Places To Visit In Chittorgarh – A Royal Vacation
Located in the Western Indian state of Rajasthan, Chittorgarh is a royal town that will beckon you towards itself with massive forts, majestic hills, and calming greens. Chittorgarh is an integral part of the rich political history of both ancient and medieval India. Through centuries, it has seen rulers of different origins and dynasties fighting over it to hold a strong political and commercial footing in the entire country. Being the center of origin of many Rajasthani cultural practices, it is favored by tourists who want to delve deep into Rajasthani cultural nuances. Some of the best places to visit in Chittorgarh hold a significant political background and have stood the test of time.
Located where the Gambheri and the Berach rivers combine, the beautiful city of Chittorgarh was once the capital of Mewar which was then ruled by the Sisodia Dynasty. The rich cultural history of the town includes practices like Jauhar that were followed by medieval Indian women. A great devotee of the Hindu Lord Krishna, the princess Meerabai was said to be associated with this kingdom in her days. The garh – the raised hill atop which the Chittor fort rests – was captured numerous times by Mughal and Sultanate leaders. Many local rulers took possession of the Garh once in a while, but Rajasthani Royal families and Mughals ruled over the city for the longest periods. Rulers like Alauddin Khilji, Humanyun and Akbar demonstrated special interest over Chittorgarh as a political capital, seizing the fort more than once in their time.You might just be attracted to the rich history of the city, or might want to take a detour to a city far away from the metropolitan bustle – Chittor will welcome you with open arms for a fun-filled vacation.
The Chittor Fort – History Realized
A UNESCO World Heritage site and once the ruling point for the capital of Mewar, the monumental Chittorgarh Fort will enthrall you with its splendor. It is situated atop a 180 m tall hill and spreads over a massive area of 691 acres, making it the largest fort anywhere in Asia. Followed by a long-ruling period by the Mewar kingdom, Raja Ratan Singh ruled the fort. Sultan Alauddin Khilji captured it in 1303, after which it remained under the Sultanate rule for a long period. It was recaptured by the Hindu rulers of Rajasthan before being seized by Akbar in 1657. Having witnessed countless conflicts, the walls of this fort are etched with historical tales of valor, victories, and defeats. There is an abrupt rise in elevation where the fort is located, making the path to the fort a very steep one. Historically, this path was meant to protect the kingdom from invaders. Currently, around 22 water bodies surround the fort, making it a scenic retreat for your eyes. You will enjoy the reddish-brown walls that demonstrate the architectural skills of the makers.
Throughout the fort, you will find a special pillar like the Vijay Stambha and the Kirti Stambh, dedicated to the rulers and soldiers who had sacrificed their lives for their people. Do not forget to visit the individual residences of Rani Padmini, a brave queen who performed Jauhar to escape Sultan Khilji, Maharana’s Palace, the Gaumukh Reservoir, the Meera Temple, the Kumbha Shyam Temple, and the Fateh Prakash palace. While here, you can stroll around the area, sit on a quiet rooftop or balcony, or take a blissful look at the happening city of Chittorgarh. Do read the plaques affixed on various pillars in the fort. You will learn a lot about the history of Indian independence through them.In the night, the fort is lit beautifully in red and golden lights that add to the beauty. Try to attend the light and sound show if you want to immerse yourself in the history of the fort. If you travel with kids, do not miss showing them the grandeur of the fort via this show.
Places to Explore in Chittorgarh:
1. The Bhainsrorgarh Wildlife Sanctuary
The Bhainsrorgarh Wildlife sanctuary is one of the best places to visit in Chittorgarh. This wildlife sanctuary is located at the juncture of the Berach and the Gambheri rivers and is filled with exotic wildlife, including animals like Chinakaras, jackals, antelopes, wild boars, black-bellied turns, goose, sarus cranes, Red-crested pochards, turtles, lizards, and owls. Your kids can also enjoy the sights of Dolphins jumping over the rivers in delight. If you visit during monsoons, you will be stunned into ecstasy by the lush greenery cushioning the flowing rivers.
2. The Bassi Wildlife Sanctuary
The Bassi Wildlife sanctuary is another fun-filled adventure that will take you deep into Rajasthan’s flora and fauna. This sanctuary is located at a little distance from the Bassi Fort Palace and is a dry deciduous type of forest. Trees like Dhok, Butea, and Churel can easily be spotted here. You will also see several wildflowers and grasses. If you are looking to get closer to animals like a porcupine, Langur, wild board and Sarus crane, the sanctuary will not disappoint you.
