Right across the garden of tombs Lies a heritage park with colorful blooms. The serene tombs sit amid the carpet of flowers While the pretty birds flutter around the pools with showers. Discover how nature meets history in this heritage park in Delhi that is located in the buffer zone of Humayun’s tomb. Explore Sunder Nursery Delhi with its exotic flora and fauna amid which sits the forgotten tombs like the Batashewala complex.
Right across the tomb of Humayun, lies 90 acres of the lush green park called Sunder Nursery. What makes it unique is that it is no ordinary green shelter but a gorgeous heritage park in Delhi. Amid its floral frenzy are around 15 historical monuments – including the Batashewala complex which is considered to be an extension to the Humayun’s dormitory of tombs. Designated as ASI (Archaeological Society of India) monuments, these are now a highly recommended extension to your tour of the UNESCO Heritage Site of Humayun’s tomb garden. Trust me, you will find this visit to Sunder Nursery highly invigorating and very different.
It had been ages since I last visited Humayun’s tomb in Delhi and post the pandemic era, things definitely had changed around here. For one, when my cab dropped me in front of the gate, I found myself confused with the entrance. There was one grand gate that said Sunder Nursery – which I did not recall from my earlier visit. Turns out that this opened a little later and was exactly the place that I was hunting after I had heard of the Batashewala complex in the buffer zone of Humayun’s tomb. Naturally, I ensured that I did a quick visit to Sunder Nursery to finally find those lost tombs.
In this blog article, I will give you compelling reasons to visit Sunder Nursery after you have done your tour of the Humayun tomb. Not only will you get a list of things to see in Sunder Nursery Delhi Heritage park but useful tips on how to get there, the timings and fees. So get ready to see how history meets nature in this heritage park in Delhi.
- 1 History of Sunder Nursery Delhi
- 2 The Sunder Nursery Layout & Map
- 3 Things to do at Sunder Nursery Delhi Heritage Park
- 3.1 Go on a heritage tour
- 3.2 Embark on a nature walk in one of the biggest heritage parks in Delhi
- 3.3 Try some birding at Sunder Nursery Park
- 3.4 Learn about Bees and bee-keeping
- 3.5 Feast away at the Sunder Nursery café
- 3.6 Let your kids run around and have some fun
- 4 Common FAQs about Sunder Nursery Delhi
- 4.1 What is the best way of getting to Sunder Nursery in Delhi?
- 4.2 Which is the nearest metro station to Sunder Nursery heritage park in Delhi?
- 4.3 What is special about Sunder Nursery?
- 4.4 What are the Sunder Nursery timings?
- 4.5 What is the best time to visit Sunder Nursery?
- 4.6 What are the Sunder Nursery ticket prices?
- 4.7 Is eating allowed in Sunder Nursery?
- 4.8 Is alcohol permitted in Sunder Nursery park?
- 5 Booking Resources
History of Sunder Nursery Delhi
Sunder Nursery originally is a 16th-century Mughal park called Azim Bagh or Bagh e Azeem. The place is said to have been full of greens that were interspersed with lotus ponds, pools and a lake. However, quite like Humayun’s tomb, it was neglected after the Mughals shifted their capital to Agra.
The British revived it as a nursery for experimental plants in the 1900s. They renamed it Sunder Nursery – after the Sunder Burj tomb and Sunder Mahal that was found on its premises. However, it was neglected soon after – with the tombs in a dilapidated state and the gardens soon became non-existent.
Massive restoration and renovation attempts began in 2007 – all thanks to the Aga Khan Trust. It was only in 2018 that this was opened to public as one of the biggest heritage parks in Delhi. (No wonder that I had missed it during my 2017 visit, but am glad to have caught up now.) In fact, it is the first arboretum in Delhi with around 300 tree species.
Sunder Nursery Delhi was designated as one of the 100 World’s greatest places by TIME Magazine in 2018. Today, it is not only a must-visit for heritage lovers but a haven for nature and birding enthusiasts. As a photographer, you will totally love the angles available for your portfolio. And given that, don’t be surprised to find tons of social media enthusiasts posing away in various corners.
The Sunder Nursery Layout & Map
Right across the epic Humayun’s tomb is the gate to 90 acres of green cover. And with such a large area, you definitely need a map to explore. You will find a large one right by the ticket window. I suggest you take a picture of this before you enter this Delhi heritage park. There are helpful signages within the park that will help you navigate around.
Alternatively, you are welcome to buy a handout for a price of INR 20 from the ticket window.
