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With two days in Lucknow, you can check out the city's most important historic sites, learn about traditional embroidery techniques, and eat plenty of rich Awadhi dishes for which the city is known. Here's how to best plan your time.
Day 1: Historic Highlights
Morning: Devote your morning to visiting Lucknow’s historic imambaras, Shia congregation halls. Start with Bara Imambara complex, an important city attraction, making sure to check out the landmark Rumi Darwaza gate. Then head to nearby Chota Imambara, known for its crystal chandeliers. Most tours of the area cover both.
Afternoon: In the afternoon, make your way to the British Residence, the site of the 1857 Siege of Lucknow, one of the events that led up to India's independence a century later. From here, continue to La Martinière College, the city's finest example of British colonial architecture.
Night: For dinner, consider skipping a sit-down restaurant experience in favor of a food-focused walking tour, which gives you the chance to try out some of Lucknow’s most beloved dishes and desserts while exploring the city on foot with a local guide.
Day 2: Cultural Immersion
Morning: Spend your second morning learning about Lucknow’s most celebrated craft: embroidery. While locals will tell you that Janpath Market is one of the best places in town to pick up embroidered fabric, a more immersive way to learn about the tradition is by signing up for an embroidery tour.
Afternoon: In the afternoon, take a tour of Kaiserbagh, a 19th-century palace complex filled with all sorts of old treasures, from historic maps to period furniture. Tours here generally finish with the chance to watch scenes from Umrao Jaan, a 1981 film set in Awadhi Lucknow.
Night: Spend your last evening taking a cooking class followed by dinner in a local home. If you’d rather stay out of the kitchen—but still want the chance to eat homemade food in a local home—choose to book a meal-only dining experience instead.