4.4 / 5

Mehrangarh Fort

🗓 Best Time To Visit:October to March

⏰ Open Hours:9:00 AM to 5:00 PM

🎒 Things To Do:Explore the fort, Visit the museum, Enjoy panoramic views of Jodhpur, Attend cultural events and festivals

💰 Budget:Indian nationals: INR 100, Foreign tourists: INR 600

👥 Traveller Types:History buffs, Culture enthusiasts, Photographers

🏅 Known For:Impressive architecture, Extensive museum collections, Stunning views of Jodhpur city

🚉 Distances:Jodhpur Airport: 5.6 km, Jodhpur Railway Station: 8 km

📸 Photography:Allowed, INR 100 for camera and INR 200 for video camera

🍽️ Nearby Eateries:Café Mehran, Chokelao Restaurant

♿ Accessibility:Not wheelchair accessible

🎁 Shopping:Traditional handicrafts, textiles and jewelry available at on-site shop

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Mehrangarh Fort in Jodhpur: A Majestic Monument of Rajasthan’s Heritage

Mehrangarh Fort in Jodhpur is one of the most impressive and awe-inspiring monuments of Rajasthan’s rich and glorious past. Perched on a 410 feet high hill, the fort dominates the skyline of the blue city and offers a spectacular view of its surroundings.

The fort is a testimony to the courage, skill and craftsmanship of the Rathore rulers who built and expanded it over five centuries. It is also a treasure trove of art, culture and history, as it houses several splendid palaces, temples and a museum that showcase the royal legacy and diversity of Rajasthan.

If you are planning to visit Jodhpur, Mehrangarh Fort should be on top of your list of places to see. Here are some reasons why you should not miss this majestic fort and what you can expect to discover inside it.

History of Mehrangarh Fort

The history of Mehrangarh Fort dates back to 1459, when Rao Jodha, the founder of Jodhpur, decided to shift his capital from Mandore to a more secure location. He chose a rocky hill called Bhakurcheeria (the mountain of birds) and laid the foundation of the fort. The legend goes that he had to displace a hermit called Cheeria Nathji (the lord of birds) who cursed the fort to suffer from drought and scarcity. To appease the hermit, Rao Jodha built a temple for him in the fort and also ensured that a well was dug for water supply.

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Mehrangarh Fort Facade - (c) Travel Triangle

The fort was named Mehrangarh, meaning the fort of the sun, as it was dedicated to Surya, the sun god, who was the chief deity of the Rathore clan. The fort was attacked several times by enemies, but it never fell into their hands. The most notable siege was by the combined forces of Jaipur and Bikaner in 1568, when Akbar was the Mughal emperor. The fort withstood the attack for six months, but eventually surrendered when the food and water ran out. However, the Rathores regained their independence after Akbar’s death and continued to rule from Mehrangarh.

The fort witnessed many expansions and modifications over the years, as each ruler added new structures and features to it according to their taste and needs. The most prominent additions were made by Maharaja Jaswant Singh (1638-1678), who built the Jaswant Thada cenotaph outside the fort; Maharaja Ajit Singh (1678-1724), who built the Victory Gate to commemorate his victory over the Mughals; Maharaja Man Singh (1803-1843), who built the Phool Mahal (Flower Palace) and Takht Vilas (Throne Palace); and Maharaja Jaswant Singh II (1873-1895), who built the Umaid Bhawan Palace as a famine relief project.

You may also like to read: Mehrangarh Fort, Jodhpur: The royal architectural extravaganza

The last ruler to reside in Mehrangarh was Maharaja Hanwant Singh (1947-1952), who acceded to the Indian Union after independence. He converted a part of the fort into a museum in 1952 and opened it to the public. He also founded the Mehrangarh Museum Trust in 1972 to preserve and promote the heritage of Mehrangarh. Today, the fort is managed by his son, Maharaja Gaj Singh II, who is also known as Bapji.

How to Reach Mehrangarh Fort

Mehrangarh Fort is located in the outskirts of Jodhpur city, about 5 km from the city centre. You can reach the fort by various modes of transport, such as:

By Air: The nearest airport is Jodhpur Airport, which is about 10 km from the fort. You can take a taxi or a bus from the airport to the fort, which will take about 20 minutes.

