Things to do in Chittorgarh: A detailed travel guide!

Chittorgarh is located in the Indian state of Rajasthan and still remains one of the lesser explored marvels of India. One visit to the beautiful fort-town and I fell in love with it. Come along with me in this journey to discover the stunning architecture and legend of Chittorgarh.

Built in the 7th Century by the Guhilot kings and abandoned in 1568 after a long seize by Akbar, Chittorgarh Fort is now also a UNESCO World Heritage site. Despite it's tumultuous history, the fort retained its prominence as one of the most magnificent forts of Rajasthan and is now slowly gaining popularity with the tourists as well.

gaumukh bawli baoli chittorgarh fort life rajasthan town heritage green vijay stambh victory tower
Gaumukh Bawli

The Chittorgarh Fort

The fort is famous for many landmarks, but my favourite are the - Gaumukh Bawli (Cow-mouth water reserviour) and Vijay Stambh (Victory Tower). It was an image of this Bawli which Tej innocuously shared with me on Friday morning which convinced me to visit Chittorgarh. The Bawli is fed through natural water and is full the whole year. As the day changes, so does its beauty. From the hustle bustle of morning when men and women come totake a holy dip, it turns into a serene seductress with golden walls and green water by the time sun sets.

Situated on the rear edge of the fort, its water is supplied through a cow-mouth like opening all through the year, hence the unusual name. A tunnel connects the bawli with the Queen's fort through which royal women used go there, hidden from the eyes of the men, though now its closed for public.

chittorgarh fort life rajasthan town heritage gaumukh baoli bawli stepwell green water
Gaumukh Bawli from the other side
chittorgarh fort life rajasthan town heritage gaumukh bawli stepwell reservoir
Men with elaborate padgis going down into the bawli to pray
I visited Chittorgarh alone as none of my friends in Ahmadabad wanted to travel and I was more than excited about it. So this was one of those solo trips which are forced on you, but to me it was a blessing in disguise. Without planning I just went to the bus-stand, bought the ticket and came here. I had no clue where I would be staying, but when you travel alone such things do not matter at all.

I traveled overnight in a bus and reached early morning. The ST buses drop you at the base of the hill and then you need to go up, either by another bus or a shared auto. I took an auto and reached up, found a guest house and dropped my bags there. The guest house was in a pretty bad shape and that told me that not many travelers come here and those who come often go back the same day.

Sharing some of my Chittorgarh experiences there.

I was amazed that people were still allowed to climb on the Vijay Stambh, most such structures have been locked in India (including Qutub Minar). Its a cramped climb of eight stories, sometimes in absolute darkness on tiny and narrow steps, with people walking up as well as down at the same time. There are still moments when you are completely alone in that darkness and its a great feeling. I loved it and even managed to click some pictures, though the famed view from the top was disappointing.

vijay stambh chittorgarh fort life rajasthan town heritage majestic golden sandstone
The majestic Vajaya Stambh

chittorgarh fort life rajasthan town heritage wall blue town
View of the town through the fort wall, the blue houses are simply stunning
chittorgarh fort life rajasthan town heritage vijay stambh victory tower
A woman inside the Vijay Stambh, typical beautiful Rajasthani sari...

chittorgarh fort life rajasthan town heritage vijay stambh steps
One of the lit sections of the steps, rest of it was completely dark though

My guide told me that a request to walk the entire fort was rare and not more than two such requests came in an year, I was impressed and proud of myself. However, by the time the day ended, I realised why most people preferred vehicles to see the place. My feet ached and all my body wanted was a chair/ bed/ floor to lie down. The absence of any meals and my chappals added to the misery. But then it rained once more and I could finally walk barefoot in was therapeutic.

