Summer holidays have begun, and the onus is on us parents to engage our kids in activities which are not only fun but contribute to their learning while sparking an interest in unexplored fields. These are the two months when children are to learn the most themselves. Schools wish that kids utilize every minute of this long break with their family and friends and while working on a huge holiday homework list.
As much as we would love to go on a vacation, my husband’s assignments would mean us chilling out in Delhi. So here is a super enthusiastic mom, and her eleven year old – we are on a mission, explore and experience Delhi, the kiddie way.
The typical “things to do” list therefore includes exploring new areas near our house, playing indoor and outdoor games, reading as many story books as she can, helping me with my work – (well that’s taking it too farJ), going for morning walks – (well I am not a morning person at all, so maybe her grandparents will oblige) and playing in the park in the cooler evenings during the hot summer months.
My wish list, however, for my eleven year old is to take her to visit museums and monuments. I want her to experience history beyond what is taught in textbooks in school in order to spark her interest in an experiential, fun manner. At the same time, I wouldn’t want the exercise to be physical as well – a walk exploring the various historical monuments would suit the bill perfectly.
A sixty day, no mall/movie pact, signed off between my girl and me, we would explore the city, in the real sense. My plans for this two month long vacation include showing her the various monuments and the museums that speak volumes about Delhi’s rich culture and heritage. Delhi, compared to many other cities, is a gold mine in this area with a host of organizations conducting heritage walks – it should just be.
I am however apprehensive about the quality of these walks and the knowledge of their guides – I definitely do not want to hire a typical guide who does a “one size fit all” tour irrespective of the audience and well, it’s safe to assume that kids are definitely not his audience! Hence starts the search for a curated walking experience with a guide who can make me feel that I am with a friend, can give me a personalized experience and most importantly, a guide who my little one can connect with. A quick search leads me to GointheCity (Disclaimer: I took a walk with them)
We all have heard or maybe even been to the famous Red Fort, but with its sprawling gardens, forts and palaces, it provides an enormous traffic-free zone where children can run around unhindered, and the Sound & Light show offers a unique, flamboyant take on Delhi history. So, first up on the agenda is the Red Fort. Easily accessible through the Metro, we hop on, and here we go! We walk with Anupma, a librarian by profession, but her passion for history makes us just love even the minutest of the details she shares.
Further south in New Delhi are the serene Lodhi Gardens, a wonderful park dotted with hide-and-seek friendly copses of trees and crumbling Lodi-era tombs. Packed picnic boxes and a few books and comics, makes this an apt location to share ideas and views with watching the sun go down.
We walk, we play, we talk, we say, lets enjoy this time my child, this time won’t stay!!
Read the concluding part here