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Humayun's Tomb

Place : Delhi
Significance : World Heritage Site
Best Season : October to March
Timings : 6:00 AM - 7:00 PM
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Built in red sandstone and marble, Humayun's Tomb is the first garden-tomb on the Indian subcontinent with landscaped lawns and orchards. Declared a World Heritage site by UNESCO in 1993 it is located 5Km southeast of Connaught place in Delhi.

The tomb was known to be have been commissioned by Humayun's wife Hamida Begum (popularly known as Haji Begum), who is also entombed in the mausoleum along with five Mughal princes, including Dara Sikoh. It is a grand mausoleum and one of the best preserved and beautiful examples of Mughal Architecture.

Often seen as a forerunner of the Taj Mahal in Agra, Humayun's Tomb is another grand testimony to lovie. It's construction was done between 1562 and 1565 by a Persian architect, Mirak Mirza Ghiyas.

Built on the bank of the Yamuna, it is typical of the symmetrical Timurid architecture and is enclosed by high walls on the northern, southern and western sides. The eastern side opened to the river. A pavilion at the centre of each wall allowed people to enter the tomb. The walls are equipped with walkways and arcaded to look attractive.

It is set in the middle of a beautifully arranged garden known as Char Bagh, which is divided into 4 parts. These 4 parts are further divided nto 36 smaller squares by a grid of water channels and pathways.

The West Gate is the main entrance to Humayun's Tomb. The complex houses several other buildings. Surrounded by high wall, the mausoleum is located in the centre of the enclosure and stands on a platform of size 12,000 square meters with a series of cells with arched openings. Under, the colonnades, there are graves, ascribed to various nobles and workers of Humayun's period such as Bega Begum, Hamida Bani Begum, Shah Jehan's son and Bahadur Shah Ii the last Moghul emperor of India. 47 meters high, the tomb is built with red sandstone, but white and black marble has been used to relieve the monotony, the latter largely in the borders. One can see a white marble dome about 6 meters high. There is some attractive inlay work, and some jalis in the balcony fence and on some of the recessed keel arch windows.

To the south east of the Humayun's Tomb is an impressive square tomb called the Barber's Tomb. It is said to be the tomb of the barber who worked for the royal family. Besides this, there are several other tombs around which is worth visiting. Some of them are Isa Khan's tomb (Isa Khan Niyazi, an Afghan noble who served under Sher Shah Suri) and Asfarwala (means officer) Tomb', which was built for an officer in Emperor Akbar's court. There is a mosque located next to this.

Entrance fee: Rs. 10 for Indians, Rs. 250 for foreigners , Video: 25 rupees. Children under 15 years are free.

Timings: All days of the week; 6:00 AM - 7:00 PM