Things to do at Sunder Nursery Delhi Heritage Park
The various themes are clearly marked on the Sunder nursery map. You will find specific green shelters like Bonsai Park and Lotus Lakes that you might want to visit. For heritage buffs like me, the ASI monuments are clearly marked and that is what I made a beeline for. In addition to that, there are many many more things to do at the Sunder Nursery Delhi
Go on a heritage tour
There are six ASI monuments that have been painstakingly restored in Sunder Nursery. I managed to capture three of them but had to let go of the other three (Boohoo!). – all thanks to my travel pal had an overdose of tombs (we visited this after the Humayun’s tomb garden). Nonetheless, here are all of them for you to check out.
This is an octagonal structure that apparently has an underground crypt. Built-in the 16th century, this is considered to be a Mughal structure. Around the main chamber are arched passages – quite like how it is inside Humayun’s tomb. As to whom this belongs, the signs of the same have long vanished.
Yet another tomb of an unidentified person, this one was the first monument that I saw when I entered Sunder Nursery. What I loved about it is that when you enter, you will see this tomb against a bed of flowers. And when you go around to the other side, you will see a lovely channel of water with fountains against it.
The tomb itself has been restored and has Quranic verses along its walls. Inside the tomb is a lovely ceiling in the shape of a star.
This one is believed to have been the home of a caretaker. Like the Sunderwala Burj, this also, has verses from Quran etched on its walls. Apparently, this was also, badly damaged but now it stands beautifully in a bed of roses.
Mirza Muzzafar Hussain Tomb – Bada Batashewala tomb
I really really wanted to capture this one but turns out it was quite a walk. As I said, my travel pal wanted to enjoy the rest of the serene park and thus, had to let go of this one. I believed the Bada Bateshewala tomb is that of the son-in-law of Akbar. The structure unlike Humayun’s tomb has a flat roof.
Chota Batashewala tomb
A partially collapsed Mughal tomb that is yet to be identified. This one is right next to the Bara Batashwala Mahal.
Another structure in the buffer zone of the garden of tombs, this one stands on a raised platform. A lot of damage has been repaired and as to the identity of the tomb owner – still remains obscure.
Other heritage structures in Sunder Nursery
There are several wall structures and pavilions spread across the Sunder Nursery. All you have to do is follow the heritage trail marked on the map of Sunder Nursery and you will spot them. Something that I plan to do the next time I get a chance to visit this Delhi heritage park.
Embark on a nature walk in one of the biggest heritage parks in Delhi
If you see the map of Sunder Nursery closely, there is a trail for nature lovers. You can use the map and do it yourself. There are helpful sign boards all over the place that will help you identify the various trees and plants. Alternatively, I suggest you book one of their nature walks through their official website.
With over 300 tree species that include a rare pink cedar, I know that I would have liked an expert guide around this first arboretum in Delhi. There are plenty of theme gardens like the Bonsai park and the Valley of Flowers that you will come across on this walk. Don’t miss the Lotus Pond which I believe was a part of the original Azim Bagh and has been revived again!
Try some birding at Sunder Nursery Park
With over 4000 trees and pretty water bodies, you can be sure that you will find some rare winged beauties at Sunder Heritage Park in Delhi. As per the last check, there are at least 78 bird species found here. From Asian rollers to bee-eaters and barbets, you will have a blast capturing them.
In addition to the birds, you will see a variety of butterflies. As per the brochure, there are at least 40 different species of butterflies here. And then there are the colorful dragonflies.
The best time for this is early morning when the garden is relatively quiet. Make sure you are carrying your binoculars and telephoto lenses when you embark on this journey.
Learn about Bees and bee-keeping
Bees all over the world are under a lot of threat and the folks at Sunder Nursery Delhi have a program to spread awareness of how important they are to our ecosystem. You can head over to the bees section and discover the bee boxes that have been carefully conserved to propagate these insects. The workshop here tells you about how various types of honey are made and what other bee products can be created. It is not only a learning experience but a fun one too.
Feast away at the Sunder Nursery café
Nothing like packing a good old-fashioned picnic hamper and having fun with your friends at the Sunder Nursery. However, if you do not want to take that pain, head to the café by the lake. The café has a very interesting health menu that you can opt for. Dine in or just take away to sit in your preferred location in the park.
You will also, find numerous food trucks and carts around the park. Just remember though that this park strictly follows waste segregation and you must ensure you dispose of your waste in the right manner.
Attend some of the Sunder Nursery events
Every Sunday, there is a farmer’s market at the Sunder Nursery. What makes it different is that it encourages sustainable and organic products. You will find numerous things to buy – from food to artifacts and personal care products. It is one of their most regular events that you can join.
Other than that, their large amphitheater often hosts various cultural events. You can get to know which ones are through their Facebook page.
Let your kids run around and have some fun
Sunder Nursery has a dedicated children’s park area. Let your little ones have a fun day here. You can even book certain venues in the nursery for an outdoor party. I sure would have loved to have an outdoor birthday bash for my daughter….what about you?
