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Sarai Amanat Khan

Punjab, the land of five rivers and the province of exotic ruins of earliest civilizations reflects the grandeur of Indian history in many ways. Sarai Amanat Khan is famous all over the world for its glazed tile decoration and ornamental gateways. This is a must see destination located at a mere distance of 38 kilometers from Amritsar along the Taran-Attari road. A journey from Amritsar to Sarai Amanat Khan will let you live the experience of witnessing one of the only four remaining sarai’s dating back to the Mughal period. Sarai would actually be referred as an inn, a household and this specific Sarai, as the name implies was the residence of Amanat Khan. This is the same person who is responsible for the calligraphy etches all over the Taj Mahal building in Agra. The same calligraphy is duly reflected in the artwork of the Sarai Amanat Khan.

History of Sarai Amanat Khan

The Amanat Khan Sarai is located amidst all the architectural grandeur of the Mughal period in Amritsar. Though time has been responsible to ravage most of the beauty of this building, the impressions still last and what is seen will definitely give a thorough idea of what an exquisite arrangement it had been in the past. The hand of Amanat Khan, as already said above was the one behind the splendor of the Taj Mahal, captivating tourist from all across the globe. Built in 1640, the Sarai Amanat Khan was built by the calligrapher to live a reclusive life after his brother, Afzal Khan, the prime minister to Shah Jahan’s court, died. Amanat Khan had come to India in 1609 from Iran and his real name was Abdul Haq. The title of “Amanat Khan” was conferred to him by none other than Shah Jahan for his impressive calligraphic work on the Taj. However, here too, Amanat Khan had left an impression of his artwork and the beautiful Sarai is full in inscriptions and calligraphy depicted in yellow and fading blue tiles.

Sarai Amanat Khan was also used as a guest house in the past or travelers along the Lahore Agra route where they would rest for a day or night before moving further. There were small rooms made for the travelers and a mosque was built for their regular prayers. After his death, Amanat Khan was buried in the same place and now the Sarai also acts as his mausoleum.

Site and Architecture of Sarai Amanat Khan, Amritsar

Sarai Amanat Khan is all the more special monument depicting the exquisite Mughal style sculpture reflected with the glazed tile decor that easily invokes the nostalgia of the olden days. The Sarai has two amazingly carved gateways: the Delhi Darwaja and the Lahori Darwaja. The beauty of the Sarai decoration can be mostly related to the ‘Baoli’ that is seen attached to the ancient well inside the Sarai. This lies almost unnoticed and it is a wonderful find with a small Mughal facility featuring itself solely to the southwest of Amritsar. The Sarai Amanat Khan also hosts the mausoleum of Amanat Khan that is structurally guarded by four minarets featured on four corners of the tomb.

In the courtyard of the Sarai Amanat Khan, there is also a mosque, a well and empty spaces that were then meant for bullocks, horses and cattle. The arched hallway of the Sarai directs to a prayer room featuring amazing glazed tile work adorning the desolate spandrels. The mosque walls shows calligraphic in Persian verses. There are hundreds of small rooms that were made for weary travelers looking to spend a night or a day on the Sarai before continuing their journey to Delhi or Lahore.

The place certainly is quite rich historically and has been announced under “Ancient Monuments and Archeological Sites and Remains Act, 1958.”

Amidst the architecture and floral designs is a special faded tile that mentions an inscription from Amanat Khan stating that the Sarai has been built “for the comfort of God’s creatures”


Sarai Amanat Khan is a must see destination located at a mere distance of 38 kilometers from Amritsar along the Taran-Attari road.


The monument is open to public all throughout the week and the timings are from morning 6.00 am to evening 9 p.m.

How to Reach

By Air

Raja Sansi International Airport in Amritsar provides regular service to major cities like Mumbai, Chennai among others.

By Train

Amritsar Railway Station is well linked to other rail heads in the state and also connected to most of the cities in India. It has a connecting railway line to Pakistan as well.

By Bus

State run public buses and private buses are available to move in and out from Amritsar. Grand Trunk Road connects Delhi to Amritsar. Luxury buses are available from Delhi.

Best Time to Visit Amritsar

Amritsar is a place which has extreme summers and extreme winters, so visiting summers in the peak summer and winter months are not advisable. Unless, one wants to experience chilly winters below the freezing point, you must not visit Amritsar in December and January. Also, due to extreme hot temperatures visiting Amritsar between May - July should also be avoided. Rest of the time is good for visiting the place.

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