India has a history like no other – ruled by different dynasties for so long that now it is a potpourri of a myriad of cultures and traditions. Fortunately, the cultural heritage of India is preserved like as if time has stood still. So, a trip to revisit the cultural past of India should totally be on your bucket list. Below, we mention the top 10 heritage walks in India.
Taj Mahal, Agra
One of the seven wonders of the world; a monument built by an emperor for his romantic love; extensive use of white marble; a pinnacle of Mughal architecture – Taj Mahal, Agra is an epitome of personified beauty. This universally admired Muslim art piece never runs out of tourists during any part of the year. The incredibly refined workmanship has effectively made Taj the face of India on the global map.
For those who love to imagine the glorious past seeing the present day dilapidation, Hampi is the place to be at. Once a crucial administrative and trade centre of Vijayanagar Empire, it has now just reduced to ruins. Nonetheless, its glorious past is reflected through the relics. Listed in the UNESCO World Heritage Site, Hampi sure makes for some fascinating place for the cultural tour. Places to visit in Hampi, Karnataka.
Ajanta & Ellora Caves, Aurangabad, Maharashtra
These caves are believed to be older than 2000 years. However, these are significant for reasons more than just historical ones. These caves are believed to be a proof of the spread of Buddhism in India. The walls of the Ellora caves are carved with beautiful sculptures by the monks, that in a way tell the story of Buddhism.
Khajuraho Temples, Madhya Pradesh
These temples have sculptures that outrageously deviate from the otherwise conservative architecture found all around in the country. The erotics sculptures celebrate facets of India’s pasts. Some of them are a great work of art and make for a great experience. Khajuraho Temples are also listed in the UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Sanchi Stupa, Sanchi, Madhya Pradesh
Sanchi Stupa stands out among its contemporaries for featuring the Buddhist architecture and art. It is famous for monolithic Ashokan pillar, monasteries, stupas and sculptures. Fascinated by its location in the hills, Emperor Asoka had made a religious centre there having Buddha’s mortal remains.
Gateway of India, Mumbai
Just after the Taj Mahal of India, let’s know a bit about the Taj Mahal of Mumbai – as it is popularly called. Originally built to commemorate the royal visits, Gateway of India, Mumbai has slowly become a historic symbol for both the city and the country. Its mix of Islamic and Gujarat architecture entices tourists from all across the country. The colonial triumph depicted through its basalt arch has kept its position on the list of top heritage walks in India.
Golden Temple, Amritsar, Punjab
This gold gilded Sikh gurdwara is the most prominent and famous Sikh pilgrimage. The Indo-Islamic architecture style of the shrine makes it a prominent cultural wealth of the country. The beautiful Golden temple is adorned with flower motifs. Nearby the temple, there is a pond which is believed to have healing powers.
Hawa Mahal, Jaipur
This palace is from the time when purdah system was prevalent in the country. Maharaja Sawai Pratap Singh got this palace built so that women could enjoy a view of the outside without being seen. Standing at a towering height of 15 m, it gives a panoramic view around the city. This 5-storey Pink City landmark has one of the most remarkable ventilation systems, the reason for which it is called Palace of Winds or Hawa Mahal.
Victoria Memorial, Kolkata
Without a doubt, the Victoria Memorial is the most famous building in Kolkata. Initially built to commemorate Queen Victoria, it has now evolved into full-fledged museum housing collections from various famous artists such as William Daniell, Thomas Daniell and more.
This historic tower was built to mark the beginning of Mughal rule in the country. Built by Qutub-ud-Din Aibak, this 73 m long architectural wonder is surrounded by pillars and comprises of outer and inner courtyards. This five-storeyed minaret has 379 steps in the form of a spiral staircase. Its design is believed to be based on the Minaret of Jam, located in western Afghanistan.