For History Enthusiasts
3. The Archaeological Museum of Chittorgarh
The Archaeological Museum of Chittorgarh will intrigue you with its amazing collection of artillery and royal relics. You will find yourself amidst stories of the royals and history of Buddhist Stupas and the Maurya dynasty. The fee to enter this museum for Indians is Rs. 25 while that for foreigners is Rs. 50.
4. The Sanwariyaji Temple
The Sanwariyaji Temple is devoted to Lord Krishna and is frequented by local merchants wanting to improve profits. The pink sandstone utilized in constructing this temple will leave you in awe of this architectural marvel. The shikharas of this temple light up in the evening to dazzle devotees, making it one of the most beautiful places to visit in Chittorgarh.
Staying in Chittorgarh
Being a popular tourist town, Chittorgarh houses several hotels. While budget hotels are easy to find and offer sufficient amenities, luxury stays are limited. The luxury hotels are located near to most premier tourist spots. Most resorts and high-end hotels are built within abandoned forts and castles in the region, giving each of them a regal look. These offer world-class amenities including outdoor pools, spas, gyms, and fine-dining restaurants.
Binging on Rajasthani Food
Chittorgarh’s local cuisine features North Indian and Mughlai dishes from the neighboring regions of Gujarat, Uttar Pradesh, Uttrakhand, and Delhi. Dishes like Daal Baati Choorma, Laal Maas and Ker Saangri are some delicacies you should not miss if you visit this town. Other than that, you can indulge in some Punjabi food or Mughlai dishes featuring lamb. The cuisine of this region is generally spicy, so if you are looking for salads or continental food, you will have to hit high-end restaurants. Sweets like Moong ka Halwa and Kaju Katli will also tantalize your taste buds.
Shop Away in Chittorgarh
Shopping at the local markets in Chittorgarh will be a festive feast for your inner shopaholic. These markets are painted with hundreds of colorful items and are always busy with both locals and tourists. Stick to local markets while shopping for goodies like silver rings, bangles, Victorian jewelry and earrings made with Meenakari work. You can also shop for decorative handicrafts made of ivory, wood and marble carvings. Apart from the items mentioned above, here, you can also shop for leather goods like wallets and jutis. Some of the best places to visit in Chittorgarh for shopping are Sadar Bazar and Rana Sanga Market.
Chittorgarh celebrates some unique festivals that light the city up exquisitely and reflect its rich culture. Some of the best places to visit in Chittorgarh, like the Chittorgarh Fort and its temples, host religious and recreational festivals seasonally. You will find your breath taken away when you witness the devotion with which locals celebrate festivals like Maharana Pratap Jayanti, Meera Mahotsav, Teej, Gangaur, Jauhar Mela and Rang Teras. During these festivals, several fetes and competitions are organized throughout the city. You can even participate in one of those to blend in with the festive moods.
- If you prefer to travel to Chittorgarh by air, you will have to avail of a flight to Udaipur Airport. The Udaipur Airport lies at a distance of about 98 km from Chittorgarh. Once you get there, take a bus or a cab to reach Chittorgarh.
- Traveling by train will take you to Chittorgarh in the most convenient manner. Board a train going to the Chittorgarh Junction and take a rickshaw or a cab to reach your hotel from there.
- Several state and national highways connect Chittorgarh to major cities in India. You can take buses or hire rental to reach Chittorgarh by road.
Mobile Phone and Camera Usage
You should be able to carry cameras and mobile phones inside most tourist destinations of Chittorgarh. Some religious sites might prevent their usage completely. If you are traveling with a camera or a mobile phone to a temple, check if there are any storage options within the temple’s premises. Some historical sites will also charge an extra fee for their usage. Whenever you visit Chittorgarh, you will be blown away by the cultural diversity, devotion and the winds of tradition circulating this city. In here, you will find solace even amid the busy streets, what with the views of majestic forts and calm lakes reminding you of an India that flourishes in its diversity. A visit to Chittorgarh is a vacation designed in paradise just for you.
P.s. You might like these related resources:
- Junagarh Fort Bikaner – Heritage Tourist Attraction in Bikaner
- Brahma Temple- A Spiritual Adventure To Pushkar, Rajasthan
- Bharatpur bird sanctuary: A Complete Guide
Hi! I am Paridhi. When not downing endless cups of coffee and binge-ing on Masala Fries, I can be found deeply engrossed in contemporary novels. Delhiite by birth and nomad by passion. I travel and I know things. I write travel blogs by day and binge watch thriller and rom-com by night.