Delhi, the national capital has a splendid history. This majestic city is one of the oldest surviving cities in the world today. The city has witnessed rise and fall of numerous dynasties , have been ruled by various kingdoms and has withstood the ravages of time. The city has risen from the ashes, every time it was plundered, looted and destroyed.
The rulers brought with them their own style of architectures and beautified the city with their material and cultural riches. The monuments that they constructed reflect their rich heritage. These historical monuments and ancient architectures still adorn the city each one has its own importance due to its rich historical backdrop. Three historical monuments from the city make it to the list of World Heritage Site due to their arcitetural and historical importance. These monuments are Qutub Minar, Red Fort and Humayun’s Tomb.
Humayun’s Tomb was the first garden tomb constructed in Indian subcontinent, reflecting a picture of Mughal India history. It was also the first sand stone structure to be constructed in Delhi. Humayun’s tomb was commissioned by his first wife Bega Begum during 1569-71, almost nine years after his death. The tomb was designed by a Persian architect, Mirak Mirza Ghiyas.
Inside the walled enclosure of the tomb and its premises the most notable features are the garden squares called chaharbagh with pathways and water channels, centrally located well proportional mausoleum topped by double dome. Since its inclusion in UNESCO world heritage site several restoration work has been done to the tomb, to preserve the monument. There are many other structures and symbolic elements inside the main chamber like a mihrab design over a marble lattice or jaali that is facing Mecca in the West.
Humayun tomb is the most popular monument among the foreign tourists due to its marvellous Mughal architecture. The tomb remains open to visitors every day from sunrise to sunset. There are some nominal charges for entry in the tomb
Qutub Minar and its complex is in UNESCO world heritage site since 1993 due to its historical importance.. Qutbuddin Aibak became Delhi’s first Sultan in 1206 and laid the foundations of the Qutb Minar, India’s tallest stone tower. The Minar is 72.5 meters high which makes it the second highest Minar i
n India after Fateh Burj in Mohali, which is 100 meters high. The base diameter of the Minar is 14.3 meters , which narrows to 2.7 meters at the top. The tower has five distinct storeys, each marked by a projecting balcony and tapers. There are 379 stairs in the tower.
The Minar is made of red sand stones and marbles. The first three stories are made of sand stone, while fourth and fifth storeys are of marble and sandstone. There are intricate carvings from Quran on the walls of the minar. The construction of the Minar was started by Qutb-ud-din Aibak and was carried forward by his successor. Qutubminar is surrounded by several ancient structures and their ruins in its complex.
A 7 m-high iron pillar called Ashoka Pillar stands in the premises. It is said that if you can encircle it with your hands while standing with your back to it your wish will be fulfilled
Lal Quila or Red Fort is situated in the center of National Capital, a place known as old Delhi. The fort is one of the greatest example of Mughal architecture under Mughal emperor Shah Jahan. Red fort is popular for its unique structure and history. It was the residence of Mughal Emperors in India since the time of Shah Jahan in 1639 till the revolt of 1857, nearly for 200 years. It is named after its massive enclosing walls made of red sandstone.
Lal Quia is adjacent to the Shalimar Fort, which was built by Islam Shah Suri in 1546. Red Fort along with the Shalimar Fort were included in world Heritage Sites in 2007.
The architecture of the building reflects a fusion of Mughal, Hindu, Timurid and Persian tradition. The apartments are connected by a water channel known as the Stream of Paradise (Nahr-i-Behisht). The architectural style of Red Fort later become an inspiration for building and Gardens in Rajasthan, Punjab , Kashmir etc.
The Red Fort is of a great significance for India . On Independence Day, every year the prime minister of the nation, hoists the national flag at the main gate of the fort and delivers a nationally-broadcast speech from its ramparts.
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