Gwalior is the is a major city of Madhya Pradesh and one of the Counter-magnet cities. Gwalior’s legendary beginning stems from the hermit Gwalipa curing the Rajput chieftain, Suraj Sen. Famous for its dramatic and dominant hilltop fort, which Mughal emperor Babur reputedly described as the pearl of Indian fortresses. Gwalior was once not only the capital of Scindias but is also a historically rich and one of the most popular cities of Madhya Pradesh. Gwalior makes an interesting stop en route to some of the better-known destinations in this part of India. City is well known for its majestic fort, considered as one of the best in the world. This ancient capital city has been a cradle of great dynasties and a living heritage heroism.
Gwalior was the winter capital of the state of Madhya Bharat which later became a part of the larger state of Madhya Pradesh. Gwalior remained a princely state of the British Raj with the Scindia as the local rulers. High rocky hills surround the city from all sides, on the north it just forms the border of the Ganga- Yamuna Drainage Basin. Gwalior is known for its historic massive 15th century fort. The distinctive and colourful hill fort of Gwalior on the north-south corridor was the key to control of the Central Provinces. Hindi and English are the main languages which are spoken here.
Gwalior Attraction :
Gwalior Fort :
The foundation of the Gwalior Fort was laid by Raja Suraj Sen on the advise of Sage Gwalipa some 1,000 years ago on a hill where he was supposedly cured of his leprosy. An architectural marvel of the 8th century, Perched high at the top of a vast rocky massif, Gwalior Fort is a place hard to miss being visible from every nook and corner of the city. The location of Gwalior Fort itself is stunning. Situated on a sandstone hill, it has been the administrative headquarters of the Tomars and witness to the rule of several dynasties. Full of medieval architecture, the fort houses a number of historic buildings including Man Mandir, Gujari Mahal cum museum, Teli-ka-Mandir Temple and many others. Gwalior Fort has two main palaces Gurjari Mahal and Man Mandir. The five hundred year old Gwalior Fort has passed through the hands of the Tomars, the Marathas, the Mughals as well as the British. Today, however, the fort is a part of the property of the Scindias. The fort is situated on a high sandstone precipice about 91 m above the surrounding plain and is 2.8 km long and 200-850 m wide. Surrounded by concrete walls of sandstone, the Gwalior Fort encloses three temples, 6 palaces and several water tanks. The whole fort is adorned with two distinctive style of architecture, one is Hindu style and another is Muslim. The architecture of Gwalior fort stand tall among other forts in India even the largest fort Agra Fort.
Jai Vilas Palace :
One of the most popular tourist attractions of Gwalior, Jai Vilas Palace is a stunning display of architectural grandeur of the bygone era. The Maharaja of Gwalior Jayajirao Scindia Build Jai Vilas Mahal in 1874. The palace built in European style has a blend of Tuscan, Italian and Corinthian styles. The Jai Vilas Mahal has a total of 400 rooms out of 25 of these rooms have been kept exclusively for the Jiwaji Rao Scindia Museum which is another attraction. It also has a big chandelier that weighs almost 7 tonners which is said to be one of the largest in the whole world. Jai Vilas Place is decorated beautifully with furniture from Varsailles, ornate mirrorworks, Venetian cut glass swings, Belgian Chandeliers, intricate hand made carpets, large ethnic dining table with tracks for the silver toy train that was used to carry food all over the table to different chairs. The Palace is one of the major tourist attractions in Gallant Gwalior in Madhya Pradesh.
Man Mandir Palace :
The palace was established by Tomar ruler, Raja Man Singh between 1486 and 1516, however the remains of the palace still showcases the beautiful carvings and designs of that era. The palace was ruled by various rulers such as Kachwaha Rajputs, Qutubiddin Aibawk, the Tomaras, Mughals, Marathas, the British and the Scindias. This palace is also known as the Chitra Mandir or the Palace of Paintings because of the tiled and painted decorations of peacocks and other birds. The palace is richly ornamented and architecturally interesting. This palace also won the admiration of Akbar. The palace has two open courts in between with apartments on two levels. There are underground prison cells as well, built later by Mughals. This was the prison where the Mughal emperor Aurangzeb jailed Murad, his brother and had murdered him. A special sound and light show organized every evening for the visiting tourists at the palace.
Gujari Mahal :
Gujari Mahal was constructed by Raja Mansingh for his favourite queen, Mrignayani in the 15th century. It has witnessed rough weather and has gone through the test of time. Gujari Mahal is now in ruins and also an archaeological museum and is known by the name of Central Archaeological Museum. The rich collection of sculptures displayed in the museum includes the famous Shalabhanjika Yakshi, Nataraj Ardhanareshwar, Trimurthi and Yamraj. The palace also boasts of a large collection of valued sculptures that depict the cultural legacy of the Hindus and the Jains as far back as early 1st and 2nd century BC as well as several ancient fresco paintings. There are other surprises that Gwalior stores in its magic box. These includes the beautiful buildings namely Teli ka Mandir, Sas Bahu ka Mandir and the mausoleum of the sufi saint Gaus Mohammad are among the most well known.
Teli Ka Mandir :
Teli Ka Mandir, Gwalior is one of the favored destinations in the city of Gwalior located in the Gwalior Fort. It is the tallest and the most impressive temple in the Gwalior Fort. It is a 100 feet high temple, which has influence from both Buddhist and Hindu architectural styles. Teli Ka Mandir is dedicated to the god Vishnu. but was later converted for the worship of the other major Hindu God Shiva. The temple represents a roundish barrel or a shikhar and presents a stunning sight. This temple is famous for its unique architecture as the temple holds a Dravidian look, but the sculptures are typically North Indian.
Saas Bahu Temple :
Sass Bahu temple in Gwalior is famous temple, is dedicated to Lord Vishnu by the King Mahipala is build in 9th century. Its called Sahastrabahu Temple is located to the east of Gwalior fort. It is an example of architectural brilliance. Adding to the beauty of temple, the carved pillars along with a stairwell provide support to the huge structure. Raised on a platform, the walls of the temple have scriptures, figures and intricate stone works and is an example of the architectural skills. These are two temples situated adjacent to each other and are decorated with impeccable carvings and sculptures.
Sun Temple :
Sun Temple is dedicated to Sun, which is located near Residency at Morar is one of the important religious centers in the historic city of Gwalior. The temple was constructed by G.D. Birla, the famous industrialist of India in 1988. The exterior of the temple is decorated with red sand stone while the interiors present a perfect white marble work. The temple not only derives its nomenclature from the legendary Sun Temple at Konark in Orissa, the architecture too is inspired by the same. These temple is a modern heritage and the temple attracts tourists from all parts of the world. The Surya Mandir, Madhya Pradesh is one of the new entrants into the list of the places of interest in Gwalior.
Gwalior Zoo :
Gwalior Zoo or Gandhi Zoological Park is the main attractions of the city and one of the beautiful zoological parks of Madhya Pradesh. Families and Wildlife enthusiasts can visit the Gwalior zoo which has a good collection of animals including a white tiger. The Phool Bagh campus also includes a gurudwara, a mosque, a theosophical lodge and a prayer hall.
How To Reach :
By Air : Gwalior is well connected to all major cities of India By Air
By Rail : Gwalior is well connected to other major cities of the country via regular trains.
By Road : Gwalior is well connected to all major city of India by highway.
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