While the Punjabis are usually popular for their lively personalities, there is also a gentle side to them that is often hidden. This culture and heritage are more so visible in the beautiful Patiala walk. Patiala is a little city tucked away in the interiors of Punjab. It has a flourishing heritage and a rich history.
This Punjab walking tour in Patiala will show you all the nooks and corners. And the little hidden stories that Patiala has. It will take you on a delightful journey that will make you fall in love with all its narrow lanes and small eateries that make this place as beautiful as it is.
Here are some of the things that you will see on your Patiala heritage walking tour:
This Punjab tour starts from the stunning Shahi Samadhan, which is a mausoleum in tribute to the royal family of Patiala. This monument includes the memorial of Baba Ala Singh- the founder of Patiala. You will find a few other cenotaphs of the members of the royal family here.
Just walk around and read the names of the great kings and queens, who lived and perishes in royalty. The structure is in a medieval style of architecture. In the main hall of Shahi Samadhan, you will find a portrait of Baba Ala Singh, with a pile of clothes kept to honour him.
There is an archway that adorns the entire room and gives it that royal look.
As you continue on your Patiala Heritage walk on your Punjab tour, you will find several ancient and old houses dotting the narrow streets of Patiala. Listen closely and you might just hear old Punjabi songs playing through the stereo, as you walk through the labyrinth of alleys and indulge in some hot breakfast. Tuck into some hot Pooris and Chole Bhature with Kaddu ki Sabzi. These small shops have a lot of heritage, so start talking to the vendors and you might get to know so much about the history, story and some lovely anecdotes about Patiala.
The next stop on your Punjab tour is the Haveliwala Mohalla. This narrow lane has tall Havelis on both sides. It looks quite palatial, and you might feel as if you are walking through the royal areas of Punjab. The doors of the Havelis are made out of wood. All of them are carved intricately. The designs are so aesthetic, that you will want to stop and click photographs all the time.
Some of the doors have deities, like one of the door, had a mesmerising Ganesha etched onto it. The windows are also quite beautiful, but you have to get on your tiptoes and strain your neck to see it.
Most of the doors are blue-grey, which gives it a uniform look. The Haveliwala Mohalla is also open to vehicles, so you might just have to squeeze and make way for those scooters, as they zip past you in this narrow gulley.
This lane also has little temples. It has a Shiva Temple, which you can visit. The Temple is quite small.
This area is quite posh and elegant. It is highly prestigious till date and houses a lot of influentially people. From the politicians of Patiala to the families who worked for the King, all of them continue to live here.
Named after the Diwan of Patiala, this arch-shaped monument was used more like a public court, Bustling with history and interesting stories, Chhata Nanumal is quite mesmerising. As of now, the area is more like a passage, however, ask any local and they will revel you with fascinating stories and quirky complaints that some of the citizens of Patiala used to have at that time.
Just as you come out of Chhata Nanumal and continue on your Punjab walking tour in Patiala, you will come across many brass utensils just scattered around you. Look to your right, then look to your left and all you will see are brass utensils. This is because there is a Bartan Bazaar right around the corner. Take a walk around this market and watch the Phulkari dupattas adding colour to the shops, as locals come and bargain away. The Bartan Bazaar is a photographer’s dream. So try and get all the angles, sunlight and colourful dupattas.
Punjabis are popular for there hospitality and jolly nature. So don’t get surprised if you are offered tea with a healthy dose of conversation. This happen even if you are not buying anything.
One of the last stops on your Punjab walking tour in Patiala is the gigantic and ancient fort called Qila Mubarak. The gates itself are a testimony to the elegance and enormity of this fort. There are large spikes on the gates that were meant to combat the enemy attacks.
Once you enter the Fort you will land in a large courtyard. There are huge buildings around it. The Quila Mubarak is overwhelmingly large, so take some time, let out your gasp and take it all in.
This imposing fort is from the 18th Century and is the oldest structure in Patiala. It coves about 10 acres and depicts a wonderful confluence of Rajasthani and Mughal Architecture. The pastel colour of the fort itself is quite soothing to the eyes.
The Fort has two areas- Qila Androon, which was the inner areas for the royal family, and the outer parts, where the Kitchen, royal guest houses and the Durbar Hall used to be.
The interior walls of the Fort shows hints of large paintings. The Fort has many narrow paths and steps, and you will find several small rooms. One of the rooms also has an oil lamp burning. According to stories, this oil lamp is burning since the Fort came into existence.
Keep exploring the Fort and you might reach the Queen’s Quarters that is located on the top floor. There is also a French Quarter which dedicated to a French Queen. This room has a distinctly European style design.
The highlight of Qila Mubarak is the iconic colourful chamber. Adorned with red and golden colours, this chamber is so regal and royal. The paintings depict the life of Lord Krishna and show the daily royal scenes. It is so intricately and precisely done, that it feels as if they are jumping out of the walls. Standing in that room surrounded by these vibrant murals will truly be the highlight of your Punjab Walking Tour in Patiala.