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Hill Forts of Rajasthan
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Hill Forts of Rajasthan

Rajasthan is known for its historic forts. The architectural splendour of these forts has till date captured the imagination of millions of travellers across the globe. There are 6 majestic forts comprising the list of Hill Forts. 6 distinct cities in Rajasthan are the locations of these forts, namely Chittorgarh, Sawai Madhopur, Jaipur, Kumbhalgarh, Jaisalmer and Jhalawar.

These regal forts reflect the erstwhile domination of princely states under Rajputs. All of these forts have a robust structure, with a well-defined periphery. Centuries back, the area within these forts was used as trading zones and luxury lifestyle. There were also urban centres and temples.

Hill Forts of Rajasthan Built By

Chittorgarh Fort was the capital city of Sisodia Dynasty, situated in Mewar. Banks of two rivers – Berach and Gambhiri, are locations of the city of Chittorgarh. The Guhilot Royals initially used to rule the place. Later on, the Sisodia kings took over the city and the fort.  Emperor Chitrangada Mori built the fort.

It took about a span of 15 years to build the fort of Kumbhalgarh – from 1143 AD to 1458 AD. Rana Kumbha, one of the finest architects of his era, planned and built the fort. The fort has been named after him. In the initial decades of 20th century, Rana Fateh Singh built Badal Mahal in the interiors of the Kumbhalgarh Fort.

The Sawai Madhopur Fort, also known as the Ranthambore Fort, was built by the Chauhan Dynasty Royals around 10th century AD, in order to make their city safer against foreign invaders. During 13th century, the rulers of Delhi Sultanate captured the fort. Much later, in 17th century, King Sawai Madho Singh, requested to Mughals for the autonomy of the fort, for checking the influence of Marathas in the region.

Jhalawar Fort is another important fort in the elite list of Hill Forts of Rajasthan. Another name by which this fort is known as is Garh Palace. Maharaja Rana Madan Singh was the main architect of this fort, in the year 1845. It is located the town’s centre. \

No person can ignore the magnetic charm of Amber Fort located in Rajasthan’s Jaipur district. Raja Man Singh 1 built the fort in the 1592. He was one of the ‘Navaratnas’ of Badshah Akbar. The fort is built on a hilltop.

The famous Jaisalmer Fort is considered to be one of the largest and most imposing fortifications, globally. Rawal Jaisal, a prominent Rajput ruler from 12th century AD, constructed the fort in the year 1156. It is located in the outskirts of the Jaisalmer city. It is arguably the finest example of a hill fort, in a desert area.

Timings of hill forts of rajasthan

Various forts among Hill Forts of Rajasthan have various timings. In order to visit and explore a specific fort, you need to consider individual timings of each of them. The Chittorgarh Fort is open to visitors from 9:45 AM till 6:30 PM. The entrance for Kumbhalgarh Fort opens at 9 AM. It remains open till 5 PM in the evening. You can visit the majestic Sawai Madhopur Fort early in the morning, as the entry gate opens at dawn, at 6 AM. The gate closes at 6 PM. The timings for visiting Jhalawar Fort are from 9 AM till 4 PM. The Amber Fort in Jaipur opens at 8 AM for the enthusiastic visitors. Its closing time is around 5:30 PM each evening. You can enter the Jaisalmer Fort from 7 AM in the morning. The Fort closes for the visitors at 6PM.

Information about hill forts of rajasthan

The Hill Forts of Rajasthan, comprising of 6 forts, clearly indicate and expand on culture, tradition and architecture of Rajputana Dynasties, ranging from the earl-medieval centuries to medieval era. The intricate architectural details of these forts had influences on later architecture of structures constructed by Maratha rulers.

The patronage of the Rajputs towards their religion is also reflected by these marvelous fortifications. The artworks inside the forts elaborate about the cultural vibes and heritage of the Rajputs, who have ruled these areas for centuries. Each of the forts is a world-class example of workmanship, creativity and impeccable architectural design.

