Madhya Pradesh, the heart of ‘Incredible India’ holds up an array of vibrancy, flavours, cuisines, cultures and history. And, somewhere inside the core of Madhya Pradesh resides the city of lakes, Bhopal. Here’s how you can explore Bhopal like a tourist. By Kumar Shree
1. Van Vihar National Park
Located adjacent to the Upper Lake, the Van Vihar National Park is spread across a sprawling area of 4.43 sq. km. This park is till date maintained as a zoological park and that’s what brings a unique charm to it. It houses a healthy colony of both herbivores and carnivores, and the adjoining upper lake adds a dash of charm to the landscape. The place comes alive at the onset of winters when thousands of migratory birds land in the lake.
2. Upper & Lower Lake
The historic architecture and the two lakes give Bhopal its distinct identity. The Upper Lake, also known as the ‘Bada Talab,’ and, ‘Bhojtal’ came to existence in the 11th century, and is surrounded by a beautiful garden. Separated by a bridge called the ‘Pul Pukhta’ or Lower Lake Bridge, the Lower Lake is located to the east of the Upper Lake. Apart from a tourist hot-spot and the centre of activities like parasailing, kayaking, canoeing and water-skiing the two lakes also serve as the water sources for Bhopal.
3. Gauhar Mahal
Just after you are done with your explorations of the two lakes, you can head over to Gauhar Mahal, that stands alongside the Upper Lake. Gauhar Mahal stands as a true testimony to the rich legacy and heritage that Bhopal has witnessed throughout the years. Built by the first female ruler of Bhopal, Qudisiya Begum, Gauhar Mahal is a fine example of the Nawabi era craftsmanship and a marriage of the Mughal and Hindu architecture.
4. The Museums in Bhopal
Bhopal is home to a number of museums namely — National Museum Of Mankind and State Archeological Museum. While picking one is a tough choice for tourists in their often time-crunched itinerary, you being a ‘Bhopali’ can check them out at your own convenience. The National Museum will take you through the journey of the humankind, whereas the State Museum boasts of a number of galleries each dedicated to a different facet. It has dedicated galleries for the exhibition of metal sculpture, coin, inscriptions, paintings, cave paintings, weapons, manuscripts, freedom movement, fossil, prehistory and so much more. There are many other museums in the city, and you will definitely bring some amusement and bewilderment onto yourself by paying a visit to these time-travel destinations.
5. Day Trips From Bhopal
However, if you are one of those residents who’s been to every place that is there in your city, you can definitely check out these day trips from Bhopal. While taking one of these trips will require a certain amount of effort, you will feel the worth once you reach to these destinations as there’s a rustic glory that radiates out of these places. The locations are Bhimbetka Caves, Sanchi Stupa and the Udaygiri Caves. All of these are located at a similar distance of around 50 km from Bhopal and are worth all the effort.