Lucknow – The City of Nawabs

The cultural heritage of a particular place reflects the skill, capacity, talent education, general knowledge, wealth, status, high caste, birth, efficiency and general behavior of the people residing there. The interaction between these factors over a period of time leads to the establishment of a particular culture for that particular place and the contemporary as well as the future generation of people will be identified by that culture. Lucknow has a culture that had mostly been influenced by the disposition and demeanor of the contemporary princely Muslim rulers known as Nawabs.

It is a universally accepted fact that the people of Lucknow exhibit the highest and warmest extent of courtesy and etiquette while interacting with people of any rank and file. And when two extremely courteous people of Lucknow interact, they show extreme submission and humility that the people of other states can’t stand with. Lucknow still holds the olden day aristocracy and royal disposition that can be witnessed by visiting a number of prominent places in Lucknow.

Bara Imambara, constructed by Nawab Asaf-ud-Daula of Awadh, in 1784, as a rehabilitation center for victims of a major famine that year. It denotes the philanthropic attitude of the Nawab. The architectural fervor of the Nawabs could well be judged by visiting Chattar Manzil that offers something unique to the visitors.

Jama Masjid, built by Sultan Ahmed Shah, during 1423, entirely out of yellow sandstone and the design of art and architecture shows his aesthetic sense. Rumi Darwaza, built by Nawab Asaf-ud-daula draws full-hearted appreciation of global visitors.

A clock with a height of 221ft! Indeed, it’s a visitors’ wonder and draws a number of visitors to Lucknow particularly for witnessing this wondrous ‘Clock Tower’ that was installed by Nawab Nasi-ud-Din Haider in 1880. It is of particular interest to kids and student.

Bird watching was a favorite past time of the Nawabs, Moti Mahal stands witness to this. Constructed by Nawab Saadat Ali Khan, this ‘palace of pearl’ is situated on the bank of the river Gomati and is constituted of three buildings only to watch birds, sitting aristocratically inside the palace. Subsequently, two more buildings, namely Shah Manzil and Mubarak Manzil were added for watching ‘Animal Fights’. This denotes the extravaganza of the Nawabs.

Monumental tombs are a part of the culture of Muslim rulers. Nawab Mohammed Ali Shah and his mother, still lie inside the tomb named Hussainabad Imambara that attracts the visitors, just as people visit the tomb of Mumtajmahal at Agra. The white colored domes supported by pillars and minarets witnesses the contemporary artistic skill. The interior, decorated with chandeliers mirrors and gold frames and on both outsides, the miniature Tajmahals keep the visitors astounded.

Although Lucknow can be visited any time during the year; the best time is during October to March. During the summer, mercury may reach 45 degree C.

‘Atithi Devo Bhava’ is a part of Hindu culture which the Muslim populace of Lucknow religiously follow in heir day-today social life and treat guest and ‘visitors’ as gods, by providing special Lucknow cuisine.

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