Just what makes this mausoleum so damn good? Find out!

Photograph: Shutterstock

Photograph: Shutterstock

Gol Gumbaz is one of the finest examples of Indo-Islamic architecture in South India. The structure of this mausoleum is like that of a budding rose. Located in Bijapur, Karnataka and is the largest dome in India. Constructed by the Sultan of Bijapur, Mohammed Adil Shah, Gol Gumbaz houses his tomb as well those of his wives and children.

It took ten years (1626- 1656) for the Gol Gumbaz to be completed and was built near the shrine of Mohammed Adil Shah’s teacher, Hazrath Hashimpeer. Yaqut of Dabul designed this impressive work of architecture. While the dome alone has a diameter of about 144 ft and the height of the monument is around 167 ft, the structure has four seven-tired minarets, one on each corner, that house the staircases to reach the top. Gol Gumbaz is also one of the biggest one-chamber spaces in the country with an area of around 18,000 sq ft. One of the unique features of the Gol Gumbaz is the ‘Whispering Gallery’ that enables you to hear the slightest of noises and lowest of voices anywhere on the first level that is 3.25 meters wide. It is also one of the oldest monuments with no pillars supporting it.

Architecture has progressed leaps and bounds over time but the fact that Gol Gumbaz, which was constructed in the 17th century, still continues to hold the record for having the largest unsupported dome in India is pretty awesome, isn’t it? And that is the biggest reason why to us, Gol Gumbaz will always be the best jewel in Karnataka’s crown!