Location: Bijapur city
Built In: 1566
Built By: Yusuf Adil Shah
Dynasty: Adil Shahi
The Bijapur Fort stands majestically in the city of Bijapur, in Bijapur district of Karnataka. The fort was built during the reign of Yusuf Adil Shah in 1566. The reign of Adil Shah of the Adil Shahi dynasty is regarded as the golden period in the history of Bijapur. Shahi dynasty of Bijapur rose to eminence in the Deccan region after defeating Vijayanagar king in the Battle of Talikota. The Jama masjid was built to commemorate the victory over Vijayanagara kingdom. During their 200 years rule over Bijapur, the Adil Shahi kings devoted their time and energy in building many monuments of architectural grandeur. Every Shahi king made sure that he surpassed his predecessor in constructing monuments, be it in size, number or architectural splendor. Due to a plethora of monuments seen around Bijapur city it is often referred to as the Agra of South India. Scroll down and collect more information about the Bijapur Fort.
Bijapur Fort Karnataka India
History of the Fort
The impressive monument of Bijapur Fort was built by the founder of Adil Shahi dynasty, Yusuf Adil Shah in 1566. Faroukh Mahal and the Arkilla were the other monuments built by Yusuf Adil Shah. Before Shahi dynasty, Bijapur was known Vijayapura meaning the city of victory and was ruled by Kalyani Chalukyas in the 10th and 11th century. By 13th century, Bijapur came under the possession of Khilji Sultanate of Delhi. Later in 1347, Bahmani Sultanate of Gulbarga established its supremacy over Bijapur and the territory came to be known as Bijapur or Vijapur. After the death of Yusuf Adil Shah in 1510, his son Ibrahim Adil Shah made the most significant contribution in strengthening the Bijapur Fort and built Jama Masjid inside its premises. His successor, Ali Adil Shah I, formed an alliance with Muslim rulers of the Deccan and successfully defeated Vijayanagara king. Ali Adil Shah I built several monuments such as Chand Bawdi, Ali Rauza and Gagan Mahal from the plundered wealth of Vijayanagara Kingdom. During Ali Adil Shah II rule, there were internal power struggle and thus began the decline of Shahi Dynasty. Bijapur fell came under the possession of the Marathas. In 1686, Mughal Emperor Aurangzeb finally conquered the kingdom of Bijapur and thus ended the 200 years old Adil Shahi dynasty.
Architectural Layout Of The Fort
The architecture of Bijapur fort is a synthesis of many styles of that era. Yusuf Adil Shah built the fort with the help of skilled artisans and architects brought from Rome, Turkey and Persia. The materials used for the monument are lime mortar and granites. There are five main gates namely the Allahpur gate on the east, the Fateh gate on the south-east, Makka gate on the west, the Bahmani gate on the north and the Shahapur gate on the north-west. The fort contains over ninety-six huge bastions adorned with crenellations and two moats. The imposing wall of this structure lies at the height of 50 feet and are 25 feet in width. The vicinity of the fort is dotted with many mahals, tombs, mosques and gardens. The fort houses some magnificent structures such as the Gagan Mahal, the Tomb of Ali Rauza Arkilla, Chand Bawdi Jumma Masjid, Jal Mahal, Mahatar Mahal and Malikah-e-Jahan Mosque. It is estimated that the Adil Shahi dynasty had built over 20 palaces, 50 mosques and 20 tombs during their 200 years reign in Bijapur.
Major Battles Or Events Associated With The Fort
- Shahi dynasty of Bijapur defeated Vijayanagar ruler in the Battle of Talikota.
- Following the siege of Bijapur in 1686, Mughal Emperor Aurangzeb finally conquered the kingdom of Bijapur, putting an end to the 200 year old Adil Shahi dynasty.
Bijapur fort is under the jurisdiction of Government of Karnataka. The fort today lay in ruins and there are reports of utter neglect by the authorities.
Best Time to Visit
The best time to visit Bijapur fort is during winter months when the weather remains cool and pleasant i.e. during the period between November and February.
How to Reach
- Bijapur Fort is well connected by road, railway and airport to the rest of the country.
- There are plenty of buses available from Hubli, Gadag and Bangalore.
- Bijapur railway station is located just 2 km away from the city and is connected to all major cities such as Bangalore, Mumbai, Hyderbad and Hubli.
- The nearest airport is Belgaum Airport, located at a distance of about 205 Km.
Around The Fort
Other interesting tourist attractions near the fort are Sangeet Nari Mahal, Saatkabar. Jamia Masjid, Ibrahim Rauza, Mehtar Mahal, Barakaman, Gagan Mahal, Asar Mahal and Taj Bawdi.
The Bijapur Fort recounts the 200 years long reign of Adil Shahi dynasty in Bijapur. This massive structure of Shahi dynasty today lay frozen in time. With the gardens, passages, halls and citadels, the fort is an interesting spot for any architecture lovers who will certainly appreciate the artistic splendor of bygone era.