Chittaurgarh Fort in Udaipur, Chittaurgarh Fort in Udaipur Rajasthan
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Rajasthan Tours Travel  »  Architectural Treasures  »  Chittaurgarh Fort

Chittaurgarh Fort

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Marvel of Architecture
The story of Chittaur and its giant 700-acre fort are intrinsically interwoven. Built by the Moris between the 5th and the 8th century it was invaded at different points in time by Rajputs, Gujaratis and even the Afghans. Its glorious past is refelected well in its architecture, an interesting amalgamation of Hindu, Jain and Muslim styles of construction. There are seven gateways to the main gate, the Rampol. On entering the fort you will encounter Rana Kumbha's Palace. An evocative mansion where the Rana would pray to Surya (the Sun ) each morning with musicians playing in the background.
Chittaurgarh Fort
Next is the Zenana Mahal or the women's quarters, with its faint traces of pink and blue paint on the walls and an endless array of maidservants' quarters surrounding it. The Gaumukh Kund or the bathing tank still carries a haunting blend of sadness and courage for this is the spot where thousands of women, not once but on three separate occassions are said to have committed Jauhar or mass suicide by jumping into funeral pyres insted of risking dishonour at the hands of the enemy. Wander on to the Mira Bai temple, where an old woman sits playing finger cymbals to recorded bhajans and its as if you can sense the very presence of Mira Bai lost in her devotion to Lord Krishna. The Diwan-i-Aam or the hall of public audience is now just a tree dappled room. An elaborately carved Jain temple stands across the road from the palace, a truly secular structure for its neat square walls are capped with an Islamic dome. The Prakash Palace is now an in-house museum which contains sculptures, weapons, artefacts and some folk art. The Vijay Stambth, built by Rana Kumbha rises nine storeys high and is encrusted with Hindu deities and in the spirit of secularity it even has Allah's name inscribed on its third and eighth storeys. The Kirti Stambh, a Digambra Jain tower honouring Adinath stands tall within the fort complex. After exploring the fort to your heart's content be sure to save a few minutes for the breathtaking view of the historic battlefield and the rugged Aravallis, 10 kms away.

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Shopping Spree
The handicrafts found in the local market make for nice little curios and trinkets to take home. The most popular indigenous craft reamins the handpainted wooden toys of Bassi Village. Also don't forget to take back a kavadh, a miniature altar painted with scenes from the epics and hinged so that it can be folded like a book. The main markets include Sadar Bazar, Rana Sangha Market, New Cloth Market, Fort Road Market, Gandhi Chowk and Station Circle.

Getting There
By Air : The nearest airport is at Udaipur. Daily flights form Delhi, Mumbai, Jaipur and Lucknow are available to Udaipur.

Meera Bai Temple, ChittaurgarhBy Bus : Rajasthan Roadways runs very luxurious deluxe and air conditioned buses from Jaipur to Chittaurgarh. It is also connected by road to Delhi, Mount Abu, Chittaurgarh, Bundi and Udaipuri.

By Train : Chittaurgarh has rail links with Ahmedabad, Chittaurgarh, Udaipur, Jaipur, Kota, Alwar and Delhi.

Weather Watch
The climate of Chittorgarh is dry. Summers, from April to June are quite hot and winters from October to February are cool. Monsoon rainfall can be experienced between June and August. We recommend you visit anytime between September and March. As per the temperature, come equipped with light cotton clothes in summer, and if the mercury dips too low then you might require heavy woolens in winter.

Soak in the Surroundings
For truly experiencing Chittaur spend a few days here soaking in its history and middle-of-nowhere quietude. After visiting the fort, poke around the villages, woodlands and temples and savour the sight of stars in a clear black sky. The city also has some beautifully laid out parks and gardens for you to wander through and museums that house treasures from times gone by. Go all out to go back in time by visiting Nagri, one of the oldest towns in Rajasthan. Hindu and Buddhist remains from the Mauryan and Gupta periods can still be found here. Situated on the banks of River Banish, it is 17 kms from Chittaur. Another must see is the cheerful village of Bassi with its houses painted mint-green, purple, yellow and sky-blue. The Bassi Wildlife Sanctuary located close to the village will require prior permission from the District Forest Office but it's worth the effort. You may even explore this wooded wonderland on horseback thereby increasing your chances of spotting the panther, antelope, mongoose and migratory birds that it's famous for.

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