Rumi Darwaza was the first monument that I passed through. Standing like an imposing gateway it stunned me with its impressive Awadhi architecture. This spectacular work is undoubtedly an architectural splendour. My guide was quick to point out that you can see only one door from one side, but once you pass over to the other side you can see there are actually three doors. Built in the late 18th century by Nawab Asaf-Ud-Dowlah, this 60 feet tall structure which is a symbol of Awadhi and Mughal architecture was built on the model of a similar gateway in ancient Constantinople.
We cycled down further to the Chota Imambara, one of the most extraordinary Mughal structures I have ever seen. I was so awed by its exteriors which had beautiful Arabic calligraphy all over and a gleaming golden dome on its top. The interiors of Chota Imambara swept me off my feet with exquisite chandlers, colourful wall coatings and glittering mirrors. I kept gawking at the wonderful architectural designs for a long time. It is definitely a visual treat. Also referred to as Hussainabad Imambara, this exceptional monument was built by Mohammad Ali Shah. When lit up on auspicious days, this structure is a magical sight.
Jama Masjid was not earlier included on the itinerary mentioned by my guide. However when I mentioned about it, he was more than keen to take me to this massive mosque. I had never been to such a huge and elegant mosque before. The whole mosque is built on yellow sand stone. The minarets, the pillars, the arched domes, the main entrance and the interiors of the mosque are in true Mughal style. I especially loved the colourful interiors. The serenity inside the mosque made me stay a bit longer.
|Entrance of Jama Masjid|
|Interiors of Jama Masjid|
|Gateway to Bada Imambara|
Signing Note- A day with the Mughals was architecturally memorable...!!
Location- Mughal quarter, Lucknow