Colonial Tour of Delhi
Begin St James Church, otherwise known as Skinner’s Church, built in 1836. Skinner promised to build a church, Hindu temple and mosque as he lay dying on the battlefield of Iniara in 1800. You’ll find interesting inscriptions on the church walls, as well as tombs in the churchyard, all of which have stories that reveal interesting anecdotes about the British Raj in the 19th century. Continue to the Nicholson Cemetery, the resting place of many colonial-era residents including John Nicholson, who died storming Delhi during the Mutiny of 1857. Drive north and visit Coronation Park, the venue of the Delhi Durbar of 1877 and the grand Durbar of 1911. Many of the colonial statues in Delhi were moved here after independence. On the way back south, stop at the Mutiny Memorial, commemorating those who fought during the retaking of Delhi in 1857. You’ll then visit New Delhi, the city laid out by Lutyens and Baker when the capital moved from Calcutta in 1911, first stopping for lunch at colonial-era Maidens Hotel. At the end of Rajpath (King’s Way) you find the Rashtrapati Bhavan, or former Viceroy’s House. If you are in Delhi on a Friday, Saturday or Sunday we can arrange for you to get inside on a tour and see the Mughal Gardens (although they are known to cancel tours at short notice). Close by is the Cathedral Church of the Redemption, opened in 1931. You’ll pass the Parliament Secretariat and Parliament House and work your way down Rajpath see India Gate, a memorial to the 82,000 Indian soldiers who died in the First World War and Third Afghanistan War. You’ll then drive around Lutyens’ Delhi, passing some of the many bungalows that line the wide tree-lined streets. You’ll be able to have a quick walk around Connaught Circus before ending your tour at the Imperial Hotel in Janpath. The Imperial has a superb art collection throughout the hotel, from landscape etchings to dramatic prints of major battles. The resident curator will personally take you around, highlighting some of the stories behind the art. You’ll end with afternoon high tea overlooking the immaculately kept lawns.