India is known for its religious diversity. Islam is second largest religion in India with 14.2% of country’s population. Mosque is a holy place of worship for followers of Islam. India is blessed to have many beautiful mosque with elaborate domes, minarets and prayer halls, in varying style of architecture. The architecture design of each and every mosque is fascinating, magnificent and unique. So as a salutation to the beautiful mosques of India, here are few most elegant mosque of the country that you will surely love to visit.
1. Jama Masjid – Delhi
Jama Masjid or The Masjid – i Jahan – Numa is one of the largest mosque in India. It is located in Delhi. It was constructed by Mughal emperor Shah Jahan. Its one of the most attractive and eminent tourist spot in Delhi. The mosque has three great gates, four towers and two minarets constructed by strips of red sandstone and white marble. The minarets of the mosque consists of five storeys. First three storey are made up of red sandstone, fourth of marble and fifth sandstone. The inlay detailing in interior arches are very impressive. Jama Masjid is surrounded by bustling markets. The best time to visit the mosque would be in the month of October and March. However, being a religious place, there is no specified or advised time and one can visit at any time of the year.
2. Taj-ul-Masjid – Bhopal, Madhya Pradesh
The actual meaning of Taj-ul-Masjid is ‘The crown of Mosque’ and Bhopal is blessed to have such a magnificent structure related to it. The structure is a masterpiece and is one of the largest and one of the most fascinating mosque of Asia and is claimed to be one of the tallest mosque in Asia. The construction of mosque was initiated during the Nawab Shah Jehan Begum of Bhopal. The mosque has a pink facade topped by two eighteen storey high octagonal minarets brought out with marble dome. The mosque has three huge domes, attractive marble flooring. The best time to visit the mosque would be in the month of October and March. A good time to visit it during the dawn azan or the Muslim call to prayer.
3. Makkah Masjid – Hyderabad, Telangana
Makkah Masjid or Mecca Masjid is located adjacent to Charminar in the heart of the city of Hyderabad. It finds place among largest mosque in India and is also the largest and oldest mosque in Hyderabad. It was constructed by Muhammad Quli Qutub Shah. It was built with local granite and bricks brought from hallowed city of Mecca in Saudi Arabia. The mosque has five passage ways, arched galleries and octagonal balconies, four minarets attached with small dome above each. There’s also an artificial pond installed in the mosque. It is located close to the historic landmarks of Chowmahalla Palace, Laad Bazaar and tourists have numerous option for food right from delicious eateries, fast food, fresh fruit juice, dry fruit shop, Irani chai, Biryani to small and large restaurant. The best time to visit the mosque would be in the month of October and March after the monsoon. As the winters here are fairly cool unlike the summers which get very hot.
4. Hazratbal Dargah Sharif – Srinagar, Jammu and Kashmir
The Hazratbal Dargah Sharif or Hazratbal Shrine, is situated on left bank of the famous Dal Lake in Srinagar. The unmatched reverence is anchored in love and respect for Prophet Muhammad whose Moi – e- Muqqadas, the sacred hair from the beard is preserved here. It is the only domed mosque in Srinagar. It is a masterwork made up of immaculate white marble. Mosque faces beautiful Nishant Bagh and offers view of the lake and the mountains. This elegant religious structure look impressive on clear sky days and startles the eye of the visitors when it’s reflection appears on Dal Lake. The best time to visit the holy shrine is from March to October due to the pleasant weather conditions.
5. Bara Imambara – Lucknow, Uttar Pradesh
Bara Imambara also called the Asafi Imambara. Bara Imambara is an imambara complex in Lucknow, built by Asaf-ud-Daula, it’s the most stunning architectural marvels of the country. The entire building is made of Lakhnawani bricks and lime plaster. It’s the only building of such magnitude to have been built without any support of either beam or pillars. The complex include the large Asfi mosque, the bhool- bhulaiya and bowli. The bhool- bhulaiya is famous for a maze of intricately interwoven corridors and a passage to the underground tunnel which is supposed to lead to Delhi, Faizabad and Allahbad. The Asafi Mosque has linear stairs, intricate minarets and curvaceous domes. Best time to visit Lucknow is October to March because weather is pleasant at that time.
The aura and sanctity that one gets to feel at these mosques is simply incomparable. You should surely plan to visit these mosques as they’ll simply provide you an immense experience of greatness and your eyes can get experience of heaven after watching these mosques.