OLD MOTI BAGH PATIALA
The Moti Bagh Palace, built as one of the largest residences of the world in the mid-19th century, was the principal seat of the Patiala royal family for a century. The opulent and imposing Indo-Saracenic structure has over 1,000 rooms and is set in a sprawling 400-acre Mughal garden replete with terraces and water channels. Following India’s Independence, Maharaja Yadavindra Singh dedicated the Moti Bagh Palace to the promotion of sports. Today, it houses the Netaji Subhash National Institute of Sports and continues to enact out that role by training budding talent in sports and athletics.
ARMOUR AND CHANDELIERS MUSEUM PATIALA
The Durbar Hall in Patiala’s Qila Mubarak houses the Armour and Chandeliers Museum. Its chief attractions are the dazzling Bohemian cut-glass chandeliers, two of which are floor standing, bought by Maharaja Mohinder Singh. Maharaja Bhupinder Singh’s four-wheeled silver alloy chariot is also on display here. Built in Kolkata in 1909, it was drawn by six horses and used on ceremonial occasions. The museum’s armour section has a remarkable collection of arms and armaments, which includes a seven-barrel bolt-action gun, a sword used by Nadir Shah, and a jade dagger that once belonged to Guru Gobind Singh.
BAHADURGARH FORT PATIALA
The Bahadurgarh Fort, on the outskirts of Patiala, was built in the 17th century by Nawab Saif Khan during the reign of Aurangzeb and was reportedly called Saifabad. Notable monuments from that period include the Diwan-e-Aam and an elegant mosque. The Nawab’s tomb can also be found a short distance from the fort. Later, renamed after the ninth Sikh Guru, Guru Tegh Bahadur, to commemorate his stay here, it was renovated and a gurdwara built by Maharaja Karam Singh of Patiala in the 19th century. Since 1989, the Punjab Police Commando Training School has been located within the grounds.
QILA MUBARAK, NABHA PATIALA
The small town of Nabha, neighbouring Patiala, was once a princely state in its own right, and grew around the Qila Mubarak. Characterised by its soaring mud walls, the fort was constructed over a period of 150 years. Raja Hira Singh, who ruled from 1871 till his death in 1911, built most of the structure that stands today. The inner precinct is built on a square platform boasting colonnades, arches, and grand balconies. In 2010, the Qila Mubarak was leased to the Nabha Foundation.