Welcome to the Pink City
Preceding our journey to Kuldhara , we had a Pit stop in Jodhpur and thought of covering one of the most magnificent forts in India- the mighty Mehrangarh Fort Jodhpur. Long weekend arrives and we begin itching to escape from the everyday humdrum of Delhi. It is monsoon in India and we look away from the mountains and towards the desert.
Jaipur is not far enough so we look further and zero in on Jodhpur- the second largest city in the desert state of Rajasthan in India. It is around 8-10 hours drive from Delhi and suitably impressive for our weekend explorations. Jodhpur is also known as the ‘Blue City’ because of the blue coloured houses in the old part of the city. A very popular tourist destination, the city is home to one of the largest forts in India-the Mehrangarh Fort.
A little A brief history of the Fort
Mehrangarh Fort was built by Rao Jodha of the Rathore dynasty sometime around 1460. The name Mehrangarh is derived from Sanskrit words ‘Mihir’ meaning Sun, and ‘Garh’ meaning fort. This was probably because the Sun God was the main deity of the Rathores.
The fort is spread over 5 km and is located high up at around 400 feet above the main city. It has many gates also known as Pols , namely, Jai Pol, Fateh Pol, Lakhna Pol, Amrit Pol, Loha Pol and Suraj Pol. A remarkable fact about Mehrangarh is that this fort has never been taken in a siege.
We venture forth into the royal past along the winding path that leads us into the beautiful courtyards and palaces- all bearing testimony to majestic victories, tales of valour, breathtaking carvings, regal opulence and the tragic remnants of the practice of Sati.
The glory of bygone days is visible in the numerous palaces and museums that exhibit arms, paintings, costumes, musical instruments and period rooms. There are many courtyards and balconies and more than once we got the magnificent view of the Blue City from certain locations in the Fort.
True to its name, Mehrangarh is mighty enough to be the citadel of the Sun God and stands out in all its splendor as the sun rays light it up against the backdrop of the sprawling blue city!
Suggest next read: Kuldhara- a haunted village in Rajasthan