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Tourist Places To Visit In Bharatpur
Lying on the fringes of the Thar Desert in Rajasthan, Bharatpur is a little gem that should most certainly feature in your bucket list of must visit places. Renowned for its bird sanctuary, the city’s proximity to major attractions like Delhi, Agra and Jaipur makes Bharatpur a rather sought after tourist destination. To make your trip a memorable one, here are few of the best tourist places to visit in Bharatpur, including, and not limited to, the Lohargarh Fort, the Bharatpur Palace and Museum as well as Keoladeo Ghana National Park.
Keoladeo Ghana National Park
The Keoladeo Ghana National Park, more popularly known as Bharatpur Bird Sanctuary, is a famous avifauna sanctuary which has been declared a World Heritage site. It houses hundreds of species of birds while thousands of endangered ones like the Siberian Crane migrate to the city during the winter months. The flora and fauna of the national park attracts birds from as far as Siberia and Central Asia and are a real treat for visitors. The birds of varied colours and hues are magical to watch and certainly the biggest attraction for tourists visiting the city of Bharatpur.
Built in early 18th century by Jat ruler Maharaja Suraj Mal, the fort stands as a testimony to its prowess and strength that rendered it impregnable. Despite repeated onslaughts from Mughals and the British, the fort held its own. Its defences could not be breached. Unlike Red Fort or Agra Fort that sweeps the tourists off their feet by the architectural brilliance and artistic excellence, Lohagarh Fort is austere and imposing. A must visit for history lovers.
Government Museum Bharatpur
Located within the Lohagarh Fort, the museum helps to shed light on the culture of the area. It contains artefacts belonging to the rulers of Bharatpur. It is a good way to get well versed with the traditions, art and culture of the city and its people.
Bharatpur Palace and Museum
A rich legacy in Rajasthan history is the Bharatpur Palace. An amalgamation of Rajput and Mughal architectural styles, the intricate works and designs are a sight to behold. The huge chambers and palatial apartments throw light on the glamorous and luxurious lifestyle of the royalty of the bygone eras. The Palace houses Kamra Khas, a museum which has a rich collection of antiques, sculptures and inscriptions which reflect the skill and expertise of the people of those times.
Bankey Bihari Temple
For the more spiritually inclined, there is no dearth of temples in Bharatpur. Primary among them is the Bankey Bihari Temple inside the Lohagarh Fort built during the Mughal rule. Dedicated to Lord Krishna and housing several idols celebrating his virtue, the temple atmosphere is soothing and helps calm the fraying nerves.
The construction of this Mandir, which began in 1845, took almost 90 years to complete. The residing deity is Ganga Maharaj. Architecturally the Mandir is beautiful with mosaic works, sculptures, engravings and carvings. The Bansi Pahadpur stone used in the construction of the temple is an unique almond colour, which is quite matchless. It is undoubtedly one of the most beautiful temples in Rajasthan.
The once summer resort of the rulers of Bharatpur, Deeg makes for an interesting day-trip from the city. Located at a distance of around 32 km, the town boasts of a beautiful palace which is a reflection of the Rajasthani style of architecture. Deeg has some lovely gardens and massive fortifications which one can explore at leisure. There is a three-day Deeg festival held in the month of September which one can visit and is one of its major attractions.
Located a mere 38 km from Bharatpur is the sacred pilgrimage site of Mathura where Lord Krishna was born. It is one of the seven sacred cities of India and a popular tourist destination. A colourful city teeming with people, rickshaws and shops, Mathura can be an interesting getaway from Bharatpur. Vrindavan is a holy town near Mathura where Lord Krishna is believed to have spent his childhood and is considered the most significant pilgrimage site in Braj region. It attracts over 5,00,000 pilgrims each year. A city which had disappeared into oblivion is believed to have been rediscovered by Chaitanya Mahaprabhu when he travelled to Vrindavan in 1515. The latter is located about 51 km from Bharatpur and can be visited along with Mathura.
An hour and a half's drive away, at a distance of 58 km from Bharatpur stands the most beautiful monument of all time, the Taj Mahal. Situated in Agra, the Taj Mahal needs no introduction. Built by Emperor Shah Jahan in memory of his beloved wife Mumtaz, the Taj stands as an embodiment of love which has withstood the onslaught of time. A few kilometres away from the Taj stands another famous monument, the massive fort of red sandstone, the Agra Fort, built by Emperor Akbar. Fatehpur Sikri, which was once the capital of Emperor Akbar is a world heritage site. A city predominantly made of red sandstone, it stands as a testimony of the architectural finesse and artistic brilliance attained during the Mughal rule in India. Agra should not be given a miss while visiting Bharatpur.
The Dholpur Palace of Bharatpur is also popularly called Raj Niwas Palace. As the name suggests, this palace, since its inception in 1800s, has been the home of the royals. The structure of red sandstone is magnificent, with all the opulence to go with it. A day of exploring Dholpur Palace along with a sunset at its top is the best way for you to indulge in some architecture tourism in Bharatpur.
An erstwhile coronation complex, Jawahar Burj was specifically built back in the day to celebrate coronation ceremonies. It also boasts of victory towers and celebrates the Jat kings of the area. The Burj is part of the Lohargarh Fort, but maintains its own individual identity due to the gorgeous frescoes, mandaps, intricately carved hamam baths and elaborate portraits of erstwhile kings. One specific attraction among tourists is the Ashtadhatu Gate.
A little but beautifully built temple in Bharatpur — Seetharam Temple makes serenity have a whole new definition. The place is beyond lovely, with nature blessing the surroundings. You enjoy monkeys jumping from branch to branch and birdsongs punctuating their quiet play. The aura of Lord Shiva surround the shrine, while the vibrations of devotees’ chants ring in the air from time to time. The shivling in this temple is legendary, almost 300 years old and borne of the earth itself.
Dedicated to Lord Laxman, the younger bother of Lord Ram, this temple is grand. With its intricately carved arches, doors and walls adorned in embellishments, Laxman Mandir reveres the unsung hero of Ramayana. The brother who walked behind his elder brother into exile, the man who left his wife behind to become a servant of his beloved brother and his wife, the warrior whose loyalty was unquestionable to his king — Ram. The temple also pays respects to Laxman’s wife Urmila, because she too sacrificed her husband for 14 years, and in spite of staying in the palace, lived like a hermit on exile until her husband returned. There are other small idols of Bharat, Shatrughna and even Hanuman along with Ram-Sita here.
A town near Bharatpur, Band Baretha has a rich history of the emperors from the Mughal dynasty. There are some very well preserved places here like the Barah Khambon ki Chhatri, Old Fort and dam of Kakund River that have delightful tourism attracting visitors. It is a town that is bigger than others around it, and is about 45 km away from Bharatpur.