Ranthambhor Fort, Sawaimadhopur
The history of Sawai Madhopur revolves around the Ramthambhor fort. Surrounded by Vindhyas and Aravalis, amidst vast and arid denuded tracts of Rajasthan, lies the oasis of biomass in an ecological desert.
The strength and inaccessibility of the fort was a challenge to the ambitions of the rulers of the ancient and medieval India, particularly those of Delhi and Agra. The eminent ruler of the fort was Rao Hamir who ruled around 1296 AD.
Ranthambhors royal past manifests itself in the well-preserved imposing fort, built in 994 A.D. atop a steep high creek 200 metres above sea level. Ruined pavilions, walls, chhatris and splendid monuments are interspersed within the majestic fort.
Perched on top of a rocky outcrop in the centre of the forest where the Aravallis and the Vindya hills meet, the Ranthambore Fort, stretched across an area of 7 kilometers presents a magnificent sight. Because of its strategic location, the Ranthambore Fort has been one of the most coveted, but difficult to overthrow forts of India. Many rulers have attacked this fort , like Alauddin Khilji, Qutub-ud-din Aibak, Bahadur Shah etc.
After being ruled by Raja Hammir in 11th century and Akbar in 1558-59, the Ranthambore Fort was given back to the Jaipur rulers who eventually preserved the forest areas around it, leading to the creation of the Ranthambore National Park.
Attractions at Ranthambore Fort
One of the main attractions of the Ranthambore Fort is the story that is connected to its history. It is said that during an invasion, almost over a thousand women once committed mass suicide or sati because they found that to be of more respect than to surrender in the hands of the invaders. The appeal of the story of sacrifice itself drags in a thousand of visitors every year.
The Hammir court is a magnificent place whose acoustics can be heard till the other end of the building. There is the Gupt Ganga which is a flight of stairs leading to the perennial stream.
Other attractions at the Ranthambore Fort include the magnificent interiors of the Fort and its exquisite craftsmanship. There are also a number of temples inside the Ranthambore Fort.
An 8th century A.D. Ganesh temple on an open land attracts thousands of devotees and is the venue for an annual fair held on. Bhadrapad Sudi Chaturthi, fourth day of the bright half, in the month of Bhadra.
There are various places of historical interest inside the fort namely Toran Dwar, Mahadeo Chhatri, Sameton Ki Haveli, 32 pillared Chhatri, Mosque and the Ganesh Temple.
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