Local legends ascribe the antiquity of the place to the epic age. Bhima, the character of the Mahabharata known for his stupendous might, is said to have visited this place and struck the ground with his foot which resulted in a gush of water issuing forth, and the reservoir thus formed is known to this day as Bhimlat.

The history of Chittorgarh revolves around its ancient forth which is traced to the reign of the Sisodia ruler Bappa Rawal (AD 734-53). The Sisodias of Mewar are believed to be the oldest dynasty in the world, with its origin going back to 566 AD. Of all Rajput kingdoms in Rajasthan which upheld the Rajput values and kept alive the tradition of independence, pride of place undoubtedly belongs to Mewar and the Sisodias, who even today are acknowledged the most superior in the Rajput hierarchy. When the other rulers were falling over backward to acknowledge Mughal supremacy, the rulers of Chittaur alone held out and their fierce pride never allowed them to give their princesses in marriage to Mughal emperors. It was this indomitable spirit of the Mewar kings which, while deterring many an invader, challenged the more daring to resort to the conquest of Chittorgarh as a means of enhancing their prestige.

It was attacked over centuries by Allauddin Khilji, Bahadur Shah of Malwa, and the great Mughal emperor, Akbar. The Rajputs managed to recover the fort after the first two conquests, but the third conquest of Chittorgarh by Akbar in 1567 finally annexed it to the Mughal Empire. But the Rajputs emerged as heroes even in defeat, preferring death to dishonor and surrender.

The Chittorgarh saga is full of legends of valour, chivalry, glorious death and defeat. And the greatest Sisodias – the legendary Rana Kumbha, Rana Sanga and Maharana Pratap (the uncrowned king), are revered as national heroes.

Major Tourist Spots

Chittorgarh Fort:


A standing sentinel to the courage and valour of Chittorgarh, it stands tall over a 180 meter high hillock, covering a massive area of 700 acres. The fort is believed to have been built by the Maurya rulers in 7th centuary AD. The fort is atreasure house of history and historical monuments. The approach to the fort is very difficult; the one mile steep serpentine thoroughfare is exhausting and the fort is reached through seven huge gates or pols which have a watch tower and massive iron spiked doors.

It was ravaged thrice, and each time phoenix-like it rose again. Allaudin Khilji was the first to sack the Chittaur in 1303, and it is said the attack was motivated by his strong desire to abduct Rani Padmini, the legendary beauty and wife of the ruling Rana. Yet she preferred death to dishonor and committed jauhar (self immolation) along with other ladies of the court

Chittorgarh was plundered again in 1535 by Sultan Bahadur Shah of Gujarat, and finally by the Mughal Emperor Akbar in 1567, in an attempt to subdue Maharana Udai Singh.

The fort is approached through massive pols or gates. Near Bhairon Pol, is a cenotaph or ‘chhatri’ in honour of the chivalrous Jaimal and his cousin Kalla, who laid down their lives while defending Chittaur against the Mughals. Jaimal, who was fatally wounded but refused to die in bed, was carried into battle on the shoulders of his cousin Kalla, and both of them died fighting valiantly.

Kirti Stambh or Tower of Fame:

Built in the 12th century, it was dedicated to Lord Sri Adinath Rishabdeo, the first Jain Tirthankar. The 22-metre high structure is replete with figures from the Jain pantheon. There are several other Jain temples in chittaurgarh.

Vijay Stambh or Victory Tower:


It was built by Rana Kumbha in 1440 to commemorate his victory over the combined forces of the kings of neighbouring malwa and Gujarat. This tower is 120 ft. (36.5 mts) high and has a girth of 30 ft. at the base. The nine-storeyed limestone structure is richly ornamented from top to bottom.

Padmini Palace:

The palace of Rani Padmini who preferred death to dishonor and committed jauhar, along with her entire entourage, rather than fall into the hand of Allauddin Khilji. It was her that the Rana allowed a glimpse of the legendary beauty Padmini to Allauddin Khilji. The 'Zanana Mahal' overlooks the pond where Padmini stood, while her image reflecting in the water of the pond was shown to Allaudin.

Rana Kumbha's Palace:


This is the largest monument of the fort. It is believed that Rani Padmini committed jauhar in one of its underground cellars. The palace is in ruins now but is of historical, as well as architectural, interest. The original palace was believed to have been built by Ranas Hamir after regaining the fort in the first siege. The Mewar power reached its acme during the reign of Rana Kumbha who was a great patron of art and architecture.

Mohar Nagri:

A small structure, which was raised during the invasion of Chittorgarh by Akbar 1567, it gets the name Mohar Nagri because, it is believed, Emperor Akbar paid one mohar (gold coin)for each basketful of earth placed on this mound. As the work was very dangerous, brave soldiers kept guard from the ramparts above. The mound was raised to such a height that the Mughal cannons could be placed over it and fired inside the fort.

The important places inside are - the temple of Tulja Bhawani (the tutelary goddess of the scribes), the naulakha Bhandar or nine lakh treasury, Singar Chauri, with its inscripitions dating to 1448 AD, Sat-bis-Deori, the old Jain temple, etc.

Kalika Mata Temple:


The temple is dedicated to Goddess Kali, the symbol of power and valour. Located on the southern side of the fort, it was built by Rana Hamir. Originally, it was built as a Sun Temple by Bappa Rawal in the 8th centuary but was destroyed during the first sack of Chittaur. Rana Hamir converted it into a Kali temple after regaining the fort in the 14th centuary.

The house of Chunda is situated near the temple. There are several other temples within the ramparts of the fort, including that of Annapurna and the Jain temples.

Sitamata Sanctuary:

The sanctuary is spread over the Aravalli and Vindhyachal ranges, and is the only forest where teak is found. The thickly vegetable sanctuary is half covered by teak, besides salar, tendu, amia, bamboo and bel etc. Three rivers flow through the forest Jakham and Karmoi are the major ones. A huge dam has been constructed over the Jakham River for irrigation.

The key fauna of the sanctuary are leapord, hyena, jackal, fox, jungle cat, porcupine, spotted deer, wild boar, four-horned antelope and nilgai etc.

The most conspicuous animal of the sanctuary is the flying squirrel which can be observed gliding between the trees during the night. This nocturnal creature hides during the day and the best time to watch it at Arampura Guest House is in February and March, when most of the trees shed their leaves making it easier to spot the squirrel.

The sanctuary is associated with mythological events. It is believed that Sita, wife of Lord Rama, stayed here in the ashram of Saint Valmiki while in exile.

Other tourist attractions

  • Kumbha Shyam Temple
  • Mahasati Cenotaphs
  • Meera Temple
  • Jaimal and Patta's Palace
  • Government Museum
  • Nagri
  • Baroli
  • Bassi Village
  • Bassi Wildlife Sanctuary
  • Bhainsrorgarh wildlife Sanctuary
  • Deogarh
  • Menal
  • Gotmeshwar

Travelling to Chittorgarh

Air: Nearest airport Dabok, Udaipur (90 km) Indian Airlines - City Office, Delhi Gate, Udaipur

Rail: Well connected by rail with direct trains from Delhi, Jaipur, Ajmer, Ahmedabad, Jodhpur, Khandwa, Indore, Ratlam, Mandsore, Kota, Bundi, Kachiguda etc.

Road: The town is well connected by road also and the bus services for Udaipur, Ahmedabad, Mt. Abu, Sirohi, Jalor, Jodhpur, Dungarpur, Banswara, Bundi, Kota, Rawatbhata, Ajmer, Jaipur, Pratapgarh, Ratlam, Indore, Tonk and Nathdwara etc.

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