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Things To Do In Chittorgarh
Chittorgarh is the land of valour and sacrifice, of devotion, of Rajputi tradition and Mewadi culture. From the era of Prithviraj Chauhan and his brother-in-law Samar Singh the king of Mewad to Rawal Ratan Singh and his wife Padmavati, from Meera bai to the legendary Panna Dhai, Chittor has in its wake a whole lot of heroism. But let’s not confine its tourism to only history as there is a lot to do here.
Explore the Grand Chittorgarh Fort
The Chittorgarh Fort is Chittor’s highlight, a huge complex that is almost as big as a township built atop a ridge. It includes numerous palaces, temples, towers, armouries, stables and chambers. It has been the home to numerous generations of Mewadi rulers before they shifted base to Udaipur. From the time of Prithviraj Chauhan’s brother-in-law Samar Singh to Padmini’s husband Rawal Ratan Singh, from Meera bai to Panna Dhai, the fort has so many stories to tell.
Inside the complex you can either explore on foot or hire bikes. Do make it a point to see the Kirti Stambh, Vijay Stambh, Kumbha Mahal, Padmini Mahal, Meera Temple and Kalika Mata Temple among others. The Gaumukh Tank is a great place to relax and catch the sunset.
Safari at Bassi Wildlife Sanctuary
Chittorgarh boasts of the Bassi Wildlife Sanctuary and a trip is incomplete without some bird-watching and safari trips here. You will find wild animals like deer, fox, antelope, mongoose and even panthers. Bird-watchers, your paradise is here at Bassi because you will be able to spot peacocks, cranes, eagles and pelicans along with many other migratory birds. Winter is a great time to do so. The Bassi Dam nearby is a nice spot to relax in the afternoons.
Stay at the Bassi Fort Palace
Whoever said that you can’t live like the kings themselves when in Chittorgarh? The Bassi Fort Palace ensures you get that experience. Built by Thakur Jamal, a Sisodia warrior of 16th Century, the Bassi Fort was initially a defence bastion. Recently it has been converted to a heritage hotel with plush suites and gives you the full fort-palace life experience, complete with king size beds, jharokha windows, personal verandas and a breathtaking view.
Pray at the Sanwariyaji Temple
The Sanwariyaji Temple, located about 40 km from Chittorgarh is a shrine dedicated to Lord Krishna, the dark one. It is situated in the village of Bhadsoda and houses the glossy black idol of Shri Krishna as the flute-player, called Sanwariya Seth. After the Shrinathji Temple of Nathdwara, this is the second most significant temple in the world for Krishna devotees. An early morning drive from Chittorgarh and a quick darshan here will bring you back to your base so that you can pursue other activities through the day too.
See History at Rani Padmini’s Palace
A part of the massive Chittorgarh Fort Complex, the Padmini Palace is the place of Rawal Ratan Singh’s second queen’s residence. It was here where Allauddin Khiji saw Padmini’s reflection in the mirror and launched his army to posses her. But alas, she jumped into fire when her husband succumbed in battle, and Khilji couldn't even touch the shadow of the woman for whom he had waged a brutal war.
Rather than become putty to a man’s whims, Padmini performed jauhar with the other Rajput women of the clan and attained a goddess-like status among the people. She is worshipped in Rajasthan even today, and a tour of her palace brings you close to her story.
Go Caving to Menal
Menal is a place close to Chittorgarh, renowned for its waterfalls, caves and temples cut into rocks. They are predominantly Buddhist in nature and you will find several Buddhist figures, teachings and traditions carved inside the cave walls. There are tourist areas for you to picnic and also some water activities if you wish to extend your fun, along with a hiking route to reach the waterfall.
Watch the Light & Sound Show at Chittorgarh Fort
Well, it is taken that at the end of the day after exploring all the nuances of the huge fort complex, you would be tired. So they offer a mesmerising Light and Sound Show at the Chittorgarh Fort that gives you enough incentive to stay back and save a seat to just relax and enjoy. The show is held everyday and starts at 7 pm, chronicling the history of Mewad and its dynasty, chivalry of the royals who have inhabited the fort over the centuries and talking about the 1100 year old Mewadi dynasty, along with its growth to the present day.