Wednesday, August 17, 2022
Madhya Pradesh



Places around Bhopal


Located 11 km away on the Bhopal-Berasia Road, past the infamous Union Carbide Factory (the poisonous gas leakage causing the worst industrial disaster in1984), Islamnagar is a small village known for the palace of Bhopal's Afghan rulers built by Dost Mohammed Khan. Gardens surround the palace and the pavilion. The pavilion, a synthesis of Hindu and Islamic decorative art, has pillars richly decorated with floral motifs. Other important monuments are the hamam (baths) of the Chaman Mahal and the double-storeyed Rani Mahal.

Located 28 Kms from Bhopal, Bhojpur is famous for the magnificent 11th century Shiva temple, 'Bhojeshwar Mandir' and the lake constructed by the legendary Parmar King of Dhar, Raja Bhoj (1010-1053). The enormous Shiva Lingam in the temple carved out of a single rock over a three tiered square sandstone platform, is the largest in India. The Lingam is 7.5 ft tall with nearly 21.5 ft circumference. The temple is a simple square with a richly carved dome supported by four pillars guarded by two ornamental figures at the entrance. There is a simple Jain shrine nearby which has a 6m high black statue of a Thirthankara and two smaller ones.A very colourful and big mela is organised here on the occasion of the festival 'Maha Shivratri'.

Bhim Bhetka 
Bhim Bhetka based on the northern fringe of Vindhya Mountain ranges is a major tourist attraction 46 Kms from Bhopal. The site has South Asia's richest collection of prehistoric paintings and other archeological discoveries. In the rocky terrain of dense forest and craggy cliffs, over 1000 rock shelters belonging to the Neolithic age were discovered in 1957, by VS Wakanker of the Vikram University, Ujjain.  The paintings in over 500 caves depict the life of the prehistoric cave dwellers and a smaller number have evidence of Stone Age habitation from the lower Palaetholic period to the late Mesolithic, making the Bhimbetika group an archaeological treasure. It was declared a UNESCO World heritage site in July 2003, thus becoming the 22nd site in India to receive the status.

The oldest paintings are believed to be up to 1200 years old. Executed mainly in red and white with the occasional use of green and yellow, the scenes usually depict hunting, dancing, music, horse and elephant riders, animals fighting, honey collection, decoration of bodies, disguises, masking and household scenes. Animals such as bison's, tigers, lions, wild boar, elephants, antelopes, dogs, lizards, crocodiles etc, have been abundantly depicted in some caves. Popular religious and ritual symbols also occur frequently.