How to Reach hill forts of rajasthan: (Air, Road and Train)

As the forts are located in 6 different cities, so, if you want to visit them all, then you need to plan extensively. You can reach the Jaipur Airport and then rent a car to visit the Amber Fort. From there, you can hire a vehicle to other cities to explore rest of the forts. If you want to travel railways, then you can reserve tickets to Jaisalmer or Jaipur, which are well-connected to major Indian cities. After reaching, you can simply hire a private car. You can also drive from Delhi or rent a long-distance vehicle, if you are eager to visit the places on an elaborate road trip.

Entrance Fee for hill forts of rajasthan

For Chittorgarh Fort, the entrance fee is Rs 50 per adult. For a kid, the fee is Rs 25. The Kumbhalgarh Fort has a fee of Rs 15 for an India, and Rs 200 for a foreign tourist. Sawai Madhopur Fort charges Rs 15 for an adult and Rs 10 for a child. There is no entry fee for Jhalawar Fort. You can explore it free of cost. The Jaipur Fort has an entry fee of Rs 100 for an Indian and Rs 200 for a foreigner. An Indian has to pay Rs 50 and a foreigner has to pay RS 250 to enter Jaisalmer Fort.

Important Structures in hill forts of rajasthan

Some of the important structures you can visit in Chittorgarh Fort are Fateh Prakash Palace, Tower of Victory, Gaumukh Reservoir and Padmini Palace. In Kumbhalgarh Fort, you can see Kumbha Palace, Lakhola Tank and Badal Mahal. Sawai Madhopur has 7 famous temples in its premises, and a few of those are Chaturbhuja temple, Jayanti Mata temple, and Jagatpalji temple. The carved stupas in Jhalawar Fort with Buddha idols attract many tourists. The Amber Fort in Jaipur has important structures such as Sukh Mandir, Jai Mandir and Bhool Bhulaiya. The fascinating Raj Mahal Palace and Jain Temples are very important structures in Jaisalmer Fort.

Best time to visit hill forts of rajasthan

The best time to visit Hill Forts of Rajasthan are winter months, spanning from November till February. The weather is very comfortable, as you don’t have to bear the desert heat during this time.

History of hill forts of rajasthan

The Chittorgarh Fort is India’s largest fort. Alauddin Khilji became victorious against King Ratnasimha and captured the fort in 1303. The Kumbhalgarh fort was constructed on the ruins of the famous Jain King named Samprati. He was the grandson of Emperor Ashoka. The old name of Sawai Madhopur Fort was Ranastambha. Its construction might have had started in 10th century AD, when Raja Sapaldaksha rule the region. The Jhalawar Fort has witness a whopping 14 wars throughout its history, along with 2 occasions of Jauhar (a custom of Hindu married women involving mass self-immolation). Sawai Jai Singh had constructed a major portion of the Amber Fort in Jaipur, after Raja Man Singh. The Jaisalmer Fort is Rajasthan’s second oldest fort. Historically, it is known as ‘Sone ki Qila’ i.e. the Golden Fort.

Attractions in hill forts of rajasthan

Near Chittorgarh Fort, you can visit Kalika Mata Temple and Kirti Stambha. When you visit the Kumbhalgarh Fort, don’t miss exploring the Ranakpur Jain temple and Muchhal Mahavir temple nearby. Attractions nearby Sawai Madhopur Fort are Ranthambore National Park, Khandar Fort and National Chambal Sanctuary. The interesting places where you can visit near Jhalawar Fort are Chandrabhaga temples and Digambar Jain Temple. When you visit the Amber Fort in Jaipur, also make a priority to visit places such as Nahargarh Fort and Albert Hall Museum. In the vicinity of Jaisalmer Fort, you can visit and explore the Longewala War Memorial, Tanot Mata temple and Bada Bagh.

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