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36 km from Kota is a tiny picturesque town, Bundi. One of the unexplored cities with a rich historical wealth. Once a part of Kota, it was ruled by the Hada Chauhans – an offshoot of the famous Chauhan clan who ruled Delhi and Ajmer.

In 1193 A. D. when Prithvi Raj Chauhan was defeated by Sultan Mohammad Ghauri, some Chauhan nobles seeked shelter in Mewar and became allies to the Rana while other young warriors moved towards the Chambal valley and overpowered the Meena and Bhil tribals – thus establishing their own kingdom of Handoti. Later, two branches of Hadas formed two separate states of Kota and Bundi, on either side of the River Chambal.

Bundi is surrounded by the Aravalli hills on three sides and is circumscribed by a massive wall with four gateways.

Interesting monuments including impressive medieval forts, palaces, havelis, temples with beautiful stone idols and chattris with carved pillars, along with a picturesque lake in the heart of the town, add to its charm. Bundi is very famous for its intricate carvings and murals.

Places to see

The Taragarh fort built in 1354 is one of the well preserved structures of Rajput legacy. The fort also known as the Star Fort gives a spectacular view over the town and surrounding countryside. The fort is led by a steep road up the hill, to an enormous gateway, topped by magnificent rampant elephants. You come across huge reservoirs carved of solid rock inside. Even Bhim Burj the largest of the battlements, on which is mounted a famous cannon is situated inside.

One of the finest examples of Rajput architecture is the Palace. It stands on a rocky hill, approachable of road of stone steps and ramps which are meant for horsemen and chariots. The superb murals done in Bundi style of miniature paintings in a gallery built around an topless court open to the sky. The Chitra Mahal is another attraction of this palace. The entry to the palace is by a magnificent elephant gate. Above the palace are the royal apartments, murals balconies, corbels, pavilions, fretted windows, domes. The memorial pavilions or Chhatris of the former rulers turns to gold by the kiss of the setting sun. The high platform of the memorials is a quiet place amidst of old trees, this place is extremely delightful.

Right in the centre of the town are a couple of extremely awe-inspiring baoris or step wells. The largest of its kind, Rani ki Baori is 46 mts deep and endowed with intricate carvings. Built in 1699 by Rani Nathavatji, the steps leading down to the water are framed with soaring pillars. Panels, depicting images displaying animal-human evolution, have been carved in the images of avatars.

Right in the centre f the town. Just outside the chogan gate, is the Nagar Sagar Kund with a pair of matching step-wells.

Other attractions

The other attractions of Bundi, all lie out of the town. Built in the 20th century is a modern palace called Phool Sagar Palace. The palace exhibits beautiful contemporary style of architecture and houses a fabulous artificial tank and gardens. Situated in a lovely artificial garden, on Sukh Sagor lake is a small palace called Sukh Mahal.

The panoramic beauty of Shikar Burj, a small hunting lodge is fascinating. Many picnickers are drawn towards this place. Set amidst the woods surrounded by lush greenery, south of Phool Sagar.

A peaceful getaway from the bustling and fast moving cities, this place draws a sense of place in our minds.

The best time to visit this place is the Kajli-Teej Festival held in between July and August.

Chhattar Mahal or Palace of Towers

A steep, paved carraige-way is the only way to reach the monument. Of special interest in the palace is the Hazari Pol or the thousand gates gateway, the Naubat Khana, the Hathi Pol with its old water clock and the Diwaan-e-Aam.

Rattan Daulta

Built by Rao Raja Ratan Singh, it is a very interesting structure forming a stable for nine horses and a Hatia Pol. (Prior permission required for visit.)

A fascinating pavilion and a gallery of miniature murals embellish the palace. Elaborate colourful paintings on the walls depict scenes fro the ‘Rangamala’ and ‘Raaslila’ – the Radha-Krishna story.

Nawal Sagar
Visible from the fort is the square artificial lake of Nawal Sagar, broken up by islets. A temple dedicated to Varuna, the Aryan god of water, stands half submerged in the center of the lake. The reflection of the entire city and its palaces can be seen in the lake – making it a unique attraction of Bundi.

Kshar Bagh

An ancient garden near the Shikar Burj with beautiful chhatris of the Bundi rulers and their queens – all examples of the town's rich architectural legacy. (Prior permission required for visit.)

Eighty Four Pillared Cenotaph

An amazing magnificent memorial with 84 pillars in a single cenotaph along with a Shiva lingam. It was erected by Rao Anirudh.



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