Posts Tagged ‘Travel’

Anand Nagri Mandu is a perfect holiday destination for nature lovers, history/architecture fans and honeymoon couples alike!

If you plan to head to the hills, with a feel of romance and happiness, Mandu is the place to be. It is a celebration in stone, of life and joy, after all one of its most famous legends is the love story of Baz Bahadur and Rani Roopmati. The locals, even today, sing of the romance of these royal lovers and high up on the peak of a hill, Roopmati’s Pavilion still gazes down at Baz Bahadur’s Palace, a magnificent expression of Afghan architecture.

LOCATION AND HISTORY

Also called Mandavgad, Mandu is a city of ruins, situated at a distance of about 90 km from Indore, a city in Madhya Pradesh. Balanced along the Vindhya ranges at an altitude of 2000 feet, Mandu was originally the fort capital of the Parmar rulers of Malwa. Towards the end of the 13th century, it came under the control of the Sultans of Malwa, the first of whom named it Shadiabad – ‘city of joy’.
The famous fort of Mandu is separated from the surrounding plateau by a deep ravine called Kakra Khoh, which encircles it on the east, west and north. The ruins are spread over an area of 21 sq km and are surrounded by lush undergrowth and crystal clear lakes and ponds.
With its natural defenses, no wonder Mandu is named a city of joy!

FUSION OF HINDUS AND AFGHAN ARCHITECTURE 

Mandu has a rich and varied heritage and history. It is known for its marvelous fort, 82 km in perimeter. The fort is considered the biggest in India. As a witness to Mandu’s military past, stands the battlemented wall, which is nearly 37 km and is punctuated by 12 gateways. Mandu has over 40 monuments, which are divided into 3 broad categories: the Central Village Group, the Royal Enclave Group and the Rewa Kund Group.

NOT-TO-MISS PLACES


The Darwazas

Most notable of the gateways of Mandu is Delhi Darwaza, the main entrance to the fortress city. The approach is made through a series of gateways with walled enclosures and strengthened by bastions such as the Alamgir and Bhangi Darwaza, through which the present road passes. Rampol Darwaza, Jehangir Gate and Tarapur Gate are some of the other main gateways.

The Royal Jahaz Mahal

Also called Ship Palace, this two-storied architectural marvel is so named as it appears like a ship floating in water. It is built between the two artificial lakes, Munj Talao and Kapur Talao. With its open pavilions, Jahaz Mahal is an imaginative recreation in stone of a royal pleasure craft. The domes of the building present an unforgettable spectacle, as a silhouette, on a moonlit night, when viewed from the adjoining Taveli Mahal.

Hindola Mahal

Hindola Mahal, meaning Swing palace is so named due to its sloping sidewalls. Superb and innovative techniques are evident from the architecture of this palace. To the West of Hindola Mahal, there are several unidentified buildings which still bear traces of their past grandeur. Amidst these is an elaborately constructed well, named Champa Baoli. Other places of interest in this enclave are Dilawar Khan’s Mosque, the Nahar Jharokha (tiger balcony), Taveli Mahal, the two large wells called the Ujali (bright) and Andheri (dark) Baolis and Gada Shah’s Shop and House, all worth a visit.

Hoshang Shah’s Tomb

India’s first marble structure, it is one of the most refined examples of Afghan architecture. It served as a template for the construction of the beauty, Taj Mahal.
Apart from these, Jami Masjid, the gorgeous palace of Baz BahadurRewa KundRoopmati’s Pavilion and others are some of the fascinating monuments of Mandu. There is also the Echo Point, the ‘Delphic Oracle’ of Mandu. A shout from here reverberates far below and is heard clearly back. The Lohani Caves and Temple Ruins, not far from the royal enclave area also deserve a visit due to their association with Mandu’s history. Sunset Point, in front of the caves affords a panoramic view of the surrounding countryside.

THE STRONGEST CALL

The call of Mandu is strongest when it turns lush green, with the dark monsoon clouds hovering and showering over. The mystical beauty of the monuments, amidst this green landscape and purple sunset sky, paints the live picture of the bygone era. The effect is completed by the rich surroundings of mango, tamarind and banyan trees. Mandu is also famous for the mouth-watering ‘Khusrani Imli’, tamarind trees that bear fruits only in the rainy season and for the juicy custard apples. Apart from these, Mandu is known for the attractive Chanderi and Rewa (Maheshwari) saris as well as medicinal herbs and local handicrafts.
The glory of the architectural gem Mandu lives on, in legends and songs, recorded for the generations to come.

Read original article at: http://epaper.namoleague.com/EpaperArticle.aspx?title=The%20City%20Of%20Joy:%20Mandu_738

Advertisements
Hey Ram! You have yet not taken the peace tour on the Gandhi Circuit? Pack your bags and pay a tribute, this 142nd Gandhi Jayanti

The greatest tribute to the Father of the Nation can be given by walking on the path that he followed!! Gujarat is the land of Gandhi. He was born and brought up here, that is why it is full of places associated with Gandhiji. There is his birthplace, the places where he pursued his primary education and places related to the massive freedom struggle.

