Posts Tagged With: History

Akbar’s Tomb, Sikandra – Where Akbar rests in Eternal Peace!

Akbar’s Tomb is nestled since time immemorial in Sikandra, Agra. The architectural wonder evokes awe and reverence alike. Akbar’s tomb is an impressive illustration of the art, inspiring in many ways than one – the architecture, design, exquisite inlay work, crafted ceilings and walls decorated with calligraphy, placed beautifully in the huge expanse of 119 acres.

Akbar was buried at Akbar’s Tomb, Sikandra in the mausoleum that was commenced by him while he was alive, and after his death finished by his son and successor, Jahangir in 1613 AD.

The story of history of Agra and it’s connection to Mughal Empire in India is incredibly gripping……Let’s rediscover together.

The ancient city (Agra) is referred to as ‘Agraban’ in Mahabharata, one of the two major Sanskrit epics of ancient India; And the other one identified as modern city, which was founded in 1558 AD.

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The main entrance to Akbar’s Tomb in Sikandra. The Architecture is awe-inspiring, it left me wondering in that era such amazing work of art and architecture was created by humans! It’s impossible to replicate or even make something remotely similar reflecting this epitome of beauty and strength.

The Name – Sikandra!

Sultan Sikandar Lodi rebuilt Agra in 1505 AD and made it the seat of the Government. A few miles from Agra there is a village named after Sultan – Sikandra! Ibrahim Lodi, son of Sikandar Lodi, was defeated and slain by Babar at the ‘Battle of Panipat’, near Delhi, in 1526 AD. And thus began the reign of the Mughal Empire that lasted till 18th century (until the time India was gripped by British Raj).

The Era of Akbar the Great

Akbar, the third Mughal Emperor, was born on 15 October, 1542 to Humayun and Hamida Begum at Umerkot in Sindh (now part of Pakistan). Akbar-e-Azam (Abu’l-Fath Jalal-ud-din Muhammad Akbar) was enthroned as emperor at a tender age of 13 on February 14, 1556. He succeeded Humayun and proved to be one of the greatest rulers of the Mughal dynasty in India. Under Akbar’s reign which lasted from 11 February, 1556 to 27 October, 1605 for 49 years, the Mughal Empire tripled in wealth and influence.

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Akbar, is admired for lot of things, for instance Akbar could neither read nor write but that did not stop him from having a great library of over 24,000 volumes spanning across Hindi, Sanskrit, Persian, Arabic, Greek, Latin and Arabic and every book was read through to him from beginning to end. Akbar had remarkably open-minded attitude and invited several missions of Jesuit priests to his court, to learn more about Christian faith and to debate with representatives of Islam and other faiths. Akbar believed that all humankind constitutes a single brotherhood, created by the same God, and fundamentally equal before Him.

A detailed and minute account of Akbar’s life is captured in ‘Akbar-nama’, written by Akbar’s devoted friend Abul Fazl.

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Akbar’s cenotaph inside the mausoleum

 

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The Circumferential Gallery that surrounds the Tomb, observe the geometric impressions on ceiling and the perfection in architecture is so evident

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Categories: Akbar, Art and Culture, Experience, Heritage, Untraveled Routes | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 41 Comments

Seven Things must do at Renukaji!

Last week I shared an engaging post about the offbeat treasure near Delhi – Renukaji, The Blessed Waters and Heavenly Charm

In continuation with the topic, here’s how you can plan your day at Renukaji, the activities you can do and get the most out of it 🙂

  1. The most popular one – Boating : Boating at Renukaji is loads of fun, the colorful boats and serene waters are so inviting! It costs just INR 250/- and the last entry is at around 5 pm. You can enjoy the scenic beauty, can actually see fishes and black turtles too in the water. The kids love it.
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Colorful Boats at Renuka Lake

2. Renuka Mataji Temple and the Parshuram Tal : The Temple is located at the base of the Renuka Lake. It is believed that Renukaji is the birthplace of ‘Lord Parshuram’, the sixth incarnation of Lord Vishnu. Lord Parshuram was born to Maharishi Jamdagni and his wife Renukaji. Their prayers were answered by Lord Shiva and they both were rewarded for devoted meditation. The locals believe that the lake (and region around) is blessed by Renukaji and her spirit. The place is highly revered by the devotees.

3. Take a Nature Walk around the Renuka Lake : This one is my favorite , start early and embark on the Nature Walk around the Lake, you can combine this with visit to the Zoo. The timings are 9.00 am but you can go before that as well, we chose to start at 7.30 am. The morning walk amidst lush greens was refreshing and infused new energy in us.©

4. Observing the Animals : After all it’s a Zoo, though I’m not a big fan of Zoo, I don’t like animals being restricted in an exhibit but yes since it’s collided with the Nature Park and morning walk we did some animal spotting too. Aayansh found it joyful, for his age he has special fondness for all animals including reptiles!

