Alwar : Towards Bhangarh Fort

There are several places within 100 km of Alwar city that may interest tourist. These include the following:

1. Bhangarh palace
2. Ajabgarh fort
3. Sariska National Park and Tiger Sanctuary
4. Karni Devi Temple

We took of for Bhangarh one morning. Bhangarh is around 80 km for the city of Alwar. In general road condition is very good for nearly 2/3rd of the way. One third of the road is single lane and dotted with pot holes. By car, it takes around 3 hours to reach Bhangarh if driven at normal speed. Drive to Bhangarh was mostly very scenic. Both sides of the road had lush green hills. At times, it would appeared, we were in Uttarakhand or Himachal and not in Rajasthan. A picture of scenic highway is shown below.
On the way to Bhangarh from Alwar

It will be advisable to carry eatables and lot of water because in summer months it can be very hot. Also, there are not many places to eat on the way. Joints in small towns may not be liked by all.

We passed through Sariska National Forest. Around 10 – 11 am in the morning, forest rangers office was all quiet. We were told safaris start in the morning and in the afternoon. That  is the time people gather around the place to collect their entry pass. As we crossed the reserve forest, we did not see many wild life, except monkeys and langoors. Shown below a languor sitting pensively on the highway all by himself.


We moved past the lonely langoor, towards Bhangarh. We reached the gates of Ajabgarh town. Ajabgarh is more like a big village. It is a typical Rajasthani village with old houses with small narrow windows. Beyond the village lies the Ajabgarh fort.

Ajabgarh was founded by Ajab Singh, the son of Chhatr Singh. It is said Ajabgarh fort was a garrison. 

Another view of Ajabgarh fort from Bhangarh side.

Bhangarh was around 30 – 40 min drive from Ajabgarh. This town was established in 1573 during the rule of Raja Bhagwant Das.

Bhangarh has two perimeters. As we entered the first gate, we came across the following map of Bhangarh town put up by ASI.


We walked past the sign post towards the palace complex. The trail was through ruins of stone structures. Historians say these used to be shops. On top of the hill is shown a chhatri. Although significance of the structure was not clear to us.

Path to Palace through Ruins
As we crossed the second gate of Bhangarh town and entered into a big compound. A view of chhatri on top of the hill from palace compound. Palace compound has several different temples – Gopinath Temple, Someshwar Shiva Temple, Mangla Devi Temple and Keshava Raj Temple.

Shown below is Gopinath temple. Bhangarh palace is shown below.
Gopinath Temple
Palace was built as residence of Madho Singh,  younger brother of Emperor Akbar’s General Man Singh I of Amber. Madho Singh was father of Chhatr Singh.
Bhangarh Palace

It is believed that Bhangarh palace and town are haunted. Rumor has it royal family was cursed by an ascetic and/or a tantric. As a result the whole family was destroyed. Some others claim royal family was destroyed by invading army. Whatever, may the cause, locals believe the palace complex and old Bhangarh town are inhabited by ghosts. ASI has put up a signboard by the main gate stating : “Entering the borders of Bhangarh before sunrise and after sunset is strictly prohibited.” The reason for this may be that there can be wild animals and it could be unsafe because there is no artificial lighting.

Tags: Ajabgarh, Alwar, ASI, Bhangarh, Chhatr Singh, Chhatri, Gopinath Temple, Keshava Raj, Madho Singh,  Man Singh I, Mangla Devi, Sariska Tiger Reserve, Someshwar Temple

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