Orcha – city of palaces and temples in M.P

Traveling to the historical city of Orcha founded by the Bundela Rajput chieftain Rudra Pratap is a real rewarding experience and is virtually a tour into a city of palaces and temples. The historical monument of the medieval city of Orcha is a unique travel destination where history is etched in stone. Over the years, Orcha has become one of the preferred destinations for tourists who want to experience the rich cultural heritage of India. Palaces and temples of this medieval city are true symbols of Indian artistry and architecture that are far ahead of its contemporary and are objects of awe for the rest of the world. Presence of a number of palaces and temples makes it equally popular among tourists, historians and pilgrims.

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Jehangir mahal inside orcha fort complex

Where is Orcha?

Orcha is a town in Tikamgarh district of Madhya Pradesh state, India. Situated on the banks of River Betwa, this city of palaces and temples lies in the northern part of Madhya Pradesh.

About Orcha

The medieval city of Orcha was once the capital of the Bundela rulers. The historical monuments still retain their pristine medieval charm, narrating stories of its glorious past, every bit of which is a cherishable experience to the tourists.
Orcha has a series of magnificent palaces and temples, dating back to the 17th century. They are still in use today and visited regularly by thousands of devotees.
Apart from the rich history, the place is also noted for its scenic beauty and the crystal clear waters of the river Betwa, which adds charm to the place. Moreover Bundela architecture, which is a curious synthesis of Rajput and Mughal styles, has its own significance and beauty.

In and Around Orcha

Orcha being a city of palaces and temples is acclaimed for its number of palaces and temples that form its biggest attraction.

Orcha fort complex – The main tourist attraction of Orcha is the Orcha fort complex, located on an island on River Betwa, having a number of palaces within it. Orcha’s fort complex is approached by tourists through a multi-arched bridge, and houses three palaces set in an open quadrangle.

Jehangir Mahal – Situated within the fort complex is the exceedingly beautiful Jehangir Mahal which is the most visited monument in Orcha. The palace was built by Raja Bir Singh Ju Deo to commemorate the visit of Emperor Jehangir to Orcha. The main tourist attraction of the palace is the two statues of bowed elephants right at the entrance.

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Front view of Raj mahal palace

Raj Mahal palace – Situated to the right of the quadrangle within the fort complex, this palace was built by Madhukar Shah, the deeply religious predecessor of Raja Bir Singh Ju Deo. The palace is noticeable for its plain exteriors and interiors depicting religious themes.

Rani Praveen Mahal Palace – This palace was built by King Indramani in the 17th century. It is said that he built it for his love Rai Parveen who was an exceptionally talented poetess and a musician. The palace is only two floor high and was built this way to match with the height of trees in the area. Visitors can get scintillating views of nearby gardens of Anand Mahal and the Octagonal flower garden.

Ram Raja Mandir – This palace-turned-temple is surely one of the most unusual in India and an important tourist attraction as it is the only temple in India where Ram is worshipped as a king.
Chaturbhuj temple – This temple is situated on a gigantic stone was the original destination of the idol of Lord Ram, but later, statue of Lord Vishnu was established. The temple houses a huge assembly hall for the devotees.

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Front view of Chaturbhuj temple

The Laxminarayan temple – This temple is a unique blend of temple and fort architecture. It was built in the year 1622 A.D. by Vir Singh Deo. The temple is dedicated to Goddess Laxmi. The frescoes within this temple depict social and secular themes. These frescoes have retained their vibrant colors, in spite of being hundreds of years old and fascinate every tourist visiting the temple.

Sunder Mahal palace – The palace almost in ruin today, is still a place of pilgrimage for Muslims. Dhurjban son of Jhujhar, embraced Islam when he wed a Muslim girl at Delhi. He spent the latter part of his life in prayer and meditation and came to be revered as a saint.

Phool Bagh is laid out as a formal garden, testifying to the refined aesthetic qualities of Bundelas. This garden has fountains, pavilions and ingenious water ventilation system.

The Shahid Smarak commemorating the martyrdom of Chandrashekhar Azad, the great freedom fighter, is an important place to visit.

How to Reach Orcha?

By Air – Nearest airports is Gwalior (125Km). Flights from Delhi and Bhopal are regular to Gwalior.
By Rail – Nearest rail station is at Jhansi (16 km), on the Mumbai – Delhi and Delhi – Madras main lines. All major mail and express trains stop at Jhansi.
By Road – Orcha lies on the Jhansi – Khajuraho road. Regular bus services connect Orcha with Jhansi. Orcha is also well connected with Delhi, Gwalior, Agra, Bhopal and Varanasi via regular bus services.

Where to Stay at Orcha?

The Orcha Resort – Situated on the banks of river Betwa, about 18 Kms from Jhansi railway station, ‘The Orchha Resort’ is located in a calm and serene zero polluted area. Completely away from the hustle –bustle of town . With 32 well decorated rooms the resort provides all international amenities and facilities. ‘Kaleva” – the restaurant offers mouth watering dishes.
To know more about this wonderful staying option at Orcha, just log on to: http://www.orchharesort.com/ or you can call the resort at: +91-7680- 252222/23/24, 290390,

Amar Mahal Hotel – This picturesque and relaxing hotel of Orchha offers a unique evocative fragrance of the glorious Bundela era. Situated at a stone throw away from the banks of river Betwa, about 18 Kms from Jhansi railway station, Amar Mahal, Orchha’ is located in a calm and serene zero polluted area. The strategic location of Amar Mahal ensures a panoramic view of the monuments, surrounding hills and wildlife sanctuary. Enjoy the breathtaking view of sunset and sunrise from the lawns and the terrace. With 46 well equipped fully furnished luxurious rooms and suites, each facing lush greenery, the beautiful monument and the cenotaphs in Orchha, Amar Mahal provides one of the best staying options in this city of palaces and temples.
To know more about this wonderful staying option at Orcha, just log on to: http://www.amarmahal.com/home.php or you can the hotel reception at: + 917680252102, 252202,09893496031.
Sheesh Mahal (07680-252624 / 252624)
Betwa Retreat (07680-252618 / 252618)
Bundelkhand Riverside Retreat (07680-252612 / 252612 / 252332)
Ganapati Guest House (07680-252765 / 252765)

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About the Author: Hi! friends, travelling is my passion and my only hobby. High mountains to deep seas, lush green forests to barren deserts, holy places to sites of historical importance, - every beautiful place attracts me the same way. I want everyone to feel the same and so through my writing I intend to take you all to a virtual trip to all those lovely places that I have visited.

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