The capital of the erstwhile kingdom of Mewar, Chittorgarh is a land of forts, citadels, ruins, and immortal folklore of sacrifice and heroism. Located in South-Eastern Rajasthan, Chittorgarh is known for chittorgarh fort, the largest fort in India built on a hilltop, spreading over an area of around 700 acres. The magnificent fortress will always be remembered for the courageous self-sacrificing Jauhar performed by Rani Padmini to thwart the conquest of the fort by Alauddin Khilji.
Chittorgarh stands at the helm of Chattari Rajput pride and is remembered in the pages of history for its glorious battles, especially the siege of Alauddin Khilji. Once known for its grandeur and opulence, today, Chittorgarh has left its tales of bravery and betrayal far behind to catch up to commercialisation.Rana kumbha palace is the largest structure in Chittorgarh fort, and while it is now a mere tumbledown structure of broken walls and piles of stones, it was once a magnificent three-storied palace with gigantic pillars, maze-like underground tunnels and intricately designed architecture. The most famous attraction in Chittorgarh fort is the padmini palace, named after Queen Padmini herself. Replete with roof pavilions and water moats, the story of Queen Padmini’s valour rings out loud in every corner of this dilapidated building. Other sights to visit in Chittorgarh include the meera temple, the kalika mata temple, the gau mukh kund, and the bassi wildlife sanctuary.
Built by local Maurya rulers (often confused with imperial Maurya Rulers) in 7th century A.D, the Chittorgarh Fort in Rajasthan is one of the largest forts in India. The Chittorgarh Fort, plainly known as Chittor is spread majestically over a hill of 590 feet in height and is spread across 692 acres of land is a fine example of the popular Rajput architecture. The imposing structure of the fort has many gateways built by the later rulers of the Maurya clan. Chittorgarh Fort was previously the capital of Mewar and is now situated in the city of Chittorgarh. Chittorgarh Fort reverberates with tales of heroism and sacrifice and displays the Rajput culture and values in the real sense. Owing to its magnificent edifice, the Chittorgarh Fort was declared a UNESCO’s World Heritage Site in the year 2013.
There is a long road of 1 km that leads to the Chittorgarh Fort and is quite steep. It is often considered to be the pride of the state as there are many historical sacrifices related to it. Chittorgarh Fort is also called the Water Fort as it had 84 water bodies once, but now there are only 22 of them left. The two major attractions of the fort are the towers Vijay Stambh and Kirti Stambh. Vijay Stambh refers to the tower of victory and the Kirti Stambh means tower of fame. The towers are illuminated in the evening and it looks even more beautiful. Apart from the towers, there are many palaces and temples within the premises of the fort, most notable being Meera Temple.
Vijay Stambha, also known as victory tower, is a piece of resistance of Chittorgarh. It was constructed by the king of Mewar, Rana Kumbha to celebrate his triumph over the combined forces of Malwa and Gujarat led by Mahmud Khilji, in 1448. The mighty tower was constructed between the period of 1458 and 1488 and is so tall and massive that it is visible from any part of the city. Hence, the entire town can be viewed from here.
Vijay Stambh is a dedication to Lord Vishnu and has intricate carvings and sculptures of Hindu Gods and Goddesses. The internal part of the tower has carvings of weapons, musical instruments, and other tools used in that period. It is an excellent example of religious pluralism practised by the Rajputs. The highest storey consists of an image of the Jain Goddess, Padmavati. Also, the word Allah is carved nine times on the third storey and eight times on the eighth storey, all in Arabic. The magnificent tower is a piece of architecture that is frequented by tourists visiting the city and makes them feel proud of the vibrant history of the country.
About 110 km away from Chittorgarh, this is the sacred place where Udaipur Rulers used to be cremated.
This beautiful structure, glistening in the sun attracts tourists also because of a water reservoir which it believed to have the waters of Ganges emerging from it. The Ahar Cenotaphs have 19 chhatris to commemorate the 19 Kings who were cremated here. In all, there are more than 250 cenotaphs here.
Gau Mukh Kund
Located within Chittorgarh fort, the Gomukh Kund is also known as ???Tirth Raj” of Chittorgarh because whenever pilgrims and devotees go on the tour of different Hindu spiritual places, then they come to Gomukh kund for completion of their holy journey after returning back.
Gau Mukh literally means mouth of cow and it has been named so because the water flows from the cow mouth shaped point. Natural environment with lush green plants and flowing water is what makes this place even more attractive.
Built in the 12th-century, Kirti Stambh is situated inside the Chittorgarh Fort, Rajasthan. The 22 meters tall tower was constructed by a Jain merchant, Jeeja Bhagerwala during the rule of Rawal Kumar Singh, to glorify Jainism. The tower contains figures from the Jain pantheon, and hence, Kirti Stambh is considered a major Jain pilgrimage by many Jainism followers.
Kirti Stambh also goes by the name, the Tower of Fame. It is dedicated to the first Tirthankara, Rishabha. Famous for its intricate carvings of the Digambar sect, this seven storeyed tall tower has marvellous statues of Sri Adinatha. They are carved on the four corners of the Stambh a long with figures of various Jain saints, making it more fascinating. The tower personifies Solanki Style of Architecture at it’s best. Visiting the Stambh not only gives you a chance to read the pages of history but also makes you a spectator of a great view.
Rana Kumbha’s palace
Rana Kumbha palace is where Rana Kumbha lived and spent his royal life. Its charming and artistic architecture makes it a must visit for tourists visiting Chittorgarh.
Lord Shiva temple in the nearby and light and sound show in its complex makes it an unforgettable experience.
Kalika Mata Temple
It is one of the most important temples of Chittorgarh and the city’s tour isn’t complete without a visit to this temple. The splendid sculpture of the temple is what attracts most tourists.
It is dedicated to Kalika an incarnation of Goddess Durga. The entire temple, built on a platform, boasts of Prathira architectural style. The ceiling, pillars and gates all have intricate designs. Even though the temple is partially in ruins, one will still marvel at its architectural credibility.