An important heritage site of Rajasthan, Chittorgarh Fort is famous for being one of the largest forts in the country. Taking a walking round of one kilometer on a bridge, you will find yourself in a six-grand gateway fort dwelling a large porting of the plateau. The remaining portion of the plateau is almost barren except for a few temples and a rusted loop road that runs through the region. There’s so much to see on this rock island and many legends to listen to. After the near-collapse, the fort unfolds many structures that deserve a visit before it turns ruin or abandoned.
Whether or not, you plan a Rajasthan Tour Package, you should plan a next short excursion to Chittorgarh Fort. With this complete guide of Chittorgarh Fort, we’ll tell you everything that you need to know about the fortress. From history to architecture and attractions, everything is covered in this guide. So, let’s take a peek at it –
History of Chittorgarh Fort –
The historical fort was known as Chitrakut and was built by the local ruler Chitragada Maurya. As many legends say, the fort area was created with Bhima (one of the Pandava brothers of the Mahabharata epic) hit the ground hard. The fort structure was later rebuilt by many dynasties. In the 8th century, the fort was taken into control by the Guhila ruler. Later it went from hand to hand to many rulers and dynasties.
The height of popularity of the fort was during the 14th century when Alauddin Khilji led a large army to conquer the fort. It was said that the Alauddin caught a glimpse of Queen Padmini’s reflection on a series of mirrors and was impressed at first sight. For the sole purpose to capture her, he decided to conquer the fortress. It is said that he waged a war for 8 months before capturing king Ratan Sen, the spouse of Queen Padmini.
Unfortunately, when Alauddin entered the fort after capturing it, all the women inside the fort including Queen Padmini jumped into the fire and committed suicide. The men of the fort also killed themselves with their swords. Later, Alauddin handed over the fort to his son, Khidr Khan. Later, the fort when into the hands of several kings before coming under Rana Kumbha in the 15th Century. Later at the end of the 16th century, the fort fell into the hands of the Sultan of Gujarat. It is said that a similar mass suicide happened in the 16th century when the Sultan captured the fort. All the Rajput women fell into fire and men killed themselves to avoid becoming slaves for life. After it was conquered by Mughals and remained under them until the British took over the whole country.
Architecture of Chittorgarh Fort –
The fort is fish-shaped and covers 5 kilometers in length and 13 kilometers in circumference. The majestic fort can be approached by a bridge, which spans for one kilometer. It is made of limestone, covering the Gambhiri River. The fort covers 65 historic structures, that include four palaces, 19 large temples, 20 water bodies, 4 memorials, and a few victory towers.
Some of the major tourist attractions in Chittorgarh are –
Fateh Prakash Palace – the palace was built by Rana Fateh Singh that beholds a small museum and a local school for the children who live in the villages around the fort.
Goddess Tulja Bhavani Temple – the ancient temple is considered to be one of the sacred temples of the bygone era. Close to the temple, you can see the cannon foundry with a few cannons intact.
Meera and Kumbha Shyam Temples – These two temples are located inside the southern palace of the fort is the Rana Kumbha Palace. The Meera Temple is the smallest one and Kumbha Shyam Temple is dedicated to Lord Vishnu.
Tower of Victory – this is a 15th-century old tower built by Rana Kumbha to celebrate his victory over Malwa’s Mahmud Khilji. The tower is dedicated to Lord Vishnu.
Gaumukh Reservoir – Beyond the Samidheshwar Temple, at the end of the plateau cliff, you can find a tank there. It is an important tourist attraction among children, as they get to feed the fish in the tank.
Padmini Palace – The royal palace is on the south of the fort, you will find an 8th-century sun temple, Kalika Mata Temple. It is a temple where you can find the palace of Queen Padmini.
Suraj Pol- The eastern gate of the fort, Suraj Pol is the main entrance of the fort and gives a great view of the plains.
Traveler’s Quick Notes:
- Visiting Time: 9:45 am to 6:30 pm
- Entry fee for Indians: INR 50 per head, INR 25 for students, and senior citizens
- Entry fee for Foreigners: INR 200 per head.
- Sound and Light show: INR 100 per head (Tuesdays and Fridays for English show and rest of the week for Hindi Show).
Chittorgarh is well-connected with many parts of the country and all the cities of Rajasthan are linked with this place. You can opt for Car Rental in Udaipur, Jaipur, Jodhpur, to reach Chittorgarh for a short excursion. So, let’s plan a great trip to Chittorgarh for a remarkable experience.