India is home to some of the most important religions to have originated in the world. From caves cut out from a single rock, to an impenetrable fortress, monuments made out of white marble it houses it all. Here are some of the best architectural wonders of India.
1. The Taj Mahal, Agra
Taj Mahal is one of the seven wonders of the world and is the landmark every tourist who comes to India wants to visit. The monument is made out of pure white marble and was built in the 17th century by Mughal Emperor Shah Jahan in the memory of his beloved wife Mumtaz Mahal. The architecture of this monument houses a white marble terrace on which the monument is built and is surrounded by four minarets.
2. Caves of Ajanta and Ellora, Maharashtra
The total number of caves amount to more than 30 in number and are more than 2000 years old. There are many religious carvings and scripts centered around Lord Buddha and Shiva and focusses on three faiths- Buddhism, Jainism and Hinduism. The rock carvings and designs display striking accuracy towards proportion and exemplary workmanship and is a UNESCO world heritage site.
3. The ruins of Nalanda, Bihar
Nalanda University was once a center of quality education where many famous monks and scholars of ancient India used to impart their knowledge to their disciples. The ruins are over 3000 years old but some of the most prominent features such as the library area, resting places for the monks are still evident to this day.
4. Sun Temple, Orissa
Sun temple is famous for the intricate craftsmanship shown in designing the artwork at the templeâ€™s exterior. The entire temple has been designed in a form of a chariot in honor to the sun god complete with 24 wheels, drawn by 7 horses housing some of the finest works of art.
5. Fort of Jaisalmer, Rajasthan
The fort is known as the â€˜Sonar Quilaâ€™ or the Golden fort as it is made out of yellow sandstone and the walls were known to be impenetrable in the yesteryears. It is the only fort in India where people reside in and is a pride as one of the innumerable works of architectural wonder to have graced Rajasthan.
6. Meenakshi temple, Tamil Nadu
The Meenakshi temple is dedicated to Goddesses Parvathi and Lord Shiva and is more than 2500 years old. The temple has 14 gateway towers each being about 45-50 meters tall. It is visited by over 1 million devotees annually and its highlight is the 10 day Meenakshi festival held in the month of April and May.
7. Tawang Monastery, Arunachal Pradesh
It is the largest Buddhist Monastery in India and was founded by the 5th Dalai Lama, the spiritual leader of Tibet in the 17th century. The monastery is three stories high and is known as Galden Namgey Lhatse in Tibetan which means a â€˜Celestial Paradise during the nightâ€™.