City gate has been a symbol of the rich heritage of old settlements. Gates of the city have been considered a source of traveling, trade, taxation, supplying and other military purposes. Indeed, city gates are the part of ancient architectural concepts but they serve urban settlements in all times and in every way. Similarly, the walled city of Lahore is known for having 13 gates in which 6 are in their better condition. Here we are going to mention Delhi Gate of Lahore with all its highlights that you might not have experienced before.
Historical Overview if Delhi Gate
It wouldn’t be an exaggeration if we call Delhi Gate a king of all the gates located in the walled city of Lahore. The gate was the Royal Trail of its time. Mughal emperors used it to travel from Lahore Fort to Delhi through this gate which leads the straight route and was known as Shahi Guzargah. Famous Mughal emperor Akbar took that revolutionary step of building 13 gates around the walled city of Lahore, connected with 30 ft high fortified wall. Delhi Darwaza was also one of these gates and was constructed in the mid of 16th century.
Delhi Gate is located in the east of the city and faces Delhi which was the capital of the Mughal empire. It has been the main passage of Mughal kings and queens who passed through this gate with all their royal protocol. During that time, royal guards opened the gate with the sunrise and shut with sunset. British era badly affected the existence of all the 13 gates in the walled city of Lahore. Only a few of the gates were rebuilt by British rulers in the first half of the 19th century including Delhi gate.
Structure of Delhi Gate
A royal reception called Delhi Gate has double story building having 10-12 rooms. These rooms are been used as classrooms. Now, let’s move towards the astonishing highlights of this gate; the staircase and Shahi Hamam. The staircase is a set of stairs and walls containing structure built in a 90-degree angle with a strategy of protecting the building from sudden attacks. This staircase leads to the rooftop, whereas the upper story has another tourist attraction of this gate, Shahi Hamam which is on the right side. Moreover. the rooftop provides a breathtaking view of traditional bazaars around the gate and also the walled city of Lahore. In the past, a guest house of Wazir Khan named Sarai also existed next to the gate which was demolished in flood came during Sikh era. The ground floor of Delhi Gate hosts tourism and craft centers in 6 rooms.
Way to Delhi Gate in the Walled City of Lahore
You access Delhi Gate via railway station Lahore by crossing Domoria Pul and turning to the left side. Majestic Dekhi Gate is adjacent to the Shahi Hamam which is been loved by local and foreign tourists to visit.
While visiting the gate, you may notice its outside having many local tea, spices and grain shops. This area is mainly the part of Akbari Mandi which is a spice market of Lahore. You will also come across the local cuisines and vendors of handicrafts. In the evening, Delhi Gate is been illuminated which creates a mesmerizing view around the gate and makes it an iconic heritage of the walled city of Lahore.