Bhopal has a number of tourist attractions. There are a number of important mosques, but the most revered is the Taj-ul-Masjid, which is the largest mosque in India. The Jama Masjid and the Moti Masjid of Bhopal are other important mosques built by the local Begums in the 19th century. Shaukat Mahal and Sadar Manzil, located in the chowk area, in the heart of the old walled city, are other important tourist attractions. While Shaukat Mahal is a strange mixture of Indo-Islamic and European style of architecture, Sadar Manzil is a hall used by the local rulers for public audience. Bhopal is famous for Bharat Bhavan, a marvel of modern architecture and a museum of tribal and contemporary art forms and breeding ground for traditional dance, music and drama. The Tribal Habitat or Manav Sangrahalaya (the Museum of Man), located on Shamala hills of Bhopal, is an open-air museum depicting tribal dwellings, from all parts of India. The tranquil Upper Lake and the Lower Lake are important tourist spots with boating and sailing facilities. The Government Archeological Museum near the Lower Lake, the chowk at the heart of the old city, Van Vihar local safari park near the Upper Lake, and the Aquarium are other places worth visiting within the city limits. The Lakshmi Narayan Temple (or the Birla Mandir) and the adjacent local museum on the Arera hills are other sites to be visited.
Places Around Bhopal
Bhopal has a number of historical places around it. Islamnagar, 11 km from Bhopal, is famous for its buildings made by Dost Mohammed. Twenty-eight kilometer southeast of Bhopal is the ancient city of Bhojpur. Forty-five kilometers south of Bhopal lay the famous Bhimbetka caves known for their prehistoric paintings. Neori (6 km), Ashapuri (6 km) and Chiklod (45 km) are historic spots, while Hathaikheda (10 km) and Samardha (26 km) should be visited for angling and picnics, respectively. Sanchi, located 46 km northeast of Bhopal, is world famous for its Buddhist monuments including the great Sanchi Stupa.