Bara Imambara is perhaps the most recognisable and popular symbol of Lucknow, and is visited by thousands of tourists all year round. 

Built as a relief project to provide work to the people of Awadh during a famine, the Bara Imambara was constructed by Nawab Asaf-ud-Daula during the 18th century, and its name essentially translates to a big place of worship. Its architecture, with delicate arches and jharokhas (windows), boasts Rajput, Mughal and Gothic influences. 

There are two main entrances to the Imambara, both guarded by enormous gateways. The ceiling of its central hall is said to have used interlocking bricks without any beams or pillars for support. The structure has an amazing maze of corridors called 'bhul bhulaiya'. It has a network of more than 1,000 labyrinthine passages with some leading to entrance or exit points and others heading to deadends. There are also 489 doorways standing at the mouths of confusing, twisting paths. The grave of the nawab is located under a canopy. At one time, there was a mile-long tunnel underground running to River Gomti that added mysticism to the location. 

Surrounding the main edifice are lush, well-maintained gardens that are perfect for a leisurely stroll, or for just relaxing and soaking in the splendour of the Bara Imambara.

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