Places to See in Bhopal
The city of Bhopal is often called the city of mosques due to the presence of a number of historical mosques and monuments within its walls. One such mosque, relatively smaller in size but not less important is the Moti Masjid. It was built by Sikander Begum in the year 1860; the beautiful Moti Masjid is an important historical landmark of the Muslims in Bhopal. The architectural design of the Moti Masjid has a striking resemblance to the famous Jama Masjid in Delhi.
History of Moti Masjid
Behind the history of Moti Masjid lies the history of one of the most significant characters in the history of Muslim women in India, Sikander Begum. Being a relatively liberated and progressive woman compared to the time in which she lived, Sikander Begum had built roads, bridges and a number of graceful and elegant monuments such as the Moti Masjid in Bhopal .The Moti Masjid was built in 1860 and since then it is one of the most significant landmarks in Madhya Pradesh.
The Moti Masjid, Bhopal is a relatively smaller sized monument that was built in the year 1860 by Sikander Jahan. The mosque has two dark red towers with golden spikes. The architecture of the Moti masjid resembles the Jama Masjid in Delhi. Because of the sparkling white façade, the Moti masjid is also called the Pearl Mosque.
How to reach Moti Masjid
Bhopal can be easily reached by regular flights and trains from different important cities such as Delhi, Gwalior, Mumbai and Indore. There are also daily buses to Bhopal that take the tourists to this walled city. Moti Masjid inside the city premises of Bhopal can be easily reached by any transport, local or private.
One of the biggest and most graceful of all the mosques in India is the Taj-ul-masjid which means ' The Crown of mosques’. Against the backdrop of the historical city of Bhopal, the Taj-ul-masjid displays a spectacular sight.
History of Taj-ul-masjid
The construction of the Taj-ul-masjid, Bhopal witnessed alternative spans of active and inactive time periods, during the rule of the succeeding Begums. However the construction of the mosque could never be completed due to the shortage of funds. It was as late as 1971 that work was resumed and the Taj-ul-masjid finally stood in all its grandeur.
LAKSHMI NARAYAN TEMPLE
It is built on top of the Hill area in Bhopal; the Lakshmi Narayan Temple generated a breathtaking sight of the old historic city of Bhopal. It is also known as the Birla Mandir, after the name of the leading industrialists who built it, the Lakshmi Narayan temple is dedicated to the Goddess of wealth, Lakshmi.
The Lakshmi Narayan Temple has the idols of Goddess Lakshmi and Narayan along with a magnificent idol of Shiva with his wife Parvati. There is a Birla Museum attached to the Lakshmi Narayan temple which displays a splendid collection of sculptures from the 12th century era of Madhya Pradesh. The temple is of a sandy yellowish color that reflects the old feel inside. On one side of the Lakshmi Narayan temple is a huge steeple. The entrance to the Lakshmi Narayan Temple or the Birla Temple is through a beautiful archway and is surrounded by lush verdant lawns.
How to reach Lakshmi Narayan Temple
Bhopal can easily be reached by air, rail or road ways. The temple is built on the hilly area of Bhopal and can be easily reached by all modes of transport inside the city.
UPPER AND LOWER LAKES
Bhopal, the capital of Madhya Pradesh, is a mesmerizing fusion of picturesque beauty, old historic charm and contemporary urban planning. The earlier city Bhojapal was founded by Raja Bhoja in the 11th century, but the modern city was established by an Afghan warrior, Dost Mohammed. His descendants further built Bhopal into the gorgeous city as we can see it today. Bhopal is rightly famous for its lakes as it has two most stunning lakes – Upper Lake and Lower Lake.
Raja Bhoja created the Upper Lake in Bhopal in the 11th century while the construction of an earthen dam across the Kolans River. One can clearly get the picture of the immaculate planning strategy of the erstwhile rulers that gets manifested through this man –made lake. It is the nucleus of the city and is prominent for its unsurpassed charm and grandeur that still beguiles its visitors. The lake has crystal clear waters and boasts of a tranquil ambience.
The lake is an ideal resort for the various thrilling trips by sail, paddle and motorboats. The cool breeze keeps blowing all day long and soothes the fatigued senses of the tourists who come to relax here after a frenzied day of sightseeing. It is also a favored spot for picnics as the tourists and locals enjoy the panoramic views while sipping coffee and munching snacks.
The Lower Lake on the other hand is positioned in the heart of the city so you can take a close look at the city. It is great fun to bask in the beauty of the pristine lake and the panoramic vistas of the city simultaneously. Along with enjoying a languorous stroll around this lake, you can make good use of the boating and sailing facilities that are provided here.
RASHTRIYA MANAV SANGHRALAYA
The Rashtriya Manav Sanghralaya on the Shamla Hills in Bhopal is the National Museum of Mankind. It has been renamed as the Indira Gandhi Rashtriya Manav Sanghralaya and is a significant tourist place in Bhopal. This museum is engaged in recollecting the past rather than collection.
History of Rashtriya Manav Sanghralaya
The Rashtriya Manav Sanghralaya is built on a pre historic ground in Madhya Pradesh, which is strewn with a number of painted shelters carve din the rocks. This anthropological institution is curetted and built by the tribal folk in a way to display the way of living of the ancient tribes. Villages have been reconstructed, entire fishing villages replicated towards the lake etc.
