Top 10 Stunning Ancient Indian Architectural Astonishments

Long before the modern science contributed in creating wonders all around the world, India had to its credit a long list of ancient architectural wonders and marvels. The influence of various empires and cultures that once ruled India and its various parts is easily visible on the architectural style and the designs. From temples, mosques, churches to forts, palaces and some of world’s earliest universities- India is a house to all these and many more. During the ancient and medieval era, the structures that were built in this part of the world can blow away anybody’s mind. The magnanimous creations were a continuous effort of the workers and reflected the farsightedness of the people of that era.


rajasthan-collage Image Source-

Being a land of wonders and diversities at every stone away, India is a hub for the tourists around the globe and has marveled the beauty of the different wonders that are available here. The architectural splendor, sense and grandeur of India are too majestic and regal to believe on your eyes. Here is a list of the beautiful ancient architectural astonishment of India which you must definitely pay a visit to:

Taj Mahal

bridge Image Source-

Being the finest example of Indo-Islamic architecture, Taj Mahal was built between in between the years 1631 and 1648 on the orders of the then Mughal Emperor, Shah Jahan. Carved and build in the memory of the beloved wife of Shah Jahan, Mumtaz Mahal, Taj Mahal today stands as a significant epitome of love, heartfelt passion and excellent architecture. Surrounded with extraordinary Mughal gardens in around 17 hectares of land, this structure is a unique blend of Persian, Islamic and Indian architectural styles. The grandeur of the structure is such that even after hundreds of years, it is being regarded as one of the most eye-catching and attention-grabbing man-made monuments of the world.


 Image Source-

The precious and semi-precious stones, that were used by around 20,000 workers in building this historic monument makes it shine on the moonlight and gives a speechless view to the on-lookers.  Every scientific measure were taken into considerations while building this monument as a result of which it has been erected in a way that it can withstand natural calamities such as earthquake. Don’t miss out watching this structure the next time you land in India and do pay close attention to its structure and architecture; you will be simply floored down.

Nalanda Ruins

article-2278200-178f175f000005dc-22_634x400Image Source-

The ruins of Nalanda University, one of the most famous ancient universities of the world, are an attraction for many people. Located in Bihar, the university was established by the rulers of the Gupta Dynasty. It was a center of learning for people all around the globe. The famous Chinese pilgrim, Hiuen-Tsang, spent around 2 years in their university and also mentioned about it and its strict disciplines in his writings. Covering an area of about 14 acres the Nalanda University had about 10,000 students and 2,000 teachers, (huge number for that period!). It also had a nine-storied building which itself was something spectacular for the time it was built.


Image Source-

Although it was destroyed and brought to ruins by Bakhtiyar Khiljiin 1200 CE, the architecture of the university and its brilliance still leaves the travelers in awe. The well-maintained libraries, wonderful garden inside the premise, great and intricate designs on the walls of the ruins and other remains still attract a large number of tourists from all around the world to this epochal site. Talks of its restoration are on and we might keep our fingers crossed while thinking of having the university restored with its architectural marvel again in place.

Ruins of Hampi

krishna_pushkarani_-_hampi_ruinsImage Source-

Hampi is located in Karnataka, India and contains one of the largest archaeological sites of India. It is one among the several UNESCO World Heritage Sites of India and is also the most searched historical place on Google in 2014. This village is home to one of the famous ancient historical chapters of India. It contains the ruins of the city of Vijaynagar, which was the capital of the ancient Indian Vijaynagar Empire, known for its prosperity and luxuriousness. The village today has the ruins of the temples, the civil buildings of the era and structures like the Zanana Enclosures, Elephant Stables and other.

2ec0mqrImage Source-

The Lotus Mahal, balance canals and other archaeological sites reflected the wonderful architecture of the era which basically used the Dravidian style. Among other ruins and spectacular architecture of the region, the Musical Pillars and the Stone Chariot never fails to astonish the tourists with its charm and excellence. It captivates your attention marvelously and takes you back to the prosperous era of Vijaynagar Empire with its surreal and fantastic features.

Konark Sun Temple


Image Source-

Built in the 13th Century by the Eastern Ganga Dynasty, the Konark Sun Temple is located in the current state of Odisha, India. It is also known as the Black Pagoda and is listed among the World Heritage Sites of UNESCO. It is dedicated to the Sun and is built in a shape of an Indian chariot with 24 wheels carved around the temple and the chariot is dragged by 7 gigantic horses. The architectural sense of the people of the era is well-reflected through the temple’s design and the materials used to design it. The 24 wheels were carved out of stones and were used to denote the time according to the position of the Sun. The Kalinga style of architecture was adopted by them which are evident from the intricate and elaborate carvings.


Image Source-

The temple structure which erects high today is only a shadow of the massive structure that was built by the Ganga Dynasty and was destroyed around the 19th century. A heavy magnet was placed at the top of the temple and every two carved stones of the temple were sandwiched by iron plates which caused them to float in the air, adding to the extravagant appeal of the temple. The grandeur of the structure and the brilliance with which it was made reflects the architectural intelligence of the people of the era.

