‘Gol Ghar’ translates to ‘Round House’ is a massive granary (grain warehouse) located in Patna, the Capital city of Bihar. This Stupa Like structure was built by the then Governor General of India Warren Hastings in the 18th century. It was built as storehouse that would contain grains for the British army.
In 1770 the province of Bihar and Bengal suffered famine due to which about 10 million people lost their lives. So in order to prevent the shortage of grain for British Army in any such event in future, it was planned that several granaries will be built in the area to serve the purpose of storehouse however Gol Ghar was only such granary to be built.
The construction of this storehouse began in the year 1784 and was completed in 1786. This storehouse was designed by Captain John Garstin.
Today Gol Ghar does not store any grains inside it. Instead, it is a famous tourist spot of Patan. This elegant monument is located amidst lush gardens which makes it an excellent picnic spot.
Gol Ghar has 2 spiral stairways, each of which consists of 145 steps. Originally these staircases were used by the laborers who used to store grain the storehouse. They used to take the bags of the grains from one side after reaching the top, drop the bags inside and used to return from other side stairways.
The stairways lead one to the top of Gol Ghar where initially was a hole. The drop hole is closed now but people can still take stairs to reach the top of the building and enjoy a stunning panoramic view of the city and the Ganga River.
The height of this spherical structure is about 29 meters, the width of the base is nearly 125 meters and thickness of walls is approx 3.6 m. It was once the tallest building of Patna. This huge storehouse can store 1.4 tons of grains. An interesting feature of this monument is that there are no pillars in the structure. A total of four gates that allow access inside Gold Ghar.
Gol Ghar has an engineering flaw in its structure due to which it could never be filled to its capacity, the door of the storehouse opens inwards hence if it was ever filled to its full capacity it would not be possible to possible the door of the storehouse.
The Gol Ghar also hosts a laser show which is a famous attraction of this place. This laser show gives you great information about the city of Patliputra. Hence watching the laser show is highly recommended especially if you are keen to the history of Patliputra
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