Trip to Ranthambhore Fort…
It was my second experience to Ranthambore National Park. A few months ago I had visited Ranthambore National Park with my wife and children. What could be a better and exciting experience than falling in Nature love at first sight? This was the reason that we planned to make another trip to Ranthambore. Last trip to Ranthambore was short one, due to which we could not see the Ranthambhore Fort. This time too we were very fortunate as before, because we saw a tiger in the first safari. It was very pleasant and unique experience during the jungle safari in Ranthambore National Park.
After returning from morning safari, we took yummy breakfast and we spent some time at the swimming pool in the afternoon and post lunch we decided to visit Ranthambore Fort. There was also a reason behind visit Ranthambore fort that it was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site along with five other forts of Rajasthan under the group Hill Forts of Rajasthan, at the 37th session of the World Heritage Committee In 2013.
We rented a jeep. We left for the historical fort of Ranthambore with Rajasthan tourism-approved guide. We reached the main gate of the majestic Ranthambore fort. Looking at the Ranthambore fort, it seems that it is a very ancient and impervious fort in history. The guide told that there is no much history of construction of this fort. It is broadly believed that Construction of Ranthambore Fort was started during the reign of Chauhan Rajput King Sapaldaksha in 944 AD, although the correct name of the ruler is disputed. Another theory states that King Jayant, who was the also Chauhan Rajput , he had built the Ranthambore fort in 1110 AD. It is likely that the construction of the Ranthambore fort started in the middle of the 10th century during the reign of the King Sapaldaksha and continued a few centuries after that. During the reign of King Rao Hammir, there were golden moments of Ranthambore Fort. Hammir was the last ruler of Chauhan dynasty (1282 – 1301 AD). During 1300 AD, Allauddin Khilji who was the ruler of Delhi sent his army to capture the Ranthambhore fort. He tried to capture Ranthambore fort three times but he had to face a failure. In 1301, finally his army conquered the Ranthambhore Fort and thus rules of Chauhan dynasty ended.
In the next three centuries, the Ranthambhore Fort was reorganized in many hands, As long as Akbar, the great Mughal Emperor. After all, captured the fort and in 1558 dissolved the kingdom of Ranthambore. By the middle of the 18th century, the fort was occupied by the Mughal rulers.In the middle of the 18th century and the Maratha rulers of western India were gradually increasing their influence in this area. In view of the growing influence of the Marathas, the ruler of Jaipur state Sawai Madhu Singh, in a unsuccessfully way, requested the Mughal emperor to hand over the Ranthambore Fort to him.In 1763, Sawai Madho Singh established the nearby Sherpur village.And its name changed to Sawai Madhopur.This city, now known as “Sawai Madhopur City”, is situated in a narrow valley between the two parallel hills on the south-western edge of Ranthambore National Park.Two years later, the Mughals handed over the fort to Jaipur state.
Taking information about Ranthambore Fort history from the Tourist Guide, we reached the first gate of the fort. It was a huge gate. This is called Naulakha Gate. We entered the Naulakha gate and proceeded towards the fort. Next we reached at the Hathi Pole Gate. The wall of the fort is absolutely straight from here. It is said that from here Hammir’s horse had climbed up on the fort with Hammir. We were surprised to see the horse hoof marks on the rocks and Ganesh Pole gate is made near these rocks. Most of the Gate in the fort was made at 90 degree angle so that enemy can not easily penetrate the fort. Looking at the scenic view of the fort we reached the Andheri Gate. There are three gate together .These gates remain dark. We crossed the Andheri gate (dark Gate) and reached the upper edge of the fort. After the Inaccessible climbing of around one kilometer of the fort we reached at Dulah Mahal and from there Forest covered with greenery were looking very beautiful.
Moving a little further from the Dulha Mahal, we saw the tomb (Dargah). This mausoleum is belonging to Peer Sadruddin. There were also some graves. There is water body near the tomb which is known as Queen Pond. A mosque is also built in the middle of the pond. A little ahead of this, there is a Badal Mahal (cloud castle) which is an excellent example blend of the architecture of Mughal and Rajput style. It has a beautiful view of the forest and Jogi Mahal. From the Badal Mahal we came back towards the Dargah. As we moved forward from here, we saw 32 Pillars Chhatri (umbrella-shaped memorials or Cenotaph), we sat under the thirty two pillars Chhatri and there was soft cold breeze. We felt relaxed there and our all exhaustion was over.
After the break, we went ahead and continued our Fort visit. Another Hammir’s Palace looked stand in the flat ground. But we could not see this palace from inside because the archaeological department has closed it for tourists. After moving a little bit forward we saw a Padamla pond on left side. Padmala pond is spread over a large area. It has immeasurable water. It is said that Padmavati, daughter of Rao Hammir, had jumped with Paras stone in this pond, thus pond was named Padmala after the Padmavati’s self-sacrifice. This deep pond near the Kali Mata Temple was for bathing the queens in ancient times. But after getting the wrong information of the king’s defeat in battle, all the queens had jumped into this pond. It is called water-Jauhar . Johar was the Hindu custom of mass self-immolation by women. At present water is supplied to the fort from this pond.
A little ahead from Padamla pond, famous Ganesh Temple is situated. We reached Ganesh temple for visit and worship. We worshiped Ganesh ji with the drums in the temple. We were blessed by seeing the beautiful image of Trinity Ganesha. Temple priest told that it is the only temple of the trinity of Ganesha which is famous in world. This idol is not a statue but also it is a self-emerging idol from the land. On the occasion of auspicious work and Marriage, People come to invite Lord Ganesha. People who can not come themselves, their invitations are received by post which is narrated to Lord Ganesha. After Ganesh temple we visited the Jain temple, Raghunath temple, mosque, palace, etc. in the fort. Sunset was going to happen, and the time of travel was also complete. We arrived back to the hotel. We were tired. We took dinner together and next morning we departed for home.
We were very happy to see majestic Ranthambore Fort with beautiful views of Ranthambore national Park and the archaeological sites of the fort.