Delhi has always been in my top list of exploring and this time I took a walk to Mehrauli Archaelogical park and Qutub Complex. I have been to qutub minar earlier also but this time my focus was on the momunents and remains near by Qutub minar. When we visit Qutub minar, we provide all our focus to Minar they might feel jealous as they have also been there from an era of Mughals, Sultans and many more, adding some important facts to the history Qutub Minar. Since Delhi is loved and looted by most of the outsiders and every ambitious emperor around the world tried or wished to rule over Delhi. So this time I decided to visit these small structure which have been telling the story, rise and fall of various dynast.
Its february, a perfect time to explore delhi, so I took my avenger and ride to Mehrauli park first and then came to Qutub minar. Parked my jumbo and purchased the ticket to enter the complex. As soon I entered the Qutub Minar campus, I first encounter a gate with beautiful engraving and on right, stands a Mosque. There was a drinking water beside a mosque. If you want to understand the complete Qutub complex, you can take a tour Guide. They will help you to understand the story and the architectural details.
Alai Minar and Alai Darwaza
As you move further, the first thing that will catch your attraction is incomplete tower/minar known as “Alai Minar”. Surrounded by a beautiful garden all around this monument was constructed by Alauddin Khilji, who wanted to construct a tower similar to Qutub Minar but after his death construction stops and no one took initiative to further construct it. There is a garden surrounding Alai Munar, it is filled with lots of beautiful flower and will provide you shade from sun. Just have a feel of the historical site from the garden. I halted here and took some pictures of flowers that are lucky to grow and feel the charm of the wind.
There is a Alai Darwaza just near by Qutub minar nearby exit, I am just clubbing it images with Alai Minar. It is a beautiful construction. The inner side of this Darwaza is crafted very well. The ceiling is also very unique in its own. It is made up of red stone and in the middle of the ceiling there is a small white tomb hanging, it increases the beauty of the Alai Darwaza.
After having a glimpse of Alai Minar I moved to view the “Graveyard” with preserve royal bodies and further comes the intricately engraved tomb of Iltutmish. This tomb construction and architecture is remarkable and the use of the combination of white marble and red sandstone for construction of this huge monument will give a soothing effect to your eyes. This tomb is surrounded by walls with two gates. There was some inscription along with beautiful engraved design on the wall. This inscription is in another language. I am not sure about the language but it may be in Arabic or Urdu. Though you can opt for a tour guide or audio guide throughout Qutub complex you will find a well-written guide.
Tomb and Madrasa of Sultan Alauddin Khilji
When I move ahead I saw a broken walls and after this came the Tomb and Madrasa of The Alauddin Khilji, Khilji was a barbaric king. This Madrasa was built by khilji in 1296-1316 AD and is now in ruined state.
After this Tomb and Madrasa of Alauddin Khilji came the major attraction of the place, the sky-touching Qutub Minar. It was appealing to me as soon as I enter the complex, though I have visited it earlier also but visiting again also has the same excitement. This alluring tower is 73 meters high and was built by Qutub-ud-din Aibak in his glory of defeating Hindu king. The five-floor building has a Mosque at the top, it is said that this was the first Mosque in India and was built by the material obtained from demolishing ’27 Hindu temples’. I waited for long to take pictures of the great structure as there was a good crowd around the complex and managed to take some good clicks 😉 . As our grandpa tells their experience about climbing the stairs inside the tower to get a spectacular view from the top, I really feel jealous as we cannot do that now, thanks to lovers or people who committed suicide by jumping off from Qutub Minar making it a reason to close the stairway for all.
Country yard attracts most of the visitors due to iron pillar, a very old pillar of around 320-540 AD. It is said that this pillar belongs to Gupta dynasty from Madhya Pradesh. There is a belief that if you can encircle it with your hands while standing with your back to it your wish will be fulfilled.
Smith Folly – Archeological blunder
Now I was tired and needed a rest so come do a garden and amidst the lonely lush green garden saw a Folly, popularly known as Smith Folly, enhancing the landscape view of the area but there I came to know that it was the archeological blunder.
Why is folly an archeological blunder?
Tour guide nearby tells me the reason behind it. According to him, in 1803 when a major earthquake damaged the Qutub Minar, the top cupola (placed atop of Qutub Minar by Feroz Shah) fell down on the ground making Qutub Minar look incomplete, so the then British Governor-General of India authorized Major Robert Smith to take the necessary steps to repair this. In the gusto to be known in the world for this repair, he made a totally different architecture. Instead of the Indo-Islamic cupola, he created a Bengali style chatthri. He installed it on the top of Minar in 1828. Now the new Bengali style chatthri has replaced the Indo- Islamic cupola and it was totally mismatched with the architecture of the building so Lord Hardinge has taken it down and paced it in the outer lawn of Minar.
Gardon Sanderson’s sundial
The garden also has sundial place alone in the middle, usually not getting tourist attraction, this spectacular structure is a tribute to Sanderson from his friends because of his work in Qutub complex. It is his work that the entire world is admiring the Qutub complex.
Opening time: This complex open 7 days in a week. It opens at 7:00 Am and closes at 5:00 PM.
Entree Fee: 30 Rs entry fees for Indian and 500 Rs entry fees for foreigners.
Read heritage walk to ruins of Mehrauli. Mehrauli complex is very near to Qutub complex.