Baolis in India was a remarkable solution to the dry weather in the country, but it formed a culture with water and a place for the community to bathe, swim, do religious and ritualistic acts, and an environment simply stay cool. The monsoon-dependent climate drove the rulers centuries ago to build wells, to capture water to be used in drier months. By building Baolis, they not only achieved the desired outcome but made a unique architectural monument with carvings, sculptures, geometric simplicity, and a place for people. This article will help you find the Baolis in India, that you should not miss!

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Sculptures in Rani ki Vav Showing the Significance of the Baoris in India_Snehrashmi, Rani ki vav – Patan – Gujarat – Wall Decorations, CC BY-SA 4.0

Chand Baori

This stepwell is famous for its picturesque geometrical views and is one of the largest stepwells in the world. While this hidden gem is not easy to find, it is one of the most beautiful Baolis in India. This symmetrical stepwell has over 3500 steps and a 20m depth to the bottom. Captivating views of the steps and the stepwell’s enormity are mesmerizing. Three sides of the Baoli have descending stairs while one side has a pavilion of three stories with beautiful carvings (, n.d.). 

Built period – during the 8-9th century by King Chand Raja

Access – situated in Abhaneri, 95km off Jaipur with no direct bus line. Two ways of access are to go to Sikandra and take a taxi from there or from Gular with approximately an hour of hike.

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Chand Baori in its Glory_Gerd Eichmann, Abhaneri-Chand Baori-16-Stufenbrunnen-2018-gje, CC BY-SA 4.0
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Chand Baori And Its Captivating Views_Gerd Eichmann, Abhaneri-Chand Baori-28-Stufenbrunnen-2018-gje, CC BY-SA 4.0

Rani ka Vav

With its seven levels of stairs and over 500 beautiful main sculptures with over a thousand mini ones containing mythological, religious, and secular images, Rani ka vav is a sight not to be missed. This UNESCO World Heritage Baoli is recognized for its artistic and technological achievements in stepwell construction. It is also regarded as a prime example containing components of step wells such as a stepped corridor at the entrance, four pavilions with the west side having an increased number of stories, the tank, and the tunneled well (UNESCO World Heritage Centre, n.d.).

Built period – Initially built in the 11th century CE as a memorial to a King

Access – Located on the banks of the Saraswati River in Patan, the easiest way to reach is by train station there.

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Rani ka Vav_Anilharnal, Steps, Rani Ka Vav, Patan, Gujarat, CC BY-SA 4.0

Adalaj ni Vav

Having an Indo-Islamic fusion in its architecture and octagonal shape well with the eight pillars that are filled with intricate details, Adalaj ni Vav only receives direct sunlight at noon, since keeping the temperature inside 6 degrees less than outside. This Baoli has five stories and three entryways to it. Ornaments and carvings of the structure include the famous Ami Khumbur, the pot containing the water of life, and Kalpa Vriksha, the tree of life among many others (gujrattourism, n.d.). 

Built period – it is believed to be built in 1411, by Mahmud Begada.

Access – using private or public buses from Ahmedabad which is only 19km away. 

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Adalaj ni Vav’s Unique Skylight_Kushpatel3240, Adalaj Stepwell Bottom, CC BY-SA 4.0
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Adalaj ni Vav’s Carvings_Mitulgajera16, Adalaj stepwell-adalaj-gujarat-N-GJ-120, CC BY-SA 4.0

Panna Meena Ka Kund

This beautiful Baoli is also a hidden gem from the popular ones but truly a picture-worthy location and labyrinth-like atmosphere. It has steps declining in a square shape stepwell where the north wall has room believed to be used for ceremonies and festive activities (, n.d.). The pale-yellow geometric steps are a delight to sore eyes. 

Built period – 16th century.

Access – located in Amer, 10km from Jaipur (Pearce, 2020)

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Panna Meena ka Kund’s Geometerical Aesthetic_Jakub Hałun, 20191219 Panna Meena ka Kund step well, Amber, Jaipur, 1130 9630, CC BY-SA 4.0

Ayanivayal Kulam or Peralassery Subrahmanya Temple Pond

Believed to be constructed centuries ago, this Baoli is in the south of India in a lush and ritualistic setting. Being the largest stepwell in Kerala, this has a square shape and a stepped walkway too. Its architectural awe is something not to be missed while it is also a symbol of faith for many daily pilgrims for its quietness and religious activities. Also don’t miss the stories that revolve around this Baoli as well as the delicious payasam (Sengar, 2019).

Built period – believed to be built 1500 years ago.

Access – about 14km away from Kannur in Kerala

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Ayanivayal Kulam or Peralassery Subrahmanya Temple Pond_On X (

Baolis in Delhi

Agrasen Ki Baoli

Delhi’s famous Baoli, Agrasen Ki Baoli is three-storied deep 108 steps including a magnificent stepwell. Even though there aren’t any intricate carvings or ornaments left in this historic place, it manages to capture an unforgettable space in its architecture. With its stone walls and arches adding a taste of a forgotten place, the rectangular-shaped stepwell is picturesque and symmetrical in its beauty and a must-visit in Delhi (Mukherjee, 2018).

