Bhopal – The city of Begums

Bhopal is a beautiful city that lies in the heart of the country. This is the second most populated city in the state of Madhya Pradesh. This incredible city was founded by Raja Bhoj in the 11th century and was developed by Dost Mohammad Khan in 1723. Earlier the city was named after the Raja Bhoj, i.e., Bhojpal. The city has two big lakes Bada Talab and Chhota Talab which are the main sources of water here.

This city is surrounded by different lakes as well as hills. It has various historical sites built with astonishing Indo-Islamic architecture. However, it attracts thousands of tourists as well as students in a year. This city is famous for its magnificent heritage site, hygienic atmosphere, beautiful lakes, and educational institutions. Bhopal is the education hub as well as the capital city of Madhya Pradesh.

Interesting facts about Bhopal

  • Taj – ul – Masjid of the city is the largest masjid in India.
  • This city is formed on some small hills like the Shayamla hills, Katara hills, and Gidga hills.
  • The city has the country’s first private railway station the Habibganj railway station.
  • Bhopal was the last city to sign an Instrument of Accession in 1947 to become part of India.
  • The city is one of the 100 cities in the country to be developed as a Smart City.
  • After Karnataka, the country’s second ISRO center is situated here.
  • This city is one of the cleanest cities in the country.
  • This city is an incredibly beautiful as well as unique destination in India to explore.
  • Bhopal was the second Muslim Princely empire during the British Raj in the country.   

Bhopal Gas Tragedy 1984

This tragedy has shaken the world with its horrifying effects. It was the world’s worst industrial disaster to date. In this tragedy, thousands of people died and there is no count on how many become the victims. It was a complete distraction to mankind in the city. This 2 day and 1-night disaster has changed the lives of millions of people and the city as well.

Basically, Bhopal Gas Tragedy 1984 was a gas leak in the UCIL Pesticides Plant in the city on the night of 2-3 December 1984. This toxic methyl isocyanate gas plant was leaked and spread in the area in no time. This gas got mixed in the environment and harmed so many people there along with workers. After the news of the gas leak went viral the government stopped all the work in the city as well as transportation services. So that more people can not enter this toxic environment and get affected.

This disaster caused so many deaths and affected the health of the people along with the unborn babies. However, the Union Carbide Corporation of the United States was the major shareholder of the UCIL plant. The company paid $470 million as compensation amount to the families of victims in 1989, after the orders of the Supreme Court of India. But this disaster was a major distraction that happened due to the negligence of the industry management as well as of the government. 

Attractions of the city

  • Bhimbetka Rock Shelter :-  These are the oldest caves where human civilization was found. This place is famous for its extraordinary wall paintings made in the historic period. The civilization of this cave is more than 10,000 years old. This complex has about 750 caves of which 500 caves have paintings.
  • Gohar Mahal :- This is the palace of Bhopal’s first lady ruler Qudisiya Begaum built in 1821. It is a beautiful palace styled in Hindu and Mughal style of architecture. This is a center of tourist attraction for the city. However, every year in the months of January and February the place hosts the Bhopal Festival which attracts thousands of tourists from around the world.  
  • Sanchi Stupa :- This stupa was constructed by Ashoka the great for recreating the remains of Buddha. This stupa was built on Sachi Hill in the 3rd century and is about 50ft. high. It is a stone structure created for spreading awareness about Buddhism among the country’s people. 
  • Taj – ul – Masjid :-It is the largest masjid in the country having beautiful architecture. This mosque has an impressive hallway, elegant minarets, and huge domes. This is one of the magnificent structures constructed by Mohammad Khan. It is one of the must-visit locations in the city.
  • Moti Masjid :- This is a beautiful mosque built with white marble and spectacular architectural style. This masjid was built in 1860 by Sikandar Jehan Begaum daughter of Qudisiya Begaum. It has a resemblance to Jama Masjid of Delhi, also known as Pearl Mosque. This place is one of the historical landmarks of the city as well as the most visited location in old Bhopal.

Other attractions

  • Van Vihar :- It is a zoological park near Bada Talab. This park is spread over an area of 4.45 sq. meters. It is a must-visit place here and a paradise for nature lovers. Here you can find so many species of flora and fauna living in a natural habitat.
  • Birla Mandir :- This temple is devoted to Lord Vishnu and Goddess Lakshmi. It is a beautiful temple built on Arera hills giving a panoramic view of the city. The premises of the temple are immense including Birla Museum. This museum is a collection of antique sculptures, paintings, and archeries of the 12th century.  
  • Upper Lake :- This is the oldest and the largest lake in the city. It is the main source of water for the city as well as a central attraction for visitors. Here tourists can go boating in the lake and enjoy Kamala Park there. This lake was founded by Raja Bhoj in the 11th century on the side of the Kolans River.
  • Madhya Pradesh Tribal Museum :- This museum is one of the most famous locations to visit in the city. It is the collection of various paintings, structures, mythology pieces, and art of the ancient period. This place has six galleries dedicated to different tribes of the region. The museum is well-maintained as well as the best place to visit for history lovers.
  • Bhojeshwar Temple :- It is an incomplete temple of Lord Shiva, believed to have been built in the 11th century by Raja Bhoj. In this temple, there is a 7.5 ft. high linga in the center. This place is in Bhojpur village near the city and an astonishing heritage monument here.  It is a valuable place to visit according to the archaeological survey of India.  

The best time to visit

The best time is when you want to explore the place you are visiting. There is never the best time for traveling it is only your excitement as well as the charm of the place you want to travel. Therefore, Bhopal is a wonderful as well as charming location to explore. This city has stories of the Begaums who ruled and glorified life here. But the best time to visit Bhopal according to its climatic conditions is from October to February. During these months the weather of the city is pleasant and best for wandering on its streets carefree. In these months the climate is quite moderate and well is idle of tasting the flavors of the city.   

Bhopal is known for

  • Life style :- This city has an energetic as well as a vibrant environment. The people of the city are known for their unique and extended lifestyle. The people here live a simple traditional life with high thinking standards. The city has qualified health facilities, an excellent environment, etc. which makes it a renowned city.  
  • Attar :- It is one of the special things you can buy here. The city is famous for its fragrances of royal attars. It is the old tradition followed here of using attar in place of perfumes. The old nawabs of the city use them for fragmented surroundings. Here you can have various types of attars with different fragrances of flowers, resins, and woods.  
  • Chowk Bazaar :- This is the busiest as well as vibrant marketplace of the city. In this market, you can buy everything from cheap rates to the highest possible. This bazaar is in the old city retaining its historical charm. Here you can experience the feel of Meena Bazaars happening during the Mughal rule. 

Hence, Bhopal is a city full of traditions and cultures. This city is a book history with so many chapters to read and learn. The Tehzeeb and Adab of locals here remember the royal lifestyle of its rulers. This city is a blend of traditions as well as modern cultures. Additionally, you cannot forget the rich food here with lip-smacking flavors. Therefore, it is a full-pack tourist destination to explore on holidays and weekends.

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