India Gate is a 138-foot (42-meter) war memorial in the heart of New Delhi, reminiscent of Paris’ Arc de Triomphe. Built in 1931 and designed by British architect Sir Edwin Lutyens, designer of most of New Delhi, it’s a must-visit photo stop on a Delhi tour.
The India Gate was built to commemorate Indian members of the British Indian Army killed during World War I and the Third Anglo-Afghan War. In the 1970s, the eternal flame (Amar Jawan Jyoti) was added to remember Indians who died in the Indo-Pakistan War. Around 13,000 soldiers’ names are inscribed on the gate.
The gate is popular among both local and international visitors. Usually visited on half- and full-day sightseeing tours of Delhi, it’s a particularly attractive place to take photos. It doesn’t take long to see the gate itself, so a visit here is best combined with a fuller sightseeing trip that may also call on the Red Fort, Lotus Temple, Humayun’s Tomb, Qutub Minar, and other sites.
Thing to Know Before You Go
- It’s free to visit India Gate.
- Festive parks surrounding the gate are a good place for kids to run around and explore.
- The traffic around India Gate can be heavy and fast, and there are few clear places to cross. Follow your guide’s instructions on the best way to cross the road.
- Beware of touts asking tourists for donations for “charities.” Most of these are not genuine, and it’s best to politely but firmly tell them “no, thanks” and move on.
How to Get There
India Gate is located on Rajpath in New Delhi, in a part of the city that’s mainly administrative. It’s not a great place to walk around due to the fast traffic and large distances between points of interest. The nearest metro stations are Khan Market and Udyog Bhawan, where you can hire auto-rickshaws to India Gate.
When to Get There
You can tour India Gate at any time, but at night, when it is lit up, is a particularly attractive time to visit. If you’re booking a private sightseeing tour, request to see India Gate after dark. During India Republic Day (January 26), the streets around it get very busy with crowds and military parades.
Touring Lutyens’ Delhi
Lutyens designed much of New Delhi in the 1920s–1940s and gave the capital’s administrative areas their character. Touring the parts of Delhi designed by Lutyens is a good way to learn about the colonial history and architecture of the city. Also visit Connaught Place and Rashtrapati Bhawan. Private tour packages can be designed around the theme of Lutyens’ Delhi.