Bhopal: Unique synthesis of Hinduism and Islam Situated around two artificial lakes enclosed by a masonry wall, Bhopal is a unique blend of Hindu and Islamic cultures; having a sprinkling of landscaped gardens and lakes; while its mosques’ huge minarets appearing on the horizon silently signal the arrival of Bhopal to the visitor!
Bhopal combines scenic beauty, history and modernity. It offers many natural as well as artificial lakes and is one of India’s greenest cities. Visit Asia’s largest masjid – Jama Masjid, the Moti Masjid and Taj-Ul-Masjid; see the Birla Mandir; marvel Shaukat Mahal and Sadar Manzil, 2 architectural wonders, supposedly designed by a Frenchman; visit the Performing Arts and Tribal Habitat/Museum of Mankind. From Bhopal you can enjoy several day trips to fascinating places nearby, including Sanchi, where you can see the Great Stupa accommodating footprints and a throne denoting the Buddha’s presence and Udayagiri Caves – rock-cut cave sanctuaries carved into a sandstone hill. Other day trips include Vidisha, known for remarkable antiques; the World Heritage Site of the Prehistoric Rock Shelters of Bhimbetka, a Palaeolithic site depicting the earliest traces of human life on the Indian subcontinent; Bhojpur, an important historical and religious town; Udaypur, where you can see the colossal 11th century red sandstone Neelkanteshwar temple; and Islamnagar, the palace of Bhopal’s Afghan rulers.