The magnificent monuments and palaces of the city of nawabs had always attracted me and finally when I was there I could not afford to miss any edifice of the city. The architecture of the structure Bara Imambara Lucknow had always fascinated me in my initial days of civil engineering. Finally getting a chance to visit the place in person I thought of starting our tour by going to Bara Imambara only.
Impossible to wander inside without a guide, we joined a tourist group led by a local guide who led us into the shrine telling the history of the place and the construction of the edifice. Built by Nawab Asaf-ud-Daula in 1784, this building stands as an evidence of the contemporary architecture of the era. The guide took us into the different sections of the building showing us the grand Asafi mosque, the bowli and the famous labyrinth— the bhulbhulaiya. The labyrinth is a complicated snare of zig-zag passages which is impossible to get through without a proper guidance. The dark passageways of it were indeed a little spooky, intensified with the historical background provided by our guide. The tourists were asked to make a line led by the guide and one of his assistant was walking behind the line. If led alone even the elders would be lost into the complex entanglement. The long corridors of the maze finally lead to a roof from where the whole city of Lucknow becomes visible. The harem for the Begam and the lavish bath room are the specimen of great engineering and architectural skill. The large vaulted chamber which contains Asaf-ud Daula’s tomb is amongst the biggest arched construction of the world with no beams to support the ceiling. The architect of this construction, Kifayatullah, also lies buried in the main hall of Imambara beside Asaf-ud Daula.
After the visual treat of Bara Imambara Lucknow it was finally time for us to return. Collecting huge memories of the place captured in our cameras we returned to our hotel to give some rest to ourselves for we had to visit other renowned places of Lucknow. The pictures of the imambara and the sections within it like the Asafi masjid, the cental hall, the bhulbhulaiya came really nice. The onset being quite good I was hoping our whole trip to be enjoyable.