Noor Mahal, Bahawalpur

Noor Mahal is a palace in Bahawalpur constructed by the Nawab of Bahawalpur in 1872. It is built like an Italian chateau in the neo-classical standard of construction. There are several legends that surround this palace but the most notable one is that the Nawab of Bahawalpur had this palace made for his wife in 1872. The queen only spent one night there because the next morning as she looked around from the balcony she noticed the graveyard next to the palace and refused to stay there ever again. Hence the palace was mostly unused during their reign.

In the long run after Pakistan independence the palace is finally now in the control of the Pakistan Army and is mostly used as a state guest house and for meetings etc. other than that it is also open for the public for viewing.

An Englishman Mr. Heennan was the state engineer and also the designer of this beautiful building. A map and coins were placed in the foundations to bring health and prosperity to the palace. Most of the furniture was imported from Italy and England. The total cost of the building was Rs 1.2 million. The palace was a sight to behold on its completion. When the Bahawalpur state merged with Pakistan, the palace was taken over by the Auqaf department. And later on, the palace was taken over by the army who now lets tourists visit the palace for a small fee. The building was declared a “protected monument” in September 2001 by the Government of Pakistan’s Department of Archaeology, and it is now open for general visitors, student’s trips and other interested persons. Bahawalpur is in south Punjab so it is very near Multan and around 400 km from Lahore. People usually take day trips to Bahawalpur during the winter months to visit such special monuments and admire the beauty these magnificent buildings have to offer.