 

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Categories: Family Travel, Himachal, Offbeat Travel, Traveling with a Baby, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 19 Comments

Citadel of the Sun

“A palace that might have been built by Titans and colored by the morning Sun” – Rudyard Kipling

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Mehrangarh Fort, is one of the largest forts in India and one of the most impressive in Rajasthan. Mehrangarh stands 400 feet above the ground and boasts of rich courtly history and religious pilgrimage. Rao Jodha (r. 1438-89) led the construction of the fort. The fort was named Mehrangarh, meaning ‘fort of the sun’ – a reference to the Rathore clan mythical descent from the sun god Surya. The mighty wall rises in places to a height of 120 feet and is 70 feet thick.

The timings for the visit are 9.00am to 5.00 pm and the ticket prices are as under:

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Categories: Blue City, Jodhpur, Rajasthan | Tags: , , , , | 12 Comments

Mandhavgarh – The City of Joy

Once known as the largest fortified city, situated amidst the Vindhya Ranges at a distance of 90 kms from Indore city, Mandavgarh (Mandu) makes the cut for the perfect weekend destination. This ‘City of Joy’ was originally founded in tenth century and boasts of fusion of Hindu & Afghan style of architecture. The tales of love story of Sultan Baz Bahadur & Rani Roopmati still adorn the city. Mandu has a total of 40 monuments & these are categorized as The Royal Enclave, The Central Group, Rewa Kund Group & other monuments. Unfortunately, today most of the monuments stand ruined. Go ahead and explore more here –  https://untraveledroutes.wordpress.com/offbeat-destinations-2/offbeat-destinations/

Interesting facts about Mandu

  • Mandu houses the first known marble structure of India – Hoshang Shah’s Tomb. Hoshang Shah (originally known as Alp Khan) assumed new name after ascending the throne to Malwa.
  • The architecture of the tomb is so elegant that it is believed that it made Shah Jahan sent his architects to study the tomb before construction of Taj Mahal.

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Categories: History, Monuments, people | Tags: , , , , , , , , | 24 Comments

A rendezvous with History and the Hills at McLeodganj, India

I first heard about ‘Free Tibet’ few years ago, I was still in college that time. Ever since, this movement and everything about Tibet has intrigued me. Let me share a little background here.

In 1950, China invaded Tibet resulting in countless Tibetans deaths, followed by imprisonment and torture of several Tibetans.

On March 31, 1959, Tibet’s political and spiritual leader, the 14th Dalai Lama, reached India after a 15-day journey on foot from the Tibetan capital, Lhasa, over the Himalayas.

HH Dalai Lama was followed by about one hundred thousand Tibetans seeking refuge in India. The Indian government extended full support & immediately set up refugee camps for Tibetans at Misamari in Assam and Buxa Duar in Bengal.

Later, these Tibetan settlements were extended to parts of Himachal Pradesh including Dharamshala, McLeodganj, Dalhousie and Manali. Refuge in India gave Tibetans an opportunity to preserve their religion, culture and identity.

HH Dalai Lama has expressed his profound experience of over 50 years of exile in India in his autobiography – Freedom in Exile. He considers India his spiritual home.

Intrigued by the legendary history of McLeodganj & spellbinding beauty of Himachal Pradesh, we (me and my soulmate) planned a trip to this town.

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Surviving the battle, Tibetan flag flies high against the backdrop of Himalayas at McLeod Ganj, India

Visit to Dalai Lama’s Abode in India

We began our odyssey right from New Delhi in a HPTDC Volvo (ticket cost INR 1100 per person), to Dharamshala; it’s an overnight journey consuming ~12-13 hrs. The bus reached at the destination early morning. Right at the bus stop there are taxis / cabs available that charge INR 200 for providing drop till McLeodganj.

McLeodganj is also popularly known as the Little Lhasa in India, it’s the residence of HH Dalai Lama & majority of Tibetans.

Situated in the lap of Dhauladhar Range (a branch of the southern outer Himalayas), McLeodganj is a village in the suburbs of Dharamshala, in Kangra district of Himachal Pradesh, India. The legend says that village is named after its founder, Lord David McLeod, the English lieutenant governor of Punjab. McLeodganj’s population is a combination of local Indians, Nepalese, exile Tibetans and foreign expats.

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Categories: Himachal, India, Road Trip | Tags: , , , , , , | 10 Comments

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