Qutub Minar

Qutub Minar is the tallest individual tower in the world and second tallest monument of Delhi which is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Updated: June 20, 2020

Qutub Minar is the tallest individual tower in the world and second tallest monument of Delhi which is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. it is located in Mehrauli and its construction was started in 1192 by Qutb Ud-Din-Aibak, founder of Delhi Sultanate. Later, the tower was built by various rulers over the centuries. The sight of this glorious monument takes you back to the rich history of India. The Qutub Minar, also spelled as Qutab Minar, or Qutb Minar, is a minaret that forms part of the Qutab complex. Qutub Minar is a 73-metre or 239.5 feet tall tapering tower of five storeys, with a 14.3 metres (47 feet) base diameter, reducing to 2.7 metres (9 feet) at the top of the peak. It contains a spiral staircase of 379 steps. Its design is based on the Minaret of Jam, in western Afghanistan.  

The Minar is surrounded by several historically significant monuments of the Qutab complex, including Quwat-ul-Islam Mosque that was built at the same time as the Minar, and the much older Iron Pillar of Delhi. The nearby pillared Cupola known as 'Smith's Folly' is a remnant of the tower's 19th century restoration. The place will surely compel you to immerse deeper into India's past and admire the vintage architecture as you roam around. It is a favourite picnic spot for Delhiites where they just relax with the Minar in the backdrop. Also, the opulent Qutub Festival which boast about the glory of the tower is a major attraction for tourists. 

The Qutub Complex consists of various historical structures built decades ago depicting the rich history of Delhi. The other monuments you should definitely explore near Qutub Minar are:

Quwwat-ul-Islam mosque:

This was the first mosque of India which was constructed from the parts of the Hindu and Jain temples which were destroyed under the Islamic rule. It was built by Qutb-ud-din Aibak, founder of the Mamluk or Slave dynasty.

Alai Darwaza:

It is the main gateway from the southern side of the Quwwat-ul-Islam Mosque which has domes decorated with red sandstones and white marbles. It was built by the second Ala-ud-din Khilji in 1311 AD.

Iron Pillar:

The pillar was constructed by Chandragupta II Vikramaditya which is 7.21-metre high and weighs more than six tonnes. The fascinating fact about the Iron Pillar is that it has not been rusted since the day it was erected.

Tomb of Iltutmish:

Iltutmish was the second Sultan of Delhi. In the centre of the tomb, the main cenotaph of white marble is placed on a raised platform. It has awe-inspiring Islamic architecture.  

Alai Minar:

Alai Minar was started by Alauddin Khilji. He wanted it to be two times higher than Qutub Minar. However, after his death in 1316, the monument was never completed by his successors.The first storey of the Alai Minar still stands today at Qutub Complex.

Other captivating monuments like the Tomb of Adham Khan, Moti Masjid and Zafar Mahal are also found inside the complex.

The Qutub Festival, held in Qutub Minar in November or December is organized jointly by the Delhi Tourism and Transport Development Corporation and the Sahitya Kala Parishad. It is a three-day festival to celebrate the magnificence of the monument and flaunt its past glory to the entire world. With three days of music and dance revitalize, Qutub Minar gets both national and international attention in this festival that it deserves. 

Qutub Minar remains open for tourists all days except Sunday. The timings are- 10:00 AM to 5:00 PM. The entry fees for Indians is INR 10 while for foreigners, it is INR 250.

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