Alwar, one of the oldest Rajasthani kingdoms, has its roots going back to 1500 B.C. A city soaking in history, gives a sense of quietude as you stroll through the ancient palace soaking in the charms of its colourful bazaars. The museum here houses the swords of Mughal emperors Akbar and Aurangzeb too.
Alwar also makes the final destination for the Fairy Queen- a retro locomotive said to be the oldest in the world and constructed in 1855! The journey begins in New Delhi and comes to a halt in the City of Rajputs.
Here’s the only list you need for places to visit in Alwar, its secrets tucked away from the maddening crowd.
Bala Qila Alwar
Towering 300m above the city, Bala Qila’s is a massive bastion which predates the rise of the Mughals and its impressive ramparts run for a good 5kms. Mughal emperors, Akbar and Babur spent time here. While Emperor Jahangir spent his three years of exile at Salim Mahal situated within the walls of this fort. While the name ‘Bala’ means young, the fort is ancient, being constructed in the 1500s.
How to reach here:
You can either hire a rickshaw for a longer 7km ride or you could make the steep climb yourself and save time.
Bala Qila was constructed on the foundations of a 10th century battlement and the structure is steeped in history.
There are six entrances and once you’re within its walls, the marble columns and exquisite latticed balconies are a joy to behold.
Timings: 10 A.M. – 5 P.M.
Entry fee: Entry is free. All you need to do is get permission from the police superintendent’s office in the City Palace complex. This is pretty easy to manage.
City Palace Alwar
Wanna see the geometric whirlwind of pavilions and ghats? Visit Vinay Vilas Mahal, or the City Palace, which sits on the bottom of Bala Qila.
Constructed in 1793, the City Palace has 15 large towers and 51 smaller towers that give this structure an air of regality. The marble pavilions, intricate murals, lotus flower bases and airy courtyard make this a must visit destination in Alwar. The palace now houses the offices of the District Collectorate, making it one of the most beautiful government offices in the country.
With the Rajput-Mughal architecture, this palace also has Sagar Kund, the artificial lake. The City Palace is one of the most historically important places to visit in Alwar.
10 A.M. – 5 P.M. (closed on Mondays)
INR 5 for Indians; INR 50 for Foreigners
Sariska National Park
Situated across 866 sq km, this National Park has everything from jungle safaris to ancient temples. It is home to a variety of wild animals in the midst of stunning scenery. Located within the soft folds of the Aravalli Hills, a jungle safari will help you spot the rare Indian Eagle-Owl, peacock, sambhar, nilgai, jackal, wild boars, monkey, leopard and the majestic tiger.
As of August 2018, Saris Tiger Reserve is home to four tigers, eight tigresses and two cubs. It is the first tiger reserve in the world to have successfully completed a tiger relocation scheme.
6 A.M. – 3 P.M. (1st October – 30th June)
INR 105 for Indians; INR 570 for Foreigners.
City Palace Museum
Within the sprawling gates of the City Palace , there is a government-run museum that contains relics such as royal ivory slippers, glorious weaponry, royal attire, erotic miniatures, a 11th century Vishnu sculpture and widescreen paintings of royal processions.
The museum is on the top floor of the City Palace and you can reach it by taking the ramp from the main courtyard. The City Palace Museum accommodates ancient coins, manuscripts, inscriptions and stone sculptures. Swords belonging to Emperor Aurangzeb and Akbar are also on display here.
Timings: Tuesday – Sunday; 9:45 A.M. – 5:15 P.M.
Entry Fee: INR 50 for Indians; INR 100 for Foreigners
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