By Train: The nearest railway station is Jodhpur Junction, which is about 6 km from the fort. You can take a taxi, a rickshaw or a bus from the station to the fort, which will take about 15 minutes.

By Road: The fort is well-connected by road to other cities and towns of Rajasthan and India. You can take a bus, a taxi or a self-drive car from any of these places to the fort. The fort has a parking facility for vehicles near its entrance.

Architecture of Mehrangarh Fort

The architecture of Mehrangarh Fort is a blend of various styles and influences, reflecting the different periods and cultures that shaped its history. The fort is built with red sandstone and has a circumference of about 10 km. It is surrounded by thick walls that are up to 36 meters high and 21 meters wide at some places. The walls are punctuated by seven gates that serve as entrances to the fort. These are:

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Jai Pol (Victory Gate): Built by Maharaja Man Singh in 1806 to celebrate his victory over Jaipur and Bikaner armies.

Fateh Pol (Fateh Gate): Built by Maharaja Ajit Singh in 1707 to mark his victory over the Mughals.

Gopal Pol (Gopal Gate): Built by Maharaja Gaj Singh in 1646 as the main entrance to the palace complex.

Bhairon Pol (Bhairon Gate): Built by Rao Maldev in 1532 as the first line of defense.

Dedh Kamgra Pol (Dedh Kamgra Gate): Built by Rao Jodha in 1460 as the original entrance to the fort. It still bears the marks of cannon balls fired by the Jaipur army in 1808.

Marti Pol (Marti Gate): Built by Rao Maldev in 1532 as the second line of defense.

Loha Pol (Iron Gate): Built by Rao Jodha in 1459 as the final and most formidable gate. It has sharp iron spikes to prevent elephant attacks.

The fort also has several bastions and watchtowers that provide a panoramic view of the city and the desert. The most prominent ones are:

Rao Jodha’s Bastion: The oldest and largest bastion, built by Rao Jodha in 1459. It houses the Chamunda Devi Temple and the Nagnechiaji Temple.

Fateh Prakash Bastion: The most decorated and ornate bastion, built by Maharaja Fateh Singh in 1899. It houses the Daulat Khana (Treasure Room) and the Armoury Gallery.

Jhanki Mahal Bastion: The most elegant and graceful bastion, built by Maharaja Jaswant Singh II in 1895. It houses the Jhanki Mahal (Peeping Palace) and the Cradle Gallery.

Phool Mahal Bastion: The most beautiful and exquisite bastion, built by Maharaja Abhay Singh in 1724. It houses the Phool Mahal (Flower Palace) and the Sheesh Mahal (Mirror Palace).

The fort also has several courtyards that connect the different palaces and structures. The most notable ones are:

Shringar Chowk (Shringar Courtyard): The first courtyard after entering through Gopal Pol. It has a marble throne where the coronation ceremonies of the Rathore rulers took place.

Daulat Khana Chowk (Daulat Khana Courtyard): The second courtyard after entering through Gopal Pol. It has a museum that displays the royal palanquins, paintings, costumes and other artifacts.

Sileh Khana Chowk (Sileh Khana Courtyard): The third courtyard after entering through Gopal Pol. It has a museum that displays the royal arms, weapons and armour.

Moti Mahal Chowk (Moti Mahal Courtyard): The fourth courtyard after entering through Gopal Pol. It has the Moti Mahal (Pearl Palace), which was the main hall of audience of the Rathore rulers.

You may also like to read: Our Beautiful Days: Meandering Around Mehrangarh Fort

Palaces of Mehrangarh Fort

The palaces of Mehrangarh Fort are among the most splendid and magnificent structures in Rajasthan. They showcase the opulence, taste and craftsmanship of the Rathore rulers who built them over centuries. They are adorned with intricate carvings, paintings, mirrors, stained glass, gold and silver work, and other decorations. They also have spacious rooms, balconies, windows and terraces that offer stunning views of the city and the landscape. Some of the most remarkable palaces in Mehrangarh Fort are:

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Moti Mahal (Pearl Palace): Built by Raja Sur Singh in 1594, it was the main hall of audience where the Rathore rulers held their court and received their guests. It has five alcoves that lead to hidden balconies where the queens could listen to the proceedings without being seen. It also has a large stained glass window that reflects different colours on the walls.

