Gwalior city occupies a strategic location in the grid region of Northern
India. Gwalior, a historic city known for its fortresses, lies in the state
of Madhya Pradesh covering an area of 5214kms and a population of about
16,2988. Gwalior comprises a composite city of three urban sections namely
Gwalior the old city, Morar the cantontment area and Lashkar the new city.
Its proximity to Delhi and Agra is 321 kms and 121 kms respectively.
Climate of Gwalior
The climate of Gwalior is extremely hot in summers and cold in the winters.
The maximum temperature in the summers can reach to as high as 46°C,
while in the winters it dips down to below 5°C. The suitable time to
get the best out of Gwalior is from October to March. Monsoon starts from
June and stays till the end of September.
Once the capital of the Scindias, Gwalior is a majestic city that retains
its past grandeur amidst the daily choas. The influence of great dynasties
of the Rajput clan of the Pratiharas, Kachwahas and the Tomars have left
indelible etching in this city. The old city retains its flavour with the
10th century fort standing atop a huge bluff, a silent witness to its
Gwalior derived its name some 2000 years ago when a Rajput chief Suraj Sen
was cured of his leprosy ailment by the hermit saint Gwalipo. It was in his
name that the grateful nobleman built a fort on the hills and named it
Gwalior. The plains around Gwalior witnessed fierce fighting during the time
of India's war of Independence in 1857 led from the front by Tantia Tope and
Rani Laxmi Bai.
Major attractions of Gwalior
The Gwalior fort -
The most domination and impressive
centre-piece of the city stands atop the massive sandstone hill and can be
seen from miles away.The historic fort which was one of the most difficult
to gain has witnessed many a battles to possess it. Among the memorable
battles was the one fought between Rani Laksmi Bai of Jhansi and the British
East India Company in 1857.The fort described as the pearl in the necklace
of the castle of hind encloses many fine palaces and monuments including the
Gujari Mahal, Man Mandir Palace, Suraj Kund, Teli-ka-Mandir and
Sas-Bahu-ka-Mandir dating back to 425AD. The finest building in the fort is
the Man Mandir Palace built by Raja Man Singh in the 15th century. Other
palaces inside are the interconnected Vikramaditya and Karan Palaces, Jal
Vilas palace and the museum.. The fort is open from sunrise to sunset but
the palaces in the fort closes at 5pm.
Jal Vilas Palace and Museum -
The residence of the royal
Scindia family, part of which has been converted in to a museum displays a
collection of royal memorabilia which includes the clothes, furniture a
battery operated silver train that was used to carry drinks and fruits to
the dinning table in state dinners. The Jal vilas Palace has a pair of
worlds heaviest chandeliers in the Durbar hall and a crystal staircase.
Tombs of Ghaus Mohammed and Tansen -
The tombs is
dedicated to two of the most famous personalities of the city, spiritual
saint Ghaus Mohammad and Mian Tansen, the famous musician and one of the
nine pearls in the court of Mughal Emperor, Akbar. The sheer beauty of the
tombs are breathtaking. The stone carvings gives them a delicate ethereal
Gujari Mahal and Archaeological Musuem -
speaks volumes on the kind of affection Raja Man Singh kept in his heart for
his wife Mrignayni, for whom he specially built a Palace outside the fort.
Now a converted museum, it contains an extensive array of stone carvings.
The beauty of queen Mrignayni and the love of Raja Man singh for her are now
a part of folk traditions.
The temple built in the ninth century
in Dravidian form is the oldest in the fort. Some believed it was built in
the telangana style while others say it was built by oil merchant and hence
got its name "Teli" from them. A Garuda can be seen on top of the
10 meter high doorway. The structures is an amalgamation of the
architectural features of both North and South India. The shikhara or spire
is Dravidian in style while the decorative details are in the Nagara style.
Nearby attractions of Gwalior
Shanichara temple -
About 18 kms from Gwalior is
situated the Shanichara Temple, the abode of Shani, the saturn deity.
The Hindus held him in great respect and awe, for a benign glance can
bestow prosperiy while a fierce look can cause unparallel misfortune on
the object of attention. Devotees flock to the temple to please him
every Saturday. The temple madeout of stone at Aeti houses the original
idol of Shani brought from Lanka(presently Sri Lanka). History speaks
that Shanideva was held prisoner by the demon king Ravana, King of Lanka
in the epic Ramayana.
Situated between Gwalior and Agra, Dholpur
was the scene of a fierce battle between Aurangzeb's sons to determine
who would succeed him as the emperor of the Mughal empire.The Shergarh
fort built by Sher Shah Suri, the Khanpur Mahal, the Palace of Shah
Jahan, Shiva Temple dedicated to Lord Shiva are glorious part of this
Lying besides the Malwa plateau, Orchha is
famous for the Temples built in the 17th century. It was once the
capital of the Bundela Rajputs. The Jahangir Mahal, the Chatturbhuj
Mandir and the Laxmi Mandir are worth visiting. Built in massive stone
platforms and palatial architecture the temples adds a feeling of wonder
to the visitors.
Heritage hotels are available in Gwalior the Hotel Usha Kiran Palace
and the Hotel Gwalior Regency offer choices of air conditioned rooms and
suites which reflects the majestic taste of the maharaja who built them.
The rooms are adorned with artdeco furniture and French mosaic floors
with a dining hall for 70 persons.
How to reach Gwalior
By Air -
Gwalior is connected by Indian Airlines to
major cities like Bombay, Bhopal, Indore and Delhi.
By Rail -
Gwalior is on the main Delhi-Bombay and
Delhi-Madras rail link. Among major trains, the Taj and Shatabdi Express
connect Gwalior with Delhi and Agra. Gwalior is well linked with Agra
(118 km), Mathura, Jaipur (350 km), Delhi (321 km), Lucknow, Bhopal (423
km), Chanderi (239 km), Indore (486 km), Jhansi (101 km), Khajuraho (275
km), Ujjain (455 km), and Shivpuri (114 km).
By Road -
Gwalior is connected by regular bus
service to Agra, Mathura, Jaipur, Delhi, Khajuraho, Lucknow, Bhopal etc.
The most common and cheapest way of moving around the city is the
six-seater auto-rickshaws. Taxis are also available so are mini buses.