10 Facts About Gol Gumbaz

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The land of India consists of various monuments all over the region. Monuments are well known for their historical facts. Today we’ll talk about Gol Gumbaz, a monument from Vijayapura, Bijapur, Karnataka. Some of you must have known about this monument, while some of you might not have. 

10 Facts About Gol Gumbaz

1. One Of The Biggest Domes

The gigantic dome of the Gol Gumbaz, which is its most breathtaking feature, has a diameter that stretches to a length of 44 meters (144.3 feet). The dome stands unsupported without any pillars, purely based on strong masonry.

2. A Replica Of The Taj Mahal

Many people refer to the Gol Gumbaz as the “Taj Mahal of the South” or “The Black Taj Mahal.” Constructed with the Deccan Indo-Islamic architectural style, the monument is made of Dark Grey Basalt.

3. A Contemporary Taj Mahal: Gol Gumbaz

Mohammed Adil Shah had begun work on his tomb, the Gol Gumbaz, far before Shah Jahan ordered the Taj Mahal’s construction in the year 1632. The Taj Mahal’s main dome was finished in 1648, and the Gol Gumbaz was finished in 1656.

4. Connection To Ratnagiri

On the direction of Mohammed Adil Shah, the Adil Shahi king, a builder by the name of Yaqut of Dabul, planned and constructed the Gol Gumbaz. Yaqut was a native of Dabhol, often referred to as Dabul, which is in the Ratnagiri district of the Indian state of Maharashtra. In the 16th and 15th centuries, Dabhol was a significant seaport and commerce hub.

5. The Tomb To The Throne

Intriguingly, Mohammed Adil Shah began work on his tomb, the Gol Gumbaz, even before he succeeded to the throne in 1627. A stunning structure in Bijapur, the Ibrahim Roza, is another tomb that he desired to be more ornate than one of his fathers, Ibrahim Adil Shah II. The Gol Gumbaz’s construction didn’t end until Mohammed Adil Shah died in 1656, 20 years after it began. Gol Gumbaz’s great design is still only a solitary dome structure since it was never finished.

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6. Gol Gumbaz’s Inner Chamber

One of the largest individual chamber spaces in the world is located inside the Gol Gumbaz, which has a huge chamber that covers a land area of 1,700 square meters.

7. Gol Gumbaz’s Magical Echoes

Gol Gumbaz’s whispering gallery is undoubtedly its main draw. The whispering gallery is a ring-shaped room located just beneath the enormous dome. Because of the gallery’s design and acoustics, even a gentle whisper from one end may be heard reverberating across the space. Not only once, twice, but seven to ten times in quick succession is the whisper’s echo audible.

8. An Entire Family Sleeps There

In addition to Mohammed Adil Shah, his wife, daughter, grandson, and mistress Rambha are all interred at the Gol Gumbaz. The five cenotaphs are situated on a raised platform; the real graves are underground. Over Mohammed Adil Shah’s cenotaph, a wooden Baldachin is present.

9. A Marvel Of Engineering

It is best summed up by James Ferguson in his book, “History of Indian and Eastern Architecture,” when he writes that the dome’s ability to stand alone is an architectural wonder. The method by which this dome’s lateral or outward force is resisted, according to him, is its most inventive and innovative feature. This was done by shaping the pendentives such that they did not just cut off the angles but also had their arches overlap, creating a huge mass of brickwork that was completely stable on its own.

10. The Lightning Bolt

A fragment of meteorite suspended from a sturdy rust-resistant steel chain hang from the Gol Gumbaz’s front. It is linked into a tripod-like ring. It is referred to by the locals as “Sidili,” which is Kannada for “thunderbolt.” According to a legend, a meteorite crashed into a nearby town while work was being done on the Gol Gumbaz. Mohammed Adil Shah, a fervent astrologer, interpreted it as a sign, traveled to the hamlet, brought the meteorite in a procession, and had it fastened as a fortunate charm to the Gol Gumbaz’s entrance.

It is Mohammed Adil Shah’s grave (ruled 1627–1657). Only St. Peter’s Basilica of Rome is larger than it, making it the second biggest dome ever constructed. The center chamber of this monument, where each sound is amplified seven times, is particularly fascinating. In the Whispering Gallery of the Gol Gumbaz, visitors may hear even the smallest noises clearly from 37 meters.

The Gol Gumbaz complex contains a mosque, the remains of guest homes, and the Naqqar Khana (the hall for trumpeters), which is currently utilized as a museum. Its enormous dome is reputed to be the second-largest dome in the world that isn’t supported by pillars. It is designed such that a pin drop may be heard from 38 meters away. The location’s acoustics are such that every sound generated is believed to be amplified ten times. An archaeological museum can be found in the neighboring attractive gardens.


More than just a mausoleum, the Gol Gumbaz stands as a reminder of the glories of Adil Shah’s rule in Southern India. The Gol Gumbaz is a famous mausoleum in India that showcases artwork and architectural elements from a bygone age. The towering structure is managed by the Indian Archaeological Survey and draws many visitors from India as well as outside who come to witness the monument’s captivating architecture and distinctive acoustics.

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