• Journey route

  • Travel Distance

    KMS (Apx.)
Cities: Mumbai, Pune, Vijayapura, Badami, Tiracol, Panjim, Velha Goa, Chandor.

About the Journey

Mansions. Temples. Palaces. Forts. Monasteries. Legendary stories. This journey has it all.

From a haunted fort in Pune where Maratha kings wrote history, to lesser known architectural wonders in the city, we explore stories in the land of Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj.

Heading further to the epitome of the Mughal regime, we marvel at the legacy of their intricate carvings and art before continuing south to a place where not many venture.

Where structures speak and stone sculptures tell epics. After knocking on the doors to the Hoysala era, we move to everyone's favourite vacation haunt - Goa!

If colours could heal, Fontainhas would be the best doctor! With a burst of vibrant shades at every bend, the Portuguese influenced doors and architecture here speak volumes of the bygone era.

The trail gets even more exciting as stories behind ancient mansions are unearthed and wooden doors come alive.

Next we enter another state with a sprawling beach town splashed with awe inspiring graffiti and more colourful doors.

Join us on this unique trail of the southwest region of India as we document diverse doors representing every facet of this rich region.

The Door's Stories

The legendary Gol Gumbaz and the legends within its door

  September 22, 2017
Continuing my journey from Mumbai and Pune to the city of domes – Bijapur (Vijayapur), I was once again dwarfed by a spectacular monument that coincidentally happened to be built by Mughal Emperor Adil Shah - the arch nemesis of the Peshwas of Pune, the builders of the previous door I visited.

They say that when something is repeatedly told as a story, it comes to be known as an established fact. In that case, the reverberating echoes heard inside the acoustic Gol Gumbaz could turn anything into reality. Because even the slightest whisper or sound made here is ricocheted over 10 times!

Legend has it that Rambhavati, a dancer in Sultan Adil Shah’s Darbar had an affair with him – and that she gave up her life in order to prove her love for the Sultan. Another tale narrates how the Raj Guru of the dynasty sacrificed his own life to ensure that Adil Shah could live to see the completion of the Gol Gumbaz.

There was so much going on in my mind as I entered the 480-year-old little door that opens up to the second largest dome in the whole world, the Gol Gumbaz – which dominates the skyline of Bijapur!

This door was the keeper of secrets, stories, and rumours that echoed within the massive dome. It was also the gateway to one of the most outstanding architectural feats of not just its time, but continues to invoke awe and inspiration in the minds of people even today.

Made up of iron and wooden carvings, the lotus pattern makes an important design element of the doors. (Lotus was the symbol of the King). The complete design around the door is made up of basalt stone, with Islamic arches, minars and chand as the main decoration. Symbols of the royal family like kalash, mashaal and lotus are also prominently seen around the door.

Seen in entirety, the arch-shaped entrance to the Gol Gumbaz is the gateway to a legendary monument that echoes whispers and legends alike.

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