It’s actually a Bahá'í temple but most people call it the Lotus Temple because it looks like a marble-clad lotus flower (it’s also reminiscent of the Sydney Opera House). It’s a little more than 40 meters tall and can fit about 2,500 people. It is built in such a way that it looks like it is “floating” on 9 ponds and is surrounded by a 26-acre park-like setting. It was completed in 1986 and it’s the Mother Temple of the Bahá'í Faith on the Indian subcontinent. It’s somewhat of an architectural marvel and has won multiple architectural awards. People from all over the world crowd to see it every day. We had heard about it and decided to check it out.
It is indeed gorgeous and worth the visit but it is quite crowded. There were thousands of people there on the day we went, which was a hot one. The line goes fast though because each group of about 20 spends only about 5-10 minutes inside before being nicely guided to exit. The interior is simple without ornate decorations but very serene and conducive to meditation. Anyone regardless of their faith is welcome to visit the temple. Holy scriptures of the Bahá'í Faith as well as other religions can be read or chanted in any language and anyone can meditate/worship there. However, there can be no sermons or ritualistic ceremonies and no musical instruments can be played inside. You are not supposed to take pictures inside either. You also have to take your shoes off and leave them at a designated area outside the temple.