Phool Mahal (Flower Palace): Built by Maharaja Abhay Singh in 1724, it was the private chamber of pleasure where the Rathore rulers entertained themselves with music, dance and poetry. It is considered to be one of the most lavish and exquisite halls in India. It is decorated with gold filigree work, paintings of flowers, birds and gods, and a ceiling that resembles a sky full of stars.

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Sheesh Mahal (Mirror Palace): Built by Maharaja Ajit Singh in 1718, it was a dressing room for the Rathore rulers where they admired themselves in the mirrors. It is covered with mirrors of different shapes and sizes that reflect light and create a dazzling effect. It also has paintings of religious scenes and floral motifs on the walls.

Zenana Deodi (Women’s Palace): Built by Maharaja Jaswant Singh I in 1659, it was a palace for the royal ladies where they lived and spent their time. It has several rooms and apartments that are connected by corridors and courtyards. It also has a museum that displays the royal cradles, textiles, jewellery and other items belonging to the queens and princesses.

Takht Vilas (Throne Palace): Built by Maharaja Takht Singh in 1843, it was the residence of the last ruler to live in Mehrangarh Fort. It has a mix of traditional and modern styles of architecture and decoration. It has a wooden ceiling that is painted with scenes from Hindu mythology, a glass chandelier that was imported from England, and a marble throne that was gifted by the British.

Jhanki Mahal (Peeping Palace): Built by Maharaja Jaswant Singh II in 1895, it was a palace where the royal ladies could watch the ceremonies and processions in the courtyards without being seen. It has several windows and balconies that offer a view of the fort and the city. It also has a museum that displays the royal portraits, paintings and costumes.

Best Time to Visit Mehrangarh Fort

The best time to visit Mehrangarh Fort is from October to March, when the weather is pleasant and comfortable for sightseeing and exploring the fort. The temperature ranges from 10°C to 25°C during these months, and the sky is clear and sunny.

You can also enjoy the festivals and events that take place in Jodhpur during this time, such as the Marwar Festival in October, the Rajasthan International Folk Festival in November, and the Jodhpur RIFF Flamenco and Gypsy Festival in March. The fort is open from 9 am to 5 pm every day, and the entry fee is INR 600 for international guests and INR 100 for domestic guests. You can also opt for an audio guide or a guided tour to learn more about the fort’s history and stories.

Best Restaurant Near Mehrangarh Fort

If you are looking for a place to enjoy a delicious meal after visiting Mehrangarh Fort, you can head to Chokelao Mahal, which is a restaurant located inside the fort itself. The restaurant offers a variety of dishes, such as Rajasthani, Indian, Continental and Chinese cuisine, along with a stunning view of the fort and the city. The restaurant is open from 9 am to 10 pm every day, and the average cost for two people is INR 1000.

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Alfresco dining at Umaid Bhawan Palace Jodhpur

You can also try some of the other restaurants near the fort, such as:

Indique: A rooftop restaurant that serves Indian, Continental and Chinese cuisine, along with a panoramic view of the fort and the city. The restaurant is open from 11 am to 11 pm every day, and the average cost for two people is INR 1200.

Jharokha: A multi-cuisine restaurant that serves Indian, Continental, Chinese and Italian cuisine, along with a live music and puppet show. The restaurant is open from 7 am to 11 pm every day, and the average cost for two people is INR 800.

Cafe Mehran: A cafe that serves snacks, beverages and desserts, along with a cozy and casual ambiance. The cafe is open from 9 am to 5 pm every day, and the average cost for two people is INR 300.

Best Places to Stay Near Mehrangarh Fort

If you want to experience the royal and luxurious hospitality of Jodhpur, you can choose from some of the best places to stay near Mehrangarh Fort, such as:

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Umaid Bhawan Palace - Jodpur

Umaid Bhawan Palace:

A heritage hotel that is part of the Umaid Bhawan Palace, which is one of the largest private residences in the world. The hotel offers elegant and spacious rooms and suites, along with a swimming pool, a spa, a fitness centre, a museum and a garden. The hotel is about 4 km from the fort, and the average price per night for two people is INR 50,000.

