Famous For: Gwalior is famous for its stunning natural beauty and rich cultural heritage. Here are some interesting places of Gwalior below –Gwalior Fort, Gujari Mahal (State Archaeological Museum), Tomb of Tansen, Jai Vilas Palace, Man Mandir Palace, Teli Ka Mandir, Scindia Museum, Saas Bahu (Shastra Bahu) Temple/Lord Vishnu Temple, Padavali and Bateshwar, Sun Temple, Suraj Kund, Padavali and Bateshwar, Boating at Tighara Dam, Mrignayani Emporium, Arihant Emporium, Usha Kiran Palace Hotel, Gurudwara Data Bandi Chhod, Samadhi Of Rani Lakshmi Bai, Kuno-Palpur Wildlife Sanctuary, Splash The Sun City, Old Water Park, Tansen Music Festival etc.Major Attractions: Gwalior Fort, Man Mandir Palace, Jai Vilas Palace, Gwalior Zoo, Usha Kiran Palace Hotel, Kuno-Palpur Wildlife Sanctuary.Ideal Visit Time: The best time to visit Gwalior is from October to March. However, those who don’t mind little rains can also visit between July and September. The four-day Tansen Music Festival (Nov/Dec) is also a good time to visit Gwalior if you are interested in enjoying the Indian classical music performances.
Gwalior is a city in the central Indian state of Madhya Pradesh. It’s known for its palaces and temples. Ancient Gwalior Fort occupies a sandstone plateau overlooking the city and is accessed via a winding road lined with sacred Jain statues. Within the fort’s high walls is the 15th-century Gujari Mahal Palace, now an archaeological museum (according to wiki).
You will be surprised at the myriad options for things to do in Gwalior when you plan your vacation to this historical city. With one of the most beautiful forts in the country, magnificent rock-cut temples, palaces and museums, Gwalior has many aces up its sleeve. Beside this, Gwalior is one of the oldest musical gharanas in India and the mausoleum of music’s greatest icon Tansen, Gwalior’s musical roots go deep. Add some great shopping options, a water park, ample eating joints and you have the recipe for a perfect holiday for the family.
Here are some of the best places to visit and things to do in this city below-
The Gwalior Fort is an extremely impregnable fort located throughout northern and southern India, which is referred to as ‘The Pearl Amongst Fortresses in India’ by Mughal emperor Babur. It is also the places where the second oldest reference of the number ‘Zero’ has been found in the form of a carving inside a temple on the top of the fort. It was situated on the top of a vast rocky mountain near Gwalior in Madhya Pradesh in central India. This imposing structure dominates the entire city of Gwalior. An inseparable part of the identity and architecture of the city, evidence suggests that it has been around since 6th Century.
The most bizarre history of the Gwalior fort is that it has moved from one dynasty to another more than once. The entire fort complex is well maintained and includes temples, water tanks and palaces.
Man Mandir Palace
Located at the northeastern edge of the Gwalior fort, the Mann Mandir Palace was built by your ruler Man Singh Tomar between 1486 and 1516. The palace was gradually destroyed over time, but the remains of the palace still show the beautiful carvings and designs of that era. The palace has two open courts between the two levels of apartments. This was the place where Aurangzeb prisoned his brother Murad and poisoned him slowly to death by using opium.
It is said that various Rajput women committed mass suicide in the 13th century in the vicinity of Jauhar Kund to avoid being raped by the forces of King Iltutmish of Delhi. If you can take the help of a local guide, he will be able to tell you various secrets about the place and show you around the different parts of the palace. The palace is also surrounded by other monuments such as Jahangir Mahal, Shah Jahan Mahal and Gujari Mahal.
Jai Vilas Palace
Joy Vilash Palace is also known as “Jai Vilash Mahal”. It is located in Gwalior, Madhya Pradesh and is a symbol of ancient Indian culture and tradition, which is still preserved today. At present it serves as the residence of the descendants of the royal Maratha Scindia family. The palace serves as a museum with more than 35 rooms. There is also the “Chitrangada Raje Art Gallery” and a library with over 5000 books. In addition, each room of the palace has some historical curiosity, including a collection of swords from the time of Shah Jahan and Aurangzeb and the original Dhal (Shield) used by the freedom fighter Rani Lakshmibai. The total cost for this initiative was INR 1 crore, which was quite an exorbitant amount at that time.
It covers a area of the floor about 75 acres. This Jai Vilas Palace has an intricately designed Durbar Hall, which houses some of the world’s most colossal chandeliers, a large plush carpet and gilt furnishings. The centre operates with a vision of creating an international cultural centre for the study of Maratha dynasty.
Built by Man Singh in the 15th century for his favorite wife Mrignayani, Gujari Mahal is now in ruins and also an archaeological museum as it showcases various sculptures, statues and other remains dating back to 1st and 2nd century BC. The palace carries the history and tradition of the ancient time.
