Orchha's magnificence has been confined in the huge stone, freezing time; it is a rich land of property given in the olden ages. In this medieval town, the pass of time has preserved some of the lightly and other attractions in this place like the temples, which was built under the rule of Bundela. In the earlier times around 16th to 17th centuries, this sacred place has encompassed a lot of their immaculate perfection.
Originally, Orchha was established in the former times of the 16th century by the emperor Bundela Rajput who was a leader of the group Rudra Pratap. He had selected this extend of land alongside the River Betwa. It is one of the ideal sites that are located in the capital city of Orchha. Among all the ensuing rulers, only one ruler was most famous known as ‘Raja Bir Singh Ju Deo’ who constructed the beautiful and lovely monument named as Jehangir Mahal. This exquisite palace was crowned by attractive chhatries at the top which adds a charming look to the site. From this palace the view of the enduring temple structure and the cenotaphs gives a spectacular view for visitors. Around thousands of tourists hail from all corners of the world to visit this enchanting place every year while exploring Madhya Pradesh.
Balancing the noble ratio of their interiors and exteriors, this signifies the premium flowering of Bundela School for its painting. In this place, you can also visit the most famous Laxminarayan Temple, where visitors can witness vivacious wall paintings that covers a wide range of secular and religious themes. The temples are adorned with exquisite paintings on the ceiling and walls that adds a rich life to the capital city of Orchha.
Scattered around this area, there are numerous little memorials and shrines that are worth visiting. Each temple is renowned for its own arousing history and it also contributes to the reflective beauty of Orchha.
Places of interest :
Orchha's fort composite approaches by a poly arched bridge that has around three palaces constructed in open quadrangle. Following are some of the sites that are worth witnessing while on tour to the state of Madhya Pradesh.
Jehangir Mahal :
In Orchha city, one of the most shinning examples which are constructed in the architectural style of Bundela is the Jehangir Mahal. This palace is the most popular destination and also most visited among the tourist choice. The beautiful palace in this place is structured around five storeys in comparison to the other palace in Agra known as the Hamam Saras. The royal Jehangir Mahal in the capital city of Orchha contains eight wonderful marquees. The main highlight of this mahal is the intricate carving, historical relevance, painting, and decorations that create the glory of this destination. Among all the other palaces, it is one of the vital travel attractions to explore in Orchha.
The Jehangir Mahal was built under the rule of King Vir Singh who was the emperor of Orchha. It was initially established in the earlier times of 17th Century. As the name of the palace hints that it was originally dedicated after the name of Emperor Mughal Jehangir. According to legend stories, in the earlier times Jehangir, Salim and Vir Singh were together as great friends. The Jehangir Mahal is one of the loveliest monuments which are embellished with attractive geometrical patterns, designs, and paintings. It is the most visited site where tourists from all over the world come to witness this enduring site. This palace also has a small museum, which is pretty popular among the tourists. In this museums various sculptures, art and crafts of royal emperor are still preserved even today.
Raj Mahal :
The Raj Mahal is one of the popular palaces which are situated in the capital city of Orchha. It is the most visited site in this place comparatively with other palaces. Around thousands of tourists from all corner of the world visit this enduring place while exploring the state of Madhya Pradesh.
When you witness this majestic palace, it is located exactly to the right side of the quadrangle. It was constructed by Madhukar Shah, who was an intensely religious precursor of Bir Singh Ju Deo. Originally, building this beautiful palace was started by Rudra Pratap Singh. It was established during the rule of Rajputs of this province in the earlier period of 16th Century. But the mission to complete the construction of this palace was handed over to Rudra Pratap Singh. He was the most famous successors of Madhukar Shah among others. While wandering in the majestic mahal, visitors can spot two rectangular shaped courtyards in the interior part of Raj Mahal in Orchha, which was originally used by Bundela Queens.
In the plain exteriors, it is adorned with various amenities that add a glory to the palace. There are lofty walls that are crowned by the designed Chharties, which give tourists way to see the interiors that are embellished with lovely bold colorful wall paintings on various forms of spiritual themes.
