Did you know, Lahore is said to be one of the eight oldest cities of the world? The oldest record about Lahore’s existence was documented in 982. Blow your mind yet? No? You might want to check out these rather unexplored treasures of the city for more mind blowing Lahori adventures:
1. Fort Road Food Street
Surrounded by centuries old buildings and situated in the Heera Mandi neighborhood, this street is a favorite spot for hungry tourists that come and stay till very late, in the city. It draws a number of tourists visiting the Lahore Fort and its surrounding regions. From the famous Cuckoo’s Den to the very traditional Phajje ke paaye and so much more caters to your taste buds in a scenic, selfie-worthy setting.
2. Lahore Fort
Called the Shahi Qila in Urdu, this historic site is spread over more than 49 acres. This is also the firs destination for college and school trips to the city of Lahore. While originally built by the Mughal Emperor Akbar, the architecture of the sprawling estate reflects the many rulers it has had over time, including British and Sikh invaders. Not known to many, it is also a UNESCO World Heritage.
Representing a strong blend of Mughal architecture, Chauburji means ‘four towers’ and was part of a much larger garden complex, the construction of which is attributed to the Mughal Princess Zeb-un-Nisa. Sitting in the middle of a crowded, noisy intersection today this ancient marvel stands for an era of opulence and majesty.
4. Daata Durbar
One of the oldest Muslim shrines in South Asia, Daata Durbar houses the Sufi saint Abul Hassan Ali Hajveri’s remains. Large crowds of the followers and those seeking blessings from the saint are seen at all times of day and night. Apparently, the langar here tastes really good.
5. Lahore Railway Station
An important step in making Lahore a major city during the British Raj, this station was constructed between 1859 and 1860 at the cost of half a million rupees. It is the busiest railway station in Lahore and is the depiction of the lasting legacy of the British.
6. Masjid Wazir Khan
This mosque is sometimes described as the mole on the cheek of Lahore for being a sort of ‘beauty mark’ due to its intricate tile work. It was built during the reign of the Mughal Emperor Shah Jehan under the supervision of Hakim Sheikh Ilm Uddin Ansari. The mosque is best visited at dawn, with a DSLR.
7. Anarkali Bazaar
Dubai has its Souk, Istanbul has its Grand Bazaar. This is Lahore’s answer to a traditional marketplace for everything a woman can think of! Dating back at least 200 years, the place is named after the slave girl Anarkali who was buried alive by the Mughal Emperor Akbar for having love affair with the Emperor’s son, Prince Saleem.
8. Delhi Gate
Located within the walled city and built during the Mughal period, this is only one of the 13 gates of Old Lahore. The area near the gate is a historical place in which a number of old buildings, havelis and mansions are located.
9. Mubarak Haveli
This mansion is not only one of the biggest tourist attractions near the Bhatti Gate in Old Lahore, it is also a source of great intrigue for it is rumored that the Kohinoor diamond was extracted by the Afghans from this haveli.
10. Pak Tea House
The place was founded by a Sikh family in 1940 and was called the India Tea House. It was the Gloria Jean’s of the 40’s and was frequented by the country’s notably artistic, cultural and literary personalities. Recently given an overhaul, this place is a must visit for a cup of afternoon chai if you’re in that neck of the woods.
11. Jehangir’s Tomb
After his death, Mughal Emperor Jehangir was initially buried in Dilkusha Garden but his son ordered that a mausoleum befitting an emperor should be built in his honor, hence this spot which was a favorite of the late Emperor and his wife Nur Jehan, was chosen. Since then the site has remained a popular tourist attraction. It cost ten years to build the tomb and cost Rs.1,000,000.
12. The Lahore Museum
Located on Mall Road since 1894, this Museum was originally built in 1864. Sir Ganga Ram was the architect of this building and the famous writer Rudyard Kipling’s father was one of the earliest curators. Time and neglect, however, have largely left this majestic building into disrepair nowadays. Take a tour sometime, reminisce about your school visits and walk through the corridors of history.
13. Lahore High Court
While many know the Lahore High Court as the place where legal history is made, but not many are aware of the architectural marvel that the building that houses the said court is. The courtyard with the huge, ancient bor tree is a special spot for many a lawyers to take a breather amidst the beautiful setting.
14. General Post Office
Located at the end of Mall Road, near Anarkali, the General Post Office handles 20,000 pieces of mail per day (who even knew that snail mail was still a thing!). This building was also designed by the eminent architect Sir Ganga Ram.
15. Tollinton Market
The place is not just a welcome sight for anyone interested in the resplendent architecture of the place but also for those who want to shop. Now serving as a wing of the Lahore Museum, it was originally an indoor market only.
Seeing all these amazing Lahore sites one can’t help but say “jinnay Lahore nai takeya o jamiya nai” (those who haven’t seen Lahore, haven’t been born yet)!
Yeh bhee dekhein: