Apr 082013
Oh how I adore India's Little Taj Mahal!

Oh how I adore India’s Little Taj Mahal!

I have a new favorite building! When our India tour leader declared that we were headed for the “Little Taj Mahal” in Delhi, it was clear we were in for something astounding. However, not one of us was prepared for the caramel-colored confection that soon burst into sight.

Behold, stunning Humayun’s Tomb!

Even the grounds are pretty. Here, my brother stands atop the main building.

Even the grounds are pretty. Here, my brother stands atop the main building.

Humayun’s Tomb was completed in 1572 C.E. and was commissioned by Bega Begum, the first wife of Mughal Emperor Humayun to bury Humayun after his passing in 1556. It was the first garden-tomb on the Indian subcontinent, thus lending inspiration to the famed Taj Mahal.

You BETTER NOT bring any "Eatables" into the building!

You BETTER NOT bring any “Eatables” into the building!

As you likely can tell, Humayun’s Tomb is built with Islamic style by a Persian architect. It is constructed from glowing red sandstone and white marble that change color with the shifting sun. At its highest point, the building is 300 feet tall. Amazing!

Such intricate architecture at Humayun's Tomb.

Such intricate architecture at Humayun’s Tomb.

Though Humayun’s Tomb looks serene and stately now, it actually functioned as a refugee camp for five years after the 1947 Partition of India for Muslims fleeing to the newly-created country of Pakistan. Given that Humayun’s Tomb is nearly 500 years old and housed countless migrating people, hats off to the preservation and restoration crews of India for bringing back the building’s former glory!

I look teeny, making a muscle atop the building.

I look teeny, making a muscle atop the building.

My little brother and I wasted no time in sprinting off to take novelty photos. Idea number one consisted of my dear sibling running to the middle of the main walkway while I bounded up the steps and then posed (looking all tiny from afar) making a muscle under the main arch. Idea number two was to have my 6’7″ little bro pretend to enter the wee doors (sadly locked) at the base of the edifice. Funny!

Hehe-- My super-tall brother looked funny pretending to enter a tiny door.

Hehe… My super-tall brother looked funny pretending to enter a tiny door.

We entered the building itself and gasped in awe. Sun streamed in through windows, which were pattered like lace. High above, the intricate rainbow ceiling smiled down. Feast upon these photos!

The inside of Humayun's Tomb has lovely pattered windows.

The inside of Humayun’s Tomb has lovely pattered windows.

Isn't this an amazing ceiling pattern?

Isn’t this an amazing ceiling design?

Look closely... Can you see me balancing on one leg high atop the building?

Look closely… Can you see me balancing on one leg high atop the building?

My brother and I loved the visit.

My brother and I loved the visit.

All three of us loved touring beautiful Humayun's Tomb.

Colin, David, and I adored touring beautiful Humayun’s Tomb.

Can you see why Humayun’s Tomb is one of my new favorite buildings, right up there with the Mezquita of Cordoba, Spain, and the #1 Sexiest Building of Boston? It’s an unmissable sight when visiting India.

So what about you? Do you enjoy this type of architecture? What are your favorite buildings around the world? Do share!

It's such a great building...

What a gorgeous building.


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  21 Responses to “Loving India’s Little Taj Mahal: Humayun’s Tomb”

  1. I absolutely loved this place. It’s so photogenic!

  2. What a gorgeous looking place! I can totally see why you got to adore it!

  3. We visited her on our way to its big brother, its a great warm up act for the big thing, the restoration that has been done is superb. Looks like you got a super bright day to photograph it, I am jealous.

    • Ah yes, if you are alluding to the oppressive air pollution in India, this was one of the VERY few semi-clear days we observed.

  4. lol eatables

  5. We just did a tour with some 30 expats few days ago of Humayun’s Tomb, it’s wonderful. On April 18, 2013, which is World Heritage Day, there is a function at Humayun’s Tomb. Does anyone know more details…

  6. It looks splendid — but “little” seems relative!

  7. Funny you mentioned Còrdoba. I couldn’t help thinking that the interior looked a lot like the Mezquita and the Alcázar of Seville. Passed it along to a friend who booked a trip to India on a whim and upon returning, another!

  8. I’d never heard of Humayun’s Tomb before but these photos look great, I’ll have to add that to a list of places to see in India!

  9. It’s always great to learn of these sights that are lesser known, but no less beautiful 🙂

    • India has so many phenomenal sights that tons get lost in the shuffle. If another country had even one of the “lesser-known” gems, it would be a must-see!

  10. Maybe your best photos EVER! Such a gorgeous building – and helped that we were there during the golden hour 🙂

  11. What a great find! I love the warm colours of this little Taj compared to it’s big sister!

  12. There is actually another “Little Taj Mahal” too – it is outside Mumbai, near the Ajanta and Ellora Caves. That one was built by one of the sons, and is a white, miniature version of the Taj in Agra.

  13. what an amazing place! love the teeny door and your very tall brother!

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