There are a number of features that mesmerize the visitors when wandering in this palace. The main feature of the Raj Mahal is the abundant royal accommodations that are structured by grand balconies. There are a wide range of floors that are interrelated by ways ascend that are relative levels on all the four sides. The whole structure is planned properly and constructed by the markings of domed pavilions and towers.
The most spectacular site in the Raj Mahal is the interiors that are lined with broken pieces of mirrors and other animated paintings are also plastered throughout the ceilings and walls. Among all of them, very few of these paintings are even today in incredible condition that tourist can witness while moving around this place.
Another most popular attraction that is preserved in Raj Mahal is the ‘Sheesh Mahal’. This mahal is one of the attractive spot that draws the attention of myriads of people every year. This small section of majestic palace is adorned with beautiful and colorful pieces of mirrors that please the eyes of visitors.
Orchha is one of the most visited places where you can witness the enduring Raj Mahal, which is located on Jhansi-Khajuraho Road. Since it is situated at a convenient place, travelers can get easy access by several ways of transport form different regions of Madhya Pradesh state. Tourists from national and other countries hail here to witness this enchanting place. There are also local facilities available such as regular buses taxis or hired car to reach this place. Therefore, tour to Orchha is incomplete without visiting the Raj Mahal of Orchha.
Rai Praveen Mahal :
Rai Praveen Mahal is relatively famous among the other local attractions in Orchha city. This palace is not too big as compared to other palaces, but it is quite small and double storied residence which was constructed by brick. The plan of building this mahal was initiated by Raja Indramani. Initially, he built the Rai Prvaeen Mahal for his woman who cohabits with an important man in middle era of 1670s. The majestic palace lies close to the Sheesh Mahal which is placed on the northern part. The structure of the castle is positioned amongst the mowed grass of the ‘Anand Mahal gardens.’ There are plenty of attractions that draw the attention of ten thousand tourists each year. From all around the world both national (locals) and international hail here from different regions and countries to witness this enduring site.
The structure of this mahal was well designed and planned where there are many spots to maintain inside this place. In the Rai Praveen Mahal, there is a main assembly hall which is placed on the ground floor; there are also lavish royal boudoirs upstairs beside with a subversive apartment. This wide hall was used to host various important musical and cultural performances. This mahal can also be called as an abode of intoxicating love. The garden of the mahal is octagonal shaped and the flowerbeds are always blooming. This adds to the appeal of the place to a large extent. The entire building is a treat for the tourist and allows more scope of exploration for the visitors. The beautifully manicured garden and the paintings all around make it worth going tourist destination. Musician and poetess, this palace was the striking paramour of the Raja Indramani from the year 1672 to 1676. Later on, he was send to Delhi state on the orders of the royal leader Akbar, who was initially strongly attracted by her.
The women who impressed the Great Mughal emperor with her purity and love for Indramani later sent him back to Orchha. Originally, the palace built for that beautiful lady is low, and is two storied structure made by bricks. The designs of this palace was made in such a way that it should match the height of trees at the background surrounding the area with charming decorated gardens of the Anand Mahal. This beautiful garden pleases the eye of visitors with its flower beds of octagonal and detailed system for water supply. The main highlight of the Rai Praveen Mahal in Orchha is the structure of the corner pillars are skillfully carved, which allow the rays of light to enter into the Mahal. The rays of golden sunlight reflect in the smaller chambers and main hall that adds a pleasurable delight to the visitors.
Ram Raja Temple :
This palace - turned - temple has a charming legend attached to it. Following the dream visitation of Lord Rama, Madhukar Shah's wife, Ganesh Kunawari brought a statue of the god from Ayodha to Orcha. While the king was a worshipper of Lord Kridhna, and a devotee of Lord Krishna, the queen was a devotee of lord Rama. The image was placed in a palace prior to its installation in a temple. When the idol proved impossible to move, the queen recalled, too late the deity's edict that the image would remain in the place where it was first installed. Today, with its soaring spires and palatial architecture, the temple is surely one of the most unusual in India. It is also the only in the country where Rama is worshipped as king (Raja).