The Rashtriya Manav Sanghralaya is spread across 200 acres of heaving lands located in one of the important pre historic sites in India. The uniqueness of the Rashtriya Manav Sanghralaya is heightened by the fact that it is one of the only museums worldwide to have numerous pre historic painted rock shelters. This is a post colonial museum of communities, a repertoire of tribal and folk arts. There is a well stocked library, audio-visual archives, computerize documentations and a wide collection of ethnographic specimens, which are among the best collections worldwide.
How to reach Rashtriya Manav Sanghralaya
The Rashtriya Manav Sanghralaya is located in the Shamla Hills, on the Upper lake front. It can be reached on the way to Van Vihar, where a road shoots off to the Rashtriya Manav Sanghralaya.
"The cultural centre that houses and preserves traditional folk art forms in Madhya Pradesh."
History of Taj-ul-masjid
"This art centre is located on a beautiful site - a gently sloping plateau overlooking the Upper Lake and the historic city of Bhopal across the water"Charles Correa: He is the person who is responsible for creating such a beautiful and unique looking cultural complex in Bhopal which is named as The Bharat Bhavan. The total beauty of the cultural complex lies in a number of low lying beautifully structured buildings, around the banks of the lake. The Bharat Bhavan remains open every day from 10.30 am to 5.00 pm except Sundays and government holidays.
History of Bharat Bhavan
The Bharat Bhavan was built to keep the traditions of verbal, visual and performing arts alive in Bhopal. It was built in the year 1982, in the month of February. It is an independent trust that is created by the Legislature of the State of Madhya Pradesh.
Description of Bharat Bhavan
The Bharat Bhavan, Bhopal has four distinct halls dedicated to different arts. There is Rang Mandal, dedicated for theatre and sustained theatre movements. The indoor theatre is called Antrang while the outdoor theatre is known as the Bahirang. The hall for classical music is called the Vagarth. The Bharat Bhavan in Bhopal also has a library for poetry and for the lovers of verses called the Vagarth which has a collection of more than 7000 books of poetry in different Indian languages. There is also an open air auditorium within the Bharat Bhavan complex. The museum of art at Bharat Bhavan is known as Roopankar. The Roopankar has two sections, one displaying contemporary Indian art and sculpture while the other section has an amazing collection of tribal and art folk. Anhad is the Library for Classical and Folk Music while the Ashram is the Residence for the guest artists.
How to reach Bharat Bhavan Bhopal
The Bhavan is located in the Shamla Hills and is easily accessible by all local transports in Bhopal.
Shaukat Mahal is situated in the heart of the city and is built in a European style there by setting it apart from the other Islamic structures. Sadar Mahal, near the Shaukat Mahal was used as the hall of public audience by the nawabs of Bhopal.The Shaukat Mahal and Sadar Mahal displays a combination of Asian and Western styles of architecture which makes this building stand out in the crowd of the traditional Islamic architecture of Bhopal.
History of Shaukat Mahal and Sadar Mahal
The history of Shaukat Mahal and Sadar Mahal states that it was designed by a corrupt Frenchman who is supposed to be from the Bourbon Dynasty of France. The Shaukat Mahal and Sadar Mahal reflect a unique blend of oriental and occidental architectural.
Description of Shaukat Mahal and Sadar Mahal
Gothic and post renaissance styles have been effectively used in the construction of the Shaukat Mahal, which eventually gives it an enchanting effect. A number of intricately carved arches on the roof of the Shaukat Mahal along with the alabaster white structure of the building give it a unique look. The outside of the palace is designed with beautiful and exotic floral patterns giving the Shaukat Mahal an eco friendly appearance. The Sadar Mahal that was the Hall of Public Audience during the rule of the princes borders the Shaukat Mahal. This building is a brick red construction of flamboyant appearance. The Shaukat Mahal and Sadar Mahal are surrounded by beautiful lawns that give it a picture postcard effect. The Shaukat Mahal and Sadar Mahal are located at the entrance of the chowk area, in the center of the city. It is easily reached by all modes of transport inside the city.
VAN VIHAR SAFARI PARK
Van Vihar Safari Park, Bhopal languidly sprawls across an area of 445 hectares. The park is located on a hill close to the Upper Lake. Van Vihar Safari Park in Bhopal houses a diverse variety of animals of both herbivorous and carnivorous species and a host of colorful birds. Bhopal’s Van Vihar Safari Park was ascribed the status of a natural park in 1983. The park provides the perfect ambience where the animals can move about freely. They are not incarcerated and are allowed free movement. ht also stumble upon Blue Kingfisher, Phakta, Bhura Teetar, Kala Teetar and migratory birds like the Tree Pie and Drongo.
If you are a wildlife conservationist or a lover of wild life, you would surely be full of praise for the initiative taken by Van Vihar Safari Park; Bhopal is ensuring a safe asylum for a variety of animals. Some of the animals that you get to come across at this place comprise of white tiger, leopard, Hyena, Cheetah, Sambar, Neelgai, Panthers, Jungle cats and Blackbuck.
Van Vihar Safari Park, Bhopal also boasts for a rich flora. Among the popular trees that grow here includes teak, Kardhai, salai, palas, tendu and gurajan. Among the creepers, the commonly spotted ones include the gomachi, harjudi, bangoon creeper and malkangni.
Islam Nagar was the palace of Bhopal's Afghan rulers and was built by Dost Mohammed Khan. Formal gardens surround the palace and pavilion. The latter, a synthesis of Hindu and Islamic decorative arVan Vihar Safari Park, Bhopal also boasts for a rich flora. Among the popular trees that grow here includes teak, Kardhai, salai, palas, tendu and gurajan. Among the creepers, the commonly spotted ones include the gomachi, harjudi, bangoon creeper and malkangni.