Also called the Victory Fort of Rajasthan, the Jaigarh Fort of Rajasthan stands in the midst of thorn-scrub hills of Rajasthan that impart a sterner look to the already forbidding Fort. At a distance of 15kms from Jaipur, the capital city of Indian state of Rajasthan stands the imposing Jaigarh Fort of Rajasthan. As one approaches the fort from the steep road that leads to the main gate, the Dungar Darwaza, one cannot help but remark at the amazing view it offers of the city below. The Jaigarh fort of Rajasthan was built between the 15th to the 18th century to bolster up the defense of Amer, so one should not be amazed to find that the fort unlike most palaces and forts of Jaipur of Rajasthan is quite plain and simple. It has moats and all the features you would expect of a full-fledged citadel.
Of the Jaipur's three forts, Jaigarh of Rajasthan is perhaps the most motivating. It does not have those delicate structures or palaces like that of Amber of Rajasthan but if you want a quick look at a hard-core fortress, this is it. Jaigarh means `Victory Fort' and was built between the 15th and the 18th century, and stands 15 km from Jaipur of Rajasthan, amidst rock-strewn, thorn-scrub covered hills, its forbidding stone ramparts are visible from the Jaipur town of Rajasthan. The Fort of Rajasthan discloses the mastery over architecture of the former age. Jaigarh or the 'Fort of Victory' is perched on Chilh ka Tola (Hill of Eagles), 400 feet above the Amber Fort of Rajasthan. The walls of the fort are spread over three kilometers. Also, there is a huge moat surrounding the fort. Once you enter through the massive south facing Doongar Darwaza, you'll instantly get a tangible feel of Rajput romanticism. If you're lucky, Thakur Pratap Singh, a handsome Rajput of Rajasthan with a fine moustache will be around to tell you stories of Jaigarh's illustrious past. The other entrance to the fort of Rajasthan is through the Awani Darwaza in the east.
Wander around a bit- you can walk the ramparts and peer down the loopholes for guns and boiling oil, or check out the wide water channels. These were part of a very efficient system for rainwater harvesting, bringing in water from across the hills and into Jaigarh's 3 underground tanks. The manner in which they drew in blasts of air from the desert is most intriguing. A 5km long canal can be seen entering the fort complex of Rajasthan to bring in water from the high hills and store in the fort for the armymen.
Of Jaipur's three forts, Jaigarh of Rajasthan is perhaps the most interesting. Not if all you want to see are pretty palaces (for that Amer's perfect) of Rajasthan; but if you want a peek at a hard-core fortress of Rajasthan, this is it.
Jaigarh of Rajasthan, once responsible for the security of both Jaipur of Rajasthan and Amer of Rajasthan, is a huge moated fort and contains all the accoutrements of a full-fledged citadel. 1½ or 2 hours are usually enough to explore it - don't bother taking a guide; there isn't much use for one, and sections like the armoury and the museum have adequate signs. Above all, the Fort of Rajasthan offers a wonderful view of the city below. Jaigarh Fort of Rajasthan is a perfect destination for a traveler, interested in the majestic past of India. The Jaigarh Fort of Rajasthan is definitely worth a visit.
Jaigarh Fort of Rajasthan is a remarkable feat of military architecture. One of the main attractions of Jaigarh Fort of Rajasthan is the Jaivan. It is believed to be the biggest cannon on wheels in the world. After you enter, head straight for the gigantic cannon Jaivan perched on top of a tower. Weighing 50 tons with an 8m barrel and a trajectory of about 20km, it is said to be the world's largest cannon on wheels. Such was its might that it took four elephants to swivel it around on its axis. But surprisingly (and thankfully!) it was never used in any war. Despite its awesome firepower, it has delicate scrollwork of birds, foliage and a roaring elephant at its mouth. Jaivan was test-fired once by Jai Singh in 1720 when the cannon ball landed at Chaksu about 38km away! and the impact of it was so enormous that a lake formed at the spot and many houses collapsed in Jaipur. The cannoneer died immediately after the firing, before he could even jump into water. (It is mandatory for the cannoneer to jump into water to avoid the massive impact, and so there's always a water tank beside the cannon.) No wonder enemies didn't ever set their eyes on Jaigarh. There's even a notice here which proudly says, "because of the strong defence system, management and the foresightedness of the rulers, the enemy never dared to enter the fort."
Seven Storeyed- Diya Burj
The highest point in Jaigarh of Rajasthan is the seven-storeyed Diya Burj, the turret of lamps from where you get a panoramic view of the city of Jaipur of Rajasthan. Also interesting is the water supply and storage system of the fort, a real marvel of planning. Sagar Talav, with octagonal bastions and huge dams, is one of the fort's grand reservoirs. The scarcity of water has always exercised the ingenuity of the Rajasthanis, also accounting for the existence of the several baoris or baolis (stepwells) in the state. There are some temples within the fort. The 10th century Shri Ram Hari Har Temple houses images of three gods – Rama, Vishnu and Shiva. It has an interesting doorway. Nearby is the 12th century Kal Bhairava Temple.
Museums at the Jaigarh Fort
The museum of artefacts tells the story of the Jaigarh Fort of Rajasthan and its vast well-protected treasury. The museum has a remarkable collection of coins, puppets, photographs of the royal kings, buildings, processions, even a circular pack of cards and other things like a balance for measuring explosives and several containers including a 16th century coin container besides many other remnants of the past. One can also see a few weather beaten sedan chairs and drums at the Shubhat Niwas or the Meeting Hall of Warriors. Don't miss the royal kitchen and dining hall; after all food and hospitality were also very much a part of Rajput agenda. One can also see old photographs of two of Jaipur's Maharajas, Sawai Bhawani Singh and Major General Man Singh II, both of whom were senior officers in the military (Indian Army). The Museum has many photographs, of Maharajas, royalty, buildings and processions and even a circular pack of cards besides many other relics of the past.
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