And… Delhi belly has struck – Jayne is down and my nostrils are dying!!! In all fairness, she is being an absolute trooper (or should that be ‘trumper’!!) about the whole thing. Fortunately, it didn’t really hit until this evening so we still managed a day of sight seeing and, much to Jayne’s delight, have seen another UNESCO world heritage site! It’s her dream during this trip to see as many as possible – 2 done in 3 days! We tried to squeeze in a third today but realised it was silly since we’ll have to come back through Delhi to go to Agra (and the Taj Mahal).
So this morning we got our 18p metro ticket and headed to Qutb Minar. We avoided the tuktuks at the station to walk the 2.5kms to the monument via the Mehrauli Archaeological Park. It was blissfully quiet in there and we got to see beautiful birds and loads of Indian palm squirrels. We also got to see a tomb that had been turned into someone’s summer home and the Qutb Minar tower without being surrounded by other tourists.
Finally deciding that we couldn’t put it off any longer, we headed in to pay our 250 rupees each to visit the complex. There are 7 monuments within the grounds – all religious buildings from Islam. The Qutb Minar is a 73m high tower that is 15m in diameter at the base and 2.5m at the top.
It has five distinct storeys – the first 3 made of red sandstone, the 4th and 5th are made of marble and sandstone. It was built from 1193 and completed in 1368 – and apart from losing its cupola during an earthquake in 1803, it is still standing solid! A metro trip home in the women only carriage which, surprisingly, gets you touched way more than in the mixed carriages and we packed up our stuff before dinner. Early train in the morning – 7am – for our 6 hour train to Amritsar and the Golden Temple.