Gulbarga ( Karnataka , South India)
Gulbarga has since ancient times been a major strategic town. It has several historical monuments and hence holds prominence on the touristic map of India, particularly Karnataka. This historical city rose to prominence under the Bahmani dynasty founded by Hasan Gangu. It is the oldest field of Gondwana plateau which broke up to become the Deccan Peninsula. The town is associated with beautiful synthesis of two cultures. A Hindu city before the Muslim conquest, the fort of Gulbarga was originally built by Raja Gulchand. It has a harmonious blend of both cultures, with 15 towers and 26 guns witnessing several battles.
Jumma Masjid is huge mosque built by Feroze Shah on the lines of the great mosque of Cardova in Spain. The tomb of Sufi saint Khwaja Syed Mohammad Gesu Daraf, popularly known as Khwaja Banda Nawaz is an exquisite monument. A mosque, a sarai (dharmashala) and a college are located near the tomb. Situated near a vast tank is the shrine of Sharana Basaveshwara, which has become a famous pilgrim centre attracting thousands of devotees and visitors. The saint came to Gulbarga in the 18th century when the city was under a grip of famine. He engaged himself in feeding the poor.
There are many worth visiting tourist destinations around Gulbarga.
Ganagapur: A small village, 38 kms from Gulbarga and on the banks of Bhima river, Gangapur is famous for the worship of Dattatreya. Dattatreya is considered as the incarnation of Lord Vishnu or the all powerful Trinity Brahma, Vishnu and Maheshwar. In the shrine, the Nijaguma Paduka is worshipped. The river Amarja confluences with Bhima near this place and the Sangama (confluence) has a sacred fig tree Audumbara Vriksha representing Dattatreya. The place is visited by thousands of devotees from all parts of Karnataka and Maharashtra.
Shorapur: 42 kms from Gulbarga and surrounded by hillocks on all sides, Shorapur is a historical place. Meadows Taylor, the renowned novelist, lived here. His bungalow is called Taylor Manzil. The Taylor Manzil is preserved as a guest house. The landscape around this hillock is enchanting. Very near to the hillock is the Jaladurga waterfall and Narayanpur Dam where the river Krishna cascades into the ravine below. As beautiful picnic centre, it attracts many holiday seekers. Sonthi is another pilgrim centre on the banks of Bhima river which has the famous Chandralamba temple.
How to reach Gulbarga:
Gulbarga is connected by rail and road from Bangalore, Mumbai and Delhi. A number of buses from Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh and Maharashtra operate in these routes. Very good lodging facility is available in Gulbarga which can be made as the base for visiting the places around. Auto-rickshaws are available for local transport.