Chandigarh Travel Guide
Chandigarh Travel Guide: The well planned Gallic vision in concrete of Le Corbusier is almost an anomaly in India. With its immaculate avenues, neatly arrayed houses and green roundabouts in full bloom, it comes as something of a cultural shock, especially when compared to the chaos of the other Indian cities. Yet, scratch the surface and the happy go lucky, free wheeling Punjabi culture with its bonhomie will shine through.
Be astonished by the inimitable fusion of art and urban waste at Nek Chand’s Rock Garden. Dip into tranquility in the languid Sukhna Lake that dazzles even at night. Go bird watching of the exotic migratory kind. If you still have reserve stamina, pick up the unique phulkari –the craft of Punjab and treat your tongue to the spicy Punjabi delight. After all there’s always a pub at the corner to wash it down.
Places to visit in Chandigarh
The sprawling over 64 acres it is a recycler’s artistic dream. The massive array of natural rock forms and stones was created sector by sector with rocks and discarded objects like bottle tops, fluorescent lights, mud guard, tin cans, broken glass, and building waste by its creator Nek Chand who wanted to create beauty from waste. At one stroke, it solves the vexatious problem of disposing city waste. Dolls birds, men and women all gambol here along a maze of paths amidst rustic and exotic environs of the garden. An open air theatre and a vast pavilion with a center stage are the other highlights.
An artificial, manmade lake created by the architect Le Corbusier; it spreads over 3 square and nestles among mountains and reserve forest land. As a sanctuary for many exotic migratory birds from Central Asia and Siberia, its tree-shaded shores serve as a favorite spot for strolling and bird watching. It shimmers in the lights reflected from the nearby hill resort at night.
The Capitol Complex
Designed by Le Corbusier in Sector 1, it is the seat of the government. The joint headquarters of Punjab and Haryana contains the Legislative Assembly, the High Court, and the Secretariat as its main geometrical buildings. Separated by large piazzas, the subtle lines exude inimitable Gallic charm.
The Open Hand Monument
Located in sector 1, it symbolizes of peace and unity with ‘Open to give – Open to receive’ and is the official emblem of the city. The top is made of a metal sheet rotates freely in the wind. Some times it resembling a bird in flight.
SecretariatThe secretariat is the largest building in the Capitol Complex. The typically Le-Corbusier work has an 800 foot long facade, broken in half in a dozen places with projections, recesses, stair towers, changes in pattern. You can get a panoramic view of the city and the hills beyond from the roof top.
Move to Sector 17 as it has the main shopping and commercial centre. This vast commercial complex offers something for everyone. The Government Emporia, innumerable shops, eateries, coffee houses, bars & pubs will keep you interested.
The typical Punjabi fare of Sarson ka Saag, Makki di Roti, Punjabi Chhole, Dal Makhni and not to forget the Lassi (a tasty beverage made from curd) is available everywhere. Moreover, there are several fast food joints serving continental, Chinese and South Indian food and chicken corners in the city.
How to Get Here:
Chandigarh Airport is connected to Delhi and Leh and also has a flight to Amritsar. Shatabdi Express, which runs in the morning and later in the evening, presents the easiest and the comfortable option to reach Chandigarh from Delhi. Chandigarh is connected to most of the towns north of Delhi by bus and the bus service is quick and frequent.