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Jharokha at Ratan Singh Palace

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The fort wall...we walked on it for a long time in a light drizzle...
Chittorgarh is a town swathed in history, perhaps another reason why I was so keen on visiting the place. The list of illustrous rulers is huge and each one has a very interesting story to tell. One of the most famous story is that of Rani Padmini and how she threw herself into the raging fire with thousands of her maids, once her Rana (king) was murdered and the invading king (Khilji) obsessed with possessing her came for her. The act came to be known as Jauhar, and was repeated twice again after this; everytime an invading army won the palace women immolated themselves rather than fall into slavey in their palaces.

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An old toothless and almost blind Meerabai bhakt, mesmerizing silky voice though
Another very intriguing story is that of Meerabai who was married to the King of Mewar, but never accepted him as her husband. For her she always belonged to Lord Krishna, and sang bhajans for him which are popular even today. I find the tolerance of the king commendable as he allowed his own wife to belong to someone else, there is even a temple within a fort dedicated to her. We always read about her even in school as part of Bhakti movement, but somehow the story now seems more real. 
chittorgarh fort life rajasthan town heritage blue houses
A lane in the old town, most houses are beautifully painted in blue
As I write this, I am down the hill in the new Chittor town, waiting for my bus. Tired and waiting to sleep, I am glad that I could live one of my dreams today.


  1. the first shot and "stambh" are lovely. have you saturated the photos?

  2. lovely lovely images and very fluid writing.........its cool to live one's dream....!!

    this monsoon..i went to the mountains and it was a rather welcome sight to be in the himalayas in the rains!!!

  3. Beautiful pictures and well written post! Hope I can visit the place someday.

  4. beautiful photographs siddharth :)

  5. Absolutely stunning photos with rich colours! Great post!

  6. Oh, what a place! So much history and so many great details. Your picture is great..would love to be there in real.

  7. Stunning images! Takes my breath away. The blue colors remind me of Jodhpur.

  8. Just by looking at your pictures I want to go there!

  9. Fantastic words and photos! Thank you so much for the tour. I'll probably never visit this place, so I really do appreciate your post. Have a nice day...

  10. Awesome place , definitely on my list of place to visit .

  11. Beautiful photos Siddhartha! Especially the first one!

    The blue houses remind me of the view from Mehrangarh fort (Jodhpur)!

  12. Thanks for sharing the pictures. My Mom was a hindi teacher and when she told me the legend of Mira Bai, I was always in awe at what her husband did to her. My husband and I listen to her poetry through various singers even here at out ages in New York, thousands of miles away.

  13. Wow! What a beautiful place! Wonderful photos!!

  14. @Sneo: Thanks! I have played around with the levels of the images...not much on the saturation values though. The place was anyway super-saturated :)

    @shootingstar: I am sure Himalayas must be great at this time. I also planned a trip, but couldn't make it...

    @TheFloatingClouds: Thank you, I too hope that you make it to the place :)

    @Amritha Menon: Thanks dear :)

    @DeeBee: Thank you!

  15. @Spiderdama: Thank you so much, its an altogether different experience to be actually there...its beautiful...

    @eyeinthesky: You are right, the blue is very Jodhpur :)

    @Mridula: You certainly should, I think its one of the most beautiful places in Rajasthan...

    @Dhiraj: Thank you :)

  16. @Abhijit: Thanks man! The first one is my fav too :)

    @Munir: That's fabulous, I am so glad that you chose to comment here :) Mirabai's poetry is so beautiful...

    @Barbara: Thank you :)

  17. it is so colorful there-the walls, the nature and the colorful sari! A poetry for eyes!

  18. oh! absolutely breathtaking...its beautiful!!love the color of sari, turban, the houses...the bawli...simply superb!

  19. Stunning location..splendid set of photographs..Very well captured Siddhartha. I feel like packing now..!

  20. Hi Siddhartha,

    I can't remember the last time I read such a captivating blog post. I was enthralled.

    Thank you.


  21. Great! I am planning to visit this place next month!!

  22. @Ola: Thanks a lot, the beauty of the place is really like poetry...

    @Shruti: :) You should plan a visit soon to the place...I am sure you would love it!

    @Sridharan: already do so much travel!

    @Kellie: Wow...that's quite a compliment, though am not quite sure if I deserve it. Its the place which is so beautiful...

