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Five Lesser known Monuments in India

Indian history is framed by decades of cultural influences making the country’s architectural heritage diverse and unique. Exhibiting this diversity, India has some famous monuments which have never missed any tourist’s checklist. However, few of them do not get the well-deserved limelight. Most package tours skip them in their itineraries and travel guides forget to mention their charm. But tucked away in the corner of every city, these monuments bring out the glory of a bygone era.

So, this year, let us dig deeper to explore these 5 less-visited monuments in India.

Bhimbetka Caves, Bhopal

Situated at a distance of 46 kilometers South of Bhopal, the Bhimbetka Caves of Madhya Pradesh transfers you to pre-historic times through some age-old paintings and scriptures. More than 600 in number, these caves are covered with teak and sal, within rocky cliffs, grabbing a position in the list of UNESCO world heritage sites. Countless of paintings depict the community activities like birth, death, celebrations, hunting and fighting that marked the lifestyle in a pre-civilizational era. Major Highlights of the complex include 30000-year old rock painting depicting the progress of human society.

Dhamek Stupa, Sarnath

Standing erect as a testimony to the Buddhist legacy in India, Dhamek Stupa was established by the great King Ashoka in the Mauryan regime. A cylindrical-shaped edifice, which is about 34 meters high, is believed to be the holy seat from where Lord Buddha delivered his first sermon. The Stupa has intricately carved geometrical borders with floweret designs and human figures making it replete with architectural brilliance. The Dhamek Stupa stands as a symbol of decades of Buddhist influences acting an integral aspect of the religious diversity in India.

Itmad-ud-Daulah Tomb, Agra

Fondly called as the Baby Taj, this unique edifice is a tomb of Mizra Ghiyas Beg, who was Mumtaz Mahal’s grandfather and Mughal Emperor Jehangir’s Chief Minister. His daughter and Jehangir’s wife Noor Jehan built this tomb between 1622 and 1628 on the riverbanks of Yamuna. The first Mughal monument constructed from marble, the tomb has an exquisite appearance. The intricately carved lattice screens and the use of perfect use of pietra dura, make this tomb a beautiful sight to behold.

Sarkhej Roza, Ahmedabad

The unique architectural complex of Sarkhej Roza has the typical Indo- Sarcenic design which comprises a fusion of Persian Islamic stylistics with conventional Hindu and Jain features. Its architectural brilliance acts as a precursor to the Mughal period in a perfect merger of Hindu, Jain and Islamic trends. The complex acts as a testament that preserves the historical heritage of Ahmedabad. Its appearance is further enhanced by the presence of the lake at the back in addition to some graves. The main highlight of the edifice is the lattice design covering the main hall of the building that gives out beautiful shadows during the day time.

Salim Singh-Ki-Haveli, Jaisalmer

Built by Salim Singh, an intimidating Prime Minister of Jaisalmer when the city was the capital of the princely state, Salim-Singh-ki-haveli is a 300-year old edifice designed like a peacock. It has a narrow structure for the first floors, and the top level thereafter stretches out into a carved mass, with distinctive curved balconies topped by blue ceilings. Its distinctiveness lies in the uniquely curved roof that has amazing arched brackets looking like peacocks. An exquisite appearance to admire, Salim Singh Ki Haveli is a must-visit in Jaisalmer.