Aurangabad

Named after the Mughal emperor Aurangzeb, Aurangabad is tagged as the Tourism Capital of Maharashtra.  Moreover, the name Aurangabad also means ‘city built by royalty’. Aurangabad is located in the state of Maharashtra, India. The city boasts of the UNESCO World Heritage Sites, the Ajanta Caves and Ellora Caves and other historical monuments such as Bibi Ka Maqbara and Panchakki.

The city is famous for its silk saris and is situated on the ‘Silk Route of India’ which connects various ports to the Deccan region of the country. Aurangabad is famous for its cultural diversity and is dotted with numerous ancient monuments, palaces and tombs.

Exquisite handicraft items and metal goods also occupy a large portion of the market and add another feather in the cap of Aurangabad. Idols carved from metals like iron and copper, crafted in accordance with the age-old art, are handed down from generation to generation here. This city is also known as the ‘City of Gates’, with as many as 13 gates scattered all around the city.

Weather

The summer season sets in during the month of March and lasts till the month of May. During this period, the temperature of the city generally varies from a minimum of 27°C to a maximum of 31°C.

Monsoon is also a nice time to visit the city of Aurangabad as the temperature remains nearly 35°C during this time. The monsoon rains generally start in July and last till the end of September. If visiting during the monsoon, rain gear is an absolute necessity.

Winters start in November and last till February. Aurangabad remains chilly as the temperature often drops down to 10°C. Most tourists visit Aurangabad in winters. The best time to visit Aurangabad is between October to March as during this time the city remains pleasant and green.

How to Reach

When it comes to connectivity, Aurangabad is well-connected to other major Indian cities by air, road and rail.

Chikalthana Airport is located at a distance of merely 11 km from the city of Aurangabad and is linked with the major cities of India.

Aurangabad is served by two bus stations namely Central Bus station and CIDCO bus station, located around 6 km away from each other. Both government and private buses, operate daily services, thereby connecting the city to other major Indian cities by road.

Aurangabad has direct rail links to important Indian cities like Mumbai, New Delhi, Pune, Hyderabad, etc.

Key attractions/Sightseeing

Bibi Ka Maqbara: A near-replica of the famous Taj Mahal with the essence of a son’s priceless emotions imbibed gives birth to Bibi-ka-Maqbara, an amazing mausoleum in Aurangabad. It is dedicated to the warm memories of Aurangazeb’s wife, Rabia-ul-Durani and is an exceptional effort on the part of a son, Prince Azim Shah, to express his unparalleled love for his mother.

The mausoleum has stood the test of time. The Bibi-ka-Maqbara is made of sandstone with plastered walls and stands at the centre of a huge enclosure engulfed by gardens and lawns. The high enclosure wall is interspersed with pointed arches and bastions. The mausoleum is positioned on a high platform with four minarets at its corners. A mosque is found to the west of the main structure and the tomb of Rabia-ul-Durani is placed below the ground, surrounded by an exquisitely-designed, octagonal marble screen. The tips of the pillars are made of red stone and the sun’s first rays on the mausoleum leave its enchanting reflection on the water.

Paithan: Located on the banks of the Godavari River, Paithan is a city positioned approximately 56 km south of Aurangabad. One could explore this small yet wonderful city on foot. Glimpses of Paithan’s glorious past get slowly unveiled in the bends and corners of the city.

A number of sightseeing options can also be enjoyed here by tourists. Some of the well-known attractions among them are the Eknath Maharaj Temple, Nathsagar Dam, Jayakwadi Bird Sanctuary, Jnanyeshwari Vatika and the Paithani Kendra. The Jayakwadi Bird Sanctuary is a paradise for bird-watchers. Built on the lines of the famous Vrindavan Gardens in Mysore, the Jnanyeshwar Vatika is popular for its puppet and musical fountain shows. Paithani Kendra is famous for its exquisite collection of hand-woven, Paithani silk sarees.

Panchakki (Water Mill): To commemorate the Muslim saint Baba Shah Muzzafar, Panchakki was built in 1624 A.D. Panchakki dates back to some Mughal period that was built to commemorate the Muslim saint. It is one of the famous Ajanta attractions.

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