Atop the Astronomy Tower

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When I visited Dehli, one of my favorite sights was Jantar Mantar, a series of sundials and astronomical instruments nestled in the middle of the bustling new section of the city.

Silk Blouse: Carine Roitfeld x UNIQLO | Scarf: Michael Stars | Pants: Uniqlo | Tote: AllSaints | Shoes: Nike
Silk Blouse: Carine Roitfeld x UNIQLO | Scarf: Michael Stars | Pants: Uniqlo | Tote: AllSaints | Shoes: Nike

The brainchild of Maharaja Jai Singh II, this assortment of staircases and towers was completed in 1724. Each structure has a distinct purpose: to tell time, to align a star’s position and to determine the shortest and longest days of the year.

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It was surpassingly chilly when we visited — roughly 50-something, which is Hawaii compared to NYC’s recent gale warning — so I selected a silk blouse and wool scarf for the visit. (In India, this is practically a Canada Goose parka.)

You’ll notice how foggy it looks in the photos. It’s not fog — it’s SMOKE — and it’s all because of the pollution. I woke up on this day with the worst sore throat. (The rest of my travel party started croaking like frogs by the time we boarded the plane for Bangalore, too.)

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I tried to figure out how the work them, but these were a little too stone age for me. (Also, we weren’t allowed to climb up the stairs, the sun is blocked by the tall buildings and my iPhone already knows the answers.)

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Afterward, we headed to Lodi Gardens, one of the most wonderful public spaces I’ve ever seen. It’s home to multiple crumbling tombs and mosques. It felt like I was wandering around Hogwarts.

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The gardens were crowded with locals doing yoga, jogging and socializing. (One thing I noticed about India is that the workout clothes are really different — for one thing, no one ever bares their shoulders.)

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The gardens were also home to a fleet of geese, koi and sketchbook artists. It was easily one of the dreamiest places we visited.

Later this week, you’ll hear about a real Hindu pilgrimage, my hints for surviving the 15-hour plane ride to India — PLUS my tested tips for dealing with Dehli belly, dirty bathrooms and more.

Namaste!

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