Hey guys, hope you’re doing well. I’m back with another post and today I’ll take you to one of the most prestigious places of India, which is none other than the Rashtrapati Bhawan, one of the biggest presidential residences in the world! I’ve to admit, I was awestruck by its sheer grandeur while soaking in its architectural beauty and extraordinary charm! We reached there pretty early to see the prestigious “Change of Guard Ceremony” which is an old military tradition where one set of guard relieves the another for a week, and so on, this takes place every Saturday morning and is a sight to behold!
What happens at the Rashtrapati Bhawan
Well, we all know that the Rashtrapati Bhawan is the residence of the honourable President of our country, India. However, it’s not just his residence but a lot of official events take place here, such as the swearing-in of leaders, defence investiture ceremonies, honouring achievers in their respective fields and brave-hearts of the country, and celebration of national festivals.
Timings and Entry Fee
You can book the tickets online from the official website of Rashtrapati Bhawan, click here, the fee is ₹50 per individual for each circuit. There isn’t any fee for children below eight years.
The change of guard ceremony takes place on the forecourt of Rashtrapati Bhavan. We saw the grand equestrian display and drill along with the military band which lasts for about 30 minutes. Make sure you reach at least half an hour before the ceremony commences.
After the guard ceremony, you’d go to the reception which is in the main building. Here, your ID proof would be checked, your phones and belongings would be taken away and you’d be divided in the groups of 10-15 people. I’d recommend you to leave your valuables in at home or in your car. Photography and videography inside is strictly prohibited. However, you can click as many times as you want in the Mughal gardens, outside the building in the front courtyard. We went in the month of April, 2021 and since it’s pandemic time so we were all masked and maintaining social distance. The best part was very few people so we had the entire Presidential mansion to us!
The change of guard ceremony is generally held every Saturday at 8am in the Summer and 10am during the Winter season.
Things to see in the Rashtrapati Bhawan
Circuit 1: Central lawn & Main Building
The president’s house is way too huge with amazing attractions within it. You can explore them as per circuit you select. I’m glad it wasn’t that hot when we visited there.
This circuit is open on Saturdays and Sundays. It consists of Forecourt, Central Lawn, Central Dome, Banquet Hall, Durbar Hall, Library, North Drawing Room, Ashok Hall, Navachara, Long Drawing Room, Iron Gate, Tuscan Pillars and Jaipur Column
Circuit 2: Museum
The second circuit is open on all days except for Mondays. It consists of the Clock Tower, Stables and Garages.
Circuit 3: Gardens
The third circuit is often called paradise, opens During Udyanotsav, held between February to March every year. It comprises of Mughal Gardens, Herbal Garden, Musical Garden and Spiritual Garden.
Change of Guard Ceremony
I was so ecstatic to see the soldiers smartly marching and practicing before the drill. Even though, as an Army wife I see them quite frequently but it has never ceased to amaze me. Every time it fills me with pride and patriotism. This ceremony is held every Saturday, an old military tradition where one set of fresh and rested guards relieve the weary soldiers from long hours of strenuous and vigilant duty, and the cycle continues.
After watching the impressive change of guard ceremony, we went to see the Rashtrapati Bhawan complex which is incredibly majestic and an architectural marvel! The interiors are breathtakingly gorgeous and so are the Mughal Gardens, one can easily see the Indo-European influence on the whole setup. I was surprised to know that it has 340 rooms spread over four floors, 2.5 kilometres of corridors and 190 acres of garden area. The Mughal garden boasts of more than 100 varieties of flowers and we really loved how the whole place was covered with beautiful flowers and lovely fragrance. the flowers were names after famous political and movie personalities.
When we reached the gardens, I was transported to the Mughal gardens of Kashmir, Nishat Bagh, Shalimar Bagh and the gardens of the Taj Mahal because of it’s beauty and resemblance. It has the same charm and beauty, in fact, it is made on the same lines! This sprawling garden covers around 13 acres of area. While moving around, I couldn’t take my eyes off the flowers even though by the month of April there wasn’t much variety left as compared to February when the flower festival is going on, but I absolutely loved every bit of it.
You’d find roses, tulips, lilies, daffodils, hyacinth and lot many other seasonal flowers accentuating the already stunning gardens. There’re small ponds around the bed of flowers making the scene even more enchanting. Had timings not been an issue, I’d have sat there the whole day admiring the beauty of nature. Give me flowers and I’m such a happy soul. Make sure you don’t pluck any, it’s strictly prohibited.
Now that you know so many interesting things about President’s mansion, book yourself a ticket and see the grandeur yourself. You can thank me later! I hope you enjoyed reading, you can checkout my YouTube video of our visit to this majestic place, click here.
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