Come February, and a quiet little village outside Delhi will have more colour, vibrancy and visitors than all the malls of the latter put together. For we are talking of the Surajkund Crafts Mela, that has from last year onwards been given the status of an International Crafts Mela. The decision was taken keeping in mind the fact that a record twelve countries - including Uzbekistan, Thailand and other SAARC nations - participated in last to last year's event, a testimony to the level of interest the festival has been creating internationally.
10:00 AM A cab will pick you up from your house and first take you to Tughlaqabad Fort.
11:30 AM We move from the Fort to the Surajkund Mela Grounds. Enjoy the remainder of the day exploring the many colourful stalls, amusement park and other facets of the Mela.
04:00 PM The cab will now take you back to your home.
An air-conditioned car will pick you up from the railway station/airport and drive you to your beautiful residence for the day - the Express Sarovar Portico, Faridabad. Once you have freshened up, proceed to the Mela grounds, just across the hotel, and you can revel in the festivities.
Today we'll take you on a history lesson of Delhi's finest. Start off with the world's most popular minaret, the Qutub Minar, built in the 12th century. Next in line will be what has been a symbol of Delhi for over 300 years now, the Red Fort. Then we let you wander around the bylanes of Chandni Chowk and shop till your heartâs content. You must, must spot that great man and poet, Mirza Ghalib's house, Parathe Wali Gali and the Spice Bazaar while you are at it. The trip ends here, people, hope you enjoyed the day's sights.
** Price is based on 2 persons travelling together
# This itinerary is recommended for people coming from outside Delhi
If you are living in Delhi, our cab will pick you up from your house. We first take you to Tughlaqabad Fort, built by the first Tughlaq king, Ghiyas-ud-din Tughlaq, in the early 1300s. A beautiful fort that stretches for over six kilometers, it is most famous for the curse imposed by Nizamuddin Auliya - 'Ya rahey hissar, ya basey gujjar' (May the fort remain unoccupied, or may the herdsmen live here)
What to expect at the festival
A melee of colours that will blow your senses, as the best artisans and craftsmen from all the states of the country display their handicrafts and handlooms in the ornamented village. For art connoisseurs, Surajkund Crafts Mela 2014 has plenty to offer. Cotton Durries, Bidri works, carpets, Madhubani paintings, wooden and bamboo wares, leather goods, Banarasi, silk and kosa works form just the top of this treasure chest.
But people come not just for the crafts and handlooms, but also for all those little lovely details about a festival. They flock from one stall to another, eating chaat or trying a regional cuisine. Screaming, they jump onto rides and relive those childhood days again. Families come from Delhi and even faraway places to picnic, soak in the sun and have a good time. For that is what a festival is all about. For photographers, the festival is a dream.
One of the major highlights of the Surajkund Crafts Mela is the folk dance performances by renowned artists from India and around the world, several of whom are award-winning performers.
How to Reach Surajkund Mela Faridabad
Surajkund literally translates into 'Lake of the Sun'. An ancient reservoir built in the 10th century, it was built in the backdrop of the Aravalli Hills and its embankment is shaped as a semicircular ampitheatre, to give it the appearance of a rising sun.
Surajkund is approximately 8 kms from South Delhi. The approach road branches off from the Mehrauli - Tughlaqabad highway and goes past the Rifle Shooting Range. If you are coming from outside Delhi, the nearest stations are Faridabad, Gurgaon and New Delhi. Tughlaqabad Metro Station is the closest.