Places to Visit in Chittorgarh
Chittorgarh, also known as Chittaur, was the Rajput capital of Mewar between 7th and 16th centuries AD. The place evokes nostalgic memories of the Rajput souls, their heroism and the sacrifices they made while fighting off invaders from the Northwest. Even today, Chittorgarh echoes with the fiery passion and triumphant spirit of all those men and women who once lived and died here. The place is filled with numerous monuments and palaces, making it a great tourist spot for all those who are fond of history.
Fort of Chittorgarh
The Chittorgarh Fort is indeed a poignant memoir of the Rajput romance, pride and spirit. Built atop a 180-meter high hillock that spreads across 700 acres, the massive structure stands as a testament to the courageous Rajputs. It is in fact the most well known fort in entire Rajasthan, making it a symbol of pride for the local inhabitants. The fort is believed to be built by the Mauryans in the 7th century, to which further structures were added by the rulers of Mewar. An alternative source states that it was the Pandavas of Mahabharata who should be credited with the fort’s construction. A massive, serpentine road leads to the entrance of the fort. Although very steep and exhaustive, it affords a stunning view of the fort and the surrounding area.
The fort was originally interspersed with 84 water bodies, of which only 22 are in existence today. It is for this reason that this fort is also referred to as Water Fort. The water bodies include several talabs (ponds), baories (stepwells) and kunds (wells). Almost 40% of the fort area is taken up by these water bodies. With an average reservoir depth of around 2 meters, the total amount of water the fort can hold is around 4 billion liters.
Rana Kumbha Palace
This beautiful, massive monument inside Chittorgarh Fort carries immense historical and architectural importance. It was here that Rani Padmini and her companions committed Jauhar or self immolation in order to protect their honor when Chittorgarh was seized by Alauddin Khilji.
Kirti Stambh or Tower of Fame
Built in 12th century by a Jain merchant, Kirti Stambh is a 22-meter tall tower dedicated to the first Jain Tirthankar Adinath. The place is adorned with naked Digambar figures. A narrow stairway leads to the top of the tower.
Vijay Stambh or Tower of Victory
The place was built in 1440 AD by the great Maharana Kumbha for commemorating his victory against Mahmud Khalji. This 9-storyed, 37-meters high tower is decorated with numerous sculptures of Hindu gods and goddesses. A staggering 157 narrow steps leads to the terrace, which offers a great view of the entire city.
This is a deep tank that is shaped like a cow-mouth. Located at the cliff’s edge, it is considered sacred by the Hindu devotees.
Meera Mandir or Meera Temple
Erected in 1449 by Maharana Kumbha, it is a place of worship devoted to Lord Vishnu. The structure is known for its artistic sanctum and pillars.
Other notable traveler attractions in Chittorgarh include the Seven Gates of the Fort, the Jain Temples and the Padmini Palace.