Majnu-ka-tilla or MT as everyone likes to call it, was established around 1960 and is officially called New Aruna Nagar Colony. It is located in North Delhi right on the banks of river Yamuna near Kashmere Gate.
Majnu ka Tilla literally means the hillock of Majnu. The legend behind the name is that it is on this tilla (hillock) a local sufi mystic, Majnu (Abdulla), met Guru Nanak and ferried people across the Yamuna as a service to god and this led to the Guru to stay here for a while.
The walk begins at the Gurudwara Majnu ka Tilla which was built to commemorate the Sikh Guru’s stay by a Sikh leader. A brief round of introductions and a quick lesson in history later, we start walking towards the Tibetan refugee colony which is just about 200 meters down the road.
As we enter the colony, we encounter numerous shops selling everything from traditional Tibetan ornaments to garments and souvenirs. We head up the narrow lanes towards the Abu club – a highly traditional club on one end of the residential part of the colony with an unparalled view of the river bank. You will not be able to find this secret hideout as people even refuse to acknowledge its existence and that is yet another reason to walk with us!
The Abu club is a small establishment, run by a really sweet Tibetan lady, for the locals to come together to socialize. Here is where we introduced Buff to you. Buff is short for Buffalo. All traditional dishes are available in Chicken, Pork, Mutton and Buff in addition to the vegetarian variants. Sample the Momo’s at the club – they only serve the Buff variant, along with some Beer and Noodles. Play a traditional betting game with the locals here or soak in the river Yamuna from the terrace of restaurant area of the club – either ways, the experience will leave you in peace.
From here we move towards the market area which is marked with the cutest little monastery you will ever see.
The Monastery is closed in the evening – to visit, come here during the day.
From here we come across numerous shops where one can get a deal on some of the most unique ornaments, clothes and memorabilia. Do spend some time shopping around before heading to the restaurants.
The restaurants are all close together and all are good for something or the other. Must haves are the Khow-suey (coconut milk based noodles), Pork Ribs, Shabaley and Gyuma (Sausages). Finish off the trip with a visit to the Ama cafe – one of the coziest cafes in Delhi. Try something Tibetan like the cheesecake (Warning! This might be too strong for some), Bhod Ja – Tibetan Butter Salt Tea (Warning again!) or indulge in a conventional dessert.
Join us in one of our upcoming Tibetan Food Walks to experience the food of Tibet!