Ajanta & Ellora Caves


Image Source-

Build around 2500 years ago, by the skilled Indian craftsmen in the bosom of the Sahayadri Mountain Range which is about 250 miles away from Mumbai, India. The caves are known for its excellent and elaborate carvings into the hillside rocks. The sculptures and the paintings inside the cave is what grab the attention of the tourists. These breathtaking sites are sheer beauty and add an excellent aura to the mesmerizing environment. These caves are the perfect example of the architectural excellence and elaborate workmanship. Being listed among the UNESCO’s World Heritage Sites, these exotic caves represents the unrivaled brilliance and architectural understanding of ancient Indians.


Image Source-

The rock-cut art, the sculptures and the excellent interior reflects the rich essence of the Hindu architecture. Its location and its paramount tranquility has made it a perfect example of engineering excellence and unsurpassed imaginative power and efforts put on by the people of the bygone days. You ought to check its sheer beauty once in your lifetime to get acquainted with what true Indian art is all about.

Golconda Fort


Image Source-

The Golconda Fort of Hyderabad, India is extremely popular for its rich architecture and exclusive designs. The city of Golconda in the early days was known for its trade of diamonds. It is also said that the famous ‘Kohinoor’ diamond originated here. Built in 1143 AD by the Kakatiya rulers, this Golconda fort was later fortified for security reasons by Quli Qutub Shahi in 1507 AD. The acoustics system of the fort makes it a topmost attraction of the region. This system also makes it a unique architectural structure of the era.


Image Source-

The numerous halls, apartments, acoustic system, parade grounds and the mosque of the fort are its main highlights. The fort has eight gates, with the main gate being the Fateh Darwaza, a sign of victorious march of Kind Aurangzeb, the famous Mughal ruler. The main gate is of 13 ft. width and 25 ft. length and is carved in Nawabi style. Constructed on a hill, the fort is known for its architectural splendor. The delightful monument is a treat for everyone and is a must visit for all history lovers.

Jantar Mantar


Image Source-

The monument is listed among the UNESCO World Heritage Sites of India and is known for its brilliant geometric architecture. Constructed in the 18th century, by the then ruler, Maharaja Jai Singh, the Jantar Mantar, located in Jaipur, houses fourteen different geometric devices which were used back then to compute the time of the day. It is for this monument, that India is known to be an adobe of the largest sundial on the planet. It lags behind only for two seconds in calculating the actual local time. Being the biggest observatory of the world, this monument is a perfect example of the wonderful blend of science and art together. It signifies the technical and architectural brilliance of the people of the medieval world.


Image Source-

Visiting this monument gives you a clear idea of how the time was calculated in the medieval era and the eclipses were predicted through which concept also becomes clear to you. Although a bit complex, this device was accurately used in that time for calculating the time precisely. If you are interested in science and architecture, then this is the perfect place for you to plan your trip.

Jal Mahal


Image Source-

Jal Mahal which means ‘Water Palace’ is one of the most spectacular and magnificent architectural wonders of Jaipur, India. Located amidst the Man Sagar Lake, this palace reflects the perfect blend of Mughal and Rajputana craftsmanship and style. Built in the 18th century by Jai Singh II, this five storied structure gives an enchanting view of the lake and the surrounding Nahargarh hills. The most captivating fact about the palace is that its four floors lie under the water and only the fifth floor is seen above the water. The appealing architecture and the attractive view of the mahal is what magnetize the history buffs and the photo fanatics to visit this mahal.



Image Source-

The picturesque view of the region and the amazing treat that it gives to your eyes make it must visit for all. Plan your trip to this palace and enjoy a wooden boat ride to cruise across the lake of this stunning monument. The royal architecture and the majestic view is too tempting to miss out.

Mysore Palace


Image Source-

Mysore Palace or Mysore Maharaja Palace is located in the heart of Mysore, India. It is one of the most visited and largest palaces of the country. The Indo-Saracenic style of the palace reflects the mesmerizing culmination of Hindu, Islam, Rajput and Gothic style of architecture. The original palace was built of wood which got burnt down in 1897, what stands today was designed by the renowned British architect, Henry Irwin. The three-storied stone structure is awesome and impressive art which houses exquisite carvings and brilliant crafts from all around the world.


Image Source-

The palace is Kaleidoscope of stained glass & mirrors and is now turned into a museum which houses treasured souvenirs, paintings and royal costumes among others. This is a visual treat for the visitors. The royal splendor of the structure gives you a jaw-dropping experience give introduces you with the exquisite architectural excellence of the region.

Hawa Mahal


Image Source-

Hawa Mahal or the ‘Palace Of The Winds’ of Jaipur is one of the most attractive and brilliant attractions of the city. This five-storied palace built by Maharaja Sawai Pratap Singh in 1799 is an excellent art work of that era. Built of red and pink sandstone, the architecture of this palace is too intricate and elaborate to pay a visit to. The pyramid shape of the mahal and the 953 windows or ‘Jharokhas’ decorated with intricate designs are the major highlights of the structure. The main reason behind the construction of the palace was to facilitate the royal women to take a view of the everyday life of the general people, as they were not allowed to appear in public.


Image Source-

The castle is designed in a beehive design with small windows. It gives an excellent view of the entire city and the design of the structure was done in a way to allow the easy passage of air in the palace. The elegant and sophisticated look of the palace and its sheer magnitude gives a perfect example of excellent architecture and great design.

Header Image Source-

Share the joy

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *