Lalbagh Fort at Old Dhaka

Lalbagh Fort at Old Dhaka


Mughal prince Muhammed Azam who was the third son of Aurangazeb, during his 15months of stay in Bengal, started to build this fort in 1678. However, this fort was not fully constructed as the prince got a sudden call from his father Aurangzeb, and he immediately moved to Delhi leaving all of those behinds. This incomplete structure is such a beauty that anyone would definitely wish to find how it might be if completed.

The true Mughal-gothic vibe here in Lalbagh Fort which is in Lalbagh at Old Dhaka, the famous fort and the key tourist place of all time in Bangladesh at Old Dhaka. This beautiful piece of architecture is established by the bank of the river Buriganga, which is also called Fort Aurangabad. This is a must-see place to visit if anyone intends to visit Dhaka.

The Tomb of Bibi Pari, Lalbagh Fort, old Dhaka
The Tomb of Bibi Pari, Lalbagh Fort, old Dhaka - Photo Source:

The tomb of Pari Bibi is another attraction for the tourists visiting Lalbagh Fort as it covers one of the three major sections. Iran Dukht known as Pari Bibi who was the daughter of the governor of Dhaka Shahista Khan was her father’s apple of eyes. After her death, he was devastated and left the fort, it still remained incomplete. 

The capital was moved from Dhaka to Murshidabad when Shahista Khan left for good leaving the capital Dhaka after his daughter’s death and eventually the prominences of the fort didn’t last long due to his farewell. Later on, the fort was announced abandoned, but in 1844, the name replaced to Lalbagh Fort from Aurangabad as per the name of the location.


Residence of the governor

The governor’s residence is another attraction for the tourists, which is mainly a two-storied building of then Shahista Khan. There is also an additional building attached to this established on the west side. When you will visit here you will see two main things.

Firstly, the audience hall was used for people to make statements. Secondly, the hammam (place for taking shower) which was under the sky. Though a dome is now placed to cover the area originally it was an open place always filled with light and ventilation.

To adjust with the temperature, there you will find a masonry tank that was used then. The ground floor and the first floor is similar to the ambiances, but all attention will be taken away by the two end rooms with the stairs. You will also find an ornamental fountain in the center of the central hall.


The tomb of Pari Bibi

Bibi Pari’s Mausoleum plays the biggest role of tourist attraction for its uniqueness cause no one has ever seen anything like this structure. This building is as unique as the materials used to build it including white marble from Rajputana, black basalt from Rajasthan and mesmerizing colored tiles.

The southern side of the fort covers the area of the tomb of Pari Bibi. To make an entrance there one has to go through a sandalwood door, decorated with the style of Chinese cross, which is also filled with stone. The geometric positions of the marbles and black stone of the floor are eye-soothing for the tourists, and the fretted marble screens on three sides put it into another level of expertise architect. 

The monument is placed in the center surrounded by square-shaped stones, and a fake dome covers the roof and tipped with a tall finial. The plastered kiosks with ribbed cupolas capped at every corner with four octagonal turrets. Inside of it is divided into nine chambers where you can also find the main sepulcher 19’-0’’. Along with a simply stepped cenotaph, the whole chamber is decorated with vintage white marble which is most likely the tomb of Humayun in Delhi.


The mosque 

No entrance fee for the mosque as people use it during prayers and detached from the fort by establishing fences. The architectural view of this mosque is quite interesting.

It includes three domes crowned with a rectangular structure which has the flavor of Mughal where the middle dome carries the largest height among three. You will find this holy place near the tomb of Bibi Pari, west-side of the fort.


The south gate

South Gate, Lalbagh fort, Old Dhaka
The South Gate, Lalbagh fort, Old Dhaka - Photo Credit: Abu Sayed

Slender octagonal flanked both sides of the main south gate of the fort, which gives goosebumps of the remembrance of the mighty people who had lived here. This gate is actually a river faced with a significant appearance of three stories building height.

You can make the entrance to the guardrooms and the above floors through this gateway. The sky-touching pillars will emerge while you make entrance situated in the four corners. The astonishing height of about 25 feet long southern and western fortification walls carries several octagonal bastions. There are also underground cells that were used as a captive for misleaders.


The secret tunnel

You will be surprised to know about the secret tunnels in Lalbagh Fort. There were several tunnels, but now, these pathways are permanently closed by the authority. Two of them directly leads to the other side of Buriganga where another Fort was situated named Zinzira of the Mughals. The maes were mainly used to make the attackers or any intruders go crazy chasing them which was actually the main purpose of building them, many of the sipahis(soldiers) were trapped here during the revolution and starved to death. 


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Visiting hours of lalbagh fort

Summer Season (April – September) 

  • Tuesday - Saturday: 10.00 AM –01.00 PM, 01.30 PM - 06.00 PM 
  • Friday: 10.00 AM – 12.30 PM, 02.30 PM – 06.00 PM 
  • Sunday: Weekly Holiday
  • Monday: 02.30 PM – 06.00 PM 

Winter Season (October - March) 

  • Tuesday - Saturday: 09.00 AM – 01.00 PM, 01.30 PM – 05.00 PM 
  • Friday: 09.00 AM – 12.30 PM, 02.00 PM – 05.00 PM 
  • Sunday: Closed (Weekly Holiday)
  • Monday: 01.30 PM - 05.00 PM

Eid Holidays Lalbagh Fort will remain closed for visitors during Eid day and the previous day of Eid. It will remain open as usual from the next day of Eid day. Govt. Holidays 

Lalbagh Fort will remain closed during any govt. holiday. Ramadan Timing Lalbagh Fort will be closed at 04.00 PM during the holy month of Ramadan.

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