With a rich history, intricately woven with spirituality, epics and legends, the city of Panipat, in Haryana, is a historian's delight. With a smattering of tombs and baked brick stupas, the city boasts many gems that would enthrall the avid traveller. Panipat is believed to be one of the cities (prasthas) founded by the Pandava brothers during the times of the Mahabharata. Panipat traces its renown to the three pivotal battles of Indian history that were fought on its soil.

The First Battle of Panipat was fought on April 21, 1526, between Ibrahim Lodhi, Sultan of Delhi, and the Timurid warlord Zaheeruddin Babur. Babur’s force defeated Ibrahim’s much larger force of over one lakh soldiers. The first battle of Panipat thus ended the Lodi rule established by Bahlul Lodhi in India. The Second Battle of Panipat was fought on November 5, 1556, between the forces of Akbar and Samrat Hem Chandra Vikramaditya, a king of North India, who belonged to Rewari in Haryana. The Third Battle of Panipat was fought in 1761 between the Afghan invader Ahmad Shah Abdali and the Marathas under Sadashivrao Bhau Peshwa of Pune. Ahmad Shah won but with very heavy casualties on both sides. It resulted in the worst defeat of Marathas in their history.

The war led to a power vacuum, which later led to the British conquest of India. Panipat is also known as a city of weavers, with its handloom products appreciated the world over. Durri (a type of carpet), carpets, and home furnishings woven here are exported to countries like Canada, Japan, Germany and Australia. Don't forget to shop for them while here.