Delhi is India's capital, and it is a large metropolitan area in the north of India. The city consists of two parts: the historic northern region named old Delhi and the New Delhi region. Delhi is a fantastic destination to experience Indian culture. If you plan to stopover here, check out these exciting facts about the city and checkout our interesting facts about India as well.
1. Delhi is the second-most populous city in the world
Delhi has a staggering 29.3 million residents living within the city limit, making it the second-most populous city in the world. The city's population keeps growing as more and more people are migrating to this metropolitan. This large population makes the city culturally diverse. The Muslim Mughals and the British, who ruled the city in the past, influence the city's culture.
2. Delhi was once the capital of the Mughal empire
Delhi, then known as Shahjahanabad, served as the Mughal empire's capital from 1638 until the country became a colony of the British empire in 1857. Today, Shahjahanabad is a part of the old Delhi and houses most of the historical buildings of the Mughal era. The city was a fortress encircled by walls with 14 entry gates to the city. Unfortunately, only a few survived the test of time.
3. Delhi was the base of an ancient Islamic empire
Even though India is a Hindu majority country today, the country had several Islamic empires in the past. One such empire was Delhi Sultanate. Delhi Sultanate ruled the majority of modern Indian land for 320 years. Five dynasties ruled over during those 320 years. The development of the Hindustani language and being one of the few powers to counter Mongol attacks are some of the Delhi Sultanate highlights.
4. The world’s second most bird-rich capital
Delhi not only serves its massive population but also is the home to a variety of birds. There are about 400 bird species, including resident birds, migrants, and birds pass through Delhi. Flamingos, Brown-headed Gulls, Herons, and Sparrows are some popular and familiar birds in Delhi. The city has several sanctuaries and parks to go birding. Okhla bird sanctuary, Sultanpur national park, and Aravalli Biodiversity Park are few popular places.
5. Home to Asia's largest wholesale spice market
Khari Baoli in Old Delhi is the largest wholesale spice market in Asia, selling a variety of spices, herbs, nuts, and other food products. This market is operating since the 17th century and is a popular tourist attraction. Here, many shops are running by the ninth or the tenth generation of each shop's founders way back in the 17th century.
6. Delhi houses the world's tallest brick minaret
Delhi's outskirts stand the Qutub Minar, the tallest brick minaret globally, reaching a height of 72.5m. The Islamic warlord, Qutub-ud-din-Aibak, built the minaret in 1192 to symbolize his military victory of seizing Delhi and establishing the first Islamic dynasty in the region. Qutub Minar is one of the three world heritage sites in Delhi.
7. The $90 billion project that will transform Delhi’s economy
India is constructing an industrial corridor between Delhi and its financial hub and largest port city, Mumbai. Eight new industrial towns, two new airports, and an eight-lane highway are infrastructures planned to construct under this project. The project will generate 3 million new jobs and increase the Indian GDP's manufacturing share to 25% by 2025.
8. Delhi is famous for its street food
Just like any other city, Delhi has its own street food culture. But Delhi's street food is famous for its fantastic street food. Many street food vendors are serving traditional as well as innovative foods. A wide range of Samosas, Fruit Kulfi – ice cream serves in fruits, Moonglet – a vegetarian omelette and Kuliya Chaat – a special fruit salad is some of the innovative street foods worth trying.
9. Delhi’s population lives in a toxic cloud
Delhi is among the most polluted cities in the world. Especially the air pollution already reached to a hazardous level. Apart from familiar sources like vehicle exhaust, construction dust, and industrial emissions, crop burnings in neighbouring states are the reasons behind Delhi's air pollution.
10. Delhi is often prone to earthquakes
Delhi experiences frequent earthquakes throughout the year. Fortunately, the majority of these earthquakes are minor. Delhi falls into a seismically active zone. The northward movement of the Indian plate and its collision with the Eurasian plate and the city's proximity to the Himalayas, which lies in the highest seismic zone, are the reasons for these earthquakes.