Hello folks, I am back again with Chittorgarh Travel Rajasthan 2020 guide. In this article, I am going to tell you everything. What to do? What to visit? While you are in Chittorgarh. First, let me tell you a little about Chittorgarh. Chittorgarh is an important historical city of India, which is lie down on the bank of Berach River in Rajasthan state. Chittorgarh is famous for its largest Fort among all Rajputs fort across India. The Fort is the witness of the famous tale of Queen Padmavati and Sultan Alauddin Khilji. The legendary story of Queen Padmavati’s act of Jauhar fascinates most historians and travellers to this palace. Bollywood film director Mr Sanjay Leela Bhansali has made a tremendous epic saga of Queen Padmavati’s tale. So let’s scroll down to know more about Chittorgarh.
What to visit?
- Chittorgarh Fort
- Victory Tower
- Kirti Stambha
- Rana Kumbha Palace
- Padmini’s Palace
- Meera Bai Temple.
- Gaumukh Reservoir.
- Jain Temples.
- Johar Graden
- Sanwra Ji temple
Historically, the Chittorgarh fort belongs the Maurayans of 7th century A.D. Some accounts say that the Mori dynasty had the Fort when Bappa Rawal the founder of the kingdom of Mewar seized Chittorgarh (Chittor fort) and made it his capital in 734 AD. While some other accounts say, Bappa Rawal received it as a part of the dowry after marriage with the last Solanki princess.
The Fort has seven gates, namely the Padan Pol, Bhairon Pol, Hanuman Pol, Ganesh Pol, Jodla Pol, Laxman Pol and the main entry gate of Ram Pol. All the gateways to the Fort have been built as massive stone structures with secure fortifications for military defence. The doors of the gates with pointed arches are reinforced to fend off elephants and cannon shots. The top of the gates has notched parapets for archers to shoot at the enemy army. A circular road within the Fort links all the doors and provides access to the numerous monuments (ruined palaces and 130 temples) in the Fort.
Chittorgarh remains replete with historic associations and holds an extraordinary place in the hearts of Rajputs. It was a bastion of the clan at a time when every other stronghold had succumbed to invasion.
The Vijay Stambha (Victory Tower) or Jay Stamba, is the symbol of Chittor and a particularly bold expression of triumph. Rana Khumba had been built this tower between 1458 and 1468 to commemorate his victory over Mahmud Shah I Khalji, the Sultan of Malwa, in 1440 AD. Built over ten years, it raises 37.2 m over a 4.4 m² base in nine stories accessed through a narrow circular staircase of 157 steps up to the 8th floor, from where there is a good view of the plains and the new town of Chittor.
The dome, which is a later addition, was damaged by lightning and repaired during the 19th century. The Stamba is now illuminate during the evenings and gives a beautiful view, but the fort staff has stopped climbing the tower due to security reasons.
Kirti Stambha (“Fame Tower”) is a 12th-century old tower lie- in the compound of the Fort. The 22-metre-high tower was built by a Jain merchant Jeeja Bhagerwala during the reign of Rawal Kumar Singh for the glory of Jainism. The tower is 22 m high built on a 9.1 m base with 4.6 ft at the top, is adorned with Jain sculptures on the outside.
In the lowest floor of the tower, naked figures of the various Tirthankaras of the Jain pantheon are seen in particular niches formed to house them. A narrow stairway with 54 steps leads through the six storeys to the top. The top pavilion that was added in the 15th century has 12 columns. Don’t forget to include it in your Chittorgarh Travel 2020’s list.
Chittorgarh Travel: Rana Khubha Palace
At the entrance gate near the Vijaya Stamba, Rana Kumbha’s palace (in ruins) is located. The palace included elephant and horse stables and a temple to Lord Shiva. Maharana Udai Singh, the founder of Udaipur, was born here; the popular folklore linked to his birth is that his maid Panna Dhay saved him by substituting her son in his place as a decoy, which resulted in her son getting killed by Banbir. The prince Udai Sing was spirited away in a fruit basket.
The palace has been made with plastered stone. The remarkable feature of the Fort is its splendid series of canopied balconies. Entry to the palace is through Suraj Pol that leads into a courtyard. The palace was also home of Rani Meera, the famous poet-saint.
Chittorgarh Travel: Padmini/Padmavati’s Palace
This palace, a white building, a three-storied structure (a 19th-century reconstruction of the original), is located in the southern part of the Fort. Chhatris (pavilions) crown the palace roofs, and a water moat surrounds the palace. This style of the palace became the forerunner of other palaces built in the state with the concept of Jal Mahal (palace surrounded by water). It is the Palace where Alauddin was permitted to glimpse at the mirror image of Rani Padmavati, wife of Maharana Rattan Singh Rawal.
It is widely believed that this glimpse of Padmavati’s beauty besotted him and convinced him to destroy Chittor to possess her. Maharana Rattan Singh was killed, and Rani Padmini committed Jauhar. Rani Padmini’s beauty is compared to that of Cleopatra, and her life story is an eternal legend in the history of Chittor, in particular and of the Mewar state in general.
