World Tourism Day 2023: Journey through history - Unearthing 7 forgotten heritage sites in India
As we gear up to celebrate World Tourism Day 2023 on September 27, let us embrace the opportunity to unearth India's forgotten heritage sites.
Ahead of World Tourism Day 2023, we embark on a journey through India, a land rich in history and culture, to discover its hidden gems – forgotten heritage sites that whisper tales of centuries gone by. While the Taj Mahal, Jaipur's palaces, and Kerala's backwaters often steal the spotlight, there's an entire tapestry of historical wonders waiting to be explored.
1. Hampi - The Lost Empire:
In the heart of Karnataka lies Hampi, a UNESCO World Heritage site that was once the capital of the Vijayanagara Empire. Ruined temples, grand archways, and bouldered landscapes transport you to an era of kings and queens. The awe-inspiring Virupaksha Temple and the mysterious Vitthala Temple chariot are timeless symbols of the empire's architectural prowess.
2. Champaner-Pavagadh Archaeological Park:
Hidden in the state of Gujarat, this site showcases a blend of Hindu and Islamic architecture. The exquisite Jama Masjid and the intricately carved Kalika Mata Temple coexist peacefully, reflecting the diverse cultural heritage of India.
3. Mandu - The City of Joy:
Perched atop the Malwa Plateau in Madhya Pradesh, Mandu is a city of love, poetry, and architectural brilliance. The Jahaz Mahal, with its ship-like structure, the Hoshang Shah's Tomb, an inspiration for the Taj Mahal, and the intricate Baz Bahadur's Palace, all whisper tales of passion and power.
4. Pattadakal - The Cradle of Chalukya Art:
Nestled on the banks of the Malaprabha River in Karnataka, Pattadakal boasts a collection of magnificent temples showcasing the architectural mastery of the Chalukyan dynasty. The Virupaksha Temple and the Mallikarjuna Temple are exquisite examples of their craftsmanship.
5. Rani ki Vav - The Queen's Stepwell:
This subterranean marvel in Gujarat is a UNESCO World Heritage site. Built by Queen Udayamati in the 11th century, Rani ki Vav is an architectural marvel with intricate carvings, sculptures, and 800 elaborately designed pillars.
6. Dholavira - The Harappan Gem:
Located in the Rann of Kutch, Dholavira is an ancient Harappan city dating back over 4,500 years. The site boasts well-planned streets, reservoirs, and a sophisticated water management system, offering a glimpse into the Indus Valley Civilization's advanced urban planning.
7. Sanchi Stupa - The Serene Monument:
Located in Madhya Pradesh, the Sanchi Stupa is one of India's oldest stone structures, dating back to the 3rd century BCE. It's an architectural marvel and a sacred Buddhist pilgrimage site with intricately carved gateways.
As we gear up to celebrate World Tourism Day 2023 on September 27, let us embrace the opportunity to unearth India's forgotten heritage sites. These historical treasures not only reflect the genius of ancient architects and artisans but also provide a glimpse into the diverse tapestry of India's cultural and historical evolution. Beyond the renowned tourist destinations, these lesser-known gems beckon travelers to embark on a journey through time, creating memories that will last a lifetime.