To book a stay at this property click here.

RAAS Jodhpur:

A boutique hotel that is located in the heart of the old city, and offers a stunning view of the fort from its rooms and terraces. The hotel offers modern and stylish rooms and suites, along with a swimming pool, a spa, a restaurant and a bar. The hotel is about 1 km from the fort, and the average price per night for two people is INR 15,000.

To book a stay at this property click here.

Haveli Inn Pal:

A heritage hotel that is located in a restored haveli (mansion) that dates back to the 18th century. The hotel offers cozy and comfortable rooms and suites, along with a rooftop restaurant and a lounge. The hotel is about 500 meters from the fort, and the average price per night for two people is INR 3,000.

To book a stay at this property click here.

If you are looking for a destination that will leave you spellbound and enchanted, Mehrangarh Fort in Jodhpur is the perfect choice for you.

So, what are you waiting for? Book your tickets now and plan your trip to this amazing fort.

Mehrangarh Fort Reviews

Saturday (20th October 2018) was swamped with “Places to Visit” list. We started with having a princely lunch at Gypsy restaurant where the authentic Rajasthani Thali is served with an elaborate menu of 31 different dishes. It was an absolute delight to have these exquisite spreads of preparations served to us in beautiful Rajasthani plates and brazen bowls. One needs to be either famished or have a giant appetite to finish off this entire thali. We were peckish since we had skipped our breakfast to have this meal. It was around 3PM after lunch, when we set our GPS to Mehrangarh fort. All of us were so excited to finally visit the most talked about fort in Rajasthan but fate had some other plans for us. A piece of advice for all who visit Jodhpur in self-driven cars – Do not follow Google maps for local sight-seeing. Always prefer to ask locals for directions. We followed Google and got stuck in one of the narrow lanes of the city just 900m away from the fort. It was labyrinth of little streets each smaller in width than the previous one. The continuous juggle between directions, constant hurl of abuses from locals and our desperation to get out of the street brimming with vehicles and humans, left all of us completely exhausted. We ultimately managed to reach the main road after 40-45mins of turmoil and took another route after consulting locals and finally arrived at our destination. The Majestic Mehrangarh Fort, from where you can see the city sprawl out beneath, smearing its blue tint into the horizon. The fort itself is a stunning example of asymmetrical and organic Rajput architecture combined with the elaborate geometry and floral decoration of the Mughals. Starting from the entrance, embellished with bullet marks, to the view of the blue city and the breath-taking architecture, the impregnable fort leaves you mesmerized. We took an audio guided tour that takes the visitor on a veritable treasure hunt through the Fort which includes a museum with magnificent collections of silver elephant howdahs, gilded palanquins, carved ivory, weapons inlaid with gold and jewels, rare pieces of textile, and some of the world’s finest miniature paintings. The Maharaja Gaj Singh II, who ascended to the Gaddi of Jodhpur in 1952 at the age of four, also shares his memories of the moving Raj Tilak Ceremony at Mehrangarh.
Famous for its aerial view of Jodhpur's old city, there's more to Mehrangarh than one first thinks about before visiting. The view expands to cover almost all the major tourist spots in Jodhpur. Umaid Bhawan Palace, a spectacle worth marvelling over from every corner, is visible from the fort- as is Jaswant Thada, the famous blue houses and the clock tower. You might also be able to identify some shooting spots for Dark Knight Rises. The one thing though, that truly makes this fort unique, is the way that is has been managed. Mehrangarh Fort has been under the wing of a "Trust" called the "Mehrangarh Museum Trust" which has managed and conserved the fort since 1972. It is one of Rajasthan's best managed and conserved forts, with a lift that goes directly to the top of the fort, so visitors don't have to climb the entire fort. I would recommend taking this lift to the top, and from there you can explore the fort on your way down. Aside from its ease of accessibility and great views of the city, the fort is also a fountain of information. I would recommend hiring a guide here and really spending time to understand and grasp what life was like here, in the King's royal zenana and mardana. Your guide will also be able to give you interesting tidbits of information about life in the royal court. Duration: 1.5- 2 hours2. Tour