Varanasi is popular for its temples and ghats, but here is a mosque that was built over a temple! Let us know more about Gyanvapi mosque in Varanasi.
Kashi Viswanath Temple in Varanasi has been demolished and reconstructed several times. After it was demolished by the Mughal emperor Aurangazeb, he constructed Gyanvapi mosque in 1669, on the remnants of the temple, and the temple had to be reconstructed on an adjacent plot.
Architecture of Gyanvapi Mosque
Since the mosque was built on the ruins of a temple, the architecture of the mosque is a fusion of Mughal and Hindu styles. The remnant temple is visible in the foundation, columns and the rear part of the mosque. The entrance of the mosque has a vague resemblance to that of Taj Mahal in Agra, and the minarets are around 71m high, out of which one was demolished in the natural calamity that happened here in 1948.
Photo Courtesy: kawanet
Today, Kashi Viswanath Temple and Gyanvapi Mosque exist close to each other, reflecting religious harmony and peace. There is a well named Gyanvapi between the temple and the mosque, which is considered as an auspicious one by the Hindus as the well is believed to be the place where a Shivalinga is hidden when the mosque was constructed.
It is believed that the ruins of the temple was used to construct the Mosque. Gyanvapi is one of the popular attractions of Varanasi today, and is visited by tourists only to marvel the stunning structure that was built on another structure. Only Muslims are allowed inside the mosque, but visitors can breathe in the splendid sight from outside.
Photo Courtesy: John Edward Sache
Other Popular Attractions to Visit in Varanasi
There are some tourist attractions that you should explore next to Gyanvapi Mosque. Some of them are Dashashwamedh Ghat, Manikarnika Ghat, Ramnagar Museum, Durga Temple and the Jain Temples among the rest.
Best Time to Visit Varanasi
October to March is considered the best time to visit this holy city, as this is the time the climate is mild and favourable, and the city is in its festive mood.
Click here to know how to reach Varanasi!