I have been waiting for this opportunity ever since I have started visiting MP, thanks to my corporate necessities. Finally, this month, I was lucky enough to take out some time to visit “Mandu”, one of the most acclaimed monuments of Madhya Pradesh. Situated in Vindhya range of Dhar district, this fantastic city of stones is just 150 km away from Indore. Sharing herewith all the photographs and information which I could gather about though ASI infostones and discussions with my local colleagues.
The entire region is fortified with a 45 km long fort wall and there are number of Gateways to enter into the region. The region boasts more than 40 structures but due to paucity of time, I decided to cover only the famous ones. You will get a feeling of being transported back into the history once you are there.
Mandu, famous for its story over romance, poetry and beauty, the region of Malwa was ruled by the then poet prince Baz Bahadur who fell in love a shepherdess Roopmati who was also fond of music. The couple used to have music Mehefils at their palaces and the structures suggest their musical taste.
Rani Roopmati Pavillion
We started our day long tour with visiting the “Roopmati Pavillion” which is about 6 km from the main town. Located on a small hill, this place offers picturesque scene of the adjoining plains and a distantly flowing river Narmada. As understood, Rani Roopmati used to view river Narmada from this location before having food everyday. Bollywood inspired to make Bharat Bhushan starer “Rani Rupmati’ in 1957 with “Aa laut ke aaja mere meet” song. To know more about the movie and legendary Malwa queen please visit http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0368196/.
Baz Bahadur Palace
Built by the poet prince Baz Bahadur in the early 16th century, the palace’s unique features are its spacious courtyards surrounded by halls and high terraces which offers a superb view of the surrounding including pavillion of his lady love Roopmati. The perfectly designed parapets of the structure will make the modern civil engineers feel short.
Tomb of Hoshang Shah
The tomb of Hoshang Shah located just behind the Jami Masjid is based on a square area with four artistic side domes and the main marble dome mounted in the center. The entire structure stands on a square marble platform. Also known as India’s first marble edifice, this tomb has served as an inspiration in building the legendary Taj Mahal as Shahjehan sent four of his architects to study and draw the master plan for building Taj Mahal.
Built by Hushang Shah in 14th century, this is considered to be the largest mosque in India. Built above a plinth level of more than 15 feet, the mosque
This more than 100 mtr long ship resembling palace is perhaps the biggest attraction of the place. Built amid 2 lake reservoirs (Munj lake and Kapur lake), this 2 storied structure gives an impression of a royal ship with a deck. As the water levels were receded during my visit, I could not get the images I thought about it.
As the name suggests, this palace resembles a swing. In T shape, the palace has upper floor with several balconies (Jharoka’s) from where the women can watch the proceedings in the main hall.
A shrine of Lord Shiva is located in a steep ravine. Surrounded by lush green trees, this place attracts lot of devotees. Some inscriptions in Urdu were visible on the walls of the shrine which are supposed to be of Akbar’s era. Just below the worship place, there is a pond from where the water goes into the ravine below through some beautiful circular canals (pic below).
Mandu’s tamarind or Mandu ki Imli is a unique sort of fruit found only in this region of India. There are few local dishes made of this tamarind. The giant trees have a huge trunk and were first cultivated several hundred years ago by the local rulers. Interesting…