The Five Most Beautiful Forts in India
Almost every city and town in Rajasthan has its own fort and there are several more throughout the rest of India. Each of these ancient wonders of architecture show a small part of Indiaâ€™s rich history under the rule of different dynasties and the chance to explore any fort shouldnâ€™t be missed. Letâ€™s have a look at the five most impressive forts in India:
5. Gwalior Fort
Strategically placed on a long solitary hill and surrounded by a number of other hills, Gwalior Fort is on of the most impregnable citadels in Indian history. Built around 773 AD, in the central state of Madhya Pradesh, Gwalior was known as “the pearl in the necklace of the forts of Hind” for a very long time.
The solid sandstone walls of Gwalior Fort rest on the edges of the hill, making virtually unscalable and offering a breathtaking view of the plains around the fortress. This amazing edifice best showcases the architectural skills of the people in the Madhya Pradesh region.
4. Chittorgarh Fort
The biggest fort in Asia and one of the most impressive in all of Rajasthan, Chittorgarh now stands as a symbol of nationalism, courage and sacrifice. Sitting atop a 180 m high hill and covering an area of 700 acres, this massive structure was once the capital of Mewar.
Three major battles at Chittorgarh Fort sealed its name in history. During long sieges by Muslim invaders, over 13,000 women and children made the ultimate sacrifice, choosing death to a dishonorable surrender. After the siege of Emperor Akbar, in 1567, Chittorgarh Fort was abandoned and never again resettled.
“Qila-i-Mubarak” (the blessed fort) was built in the 15th century by Emperor Shahjahan and represents the pinnacle of Mughal architecture. Occupied by the British until India gained its independence Red Fort was used mainly as a garrison for troops and several of its structures suffered alterations.
The Red Fort is a perfect example of the unique Shahjahani which features Indian, Persian and European architectural influences. It is a symbol of Indiaâ€™s independence and every year, on August 15, the national flag is hoisted on its palisades by the Prime Minister.
Perched on a steep hill, 400 feet above the neighboring Jodhpur, Mehrangarh Fort is one of the most overwhelming structures in India. Built in 1459, by the founder of Jodhpur, as protection for his city, Mehrangarh offered a commanding view of the surrounding and discouraged many from even attempting to attack.
The imposing thick walls of the fort and the 7 of 8 original gates still bear the marks of cannonballs sent by the invading armies of Jaipur, but they managed to protect some of the most breathtaking palaces and courtyards in India.
Built during the reign of Emperor Akbar the Great, Agra Fort is considered the most important fort in the whole of India. Although the history of Agra goes back 2,500 years, it wasnâ€™t until the famous Mughal ruler came to power, that Agra became a city of great importance.
Built between 1665 and 1671, Agra Fort is a fine example of fusion architecture, featuring local, Persian and Turkish style elements. The red, 20 meters-high walls of the citadel hide impressive white marble palaces that stand as proof of the power and riches of the Mughals.