PORBANDAR

The journey should begin from where Mahatma Gandhi began his own! On a bright day of 2nd October, 1869, Mohandas Gandhi was born in a 3-storey blue haveli, his ancestral home in the city of Porbandar. Karamchand Gandhi: his father, his uncle and grandfather had all been prime ministers to the Jethwa Rajput rulers of this princely state.
The birthplace is now known as Kirti Mandir. Apart from historical importance, the place is an architectural marvel as well. Behind the birthpace, Kasturba Dham is situated. This is a unique place where the monuments of Mahatma Gandhi and his wife Kasturba are adjacent to each other.The height of the temple is of 79 feet which symbolizes the 79 years of lifespan of Gandhiji.

Kirti Mandir houses a small museum about Gandhi, with an exhibit of old photographs, some of his very few possessions and a nice library of books either by him or relating to the Gandhian philosophy and practice.

RAJKOT/BHAVNAGAR

Mahatma Gandhi pursued his primary education from Alfred High School at Rajkot and Samaldas College at Bhavnagar. After his education too, Gandhiji had returned to Rajkot in 1939 to set up Rashtriyashala, the first of many institutions expressly incubating the values of Swaraj and instigating a sense of pride leading to freedom from the colonial rule. Today, the school imparts training and has initiated projects in weaving khadi, cotton and manual oil pressing. One should also pay a visit to Kaba no Delo in Rajkot, where Gandhi spent the early days of his life. Bhavnagar, on the other hand has the Gandhi Smriti, an institution built in memory of Mahatma Gandhi. It contains a library, a museum and  galleries of photograph depicting Gandhiji’s life.

AHMEDABAD

Once you enter the Sabarmati Ashram at Ahmedabad, you are bound to feel the energy of the non-violent struggle for independence. The Ashram was established by Gandhiji on the banks of river Sabarmati in 1917, after the previous Kochrab Ashram had to be abandoned because of a breakout of plague. On the grounds of the place, there lies the Gandhi Smarak Sangrahalaya, a small museum that includes excellent pictorial and written documentation, a library of Gandhian literature and paintings, and an immense archive of letters written by Gandhiji, every single one on the back of used paper. The place includes the Hridaykunj, Gandhiji’s sparse living quarters, Vinoba-Mira Kutir, where Vinoba and Mira each stayed on separate visits, a prarthana bhumi, a guest house and a building used as a training center for cottage industries, all preserved as part of the museum. The Ashram buzzes with Gandhians who either work in the non-profit organizations on the grounds or volunteer in some or the other way to preserve the memorial.

DANDI

Dandi is almost a synonym of Gandhi, they rhyme well too! The historic landmark is in Surat, where the Namak Satyagraha, also known as the Dandi March ended and India’s independence began when Mahatma Gandhi picked up a pinch of salt in protest of the British rule. Bardoli is another town in Surat that is associated to Gandhian Heritage. It was a precursor to the Salt March.

HERITAGE TRAIL

Plan a mini break and get back to the history. These places will introduce you to the making of the legend Mahatma and also that of a free India. Let us know our Gandhi better on this Gandhi Jayanti!

Read the original article at: http://epaper.namoleague.com/EpaperArticle.aspx?title=Going%20The%20Gandhi%20Way_725

India was the proud owner of three prestigious awards at an international travel mart ceremony held in Macau recently on the 17th of September, 2010. The Ministry for Tourism bagged the prizes for its eco-tourism and rural projects.

The splendid function was held by PATA – Pacific Asia Travel Association. PATA, founded in 1951, is a nonprofit membership association that works for the development and betterment of the Asia Pacific travel and tourism industry. Every year, the PATA Travel Mart gathers tourism stakeholders from around the world to network and seek business opportunities. PATA’s membership boasts more than 100 government, state and city tourism bodies, over 50 airlines and cruise lines, and hundreds of travel industry companies.

Our Ministry of Tourism has won the PATA Grand Award and two PATA Gold Awards. The Grand Award was under the category of Heritage, received for the Rural Tourism Project at Hodka village in Kutch District of Gujarat; while the Gold Awards were allotted for marketing of the products in an innovative manner.

About the Gujarat project, the organizers said: “The scale of this project is very welcome and could have major positive impacts on the community.” The project that won the Grand Award is managed as well as owned by the Village Tourism Committee of the people of Hodka village. The place is basically a rural resort that boasts of a scenic surrounding. It is a blend of all the latest and modern facilities and is amidst the natural surroundings of Kutch. Here, the art and craft of the local villagers are sold, this provides livelihood to a number of local people.

The two Gold Awards were given for the Marketing Media – Travel Advertisements in the Print Media and the Marketing of the Government Destinations. The Eco-tourism Marketing Campaign, which won India, the Gold Award under Primary Government Destination was judged as an “Excellent Objective”. The idea of targeting the World Climate Summit held in Copenhagen was considered innovative to contribute to the Summit’s Debate.

The award function took place at Macau Government Tourist Office. The three day event was attended by over a thousand buyer and seller delegates from across the globe. The awards were handed over by the Chairman, CEO and Director of PATA. The Grand Award for India was received by R H Khwaja, Secretary, Ministry of Tourism, who headed the Indian delegation and Anand Kumar, Joint Secretary, Ministry of Tourism, received the two Gold Awards.

Every year, the PATA Travel Mart gathers tourism stakeholders from around the world to network and seek business opportunities. And a fourth award for India is that the Travel Mart 2011 will be held in Delhi in September.

Read original article at: http://epaper.namoleague.com/EpaperArticle.aspx?title=Pata%20Grand%20Award%20For%20Kutch%20Kutch%20Nahi%20Dekha%20Toh%20Kuch%20Nahi%20Dekha_117