Day 17- The city that inspired the Taj, the city of Sultans

Usmanabad to Bijapur

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The trio began their day quite early. All excited to head towards the next State- Karnataka, in their journey, moving further away from  home struck them as soon as they hit the road. The signboards were no more in the familiar script, the landscape changed and alongwith it changed the language as they moved towards the distant South…

After 20 kms on the highway, without any signboard in sight and the google- baba also going off- network, the three felt a little helpless. They continued however to drive on the same road for another 5-8 kms till they found some help from an auto-vaala riding pastApparently, they were moving the other way- heading towards Hyderabad (Telangana)- surely that would have been another adventure for the ladies but for now they decided to resume their journey, as planned, towards Bijapur, the stop-over for Day 17. The humble auto- vaala directed them towards Solapur highway which would take them to Bijapur .. and they ended up driving 45kms off – route.

IMG_20160326_092250Finally they made it to Bijapur by 11:30 a.m. They checked in at Madhuban International Hotel, and after a much- needed afternoon nap, they were all fresh to explore this beautiful city of the Adil Shahi Sultans: known for its medieval architecture with gems like Gol Gumbaz, Ibrahim Roza, Juma Masjid. The ladies delved into the beauty and splendour of the city where the masters from around the world have left their mark to inspire the future generations…

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as they stepped out of the hotel wondering where to start.. another auto- vaala came to their rescue.

Madam ji poora shahr ghooma doonga sirf 300 rupaiye main’

( ‘I’ll show you the whole city in Rs. 300 only’.)

Our women, bewildered, that it was already 4pm and the monuments would close by 6pm, how will they ever be able to see them all.. but trusting the auto- vaala, they just took on the joyride.

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Gol Gumbaz- The largest dome ever built in India- next only to St. Peter’s Basilica in Rome

and yes they did give a shot to ‘evesdropping’ in the Whispering Gallery of the Gumbaz, where even the minutest sound can be heard clearly even 37 metres away.

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Ibrahim Roza- the building that inspired the Taj Mahal

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the intricately calligraphed walls of the tomb at Ibrahim Roza

Next they moved towards the Upli Burj..

 

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also known as Haider Burj, it served as the watch tower

 

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Sitting by the huge ‘Malik-e- Maidan Top’ weighing 55 tonnes

 

and they wrapped up the evening at Juma Masjid-

 

 

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the largest and oldest mausoleum in the Deccan, it was built by Ali Adil Shah I after his victory over the Vijaynagara empire

The ladies thanked the auto- vaala with an extra tip who kept his promise and showed them major landmarks around the city, all in time. Happy and content, they packed their bags for the next day, all excited to travel further south and further back in time…

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