It is being long time I haven’t talked about travelling. I spent my Christmas weekend as a getaway from the loud noises & horns of metro city to a calm city. Chandigarh!
I spent my weekends at Chandigarh and my tour was really soothing. Before starting my journey, I had read well about Chandigarh. Make sure to do this, ALWAYS.
Chandigarh in India is the only city which is the capital of both neighbouring states Haryana & Punjab. Chandigarh also serves as a Union Territory. It is located 260 km North of New Delhi.
It is the first city in India which is well-planned after post-Independence and is internationally known for its architecture and urban design. The master plan of the city was prepared by Swiss-French architect Le Corbusier, which was transformed from earlier plans created by the Polish architect Maciej Nowicki and the American planner Albert Mayer.
The city has one of the highest per capita income in the country. The city was reported to be one of the cleanest in India based on a national government study.
You will experience all season in Chandigarh like winter, summer, spring, autumn, monsoon. Official language of Chandigarh is English while Hindi is most spoken language and then Punjabi.
Chandigarh has been rated as the “Wealthiest Town” of India. The Reserve Bank of India ranked Chandigarh as the Third largest deposit centre and seventh largest credit centre nationwide as of June 2012.
Places you can visit in Chandigarh are:
1. Sukhna Lake
You can start your day by visiting the lake first. is a reservoir at the foothills (Shivalik hills) of the Himalayas. Health freak pursue an exercise regime, families enjoy an evening stroll and nature lovers mingle with children on roller skates. There is also an option for you to do boat-riding. Boating charges are Rs. 200 per head for 30 minutes. If you are done boating and submit the receipt within 30 minutes then Rs. 100 is refundable. You can feed swans, take a long walk, have ‘bhel-puri’ and many edible items seen across the road.
Sukhna Lake had variety of crowd. You can find youngsters to oldies.
2. Rock Garden – Unimaginable!
This is all I can say about Rock Garden. Rock Garden is 500m away from Sukhna Lake so you can go walking. I will tag Rock Garden as “Best Out of Waste”. It was created by Nek Chand. In his spare time, Nek Chand used to collect materials from demolition sites around the city. He recycled these materials into his own vision of the divine kingdom of Sukrani, choosing a gorge in a forest near Sukhna Lake for his work. This land was reserved for forest by government and without government’s knowledge, a city of Rock was been created. Since this land belonged to government, it was under Chandigarh Government. Today it is spread over an area of 40 acres (161874.25 m²). It is completely built of industrial and home waste and thrown-away items.
3. The Rose Garden
It is also known as Zakir Rose Garden. There are various kinds of rose found in this garden. Families come here for a picnic, relaxation, for family outing. It is like a playground for children who can learn as well as play. It is spread over 30 acres (120,000 m2) of land, with 50,000 rose-bushes of 1600 different species. Named after India’s former president, Zakir Hussain. Zakir Rose Garden serves as the venue for hosting an annual rose festival called Rose Festival, a major cultural event in Chandigarh during February or March.
4. Government Museum & Art Gallery
The Government Museum & Art Gallery is designed by the Swiss born French architect, Le Corbusier. There are 3 buildings in this museum Natural History Museum, Chandigarh Architecture Museum, and Government Museum & Art Gallery. Every building in Museum campus is detailed.
Natural History Museum comprises of evolution of mankind, birth of Earth, history of dinosaurs, and many more. The best part is, there are some sculptures which you can touch and feel.
Chandigarh Architecture Museum details about how Chandigarh city was planned. You will find the newspaper articles, photographs, equipments & scales used to plan Chandigarh.
Government Museum & Art Gallery shows the paintings by famous artists, statues, and shawls used more than 100 years ago.
5. Market of Sector 17
Just name the brand and its there. This market is so spacious that it can accommodate whole lot of crowd and still seem empty. You can eat, shop & watch movies. This market is like how it used to be long time back, fully spacious on ground floor and not floor-by-floor like malls. You will also see locals with their stalls as well.
For first time, I had seen Cotton Candy in so many colors.
6. The Open Hand Monument in Chandigarh
It is a symbolic structure designed by the architect Le Corbusier and located in the Capitol Complex. It is a symbolic structure designed by the architect Le Corbusier and located in the Capitol Complex. Le Corbusier thought of the Open Hand Monument first in 1948. It appears like a flying bird. The surface of the vane is covered with polished steel and is fitted over a steel shaft with ball bearings to facilitate free rotation by the wind.
7. Elante Mall
It is a shopping mall in the city of Chandigarh. it is the second largest shopping mall in Northern India and the eleventh largest in India. The Mall has an 8-screen Multiplex of PVR Cinemas. On its top floor, the mall has restaurants and fast food joints. For kids entertainment there is a Fun City on the top floor. The sad part is, ever since Elante Mall was built, the crowd moved from Sector 17 Market to Elante Mall. On 28th July 2017, Nexus Malls, a subsidiary of US-based global investment firm Blackstone Group bought Elante Mall for an undisclosed amount. This is the second time Elante Mall is sold in two years.
8. Le Corbusier Centre, Sector 19
The Swiss-French architect used the office while conceptualizing the city almost six decades ago. The Centre displays and exhibits the life and works of Le Corbusier, so that tourists and future generations may be able to acquaint themselves with the rich cultural heritage of the city.
Below is the view of Chandigarh-plan and you will realise how much detailed-planning is been done.
Written By: Alka Prasad