Well, isn’t this a place for everyone? And isn’t it worth extending your Humayun’s tomb tour to this heritage park in Delhi? I am sure your answer is yes.
Common FAQs about Sunder Nursery Delhi
What is the best way of getting to Sunder Nursery in Delhi?
Sunder Nursery is right across the main gate of Humayun’s tomb in Delhi. You can cover both destinations when you are in Delhi. You can get to them by using any of the following means –
By Metro: The nearest metro station to Humayun’s Tomb is the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium Metro Station which is on the purple line. Alternatively, if you are using the pink line, you can get off at the Indraprastha Metro station. At both stations, you can take an auto-rickshaw or a taxi to reach the monument. There are several e-rickshaws that stand around the stations, offering you shared rides (almost like a shuttle service) to Humayun’s tomb. They usually charge around INR 20 – 30 per person, one way.
By Bus: You can take a bus to the Nizamuddin bus stop, which is just a few hundred meters and easily walkable to the two places.
By Taxi or Auto-rickshaw: You can hire a taxi or an auto-rickshaw from any part of Delhi to reach the monument. There are Uber and Ola apps that can be used to book these rides.
By Car: If you have your own car or are renting one, you can reach Humayun’s Tomb by following the directions on Google Maps or any other navigation app. There is plenty of paid parking available at the park.
Which is the nearest metro station to Sunder Nursery heritage park in Delhi?
If you are traveling by the pink line, get off at the Indraprastha Metro station (5 km). On the purple line, you can opt for Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium Metro Station that is around 2.3 km. You can get into one of many e-autos available outside these station. These e-autos offer shuttle services to Humayun’s tomb for around INR 20 -30 per person.
What is special about Sunder Nursery?
Sunder Nursery is one of the largest heritage parks in Delhi and is also, the first arboretum of the city. It has been named 100 World’s greatest places by TIME Magazine in 2018. The park is spread over 90 acres and is a beautiful mix of heritage monuments and nature. It is home to some rare species of plants like the Pink Cedar and has a huge population of birds, butterflies and bees. There are several interesting activities that you can do when you visit Sunder Nursery.
What are the Sunder Nursery timings?
Sunder Nursery is open from 7am to 10 pm every day. The Sunday farmers market is usually from 9:30 am to 1 pm.
What is the best time to visit Sunder Nursery?
Season-wise, you should try and visit Delhi between September to November and from January to March – when the temperature is cooler. Summers have temperatures soaring to over 45 degrees while the winters are extreme with single digits.
If you are a birder, you will want to get to Sunder Nursery in the quiet hours of the morning. For the rest of the activities, any time is good. I suggest you visit this nursery after you have done a tour of Humayun’s tomb in the morning. Afternoons here too, might be a good idea as the place has plenty of shade and shelter.
What are the Sunder Nursery ticket prices?
The entrance tickets to Sunder Nursery cost INR 35 for Indians and INR 100 for foreigners. You can even get an annual pass for this place for INR 3000. Photography in general will not cost you anything but if you are looking at Pre-Wedding photography, you will have to shell out INR 5000.
Is eating allowed in Sunder Nursery?
Yes, you can pack your own hampers or eat at the food stalls or cafe inside Sunder Nursery. Just remember to segregate your waste and dispose it properly within the bins in the garden.
Is alcohol permitted in Sunder Nursery park?
Nope, no alcohol or smoking is permitted here.
Before you go, pin this
- Booking.com has several good Delhi hotels listed on their site. You could use this link to browse and book the same.
- Viator.com offers several tours in and around Delhi. You will even find a guided tour of Humayun’s tomb along with other Delhi attractions on the site. Use the link to discover more like the Hop On Hop Off Buses, Tuk tuk tours etc.
- GetYourGuide has various local tours and car bookings available that you can use to explore Delhi. In fact, you can book a a tour of Humayun’s tomb along with the other attractions of Delhi using the link given.
- For any of your travel needs or general shopping, consider using Amazon through this link.
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Popularly referred to as a Restless Ball of Energy. My Mom refuses to entertain my complaints about my equally restless daughter & assures my husband that I was born with a travel bug.
I am a Post-Graduate in Marketing by qualification and a travel blogger by passion. Besides travel, I enjoy photography and if you don’t find me at my desk, I would be out playing badminton or swimming or just running. I believe in planning for every long weekend through the year. And when I cannot travel physically, I travel virtually through this travel blog. My travel stories have also, got published on various websites and magazines including BBC Travel, Lonely Planet India and Jetwings. I have recently published my first book – When Places Come Alive – a collection of stories that are based on legends, landscapes, art and culture of a place which is available in both ebook and paperback format.