Built period – believed to be around 1132 by King Agrasen

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Agrasen Ki Baoli’s Captivating Space_Vi.vipin, Agrasen Ki Baoli-New Delhi-Delhi-DSC02, CC BY-SA 4.0

Feroz Shah Kotla Fort Baoli

With its distinctive circular structure inside the Feroz Shah Kotla Fort, this Baoli holds a unique place in the list of Baolis in India. It is still being used with the help of electrical pumps for gardening purposes of the fort using the stored water. Even though the gates are closed due to safety reasons, one could peek at this stepped well using a near higher ground. The Baoli is not in its best shape but the unique shape and details in the circular wall tell a great story (Mukherjee, 2018).

Built period – believed to be around the 14th century by Feroz Shah Tughlaq when the fort was constructed.

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Feroz Shah Kotla Baoli’s Interior_ Varun Shiv Kapur from New Delhi, India, Feroz Shah Kotla Baoli (3545671389), CC BY 2.0

Rajon Ki Baoli

This three-storied Baoli reminds us of a courtyard more than a stepped well with its long covered corridors or Dalans. It comprises steps only at one shorter side of the rectangular well but scenic shots of a movie at every corner. With tree canopies covering parts of the sky and a cooler atmosphere in the lower parts, it is hard to believe all around you is a city (, n.d.). This Baoli is situated inside the Mehrauli Archaeological Park (Mukherjee, 2018).

Built period – believed to be built in the reign of Sikander Lodi (1498-1517 AD) by Daulat Khan

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Rajon Ki Baoli’s Interior View_By Rupeshsarkar, Rajon Ki Baoli – Delhi – 01, CC BY-SA 4.0

Wazirpur Monument Complex Baoli

Located inside the Wazirpur Monument Complex, this Baoli is famous for its location holding five tombs with domed structures. The Baoli itself is a two-storied structure and at the end of the steps, when cascading only from one side, a circular shaped well could be seen. Even though the scale of this Baoli is small compared to most, its proportional grandeur is something not to be missed (Mukherjee, 2018).

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Wazirpur Monument Complex Baoli_On Yappe (

Lal Qila Baoli

Red Fort in Delhi is one of the most prominent locations in the city and this Baoli is part of the fort but not located in the usual tourist paths (SoCity, 2023). With its two flights of stairs coming from the North and West sides forming a right angle and an L shape for the whole Baoli, the well at the bottom is somewhat octagonal shape. With this unique layout of the Baoli and arches framing views, it is said that some niches of the stepwell have been used as prison cells too (Rogers, 2022). 

Built period – believed to predate the Red Fort (Rogers, 2022)

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View Towards South Wall Of Red Fort Baoli And Bottom Of Well_By Patrick Rogers

Time passes by but historic monuments never cease to amaze us and find ways to push new life into it, who would have thought a Baoli could be part of an adventure sport, like high diving?

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High Diving from Baolis_By Michael Henry on Redbull


Bindloss, J. (2019). India’s Most Beautiful Stepwells and How to Visit Them. [online] Lonely Planet. Available at: (n.d.). Rajon Ki Baoli | Film Facilitation Office. [online] Available at: [Accessed 11 Jan. 2024].

gujrattourism. (n.d.). Adalaj Ni Vav. [online] Available at: [Accessed 11 Jan. 2024].

Mukherjee, S. (2018). Baolis (Stepwell) Of Delhi. [online] Indian Vagabond. Available at: [Accessed 11 Jan. 2024].

Pearce, S. (2020). Panna Meena Ka Kund (2024) – How To Visit The Amazing Jaipur Stepwell! [online] Available at: [Accessed 11 Jan. 2024].

Rogers, P. (2022). THE FORGOTTEN STEPWELL OF RED FORT. [online] Patrick Rogers. Available at: [Accessed 11 Jan. 2024].

Sengar, R.S. (2019). Sri Subramanya Temple in Peralassery – its legend, the stepwell and resident snakes. The Times of India. [online] 25 Mar. Available at: [Accessed 11 Jan. 2024].

SoCity (2023). The Lal Qila Baoli Was Built In The 14th Century & Is Nestled In The Majestic Red Fort. [online] So City. Available at: [Accessed 11 Jan. 2024].

UNESCO World Heritage Centre (n.d.). Rani-ki-Vav (the Queen’s Stepwell) at Patan, Gujarat. [online] UNESCO World Heritage Centre. Available at: (n.d.). Chand Baori. [online] Available at: (n.d.). Panna Meena ka Kund Jaipur. [online] Available at: [Accessed 11 Jan. 2024].


Chamindu Piyathilake is an architect from Sri Lanka who is passionate about creating meaningful spaces and experiences through architecture. With a focus on practical expertise in BIM and digitalization strategies, he strives to bring innovation to creative design and the industry.