“The city of Nawabs”
Referred to as the city of Nawabs, Lucknow is the capital city of Uttar Pradesh. Famous for its monuments, food, clothing in all of which, one can see the traces and grandeur of Mughal reign.
Lucknow, the city of Nawabs is naturally the city of Adabs and Tehjeebs (manners and hospitality). Situated on the banks of the Gomti River, Lucknow is famous for its culture, food, heritage and its traditional dance form Kathak. Remnants of its rich historical and cultural past are well displayed here through the architectural designs, the handicrafts and the typical Lucknowi way of life. Lucknow was a symbol of Hindi-Muslim-Sikh harmony and is hub of Urdu, Hindi and many Hindustani Languages. The Hindi spoken here is considered to be the purest and most beautiful form of Hindi. Lucknow is also famous for its sweets, kebabs and other Mughlai delicacies. Most places of tourist attractions here relate to the Mughal era and are historical in nature. The various architectural styles and brilliant monuments make Lucknow a historians delight.
Bara Imambara, Lucknow Overview
The Bara Imambara of Lucknow is one of the most famous monuments of the city. Also known as Asfi Imambara, after the name of the Nawab of Lucknow who got it constructed, it is an important place of worship for the Muslims who come here every year to celebrate the religious festival of Muharram. The Imambara is primarily known for its incredible maze, known as Bhul Bhulaiya locally, which is located on the upper floor of the monument.
Said to be the world’s largest unsupported structure, Bara Imambara is considered a marvel of engineering and a fine specimen of Mughal architecture. In the vicinity, religious centres like the Asifi Mosque, Shahi Bawali, Rumi Darwaja, etc., are also present for one to explore. The Bara Imambara has a unique style of construction. The central hall of Bara Imambara, which is said to be the largest arched hall in the world, measures 50 meters long and goes up to a height of 15 meters.
The whole building is made of Lakhanui bricks, which are a bit small in size, and lime plaster. No wood or metal has been used in the construction. One can also have a view of the grave of Nawab Asaf-Ud-Dowlah and his crown, which is kept in the central hall. The Bara Imambara is worth seeing in its own right, but the unusual labyrinth of corridors on its upper floor (Bhul Bhulaiya) is what steals the show!
Hazratganj Market, Lucknow Overview
Hazratganj, the central shopping district of Lucknow, has a long history behind it and has undergone a great makeover that bridges the past and the present and continues to serve as Lucknow’s central shopping arcade.
Lucknow Zoo, Lucknow Overview
Located in the heart of Lucknow, the Nawab Wazid Ali Shah Prani Udyan or Lucknow Zoo is a favourite haunt of wildlife enthusiasts from all over the city. This massive zoo is spread over an area of 71.6 acres and was established in the year 1921 to commemorate the visit of His Royal Highness, the Prince of Wales to Lucknow. It was formerly known as the Prince of Wales Zoo but was later renamed after. Some of the fascinating animals and birds such as Royal Bengal Tiger, White Tiger, Lion, Wolf, Great Pied Hornbill, Golden Pheasant and Silver Pheasant can be spotted here in their natural habitat.
In addition to being a safe house for animals such as Hoolock Gibbon, Himalayan Black Bear, Indian Rhinoceros, Blackbuck, Swamp Deer, Barking Deer and Hog Deer, the Lucknow Zoo also has a number of fun-filled activities for its visitors. You can observe the vintage train that is exhibited in the zoo premises, and if that leaves you wanting for more, hop aboard the toy train that runs through the zoo! The State Museum displaying artefacts from Awadh is also situated in the Lucknow Zoo. In addition to these, several events such as Wildlife Week and Children’s day Celebration are regularly held here as well.
Chota Imambara, Lucknow Overview
The Chhota Imambara, or the Imambara of Hussainabad is one of the most beautiful and attractive buildings in the old city. The imposing monument lies to the west of Bara Imambara. Chota Imambara was a congregation hall for Shia Muslims built by Muhammad Ali Shah, the third Nawab of Awadh in 1838 and was to serve as his own mausoleum and his mother’s, who is buried beside him. This 19th century building is also known as the palace of lights because of its decorations and chandeliers during special festivals
Chota Imambara is often touted as the most prominent historical structure of Lucknow by many locals. Architecturally, it is a wonderful amalgam of Charbagh, Indo-Islamic and Persian structural designs. The sheer brilliance of Chota Imambara during the festive season at night time gets imprinted on the mind of visitors.
A hotspot of photo fanatics and history buffs, Chota Imambara, attracts a large number of tourists every year. Even the interiors are designed and maintained with intricate details and utmost care.
Dr. Ambedkar Park
Dr. Ambedkar Park, Lucknow Overview
The Ambedkar Memorial Park was constructed by the Mayawati Government in Gomti Nagar, Lucknow. The park was built to commemorate the people who dedicated their life to equality and human justice like Dr. Bhimrao Ambedkar, Kanshi Ram and others. With a budget of a whopping seven billion rupees, the park is one of the loveliest things to see in Lucknow.
Rumi Darwaza, Lucknow Overview
The Rumi Darwaza was built in 1784-86 and is a 60 feet high entrance, with no visible supporting fittings. It is also known as the Turkish Gate and displays Awadhi architectural style.
Dilkusha Kothi, Lucknow Overview
A hunting lodge converted into a summer palace for the royals, Dilkusha Kothi was built in 1800 by Major Gore in Baroque style. It faced major impact during the first war of independence and hence lies in a less than perfect state with just a few towers and walls standing.
British Residency, Lucknow Overview
The British Residency of Lucknow served as a refuge for several Britishers during the uprising on 1857. The fort is now in ruins and a cemetery nearby contains the graves of the hundreds of Britishers who died during the siege. The ruins are now protected by the Archaeological Survey of India.
Constantia (La Martiniere School)
Constantia (La Martiniere School), Lucknow Overview
One of the historical landmarks of Lucknow with its English past, the La Martinere School started in 1845. It houses the tomb of French Major-General Claude Martin as he resided there.
Husainabad Clock Tower
Husainabad Clock Tower, Lucknow Overview
Standing tall adjacent to the Rumi Darwaza, the Husainabad Clock Tower was built in 1881 and since has been the tallest clock tower in India. It is 67 meters high, displaying Victorian-Gothic brilliance with a 14 feet long pendulum and a dial in the shape of a 12 petalled flower.