- Beautiful Bhopal sprawls picturesquely around two artificial lakes on gently rolling hills.
- City Bhojapal was named after its founder Raja Bhoja, the famous 10th century ruler of Parmar dynasty, who is believed to have built a dam (pal) across the Narmada River.
- Glorious city was destroyed in 15th century by Sultan Hoshang Shah of Malwa.
- Present city was founded by Dost Mohammad Khan, one of Aurangzeb’s Afghan governors who left the Mughal Empire after Aurangzeb’s death and established his own dynasty – the Nawabs of Bhopal.
- Today, the city presents a multi-faceted profile, the old city with its teeming market places, fine the old mosques and palaces which bear the aristocratic imprint of its former rulers.
- New beautifully planned city with wide avenues, parks and gardens, government buildings and residential areas which are functional, practical and aesthetic.
- Bhopal also a perfect base to visit Sanchi, Bhimbetka and Bhojpur.
MODE OF COMMUNICATION:
- Airport: Raja Bhoj Airport, Bhopal (BHO), 11 kms away from Bhopal city centre.
- Rail: Bhopal Railway Station, Bhopal, 1 km away from Bhopal city centre.
- Road: Well connected by road.
SIGHTSEEING AT A GLANCE
FORT & MONUMENTS
Shaukat Mahal and Sadar Manzil Bharat Bhawan Gandhi Bhawan Islamnagar
Taj-ul Masjid Jama Masjid Moti Masjid or Pearl Mosque Bhojpur
PARK & GARDENS
MUSEUM & AUDITORIUM
Tribal Habitat Govt. Archaeological Museum Govt. Archaeological Museum Bhimbetka
Upper & Lower Lakes
ATTRACTIONS OF BHOPAL
- Taj-ul Masjid:
- Majestic mosque is perhaps the largest in the country.
- Construction was started by Shah Jahan Begum, but the work not completed and was resumed in 1971.
- Main hall with inter arched roof, broad façade, spacious courtyard and smooth marble floors are noteworthy.
- Jama Masjid:
- Beautiful mosque has tall dark minarets crowned by golden spires.
- Built in 1837 by Kudsia Begum, the devout wife of the ruler of Bhopal.
- Moti Masjid or Pearl Mosque:
- Majestic mosque was built by Sikandar Begum in 1860.
- It is architecturally inspired by the famous Jama Masjid of Delhi.
- Shaukat Mahal and Sadar Manzil:
- Magnificent edifice is set at the entrance to the Chowk area in the heart of the walled city.
- Bharat Bhawan:
- Prestigious multidimensional centre for performing and visual arts was established on 13th Feb 1982.
- Building set on the banks of a lake was designed by the famous architect Charles Correa and is an excellent illustration of modern architecture.
- Interesting sites here are – Rupankar, the only museum in the country where contemporary urban, folk and art of aboriginals are kept under one roof.
- Rangmandal, where country’s best stage talent and play writers take pride in performing, Vagartha, the centre of Indian poetry, Anhad, the centre for Indian classical and folk music.
- Set in the heart of the old city is lined with old mosques and haveli’s.
- It is an excellent place purchasing Bhopali crafts like silver jewellery, velvet purses, embroideries and bead work etc.
- Tribal Habitat:
- An open air exhibition on the scenic Shamla Halls.
- Centre provides an insight into the tribal life in various states of India.
- Govt. Archaeological Museum:
- Splendid sculptures, paintings of various schools and paintings from Bagh caves are exhibited here.
- Gandhi Bhawan:
- Houses an exhibition of photographs of Mahatama Gandhi and a Gandhi Museum.
- Van Vihar:
- Safari Park is located near upper Lake amidst scenic surroundings.
- It has rich variety of animals and birds.
- Upper & Lower Lakes:
- These two charming lakes are divided by an over bridge and are the most notable features of Bhopal.
- Tourists enjoy boating at the Lower Lake.
ATTRACTIONS AROUND BHOPAL
- 40 kms away from Bhopal city.
- A natural amphitheatre is surrounded by the northern fringe of the Vindhyas.
- Discovery of over 700 rock shelters (the largest group in the world) has brought Bhimbetka on the tourist map of the State.
- Rock shelters belonging to the neo-lithic age are an archaeologist’s delight and have paintings depicting the life of the prehistoric cave-dwellers.
- It has been recently recognised as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO.
- 28 kms away from Bhopal city.
- It was founded and named after legendary Parmar king Raja Bhoj (1010-53).
- Town also known as the ‘Somnath of North India’ is famous for its 11th century Shiva temple and lake built by Raja Bhoj.
- Temple enshrines an enormous ‘Shivalingam’, carved out of a single rock.
- It walls are engraved with numerous Shiva Images.
- Lies on the Bhopal – Berasia road, 11 kms away from Bhopal city centre.
- Known for the palace built by Dost Mohammed Khan.
- Hammam of Chaman Mahal and Rani Mahal are worth visiting.