Known as the ‘Agra of the South’, historic Vijayapura (also known as Bijapur) typifies the Islamic Deccan era. Here you’ll find fantastic examples of Deccan architecture, including fortifications, mausoleums, monuments, mosques and palaces.
Although having a strong Islamic presence, Vijapura is also a centre for the Lingayat brand of Shaivism, in which a single personalised god is worshipped, and hosts the Lingayat Siddeshwara Festival.
Surrounded by peaceful gardens is the imposing Golgumbaz, the resting place of 17th-century emperor Mohammed Adil Shah and his family. Its cavernous interior has amazing acoustics and the views of the city from the balcony around the dome are outstanding.
With towering minarets said to be inspired by the Taj Mahal, the glorious Ibrahim Rouza is one of India’s most elegant monuments. Built as a mausoleum for his queen by Ibrahim Adil Shah II, the emperor tragically died before her. Tip the caretakers and they might show you around the labyrinth to see the graves.
These ruins amidst a wide moat and fortified walls were once the durbar (royal court), palaces and pleasure gardens of the Adil Shahi kings. The most impressive is the Gagan Mahal (Sky Palace), an enormous archway where the last ruler of the Adil Shahi dynasty is said to have surrendered. Nearby you can find the seven-storey palace Sat Manzil, the former water pavilion Jala Manziland the delicate arches of the ruins of the Bara Kaman mausoleum.
Visit Vijayapura (Bijapur) on our Hampi and Deccan Plateau Tour or contact us to create your own bespoke tour of India.