Rajasthan The Heritage State- Bikaner
Heritage Hotels in India
Heritage Hotels in Rajasthan
This is the fort nobody could conquer. Built between 1587 and 1593, Junagarh Fort is an imposing bulwark of north India, the cornerstone of Mughal Emperor Akbar's trusted Rajput general Raja Rai Singh. Rai Singh's fort was designed with a high wall and deep moats round it. Inside is a complex of 37 buildings: pavilions, palaces and temples. Two gates provide access to these bastions. One is the Suraj Pol or the Sun Gate. It is also the main entrance.
The gilded Diwan-i-khas or the special audience hall is inside. In Phool Mahal you will see a series of paintings depicting the Ramayana. The Anup Mahal and the Karan Mahal have gold-tipped art in plaster and relief. The complex also has the blue Badal Mahal; the chambers of the rulers called Gaj Mandir and the summer palace or Hawa Mahal. Outside the second entrance, the Daulat Pol are the chilling palm prints of royal women who became Satis by burning in their embattled husband's funeral pyres. Entrance Rs 50 (Indians Rs 10). Included in the charge is the price of a group guide. Camera Rs 30, video camera Rs 100. Open daily, 10 am to 4.30 pm.
Created in a mix of European and Oriental style, it was built by Maharaja Ganga Singh in the memory of his father Maharaja Lal Singh in 1902.
You can stroll around Lalgarh's terraced lawns and bougainvillea bushes if you live in the section that has been converted into a hotel. The palace's Sadul Museum showcases hunting trophies, photographs of the Raj era and contemporary possessions of the Maharaja like swimming goggles(!) and a film projector. The library of the palace is supposed to have the largest collection of original Sanskrit manuscripts on parchments, copper and gold or silver plaques. Check out the personal carriage of the maharaja's royal train.
Three km from the city centre. Open Thurs to Tue, 10 am to 5 pm.
To view a good collection of late-Harappan, Gupta and Kushan pottery, this is the place to go to. Also exhibited here are carpets, paintings, armoury, the firmans (decrees) to the Bikaner maharajas asking them to travel to Delhi immediately. On one occasion to the funeral of Emperor Akbar.
Coins, miniatures, sculptures are also displayed.
On Jaipur Rd, Open Sat to Thurs, 10 am to 4.30 pm.
These old surviving temples are named after two merchant brothers who built them in the 16th century.
Bhandeshwar temple was commissioned 1468 and is dedicated to the fifth tirthankar, Suminath. It is believed that the finest of Emperor Akbar's artisans were employed to carve the gilded motifs inside the temple. It is supposed to have taken 500 labourers 50 years to build this temple which apparently used 40,000 kg of ghee and water for the foundations. On scorching days, this clarified butter is said to ooze out of the walls!
Pillars are adorned with a floral intertwining design. The 24 Jain thankaras and their lives are depicted here in picturesque stories.
The inner sanctum is decorated with English tiles and stones transported from Jaipur. The altar of Suminath is adorned in mirror and gilt. Sandeshwar temple completed in 1536 is the smaller of the two and is dedicated to Neminath the 22nd Jain tirthankar. Inside, marble statues, carved doors and painted pillars echo the rich imagery of the Bhandeshwar temple.
Closed between noon and 4 pm.