Kumbhalgarh Fort, a robust 15th-century royal architectural wonder that stands on top of a hill of the Aravali ranges at a height 1100 meters above the sea level. The fort was built by Rana Kumbha in the 15th century and that’s where it derived its name Kumbhalgarh.
The fort is situated in the Rajasamand district of Rajasthan which is 82 Kms northeast of the famous city of lakes Udaipur. The fort is a major tourist attraction, many tourists from all over the world flocks in to confront the architectural magnificence, mesmerizing beauty and legacy tales. Kumbhalgarh is the second largest fort in Rajasthan and is declared as a ‘World Heritage Site’.
Here are the reasons that make the fort an ultimate tourist destination of historic importance.
1.World’s Second Largest wall
The wall that runs along the perimeter of the fort is world’s second largest wall after ‘ The Great wall of china’. The wall continuously stretches to 36 Kms in length and is 15 feet wide.
Two cars can run parallel on the wall.Unbelievable!!
2.The Magnificent structure
The Fort is indeed an architectural wonder which gives a testimony of the architects of that era built under the supervision of famous architect of that era ‘Mandan’. The fort houses 7 gates of which Aaret Pol, Hulla Pol, Hanuman Pol and Ram Pol are the major gates.Pol in the local language means “Main Gate”.There are different sections with rooms constructed inside the fort and given different names likes ‘Badal Mahal’, ‘Kumbha Mahal’ etc.The Badal Mahal is one of the most important and attractive building built by Rana Fateh Singh in AD1884 to 1930.The fort has dark congested stairs which is a common feature of all the forts as it acts as an obstacle for the invading army.You need to climb on a steep ramp like path(slightly more than 1 km) to reach to the main fort.
3.Interesting Tale associated with the construction
It is said that Maharana Kumbha failed multiple times in constructing the magnanimous wall so then a saint named ‘baid baba’ was consulted and he suggested a voluntary human sacrifice as a remedy. No one came up for some time then the saint himself volunteered to sacrifice, the saint said “I’ll climb the hill you follow me, the point where I stop there you build the main entrance of the fort, i’ll further climb up and when I stop for the second time, just behead me then and there, build a temple where my head falls, my rest body will continue to walk and fall to mark the limit point of the wall.”There is a temple at the main entrance ‘Hanuman Pol’ of the fort to commemorate the great sacrifice.
The Fort is bestowed with mesmerizing natural beauty. If you are traveling in the monsoon which is the best season to visit you will find lush green Aravali ranges surrounding the fort, the clouds flying through your head and occasional showers.
There is ‘ Badal Mahal’ at the top of the fort which takes you to the proximity of clouds and on many occasion, you’ll find yourself in the clouds.
5.Shiva Temple with huge shivaling
The shiv temple inside the fort known as Neelkanth Mahadev has a Huge shivaling of approximately 5 feet in height.It is said that Maharana Kumbha was so huge in physique that he use to do ‘Abhishek'(pouring Milk over the Shiv Linga while chanting Mantras)of the shivaling while sitting as he could reach the height of the shivaling even being remain seated.
6.An Unforgettable Road Trip Experience
The road that takes you from Udaipur to Kumbhalgarh is incredibly beautiful. There is a single strip of road throughout which will take you through dense lush greenery all over the journey. In the way, you will find rivers and Dam which will hardly let you pass without a click. You will come across ‘Kathaar River’ and ‘Bageri Ka Naka’ dam both are renowned picnic spots amongst locals.You will find a diversion after few kilometers of the ride, you can ask locals and they will guide you to this place.Hire a bike from Udaipur that will boost up your experience.You can take a fun-filled bath at ‘Bageri ka Naka’ which is a huge wide dam in which the falling water looks ‘white’ like milk.
There is one more must visit lake know as Hameri Pal which is calm, beautiful, less crowded, and it is known for the ‘Giant African Catfishes.Follow the link to know about the details.
7.Kumbhalgarh Wildlife Sanctuary
Kumbhalgarh Fort is surrounded by Wildlife Sanctuary in which you can take a jungle safari organized by local tour operators. The sanctuary is a home to various wild animals like chinkara, leopard, sloth Bear, Antelope, jackal, sambhar, nilgai and hyena. You can also spot various species of birds.
8. Visible Marwar and Sand Dunes
Reaching the top of the Kumbhalgarh fort you can see miles into the beautiful Aravali ranges, even the Marwar and dunes of the Thar desert are visible in the clear weather
9. Birthplace of a Braveheart
Kumbhalgarh fort also holds the honor of being the birthplace of the brave Maharana Pratap, the great warrior of Mewar who didn’t succumb to the giant Mughals.
10.Around 360 Hindu and Jain temples around Fort
The Kumbhalgarh fort has around 360 temples and surprisingly 300 of them are jain temples and rest are hindu temples.The reason of Jain temples in such quantity is due to the fact that the place was earlier ruled by a Jain prince Samprati of the second century B.C.
11.Remained ‘almost invincible’
The Kumbhalgarh fort remained almost invincible throughout the Mewar rulers era, it just got breached once that too due to the shortage of water supplies.It got captured by the joint army of four kings, Mughal king Akbar, Amer’s Man Singh, Mewar’s Udai Singh, and Sultan of Gujrat.
12.The Giant Lamp used for light
It is said that Maharana Kumbha used to light giant lamp which used 100 kg cotton and 50 kg ‘ghee’ to provide light to the farmers working in the farms at night.The lamps used to glow so brightly that its brightness used to reach in miles.
13.Earlier called Machhindrapur
The original fort is said to have built on the ruins of ancient structure, that particular time the village around was called ‘Machhind’ and hence the fort was named ‘Machhindrapur’.
14.Light and Sound show inside Kumbhalgarh Fort
Every evening at 6:45 pm a light and sound show is organized at the fort. The ticket for the show is Rs 75 and the show lasts for 45 minutes. The show showcases the history of the fort with audio, light, sound and music.The lights blinking on the fort according to the storyline is a treat to watch, it’s a must watch show, it’s a hindi show but still the lights and sound effects are worth watching. After the show, the fort is illuminated for an hour and under the lights, which is spectacular to watch.
15.Kumbhalgarh Fort is a ‘World Heritage Site’
Kumbhalgarh Fort, along with five other forts of Rajasthan, was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site under the group Hill Forts of Rajasthan in 2013.
How to reach Kumbhalgarh from Udaipur?
The nearest airport and Railway station are in Udaipur which is 82 km, so you will have to reach Udaipur first and from there you can opt for bus or hire taxi/bikes.It will be convenient to hire a taxi or a bike from Udaipur as buses are congested and uncomfortable. You always have the advantage of halting at various beautiful spots that you encounter in the journey while traveling in the personal hired vehicle.
If you are riding/driving of your own.Here’s the complete Map
You need to head to Fatehpura-Saifan choraha-Badgaon-loyra-thoor and continue to proceed as per map.You can freely ask anyone about the way, people are very kind here 🙂
Watch the video below describing interesting facts about Kumbhalgarh Fort.
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