Mughal Gardens or now Amrit Udyan is in Rashtrapati Bhavan, Delhi.
Covering a whopping 15 acres, this garden is a true beauty and inspiration. With roots tracing back to the Mughal Gardens of Jammu and Kashmir and the gardens surrounding the Taj Mahal, this garden is a fusion of two different horticultural traditions – the Mughal style and the English flower garden.
Designs for the garden were finalized in 1917 by Sir Edwin Lutyens and William Mustoe, the Director of Horticulture. And let me tell you, their collaboration was a match made in heaven. The garden is a harmonious blend of Mughal canals, terraces, and flowering shrubs with European flowerbeds, lawns, and private hedges. Sir Lutyens’ wife even called it a “paradise” in Christopher Hussey’s The Life of Sir Edwin Lutyens.
The Mughal Gardens were previously only open to the public during the annual Udyanotsav festival, but now the garden, which is the third circuit of the Rashtrapati Bhavan tour, will be open from August to March.
With 159 celebrated varieties, including roses named after Mother Teresa, John F. Kennedy, and even characters from the Mahabharata, the Mughal Gardens are a rose lover’s dream come true.
But wait, there’s more! The garden also boasts over 70 seasonal flowers, 60 bougainvillea varieties, and 50 types of trees, shrubs, and vines. The lush green doob grass covering the garden was originally brought from Calcutta (now Kolkata) during the planting of the garden.
The President’s Estate is not just a place for leisure and recreation, it’s also a space that’s been put to efficient use by its occupants. From President Rajagopalachari, who used a portion of the grounds to cultivate wheat during a food shortage, to President Pratibha Patil’s Bonsai Garden and nature trails, each resident has made their own contribution to the Estate. The Mughal Gardens themselves are a testament to democracy, as they’re now open to the public.
So, let’s take a stroll through the three terraces of the Mughal Gardens – the Rectangular Garden, the Long Garden, and the Circular Garden. It’s said that the large geometrical designs of the garden are best appreciated from the first story of the building. And trust me, this garden is worth the climb. Get ready to be transported to a paradise of flowers, scents, and colors.