Bibi ka Maqbara

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Bibi ka MaqbaraBibi Ka Maqbara is situated about 5 kms from the Aurangabad city, the burial place of Aurangzeb wife, Rabia-Durrani. Aurangzeb’s son built this monument in 1679 AD in memory of his mother Rabia-Durrani. It is an imitation of the Taj Mahal (among 7 new wonders of world) at Agra, it is also called as "poor man's Taj Mahal" owing to it being a poor replica of the Taj. Behind the tomb is located a small archeological museum.

The comparison with the Agra monument has unfortunately somewhat degraded the Aurangabad tomb which in itself displays a worthwhile architectural design, with much distinguished surface ornamentation in the late Mughal style.

The tomb dates from 1678 and it was erected by Prince Azam Shah, one of Aurangzeb's sons, in memory of Begum Rabia Durani, his mother. It stands in the middle of a spacious and formally planned garden, some 457 by 274 meters, with axial ponds, fountains, and water channels, many defined by stone screens and lined with broad pathways. The garden is enclosed by high crenellated walls with fortress set at intervals, and open pavilions on three sides.

In the middle of the south wall is an imposing gateway with brass-inlaid doors; these are inscribed with the name of the architect, Atam Aula. The central focus of this vast enclosure is the tomb itself. This is raised on a high terrace to look out over the garden plots and waterways. Access to the octagonal chamber containing the unadorned grave at the lower level is from a flight of steps that descends from the terrace. The grave is enclosed by an octagon of perforated marble screens. The chamber above is a high square structure presenting identical fagades on four sides. Each is dominated by a lofty portal with a pointed arch, flanked by smaller arched niches of similar design. A great dome, with a pronounced bulbous profile and a brass pot finial, crowns the whole composition while four lesser domes mark the corners.

Doorways lead to an inner octagonal gallery, defined by stone screens, that overlooks the grave from an upper level, an architectural innovation unicfue, to this monument. Corner squinches carry the lofty dome that roofs the chamber. White marble is used throughout, interspersed with delicately moulded stucco. There is, however, no use of semiprecious stones. Exactly like the Taj Mahal, the mausoleum is framed by four lofty minarets that stand freely at the corners of the terrace, their part-octagonal bases continuing down to ground level.

They have diminutive square pavilions in red sandstone at their summits. To the west of the tomb is a small mosque with finely worked cusped arches and corner minarets. Small recesses, rosettes, and arabesques embellish the faqade. Mention may also be made here of the Sunheri Mahal, situated to the north of Bibi ka Maqbara, which is a notable building in the late Mughal style. It is of interest for the patches of old painting and goldwork that adorn the walls.

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Bibi ka Maqbara: How to reach Bibi ka Maqbara

You can reach Bibi ka Maqbara by Air, Train or by Road as per your convenience and money you want to spend.

How to Reach Bibi ka Maqbara by Flight
The nearest airport is at Aurangabad, 11 kms. Aurangabad has a good national airport, which is well connected to major cities like Mumbai, Delhi & Hyderabad.

How to Reach Bibi ka Maqbara by Rail
Aurangabad Railway station is nearest one to Bibi ka Maqbara, which is approximately 12 kms away.

How to reach Bibi ka Maqbara by Road
You can take a public transport like city bus or alternative you can hire private car, there are plenty of tour operator you can avail service from. The other mean of transport is using auto rickshaw, driving in is fun and cheap (not cheapest one but instead of going by private car etc) way to reach there. Its a advisable to fix the tariff prior to hiring the auto rickshaw.

Getting Around Bibi ka Maqbara
Panchakki is another interesting place to go which is 5-6 kms from Maqbara. The other places to notice while visiting the place is Bhadkal Gate, Dr. Babasaheb Marathwada University, Mehmood Darwaza (Gate), P.E.S College or Engineering, Kham Nadi (Kham River) etc.

Bibi ka Maqbara: Best Time to Visit

The best time to visit Bibi ka Maqbara is during the months of October to March, these are the best time to visit, as the weather is really pleasant during these months.

Although April and May are holiday season (most of the school & colleges are shut downs during these months) in India, but the temperature is really high during these months i.e. between 37 °C to 44 °C making the weather really hot and humid making it difficult to travel around.

Bibi ka Maqbara: Visitor Information Centre

For more information you can contact the MTDC office in Aurangabad at below address:

TOURISM OFFICE:

MTDC (Holiday Camp)
Station Road, Aurangabad,
Maharashtra- Pin Code 431001

Telephone: 0240-2343169
Telefax: 0240-2331198, 0240-2334259

Click here to find more information on wikipedia.

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