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Humayuns Tomb

  • Location: Opp. Dargah Nizamuddin, Mathura Road
  • Metro Station: JLN Stadium
  • Open: Daily
  • Timings: Sunrise to sunset
  • Entry Fee: 10 (Indians), 250 (foreigners)
  • Photography Charges: Nil (`25 for video filming)

The Humayun tomb belongs to the tomb of Mughal ruler Humayun. Haji Begum (Bega Begum), the 1st wife of Humayun commissioned this tomb between 1569 and 1570. Mirak Mirza Ghiyas, the Persian architect designed this mosque. This is the first and foremost garden tomb to get constructed in Indian subcontinent, situated towards the east of Nizamuddin, Delhi, besides Old Fort (Purana Qila) otherwise known as Dina-panah citadel, founded in 1533 by Humayun. This was the first and foremost structure to make use of red sandstone in such scale. In 1993, this was declared to be UNESCO World Heritage Site and later on underwent lot of restoration procedure which is carrying on even today. Apart from this main tomb, there are various small size monuments located on the pathway leading to the mosque. It starts right from main entrance and also includes the Isa Khan Niyazi tomb complex which is almost twenty years older than the Humayun tomb. It was built by Sher Shah Suri dynasty’s afghan noble who acted against Mughal and built it in the year 1547 CE.

The place was selected on Yamuna River banks because of its closeness to the Nizamuddin Dargah, which is the well known mausoleum of renowned Delhi Sufi saint, Nizamuddin Auliya. He was very much respected by Delhi rulers and his residence in the name of Chilla Nizamuddin Auliya is situated towards the north eastern direction of tomb. During later part of Mughal history, Bahadur Shar Zafar, the last known Mughal emperor took refuge at this spot along with his 3 princess during 1857 Indian Rebellion and later on captured by  Captain Hodson who exiled him to Rangoon. During Slave Dynasty, this place was covered by Kilokheri Fort, the capital of Nasiruddin’s son, Sultan Kequbad (between 1268 and 1287).

Architecture of Tomb

This high rubble shaped construct can be entered via 2 lofty double storeyed gateways situated on the south and western direction which is of 16 m high carrying rooms on both sides of passage along with small size courtyards on upper floor. The main gate is adorned with 6- sided stars. This tomb is constructed from red sandstone and rubble masonry making use of  white colored marble on outside and flooring other than door frames , jaalis (lattice screens), chhajja (eaves) for main dome. This stands on 8 metre high terrace that is wide spread in 12,000 sqmts. This is square shaped with octagonal shaped edges. There are 56 round shaped cells on the rubble core made plinth which carries approximately 100 gravestones. Along with this, the complete basal structure is located on raised platform.

It makes use of Persian Bulbous special double dome located on high neck shaped drum which is then topped by brassy finial finish in crescent. Outer layer of this double dome supports an exterior of white marble whereas the interior displays a cavernous structure. Apart from the white colored exterior dome, other part of the construct is made from yellow sandstone, black and white marble, red sandstone to get rid of monotony.

The floor plan in the inner chambers is completely contrasted to the simple and symmetrical designed exterior. There is a square shape 9 fold plan in which 8 two-storied chambers perfectly radiate from central dome which is double-height in structure. Below this white colored dome in Hujra (domed chamber), there is a central octagonal shaped burial chamber carrying Humayun’s cenotaph. One can reach this place via a small recessed entrance located on the southern direction whereas the other directions are decorated with lattice work made from intricate stones.

The actual Emperor burial chamber is situated slightly far from this underground chamber, correctly under upper cenotaph. This place can be reached via a secluded passage which lies outside main structure and remains close for public. One can trace out marble made inlay ornamentation, pietra dura around the façade, the significant legacy of Indo-Islamic architecture which was flourished in various mausolea of Mughal Empire like Taj Mahal.

Best Time to Visit

The ideal time to visit this place is between October and March when weather remains pleasant. At this time, flowers bloom to its best and weather remains enjoyable and pleasant to experience this incredible Delhi.

How to Reach

By Air

There are many international and domestic flights from various parts of main Indian cities and also outside India. All major airlines operate their flights from the well known Indira Gandhi International Airport, New Delhi. All major Indian cities are connected to Delhi through domestic airport.

By Train

The networks of railways connect Delhi to all major and minor cities in India. There are three significant railway stations in Delhi under the name of Hazrat Nizamuddin railway station, Old Delhi railway station and New Delhi railway station.

By Road

All major Indian cities are well connected to Delhi with a network of national highways and roads. The major bus terminals in Delhi are Anand Vihar Bus Terminus, Sarai Kale-Khan Bus Terminus and ISBT (Inter State Bus Terminus). Both private and government transport providers operate frequent buses. One can also hire private and government taxis at this place.

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