Are you a lover of Qawwali? Here are the best Qawwali spots in India


Photo of Are you a lover of Qawwali? Here are the best Qawwali spots in India by Sourjya Das

Qawwali is a type of Sufi reverential or devotional music prominent in South Asia: in the Punjab and Sindh areas of Pakistan; in Hyderabad, Delhi and different parts of India, particularly North India; and Dhaka, Chittagong, Sylhet and numerous parts of Bangladesh. It is a piece of a melodic custom that extends back for over 700 years.

Qawwalis take place in Dargahs and it is a mandatory religious tradition in Dargahs to conduct qawwalis. Here are the major Dargahs in India where you can definitely enjoy the best of qawwalis in the world.

This Dargah is situated in Delhi and is named after the famous Sufi saint, Hazrat Nizamuddin. Thousands of pilgrims visit this Dargah every week and this is the most famous dargah when it comes to qawwali in India.

How to reach:

The Dargah is situated in the heart of Delhi. Once you reach Delhi, you have numerous options to avail to reach the Dargah.

By Metro: Take the metro to Jangpura or Indraprastha

By Car: Take a car or a taxi to Nizamuddin West

Dates & Timings: The qawwali takes place twice everyday in the week except Thursday (as per new rules), once at 6:30-8:00 pm and the other at 9:00-10:30 pm. Go early to get a good spot. The dargah is open on all days from 6 am to 10:30 pm.

Hazrat Nizam

Photo of Hazrat Nizamuddin Aulia Dargah, Nizamuddin, Nizammudin West Slum, Nizamuddin West, New Delhi, Delhi, India by Sourjya Das

Dargah Ajmer Sharif is a sufi shrine of the sufi saint, Moinuddin Chishti located at Ajmer in Rajasthan. The shrine has the grave (Maqbara) of the revered saint, Moinuddin Chisti. The dargah of Moinuddin Chishti is an international Islamic spot important for Muslim pilgrims and its qawwali.

How to reach:

The Dargah is situated in Ajmer, Rajasthan. Once you reach Ajmer, you have numerous options to avail to reach the Dargah.

By cab or autorickshaw: Once you have reached Ajmer by bus or train, take an autorickshaw (tuk-tuk) or a cab to the dargah. The dargah is only 1.1 km from the railway station.

Dates & Timings: The qawwali takes place every Thursday. The best qawwali takes place for continuously 6 days during the Urs festival in March. The dargah is open from 4am to 9pm (summer) and 5am to 9pm (winter) everyday.

Dargah Ajmer Sharif, Ajmer

Photo of Ajmer Sharif Dargah, Khadim Mohalla, Diggi Bazaar, Ajmer, Rajasthan, India by Sourjya Das

Haji Ali is the most important dargah in western India. Situated away from the bustling Dargah Road in Mumbai, it is connected by a cement road which is historically famous for its ability to fulfill wishes for which you will never find this place not crowded.

How to reach:

The Dargah is situated in Mumbai, Maharashtra. Once you reach Mumbai, you have numerous options to avail to reach the Dargah.

By train: If you are taking the local train from Borivali or Andheri East, get off at Mahalaxmi Railway Station. If you board it from Mumbai CST or Thane, get off at Byculla Railway Station.

By bus: Numerous public buses from different parts of the city pass by this Dargah. Buses are the best way to reach here.

Dates & Timings: Qawwalis start here from late afternoons every Thursday. You can find them on Fridays too. The dargah is open from 6am to 10pm.

Haji Ali Dargah

Photo of Haji Ali, Mumbai, Maharashtra, India by Sourjya Das

This tomb is situated inside the fortress of Fatehpur Sikri. It is the burial place of the Sufi saint, Salim Chisti, a descendant of Khwaja Moinuddin Chishti of Ajmer, and who lived in Sikri. This is considered as one of the holiest Islamic pilgrimage spots in Northern India.

How to reach:

The Dargah is situated in Fatehpur Sikri in Agra, Uttar Pradesh. Once you reach Agra, you can take a car or an autorickshaw to travel to Fatehpur Sikri.

By cab or autorickshaw (tuk-tuk): Take a cab or an autorickshaw (tuk-tuk) to Fatehpur Sikri. Fatehpur Sikri is 36 km away from Agra.

Date & Timings: The opening timings of the dargah are 6am to 5:30pm. Qawwalis take place every evening and the best one takes place on every Thursday evening.

Sheikh Salim Chisti Dargah, Fatehpur Sikri

Photo of Graven til Sheik Salim Chishti, Dadupura, Fatehpur Sikri, Uttar Pradesh, India by Sourjya Das

Situated in Kutch, Gujarat, this dargah is the most visited dargah by Islamic pilgrims in far west India. The Dargah is dedicated to a Muslim saint Hajipir who is remembered to have died saving cattle from dacoits and also for performing Hajj in Kutch.

How to reach:

The Dargah is situated in a place called Haji Pir in Rann of Kutch, Gujarat. Once you reach Bhuj, you can take a car or a public bus to travel to Haji Pir.

By bus: Buses run from Bhuj bus station to Haji Pir everyday.

By car: Take a private vehicle from Bhuj to Haji Pir (118 km)

Date & timings: Qawwalis happen every evening although sometimes it does not, on weekdays and weekends. It surely takes place on Thursday evenings. The opening timings of this dargah is 6am to 8pm.

Haji Pir, Kutch

Photo of Haji Pir Dargah, Hajipir, Gujarat, India by Sourjya Das

This dargah traces back to Mughal times. Syed Shah Yousufuddin and Syed Shah Sharifuddin were once commanders in Aurangzeb's army and he had sought help of these saints to conquer the Kingdom of Golconda. When they died, they were buried in village Nampally andthis dome was built. This is the only dargah in South India where its qawwali is heard and celebrated nationwide.

How to reach:

This Dargah is situated in Hyderabad in Telengana, India. Once you reach Hyderabad, you can take a car or a public bus to travel to Dargah Yousufain.

By bus or cab: Take a public bus or a cab to Nampally where the dargah is located.

Date & timings: Qawwalis happen every Thursday evening till night. The opening timings of this dargah is 4:30am to 8:30pm.

Dargah Yousufain, Hyderabad

Photo of Dargah Yousufain Sharifain, Nampally Darga Road, Bharat Nagar, Aghapura, Nampally, Hyderabad, Telangana, India by Sourjya Das

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