Friday, 22 June 2012

The Royal Forts of Rajasthan – II


Forts in RajasthanThe impressive forts of Rajasthan are famous all around the world. Rajasthan in the early ages was a collection of independently existing kingdoms. The forts were constructed by the Kings who ruled the Kingdom to protect their kingdom from foreign invasion. Some of the forts succumbed to invasions but what remains of them provides insights on the kingdom.
Most forts in Rajasthan are built on hill tops to ensure a better view in times of danger. Some of the distinct characteristics of the forts of Rajasthan are royal courtyards, museums to reflect the rich heritage and massive palaces. The jaw dropping architecture and the massive structures are visible from even far.
The terraces of the fort provide one of the most spectacular view of the setting sun, tourists wait for long to have an opportunity to witness the setting sun from the top if the forts.
The forts in a glimpse
Chittaurgarh fort A living testimony of the Rajputs who ruled over various parts of Rajasthan the Chittaurgarh Fort exhibits their heroism and gallantry. Dominating the modern township of Chittor the fort is located on top of a hill. The superb style of architecture oozes romance and courage of the Rajput tradition.
Chittaurgarh fortBelieved to be the capital of Gahlot and Sisodia Kings who ruled Mewar the fort dates as early as the 18thcentury A.D. Named after Chittrangad Maurya the fort rises 150 m above the surrounding area and has a length of approximately 3 km covering an area of 60 acres.
Chittaurgarh fortThe first attack on the fort was to pursue the beautiful queen Padmini. Sultan Ala-ud-din khilji the then ruler of Delhi had heard of the beauty of Padmini and was keen on having a glimpse of her. On the approval of Rana Rattan Singh the King of Chittaurgarh he was allowed to look at the reflection of Padmini from a water tank overlooking the palace. Having been driven by her beauty he attacked Chittor only to possess her leading to the siege of the fort and mass suicides.
Chittaurgarh fort is linked by rail to major cities across India like Ahemdabad, Jaipur, Ajmer, Kota, Udaipur and Delhi. Regular bus services are also available from major cities in Rajasthan.
While at Chittaurgarh Fort you should definitely see Anup Mahal the most beautiful palace in the fort compound. The impressive colored glass work on the walls and the massive pillars are something you can’t miss. Enjoy the finest paintings at Badal Mahal and the marvel of Phool Mahal.
The fort is also home to a museum which has a great collections of items that belonged to the Rajputs. Giving us a glimpse of the royal and luxurious lifestyle of the Rajputs these items are a treasure to the ancient past.
Mehrangarh FortEnclosing many palaces known for their intricately carved stone screen and treasures the Mehrangarh Fortis one of the largest forts in India. Narrating a saga of grandeur the fort was constructed by skilled Jodhpuri sculptures.
Mehrangarh FortBearing the marks of many sieges the gates of the fort still stand tall. Seven gates have to be crossed to make an entry into the fort.
Moti Mahal also known as the Pearl Palace is one of the most beautiful places in the fort. The royal throne of Jodhpur, Srinagar Chowki is one of the treasures present in the Moti Mahal. Umaid Villa has a display of miniature paintings while Ajit Villa showcases musical instruments and costumes of the royal Rajputs. Magnificent mirror rooms are present in both the Villas.
Amber FortCompleted in the 18th century Amber Fort was built by Raja Man Singh. Amber Fort is one of the finest examples of Rajput architecture. The deep narrow valleys and the wide plains form a spectacular view from the Fort. Amber was once the capital of Mina Tribes who are believed to be the original residents.
Amber FortAmber fort is located on the hills that surround the city of Jaipur. What makes the fort spectacular is Maotha Lake sprawling around the hills. Built over a period of two centuries this fort comprises of pillared pavilions, courtyards and massive palaces.
Sheesh Mahal - Amber FortSheesh Mahal also known as the Palace of Mirrors is one of the most visited places in the fort. Dil-e-Aaram is the garden which also makes a splendid entrance for the Fort.
Raja Man Singh was a great follower of Goddess Kali hence the Fort also has a small Kali Temple. The doors of the temple are made up of Silver and white marble especially brought in from East Bengal now known as Bangladesh.
Jaigarh FortThe last fort in this brief list of the mighty forts of Rajasthan is the Jaigarh Fort of Jaipur. Last but nevertheless important Jaigarh Fort was built by Sawai Jai Singh. This is a citadel like no other fort of Rajasthan. With no palaces and delicate structures inside the fort the purpose of the fort is clearly highlighted. The fort was formed merely to be used a military structure.
Jaigarh FortSituated 15 kms away from the city on a cliff the fort was also coined the term Victory Fort. The architecture of the fort makes it easier to fight during the times of danger. The walkways provide a clear view from all sides.
Jaigarh Fort For all its worth one gets to have the most spectacular view of Jaipur City from atop the Fort. While museums in other forts in Rajasthan have a collection of gems and jewellery the Jaigarh Fort Museum has a collection of arms that were used in the battle. One can have a look at the guns, swords, shields and even cannon balls used to fight.
To have a one of a kind experience of the forts of Rajasthan get in touch with The Other Home while they plan a fort circuit tour especially designed for you.
If you wish to have a great home stay in Rajasthan, The Other Home provides a list of available properties to choose from in major cities and towns in Rajasthan.
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