By Aseem Kulkarni

Chances are, you’re probably not visiting Rome, Madrid, Moscow, Paris, Tokyo, Tehran, Addis Ababa, and Washington DC all this year. No worries. We live in a capital city where cultural centres from all over the world are present. With free film screenings, language courses, theatre programmes, art exhibitions, libraries, and cuisines on offer, you really don’t need to travel too far to experience a new country.

instituto_de_cervantes The Delhi Culture Vulture | 13 International Centres in Delhi

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Instituto de Cervantes 

While the name might make you think of Spain, The Instituto Cervantes offers a wide variety of cultural programmes with the objective of building bridges between all Spanish-speaking countries and India. The Zenobia-Juan Ramón Jiménez Library is integrated within the Library Network of Instituto Cervantes, the largest network of Spanish libraries in the world. Their cultural programmes range from presentations on the arts, music, gastronomy, history, conferences, exhibitions, concerts, film screenings, workshops, and scholarly reasearch. The Instituto de Cervantes also boasts a calm and serene ambience amidst chaos of Connaught Place.

Where: 48, Hanuman Road

Contact: {+91 11} 43 68 19 00

For more information, click here

Hungarian Information and Cultural Centre 

With a long shared history between Hungary and India, it makes sense that they organise over 150 programmes annually. Their reference library has a collection of 3,000 books, 150 CDs and a large number of periodicals that give a good cross-section of the cultural, political and scientific life of Hungary. There are also the informative, monthly lectures of Petofi Book Club, closely associated with the Library activities.

Where: 1/A, Janpath

Contact: {91-11-} 2301 4992

For more information, click here

The American Center

The American Center is the Embassy’s cultural center, offering art exhibits, book launches, discussions, lectures, seminars, and film festivals. It houses the American Library, a specialised reference and research facility, for access to comprehensive and authoritative information on the United States, its people and its policies.

Where: 24 Kasturba Gandhi Marg

Contact: +91-11-2347-2000

For more information, click here

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Alliance Francaise

While the Alliance Francaise in Lodhi hosts many events, {including theatre performances, lectures, and film screenings} we thought we’d let you know that they have a location in Gurgaon too. The Gurgaon centre has a fully equipped multimedia library with a collection of documents across different subjects including lite­rature, language, social sciences, arts, comics, children’s books as well as a wide range of French magazines and journals.

Where: 72 K K Birla Lane, Lodhi Estate and S-24/8, DLF Phase III, {Near Neel Kanth Hospital}, Gurgaon

Contact: 43 500 200, 0124-4061032

For more information click here

Ethiopian Cultural Centre 

Not only does this center include a conference hall, meeting hall, and a permanent display of traditional Ethiopian artifacts and paintings, they’ve also got a restaurant, and a coffeehouse. Sign up for membership and you can enjoy some Ethiopian coffee, Injera bread, and Doro Wat!

Where: 7/50, Niti Marg, Chanakyapuri

Contact: +91 1124673654

For more information click here

Japan Foundation 

While the Japan Foundation has its own film club, language classes, talks, and exhibitions, they’ve got an impressive library too. Notably, membership to their library gets you not only Japanese books, CDs, and DVDs, but also manga comics.

Where: 5A, Ring Road, Lajpat Nagar 4

Contact: +91-11-2644-2967/68/71/72

For more information click here

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Korean Cultural Centre 

The Korean Cultural Centre deserves special mention since some of their coolest offerings {aside from their art exhibitions, theatre performances, library, language courses, and film screenings} are their own Taekwondo Academy, a Korean Cafe, and two serene gardens. Go on, sign up for membership to the centre and go for that black belt.

Where:  A 25, Lajpat Nagar IV

Contact: 011 43345000/5001

For more information, click here

Iran Culture House 

The Iran Culture House, New Delhi includes an extensive Persian language and calligraphy programme for beginners as well as for advanced level students. And for all you poets and Rumi lovers out there, The Culture House of the Islamic Republic of Iran organises a fortnightly poetry recitation and discussion programme in order to enable the students and scholars to speak the Persian language fluently.

Where: No. 18, Tilak Marg

Contact: 0091-11-23383232

For more information, click here

Italian Cultural Centre 

With membership to the Italian Cultural Centre, you receive invitations to all the cultural activities organized by the centre, access to all the Italian reading room’s services {DVD player, internet, newspapers and magazines}, and the freedom to borrow books from the library. Oh and did we mention you get access their restaurant too.

Where: 50-E, Chandragupta Marg, Chanakyapuri

Contact:  91 11 26871901/03

For more information, click here

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Goethe  Institut– Max Mueller Bhavan 

The Goethe-Institut New Delhi is the best-known centre in the city for German courses and internationally recognised examinations. In addition to general language courses covering all levels for adults and teens, the offer includes a wide range of customised corporate courses. The language courses are supplemented by an extensive examination programme. Make sure to also check out their online library catalogue as well as online DVD and video catalogue.

Where: 3, Kasturba Gandhi Marg

Contact: +91 11 2347 1100

For more information, click here

Pro Helvetia 

Powered by the Swiss Arts Council, Pro Helvetia is no stranger to Delhi’s contemporary art scene. The Pro Helvetia promotes the dissemination of culture and art from Switzerland and highlights the diversity of the Swiss cultural scene. For all you artists and culture fanatics, make sure to check out their studio and research residiency programmes.

Where: Swiss Arts Council, D-9 Gulmohar Park, Second Floor

Contact: +91 11 41825636

For more information, click here

Polish Institute 

The Polish Institute develops events and cultural programming in the genres of the visual arts, film, theatre, music, literature and science. Past collaborations have included introducing a selection of Polish books in Hindi with the National Book Trust at the New Delhi World Book Fair 2014.

Where: 50-M Shantipath, Chanakyapuri

Contact: 011 41496965

For more information, click here 

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Russian Centre of Science and Culture 

The Russia Centre of Science and Culture is one of the few international centres that offers a great variety of science programmes. More recently, they partnered with IIT for an event to celebrate the birthday of Dimitri Mendeleev, the father of chemistry.

Where: 24, Firoz Shah Near Mandi House

Contact: 011 2332 9102

For more information, click here


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