Tomb Of Tansen
During the Mughal period, there were 9 talented people in the Mughal court. They were called Mughal court’s gems. Similarly, one of the most famous musicians is Tansen. Who is one of the top 9 gems of the Mughal court. It is said that Tansen created magic with his music. There is also a folklore that he used to attract animals with his music. He was a devoted student of Mohammad Ghaus, who taught him Hindustani classical music. He was a proponent of Dhrupad style and he developed the Gwalior Gharana style of music. He was buried near to his guru and this burial site is a beautiful piece of architecture.
However, annual “Tansen Music Festival” is held here every year in the month of November where prominent musicians from all over the country come and perform various classical shows.
Gwalior Zoo is just another feather in the cap Gwalior’s glorious traditional history. This zoo was established by the royal family Madhao Rao Scindia back in 1922. It’s also known as “Gandhi Zoo”. It is actually a section of a larger garden known as “Phool Bagh” and houses various rare species of animals such as spotted deer, black bucks, golden peasants, sambhars, bison, hyena and white tiger. Several smaller populations of monkeys, crocodiles, snakes and birds have also made the zoo their home.
“Phool Bagh” was inaugurated by the Prince of Wales about a hundred years ago and is still beautifully maintained and preserved. It provides a very good and clean habitat for the animal. The Gwalior Zoo is a place for families to visit. Especially for children it provides a pleasant enjoyment. It is an interesting destination for those who are interested in seeing rare animals like white tigers and various protected species.
Usha Kiran Palace Hotel
This traditional hotel wa constructed in 1880 by the Scindia rulers. Usha Kiran Palace Hotel is a heritage hotel in Gwalior. The property now belongs to the Taj group of hotels in India and occupies over 9 acres of land. The stunning traditional architecture and the regal decor still maintain the aesthetic appeal of the palace. The hotel has a multi-cuisine restaurant and provides all the facilities to make their guests feel like royalty. Here, for a while you can think of yourself as a king of the ancient time!
Kuno-Palpur Wildlife Sanctuary
Kuno-Palpur Wildlife Sanctuary is a hidden gem in the state of Madhya Pradesh. It has hidden itself in the middle of the Vindhyan hills. This wildlife sanctuary is a well-preserved secret and safe haven for a large number of flora and fauna, which always invites you to explore. This wildlife sanctuary is an offbeat destination so many people do not travel and so it is quite peaceful and noise free. Kuno-Palpur Sanctuary is a safe haven for innumerable flora and fauna.
This place is home to animals like Indian wolves, spotted deer, black bucks, monkeys, Indian leopards, chinkaras, squirrels, foxes, bears and nilgai. This wildlife sanctuary is most famous for the conservation of endangered Asiatic lions. Also among the various reptiles are monitor lizards, cobras, vipers, crates and pythons. A large number of myriad birds are also inhabitants of this wildlife sanctuary and also a lot of birds migrate here. Some of them include Lesser Florican, bayaweaver, babbler, tree pie, lapwing and king vulture. The wildlife sanctuary is replete with verdant trees which are full of colourful blooming flowers. Some of the trees that you must see include kardhai, gurjan, khair and kahua.
The Kuno River is a pristine and ancient river that divides the Kuno-Palpur Wildlife Sanctuary into North and South. This river is full of clear and cool water, which enhances the beauty of this place. This river is like the life line of this wildlife sanctuary and carries a beautiful view of nature. A few hours spent with trees, flowers, animals and birds will surely make you appreciate the beauty of nature and you will not want to leave this wildlife sanctuary easily.
How To Reach
By Road: Gwalior is well-connected to various parts of Madhya Pradesh and also to other states via a number of national highways and state highways. Several public and private buses ply through the areas. The pubic bus service is Madhya Pradesh State Road Transport Corporation (MPSRTC) and private bus services are Hans Travels, Intercity Travels, Sanjay Travels. These corporations provide a range of buses, from A/C, non-A/C and deluxe buses to semi-deluxe and ordinary buses.
By Train: Gwalior Railway Station is the main railway station of the Gwalior city. It is run by North Central Railway division of the Indian Railways. This station has regular trains to and from various cities in India such as Delhi, Kolkata, Pune, Jammu, Lucknow and Bhopal. Express trains such as Rajdhani Express, Bhopal Express, Taj Express, Bhopal Shatabdi and Garib Rath Express pass through this station.
By Air: Gwalior Airport is a domestic airport of Gwalior city. It has regular flights to cities like Delhi, Mumbai, Indore and Bhopal via Air India. Tourists from other cities and towns in India, as well as from other countries, can board a connecting flight from Indira Gandhi International Airport in Delhi, which is 335 kilometres from Gwalior. It is a world-class airport that has daily flights to and from various cities in India such as Mumbai, Jaipur, Chandigarh, Kolkata, Ahmedabad and Kochi, and also from international cities such as London, Paris, Melbourne, New York, Moscow, Beijing, Toronto, etc.