Chittorgarh Travel: Kumbha Shyam Temple
The Temple was Build by Maharana Kumbha in 1449, this lord Vishnu Temple has beautiful idols in its sanctum, mandap and pillars. Maharana Kumbha also is known as Kumbhakarna Singh was the son of Rana Mokal and Maharani Sobhagya Devi. He ruled Mewar from 1433 to 1468, being a Hindu, he had a great inclination towards music and art. Meera Bai was an ardent devotee of Lord Krishna. She got married to Rana Kumbha in 1513 and then accompanied him to Chittorgarh. The Kumbha Shyam temple was built on her request.
The Kumbha Shyam Temple was initially built in the eighth century. Maharana Kumbha later repaired and revamped the Temple during the fifteenth century. After that, the Temple was renamed after him.
Chittorgarh Travel: Queen Meera Bai Temple
The Meera Temple, or the Meera Bai Temple. Rana Khumba built it in an ornate Indo-Aryan architectural style. It is associated with the mystic saint-poet Mira Bai who was an ardent devotee of Lord Krishna and dedicated her entire life to His worship. The Temple served as a private place of worship for Meera Bai. She spent long hours here in dedication to Lord Vishnu. Benign at heart, she fed the poor and the visiting pilgrims with her share of wealth. She composed and sang lyrical bhajan called Meera Bhajans. The popular legend associated with her is that with blessings of Krishna, she survived after consuming poison sent to her by her evil brother-in-law.
Meera Bai was the follower of Guru from the holy land of Varanasi. The Kumbha Shyam Temple has a Chattri dedicated to her Guru, Swami Ravidas, who was also known as Swami Raidas. The markings of the footprints of Guru Ravidas have been preserved in this place of pilgrimage. The pinnacle of the Temple is in the pyramid shape. A picture of Meera Bai praying before Krishna has now been installed in the Temple.
Chittorgarh Travel: Gaumukh Reservoir
The Gaumukh Reservoir is one of the eighty-four water bodies of the Fort. It is full with water to this day. The nomenclature refers to the cow-shaped mouth which serves water to the reservoir. The visitors admire the Gaumukh Kund as the ‘Tirth Raj’ of Chittorgarh. Local people believe that after touring various holy places in India, Hindus need to visit the Gaumukh Kund in Chittorgarh to complete their sacred journey.
Water incessantly flows from the cow-shaped mouth into the coil or the reservoir. The coil is a natural water body. The origin of the water is possibly an aquifer. As per hydrogeology, at some places beneath the surface of the earth, layers of permeable rocks, sand and silt can have water reserve. This stored water is creeping out into the surface of the earth results in the formation of aquifers.
A Shivaling and an icon of Goddess Lakshmi adorn the base of the Gaumukh were the waterfalls. Numerous fishes dwell in this reservoir. Although feeding fishes is consider auspicious in Hinduism, however, most of the tourists irrespective of a religious bent feed the fishes in the Gaumukh Reservoir.
Chittorgarh Travel: Jain Temples
At present, there are six Jain temples on the Fort of Chittor. The largest and chief among them is the Temple of Bhagawan Adinatha with fifty-two devkulikas. The place of this Temple is known as ‘Sattavish devri’. It means that at some time in the past, there were twenty-seven temples here.
The Digambar Jain Kirtistambh and seven-storied Kirtistambh are two among them. The seven-storied Kirtistambh was built in the fourteenth century in memories of Bhagawan Adinatha.
Chittorgarh Travel: Johar Graden
Johar Garden is the place where Queen Padmavati and other 30 thousand women committed Johar. In the garden one still can see a burning fire coil which has been build in the memory of all women who committed Johar. The Fort and the city of Chittorgarh host the biggest Rajput festival “Jauhar Mela”. It takes place annually on the anniversary of one of the jauhars, not the one by Padmini which is most famous.
This festival is to commemorate the bravery of Rajput ancestors and all three Jauhars which happened at Chittorgarh. A huge number of Rajputs which include the descendants of most of the princely families do a procession to celebrate the Jauhar.
Chittorgarh Travel: Ruins Complex
Ruins complex is just lie-down beside the Joghar garden. All the part which has been ruined are kept in this area. This portion of the Fort does attract more archaeologists and historians to understand the magnificent architect of the Fort’s buildings.
Chittorgarh Travel: Local Market
There is a small local market near the Goddess kali temple inside the Fort. One can buy traditional Rajasthani clothes and Juits(footwear) from here. Keep a close check on the quality of the product as they have all kind of cloths. Use your bargaining skill to make your pocket happy. Be aware of fake tourist guides, and their advice they can lead you in some danger.
How to Reach By Air/Rail/Bus
Chittorgarh is 300 km from Jaipur, 200 km from Udaipur, and 312 km from Jodhpur. The most convenient way to reach Chittorgarh is to hire a taxi from Udaipur, which is approximately a 2-hour drive.
Airport Udaipur Airport also called the Maharana Pratap Airport, is the nearest airport to Chittorgarh. Some of the airlines that operate in and out from the airport are SpiceJet, Air India, Jet Airways, and Indigo. It operates flights from Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata among other cities.
Railway Station Chittorgarh Junction is 6 km from the Chittorgarh Fort. You can also board a train from Chanderiya Railway Station which is 11 km from the Fort. Some of the trains from Udaipur to Chittorgarh are Mewar Express, Chetak Express, to name a few.
Bus Stand SRTC is the nearest bus stand. There are both private and state-run bus services to Chittorgarh. From Udaipur to Chittorgarh, it takes around 2 hours.
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