Thursday, August 31, 2017

Images of India - 167

A glimpse of heritage monument of India in black and white. Check other posts that will give you more details about this monument.

Monday, August 28, 2017

Hussain Sagar, Hyderabad

Hussain Sagar Lake in Hyderabad is a heart shaped artificial lake. The lake was designed by Hussain Shah Wali and hence the name. 

It is a heritage site of India and it is declared as the 'Heart of the World' by UNWTO on 27 September 2012, on the occasion of World Tourism Day, for being the World's Largest Heart Shaped Mark.

In 1563 it was built by Ibrahim Quli Qutub Shah during his rule over the place. It is spread across an area of 5.7 square kilometers with maximum depth of 32 feet it is fed by River Musi. It was the main source of water supply to the city before Himayat Sagar and Osman Sagar were built on river Musi.

A large monolithic statue of the Gautama Buddha stands on Gibraltar Rock in the middle of the lake. 

This lake is also popular for water sports. Other attractions around are Lumbini Park, Birla Mandir. On the adjacent Tank Bund road there are 34 well-sculptured bronze statues, mounted on high platforms.

Thursday, August 24, 2017

Ganesh Tok, Gangtok

In Gangtok close to Tashi View point is Ganesh Tok, a temple of Lord Ganesha. It's located at an altitude of 6,500 ft.

This is a small temple that can be reached by climbing few number of steps.

Opposite to the temple is a small glass panel room from where one can get panoramic view of the entire town of Gangtok, and mount Kanchenjunga if whether is kind on you.

Nearby there is small garden with beautiful flowers.

Monday, August 21, 2017

Asiatic Lions at Gir

Asiatic Lions are found only in Gir Forests of Gujarat. They have been marked as Endangered in the IUCN Red List of threatened species. The approximate population of the lions is between 300 - 400.

In Gir Sanctuary went for Jeep Safari in an open jeep and we could see some birds flying around. We spotted pride of Asiatic Lions in a small open area in the forest.

They are very similar to the African lion in physical size and appearance, though they are somewhat smaller. The height at the shoulders is approximately 3.5 ft The mane of the male lions is short, sparse and darker in color. 

The fur ranges in color from ruddy tawny, heavily speckled with black, to sandy or buff-grey. They have a very unique longitudinal fold of skin that runs along their belly. 

They live in prides, that include only two to five females each. The different jeeps in the Safari take different predefined routes inside the forest. We were one of the few lucky ones who could spot the lions in our route.

Thursday, August 17, 2017

Pandava Caves, Aravelam

The ancient Caves in Aravelam is must visit place for history buffs. These 6th century caves are small that have 5 compartments. The Buddhist monks have carved these caves out of a single hard laterite rock. 

These caves are also known as the Pandava caves as it is believed that Pandavas have stayed here at some point during their 12 year exile as described in the Mahabharata.

At a later period these caves have been converted to shaivite caves. 

Shivlings carved out of granite of different shapes and sizes have been placed in each of these caves. These Shivlings are placed on raised platforms.

Monday, August 14, 2017

Flower Garden of Samdruptse

In the park where tall statue of Guru Padmasambhava in Samdruptse is located there is a beautiful garden.

There are variety of colourful flowers in this garden.

We could also see some flowers that I was seeing for the first time.

Wednesday, August 9, 2017

Karma Shri Nalanda Institute of Buddhist Studies, Rumtek

Inside the Rumtek Monastery Complex at Rumtek behind the main monastery, is the Karma Shri Nalanda Institute of Buddhist Studies and the Golden Stupa.

The institute constructed in the year 1984 is the most beautiful building in the complex. The students who study here spend at least 9 years to complete the studies. 

The institute is decorated with colourful murals.

Monday, August 7, 2017

Rang Mahal, Ellora

We have already seen details of Kailasa Temple of Ellora in the earlier post. This 8th century temple has strong architectural influences  of Pallava and Chalukya styles.

Within the enclosed courtyard, there is a flat-roofed main shrine dedicated to Shiva, and an image of his mount Nandi. The rectangular main shrine is called Rang-Mahal because after its completion, the temple was plastered and painted. 

The temple has niches, plasters, windows as well as images of deities and other figures. The 7 meter high plinth is decorated with life size elephants and mythical animals.

The two storey main shrine has Vadys Mandapa, Nandi Mandapa, a pillared hall, an antechamber and a small sanctum surrounded by five subsidiary shrines.

The pillared hall is supported by 16 pillars each with different set of carvings on them.