in the day time it is popular among the young couples who come here to spend some time together here. The Lodhi garden was known as the Lady Willingdon Park before India's Independence. This garden is a very big garden with flourishing vegetation and different varieties of birds. These days it has also become a sought after place by the couples for their pre-wedding photo shoots and i myself saw quite a few number of such to-be-married couples happily posing for these shoots.
This park is also a popular spot for the medieval Indian History enthusiasts.The striking feature about this park is that is surrounded by the remains of the Indian history in the form of the tombs of the Sayyids and Lodhis who ruled Northern India during the 15th century and early 16th century. The major monuments in this park are the Muhammad Shah's tomb, Sikander Lodi's Tomb, Bada Gumbad and Shish Gumbad.
Since last few months i had been yearning to visit the Lodhi Gardens but could not somehow take out time to visit this park. However last week i decided that i should go there anyhow and i made up mind and turned everything in my routine to make up some time to visit this beautiful park. This is not the first time i went to this park. I had earlier during my college days visited this park twice. My college best friend stayed in government quarters in the Khan market area around the Lodhi Gardens. I along with her and another friend had come here for some good evening walk and passtime. I still have fond memories of that time when we were so amazed by the beauty of the park and i was especially bowled over by the historical heritage of this park because since my school days i was always interested in the medieval Indian history. So for me it was a golden opportunity to practically see what i read. This time again it was that charm of those historical monuments that weighed heavily on my mind and i just couldn't stop myself from visiting this park again.
This year April has been a very hot month as compared to previous years but still that did not deter me from visiting this park. Though i decided to visit this park in the morning to avoid extreme heat of the afternoon. I decided to enter the park from the Asoka gate which was near the Lodhigarden restaurant.
The moment you enter the park you see a long narrow concrete path flanked by trees on both side and leading to the main park. On the right hand side of this path you can see a small play area for the kids. As you proceed a little straight towards the park you catch the first glimpse of the Lodhi history in the form of a big monument known as the Bada Gumbad.
From the circular intersection, i turned to the left towards the tomb of the the Muhammad Shah who was the third ruler of the Sayyid dynasty. His tomb was built by the last Sayyid ruler Alauddin Alam Shah and this tomb is the oldest monument in the park. On way to the tomb one gets to see a herbal garden, lots of beautiful flowers and lovely ornamental trees and shrubs that make you stop and admire the beauty.
The octogonal tomb of Muhammad Shah has some chhatris around its main dome and is built on an elevated paltform. This tomb is built near the boundary of the park near Ashoka gate so it is easily visible from the road. Beautiful landscaping has been done around this tomb which definitely makes you spend more time here.
After sitting in the green space around this tomb and admiring the architecture, i moved towards the center of the park to see other monuments. I again came infront of the Bada Gumbad which literally means the 'Big Dome '. The green garden infront it seemed to be a hot favourite among the people coming to Lodi gardens. Some people just relaxed sitting under the shade of the trees, some enjoyed playing cricket with their kids, while some other people were enjoying the picnic here.
Bada Gumbad looked like a double storey monument from outside but on moving inside it i found that it was only single storeyed and also it was not a tomb. It was built on a square plan during the period of Sikander Lodi. A central courtyard leads to the Bada Gumbad and is flanked by a mosque and a residential space on its two sides.
The Bada Gumbad mosque has some beautiful carvings and Quranic inscriptions that are definitely a treat to eyes. It also has some jharokas and turrets.
The jharokas are the ideal place for couples shooting for their pre-wedding portfolio. So you will find quite a few number of young posing in these jharokas. And what a view these jharokas offer. Mindblowing i must say. Just opposite to the the Bada Gumbad is the Shish Gumbad or 'Glass Dome', called so because of the Blue glazed tiles work on it. This is also square on plan and contains some unknown graves of the period of Sikander Lodhi. The blue tiles make this monument stand out though only a few tiles remains on on the top facade of the tomb now.
