The Jama Masjid situated in Ahmedabad is one of the largest mosques in India built in the period of 1424. This marvellous edifice formed a major part of the old walled city and was built by Emperor Sultan Ahmed Shah, who is the founder of the Ahmedabad. In addition to being a revered shrine, Jama Masjid also houses the tombs of Ahmed Shah I, his son and his grandson followed by the graves of the queens of the king.
One of the most historic monuments in the history of the city, the Jama Masjid was one of the most anticipated mosques of Ahmad Shah I. The foundation of the building was laid down in the year 1411 and meticulous work led to its completion on January 4, 1424. It was the largest mosque to have been built at that time and was built as an exclusive prayer hall for the royalty. The mosque suffered some damage in the year 1819 when the two principal minarets adjacent to the main arched entrance collapsed. However, their lower portions are still intact.
Situated in the middle of the Old City, Jama Masjid is a harmonious example of Hindu and Muslim architecture styles. Gentle lotus carvings lie akin to detailed lattice designs and blend in perfectly. The mosque is built out of yellow sandstone with the central courtyard being 75 metres long and 66 metres wide. Evenly spaced columns adorning Arabic calligraphy surround the main courtyard on three sides, while the fourth side has the main prayer hall. The courtyard itself is built out of dazzling white marble and has a water tank containing holy water within its confines.
The main prayer room is also rectangular and embellished with four magnificent domes. The interior, as well as the exterior, is ornamented with classical Indo-Saracenic motifs. Domes of the Jama Masjid are carved like lotus flowers resemble the Jain style of architecture, while the pillars here are carved like bells which is typical to Hindu temples. Detailed carvings embellish the 260 columns supporting the roof. The Wall of Prayer or the Qibla is beautifully decorated as well. Towards the west of the Jama Masjid lies the cenotaph of Ahmed Shah I, his son and his grandson, Ahmed Shah's Tomb, where you can pay your respects to them. The serenity of this place a welcome change from the din of the bubbling city that lies just outside, and is the perfect place to call upon the Divine.
Best time to visit during the day are morning and evening hours. The weather here is pleasant from October - March.
Nearest bus stop to the mosque is Navrangpura which is about 200 meters away, from where you can take the bus. In addition to this, you can also take an auto rickshaw or taxi to reach your destination.
The experience of the mosque is especially wonderful for architecture lovers and spiritual seekers. The quaint atmosphere of the mosque coupled with the regal architecture of this place is a soulful experience.
1. Liquor and tobacco are prohibited on the premises
2. Maintain decorum in the shrine
3. Cover your head before you enter the premises
4. Remove your footwear outside the mosque
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