    @Kusum: Awesome, so share your thoughts once you are back :)

  23. These are your clicks? Ohh! What a stupid question!! I meant "These are amazing clicks!!" I saw the pictures first, went back and read the details next.

    Great job! And a great great blog!! :)

  24. @Mi: Yup my clicks, though I can thank the camera and the place as well :) And thanks a lot :)

    p.s. I am a wicked guy who uses the clicks to lure the visitors to read the blog as well ;X (wicked expression)!

  25. Such beautiful scenery! I love the first shots with the water.

  26. envy envy envy envy envy envy envy ! more envy :)

    i call myself mira, am schizo and feel my second personality is of mira :D

  27. I am so glad that you shared this dream with us. Your photos and story are amazing, right to the woman in the dark photo and the blue houses. What a great history and heritage in this place!


  28. @Halcyon: Thanks, that's my fav shot too :)

    @Chintan: You call yourself mira :) That's a nice name loaded with history!

    @Genie: Thank you so much! I am glad you liked the pics and the story...

  29. The images are simple amazing sid...i would also like to go at this plc after reading ur blog...

  30. Oh wow, Sids. That's stunning. Beautiful captures. The one of the woman.. it looks like she's floating. What a wonderful place to get to visit. I'm proud of you too for taking the full tour!

  31. nice photo

    beautiful nature scenery


    thanks for sharing

  32. @Vishakha: Thanks dear, and next time don't just say a 'NO' when I ask you for a trip :)

    @Jules: Thanks a lot...I guess I am just lucky that there are so many beautiful places around me to see and explore...

  33. @Krishna: Thanks a lot man, and Happy Onam to you too :)

  34. Fabulous captures.

  35. Fantastic photographs....Just superb!

  36. Amazing pics! The first one stands out :)

  37. @Daniel: Thank you :)

    @RNiranjanDas: Thanks :)

    @Ash: Thanks :)

    @Harsha: Thanks, I also like the first one...

  38. wow... beautiful pics with nice execution of words...
    n thank you so much for reminding every corner...
    may I ask u something... Meera ji ka mandir was either missed or u gonna post those pictures in another post...???
    thanking u again...

  39. @JM: Thank you!

    @Pooja: I am really glad that you enjoyed the post.

    There is only one picture of Meera's temple used here (though I clicked many)...the old man singing Meera bhajans. I regret but I guess won't be able to post anymore for now...

  40. Love the indoor pictures. Of the woman in the typical sari. Haunting.

  41. Thanks a lot Zeba! I really appreciate your feedback :)

  42. What an amazing place - you've really captured the feeling of the place.

  43. Stumbled on to your images via pinterest... your words have ensured that many people like me will surely check Chittorgarh soon :) Cheers Preeti

    1. check your image on
      wish you were given the credit... have tried my bit

  44. Dear Siddharth
    I have been following your blog for some time now. i want to narrate an incident which happened with my Late uncle Shri Jagatpati Joshi, an eminent archeologist, who later became the Director General of Archeological Survey of India. He was a typical fiewld archeologist and was involved in diggings at Lothal and Dholavira for most of his life. He narrated this incident to me. during one of his digging projects in Chittorgarh, he was being pestered by the watchman to leave the fort premises before sundown. Since my uncle was a persisitent worker, he did not really listen to the guys' pleas that the fort closes at dusk and continued his work, as he was a superior officere. On coming out of the trench,my uncle saw a line of women dressed in traditional rajasthani dresses walking on the fort wall. My uncle immediately retaliated and asked why we are being asked to leave when so many other people are there already. To this, the man smiled and said "Saahab, sab log to chale gaye, bas ye hi reh gaye hain. Isliye apse keh raha tha ki aap log sooraj dhalne se pehle chal jaaiye."

    1. This is a really interesting story, I am really sorry for such a late reply...somehow I just missed it. Thanks a lot for sharing...

  45. Great Pics, Nice thoughts, Kya baat hai!!


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