the blue houses: It was the idea of seeing the blue houses in person that drew me to Jodhpur, and I was directed towards the "old city" for its narrow streets lined with these cobalt blue homes. A path extends from Mehrangarh Fort into the old city, and that is where it begins, extending all the way to the ghanta ghar or clock tower. Sadly though, there are much fewer houses now that are still painted blue, and one who is actively seeking a sight of blue over blue houses is bound to return disappointed. Within this small city area is the main "jhalra" with its commercialisation by stores and cafes additionally off-putting. The novelty hasn't worn off entirely though, and you can still stroll along these blue streets, exchanging pleasantries with local shop owners.3. Umaid Bhawan Palace and its surroundings:
"Travel brings Love and Power back to your life" ~ Rumi<br /><br />It all began one weekend, when all of us were fed up of the regular office politics and workload. One of my friends was serving her notice period and wanted a trip desperately. Since all of us were a ardent mountain lovers, we zeroed in a place in Uttrakhand. <br />Everything was set. Our bags were packed and buses booked. Our excitement level was at it it's highest peak. <br /><br />*Seven hours before our journey* <br />We get the news that there has been a cloudburst in Uttrakhand and it's going to rain continuously for two days. That news saddened us a little because we wanted this trip to happen. <br /><br />After lot of brainstorming, we decided to change our destination to Jodhpur (we were desperate to get out of Delhi). Initially, all were not in for this plan because people wanted to run away from the Delhi heat; but after lot of persuasion, we booked our tickets for Jodhpur (to a more hot place). <br /><br />We escaped the glass walls of our offices to begin this journey with the excitement level down to 30%. By evening, we boarded the local sleeper bus from Delhi to Jodhpur.<br /><br />After the tiring 14 hours journey, we finally reach Jodhpur. From here, our journey to The King's Landing began. <br />Though it was hot and humid, it didn't stop us from exploring places here in Jodhpur. The people and the food were amazing. Watching the sunset from our Hotel window, silhouette of the little blue houses and the grand Mehrangarh Fort was mesmerizing. <br /><br />We started the journey with little hope and took back home a bag full of memories. <br /><br />
If you've done even a little bit of research on Jodhpur, you know you HAVE to visit the Mehrangarh Fort. The ticket is about 100 rupees for an Indian citizen and a whooping 600 for international guests. Luckily, we had our student identity cards and entered with a 50-rupee pass! My Jaipur blogpostcovers some of my travel tips and carrying your student ID card tops the list! The fort is more than magnificent and breathtaking; I couldn't seem to gauge how massive it was. After buying our tickets, we thought we had entered the fort so; we kept walking until a signboard said "This way for the fort", and I couldn't stop laughing! Its huge and overwhelming, and if you're interested in knowing the history and stories of the fort then you're in for a long day! I still think I haven't entirely seen each part of it. When you look down from the high vantage point of its ramparts, it's quite possibly one of the coolest views you'll see. It's a magical blue city in the middle of a desert with a giant fort overlooking it, palaces scattered around and in the distance you see the hills protecting it. It's quite a spectacular view. 2) Other attractions
Pride of Jodhpur- Mehrangarh Fort By the time we reached Jodhpur back it was already 5PM. Since we were leaving for Jaiselmerh the next day, we refused for not making a visit to Mehrangarh Fort. But our cabby had already promised for that he will help us see Mehrangarh at any cost. We were stopped by security personnel at the entry as closing time was over and people who are still inside awaited to move out. But very few people know that Mehrangarh Fort have a Durga Temple which is still available for visit as the evening arti was performed around 5:30. With the assurance of not clicking photographs (photography is a time taking skillset we got the permission to enter. It is perhaps the Best In Condition than any other forts in India. It is still owned by the Royal Family of Jodhpur and not by Govt. Of India. That's the reason why Christopher Nolan chose the same for Dark Night shoot. Very well maintenance of all antique pieces plus the perquisite view of the BLUE CITY. Even the sun set view is too good. After good 40 odd minutes, we left for our Kothi for fresh-up.
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