Known as “The Pearl Amongst Fortresses In India”, the Gwalior Fort is one of the best fortresses of India. This hill fort is also considered to be one of the most impenetrable forts in the country. This epitome of architectural grandeur is a must-visit attraction. The Gwalior Fort stands on an isolated rocky hill named Gopachal, overlooking the Gwalior town of Madhya Pradesh. This magnificent fort is an iconic historic monument that represents the rich culture of the bygone era.
Gwalior Fort History
– Gwalior Fort – One Of The Top Attractions In Gwalior
The Gwalior Fort, also known as Gibraltar of India, has a very rich history. However, there is no certain proof to indicate when the fort was built. According to some sources, it was built in 3 CE by a king called Suraj Sen, who was suffering from a deadly disease called Leprosy. A sage named Gwalipa once came to the fort and offered the king some water from a sacred pond (now known as Suraj Kund). Suraj Sen recovered from the deadly disease immediately. To thank the saint, he named the fort and the town after him.
The fort was ruled by 83 successors of Suraj Sen. But the 84th king, Tej Karan, lost the fort.
According to certain inscriptions and monuments inside the fort, this fort has been existent since the 6th century. Mihirakula, an Huna emperor used to rule over the fort at that time. Gurjara-Pratiharas captured the fort in the 9th century. They also built Teli Ka Mandir in the fort complex.
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The fort was then attacked by the Muslim dynasties. They ruled for about three centuries. Then in 1398, the Tomars captured the fort. Maan Singh, the last Tomar ruler, constructed several monuments inside the fort complex. He had also built the Gujari Mahal for his wife Mriganayani, which is now a state archaeological museum. The beautiful Man Mandir Palace built by him is an epitome of beautiful architecture. In 1516, Ibrahim Lodi attacked the fort. He defeated Maan Singh, who died. Thus, the Tomars lost the fort.
The Gibraltar of India was then ruled by the Mughals for a brief period of time. Then, the Marathas captured the fort and soon lost it to the East India Company. After this, there were many repeated shifts between the rule of the Britishers and the Marathas.
Finally, in 1844, the Britishers gave up the ownership of the fort to the Maratha Scindia family.
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This iconic fort witnessed great warfare during the rebellion of 1857. When Rani Lakshmibai (The Queen Of Jhansi) came fighting from Jhansi to Gwalior, she sought shelter inside the fort. She fought for many days with Britishers. But then, she jumped from the fort with her horse and sacrificed her life.
The Scindias continued ruling the fort until 1947 when India got independence. They constructed a number of monuments in the fort complex. In 1947, the fort was taken over by the government of India.
Gwalior Fort Images
Gwalior Fort Timings
You can visit this iconic fort anytime between 6:00 am to 5:30 pm. You generally need 3 to 4 hours to explore this embodiment of culture and architectural grandeur.
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Gwalior Fort Entry Fee
For Indians: INR 75 per person
For Foreigners: INR 250 per person
For Kids (below 15 years): Free
Gwalior Fort Interesting Facts
- The Gwalior fort was used as a prison during the rule of Mughals. It was a political prison for royal people.
- The second oldest record of usage of ‘Zero’ in mathematics is found in a temple in the fort. The inscription is more than 1500 years old.
- This fort witnessed many events and festivals from time to time. The very famous Annual Trade Fair takes place during the winter season.
- There is a tamarind tree inside the fort complex which was planted by Tansen. There is a rumor that eating the leaves of this tree can sweeten your voice like Tansen.
- The fort makes a good watching tower for the city.
- There is an amphitheater in the fort where a light and sound show is hosted every day in the evenings in both Hindi (7:30 pm) and English (8:30 pm) languages.
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Places To Visit Near Gwalior Fort
Here are some of the places near Gwalior Fort that you can visit:
- Tomb Of Khwaja Kanoon Sahib
- Sun Temple
- Tomb Of Tansen
- Tomb Of Mohammad Ghaus
- Jai Vilas Palace
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