Both these monuments were surrounded by well manicured green lawns and beautiful flowers where you can just sit or lie down and relax for sometime.
I decided to further move forward to see the tomb of Sikander lodhi and on way i saw some birds like eagle, sparrows , ducks and swans in the park. So this place is actually a good one for the amateur ornithologists.
After walking for few minutes i saw a pond containing few fishes. Just opposite the pond is the Tomb of the second Lodhi ruler Sikander Lodi which was built by Ibrahim Lodi who was the third and the last ruler of the Lodi dyansty. This tomb is located in the center of a garden enclosed within a big walled enclosure.
The middle part of the western wall of this enclosure was built to work as a mosque wall. The tomb is octogonal like the tomb of Muhammad shah but lacks the chhatris. Few Hindi movies have also been shot in this garden because of the pleasing surroundings. The tomb entry was locked from all sides so i couldnot go inside the tomb and see the grave. Some restoration work was also going on.
So there wasn't much to see so I ventured out to see the Athpula across a pond just opposite the sikander lodi's tomb. Athpula is a eight pillared bridge which was built during the times of the Mughal ruler Akbar. The pond water flowing through the the arches of the the bridge gave a stunning view. The Athpula and this water body seemed to be quite a favourite with the people in the park. People were lazying around this pond and enjoying the view of the serene waters. What added to the tranquility was the chirping of the birds and the soft musical sound of the breeze. I could see some lying on a bench near pond and relaxing, some were just sitting besides the pond and enjoying the view. Almost all looked mesmerised by the beauty of the place. Such was the magic of the place. Must say this place was perfect for reading a book and even better for writing a book itself...! So you never know I may one day just besides this pond and actually write a book.
After spending some time here I decided to go back to the Ashoka gate of the park where my car was parked. On way back I decided to take different route. There i saw a rose garden with lots of beautiful and different colored roses growing. The garden was enclosed by four walls with a gateway to the rose garden. Just next to the gateway there is a mosque also. The mosque and the gateway were built during the Mughal period. There also we saw a beautiful couple shooting for their pre-wedding photo album. The view of the the girl twirling around in a lehenga dress against the backdrop of the monument was breathtaking. And i so wished to do the same wearing a lehenga .Wow what a sight it was. Superb and dreamy too...!!
On walking towards the exit there is a small turret at one corner of the park. It caught my attention as I wondered what that structure alone was doing there. What was it meant for. It was believed to be a corner tower of an enclosure of the Lodhi period. Well there wasn't much to see in it except for a jharokas on its upper level
Must say this park is seriously one of the best places to see in Delhi and must not be missed because of the ambience of the park both historically and naturally.
My overall rating for this place
Beauty and visit worthiness of this place-5/5
Where to eat
The best part is that just outside the Ashoka gate is the Lodhi garden restaurant where you can have continental food but with a prior booking. The ambience of the restaurant will too make you fall in love with it.
If you want to have some good Indian food then you can head to the Pandara Road where there are some good mid-range restaurants. Khan market is also having some good restaurants and fast food chains. Also there are some luxury hotels nearby within a radius of 2-3 kms where you can dine-in for a luxurious spread of meal.
What to wear
A track suit and jogger shoes are perfect for exploring this park while enjoying your morning or evening walk.
Best time to visit this place
This park is open round the year. Try visiting this place in the morning and evenings to avoid the harsh heat of the afternoons.The park is open from 5am to 8pm during summers( April to September) and from 6am to 8pm during get winters(October to March).
Few tips and helpful information about this place
Tourist attractions near Lodhi Gardens
Location and How to reach Lodhi Gardens
Lodhi Gardens is located on the Lodhi Road in New Delhi. See the map below for reference. Indira Gandhi airport is about 13kms from Lodhi garden. You can reach here by road and it is very well connected to all parts of Delhi. You can also reach here by taking a metro train upto the Jorbagh metro station and then walking for 5-10 minutes to reach here.