Gwalior, located 122 km south of Agra, is the tourist capital of Madhya Pradesh. It is the fourth largest city in the state. It is a historic city famous for its temples, ancient palaces and enchanting monuments which will take any traveler to a bygone era of glory. There are many places around Gwalior where travellers can head to and enjoy the beauty of nature as well as the history of this regions past. Here is a guide to the weekend getaways around Gwalior.
Jhansi is considered to be the gateway of the Bundelkhand region of Uttar Pradesh. It rose to glory during the rule of Chandelas but lost some of its sheen after the decline of their empire somewhere in the 11th century. Jhansi's main claim to fame was it's fiery queen Rani Laxmibai, who led the forces against the British in the first battle for independence in 1857. She was married to Raja Gangadhar of Jhansi but never bore him any children, a fact that was exploited by the British who wanted to force her into retirement but she retaliated in 1857 by trying to seize the Jhansi Fort. In the battle that ensued she was able to escape with her adopted son and was on her way to join the army at Gwalior when she met her death. She is widely regarded as the John of Arc of India. Travellers coming here can browse through the many monuments of history and relive the past here.
Photo Courtesy: Ajay Kumar
Shivpuri has dense forests which were at one point in time the hunting playgrounds for the Mughal rulers. The dense forest fortunately is not a myth and today drives forward tourism here. The Karera Bird Sanctuary and the Madhav National Park with the enormous George Castle whisk tourists into a land where nature and man co-exist peacefully.
Photo Courtesy: LRBurdak
One of the former capitals of India, Agra in Uttar Pradesh is a hub of monuments that add to the pride of Indian heritage. Taj Mahal, Agra Fort, Chini ka Rauza are some of the well known monuments here. Explore these places or be marvelled by their splendour. These monuments hav stood the test of time and gives a peek into the history of this place.
Photo Courtesy: Jean-Pierre Dalbera
Built by the Mughal Emperor Akbar, Fatehpur Sikri is now a UNESCO World Heritage Site that encompasses the grandeur of the Mughal Kingdom. The unique feature about this place is that the entire region was well-planned. It has many famous monuments and is truly a major tourist destination.
Photo Courtesy: Soham Banerjee
Alwar, a hilly region, located amidst the craggy rocks of the Aravalli Ranges, is a major tourist attraction. Mythological belief persists that this region was known as Matsya Desh where the Pandavas are believed to have spent their 13th year of exile. Also known as Mewar, it is famous for beautiful lakes, grand palaces, magnificent temples, glorious cenotaphs and towering forts.
Photo Courtesy: Astoriajohn
Ever felt like taking a walk back in time and seeing the lifestyle and beliefs of our ancestors? Then you should head to the town of Khajuraho in Madhya Pradesh. This UNESCO World Heritage Site is house to ancient Hindu and Jain temples. Originally consisting of 85 temples, now only 22 still remain standing here. These beautifully sculpted temples gives us an insight about the traditions, cultures and belief of our ancestors. Most of the temples were built to revere specific Gods and Goddesses.
Photo Courtesy: Aakash.gautam