Ram Raja Temple is another popular site which is nestled in the beautiful place at Orchha. This iconic temple is most prominent in the state of Madhya Pradesh which has the remains of the architectural ancestry and rich spiritual history of the primeval times. It is one of the frequently visited attractions for tourist to visit while they are on tour to Orchha. This enduring temple was originally a massive palace, which was made under the rule of Madhukar Shah during the earlier period.
According to mythological story, the emperor Madhukar Shah had seen ‘Lord Rama’ in his dreams. By this dream Madhukar Shah got motivated to construct a shrine of the Supreme Being. However, prior to the construction of this religious temple, emperor Shah had brought an idol of ‘Lord Rama’ and confined in his own palatial house.
Even though, after the completion of Ram Raja temple, Madhukar Shah was not capable to set up the statue of Lord Rama within the heavenly sanctorum of this shrine. The powerful ruler then once again evoked a small portion with his heavenly encounter with Lord Rama in his dream. Following the instruction of the Supreme Being the statue of his deity should not move from its original position. Therefore according to the wish of the lord, the huge royal palace was turned into a religious temple where he worshipped his deity Rama.
The most unique feature of the Ram Raja Temple is its style of architecture, which looks like an impressive residential house than a spiritual monument. To witness this exquisite shrine tourists from all corners of the world come here to experience a mesmerizing vacation. Since it is a pilgrimage centre, around myriad of devotees visit this place every year to get the blessings and perpetual delight the Supreme Being after worshipping their Lord Rama. Tourist from both local region and other countries hail here for reviving their soul in the Ram Raja Temple. It is the most prominent site nestled in the capital city of Orchha. If you are planning to reach this holy place, there are many transportation facilities available for tourists where they can travel. Since located in a convenient location regular bus services, taxis and other local transportation are provided by Madhya Pradesh state, India. It is a significant religious temple in Madhya Pradesh, which is known as the Ram Raja Temple of Orchha. It depicts the rich spiritual enthusiasm of local residents of this place.
Chaturbhuj Temple :
The holy temple was constructed upon a huge stone raised area where you can reach the entrance of this shrine by a steep flight of stairs. The main aim of building this religious shrine is to preserve the image of Lord Ram that stayed even today in Ram Raja Temple. This memorial is adorned with various amenities that draw the attention of thousand of visitors including the lotus symbols and other signs of spiritual significance that provide the delicate external ornamentation. Within, this holy place there is virtuously natural with high, domed walls underlines its deep holiness. This place ensures that you will experience one of the most alluring and remarkable vacations by visiting in this sacred place.
Laxminarayana Temple :
The Laxminarayan temple is one of the third most vital temples that is located in the capital city of Orchha. This religious place is an attractive tourist attraction where numerous pilgrims hail from across the globe to witness this place. It showcases an ideal and exclusive mix of fort architecture and sacred temple. Even if the shrine of Orchha is dedicated to Goddess Laxmi, you will spot no idol or even image of Goddess that should be set inside the shrine.
A paving stone path connects this sacred temple along with Ram Raja Temple. The architectural style of this spiritual shrine is one of the appealing sites for tourist which synthesis of temple and fort moulds. The Laxminarayana Temple fascinates around more than thousands of tourists to see the features of the sacred place. The interiors of this temple cover the ceiling and walls of the three wide halls, which are adorned with murals. These wall paintings are vivacious work of art and cover a wide range of secular and spiritual subjects. Even today, the beautiful murals are preserved with excellent colors holding their bright quality.
In the year 1622, during the rule of Vir Singh Deo this beautiful and attractive Laxmi Narayan Temple was built. However, due to some of the insufficient preservation, the condition of this temple soon got worsened. Therefore, in order to not lose the icon and wealth of Orchha city, it was again reconstructed in the year 1793 by Prithvi Singh.
Phool Bagh :
Set up as one of the formal garden, this composite shows the superior aesthetic qualities of Bundelas. This bagh (park) is the most beautiful place that is located in the state of Madhya Pradesh. It was build under the rule of Bundelkhand reign that reflects their royalty and rich sense of the natural splendor during the earlier period. When witnessing this place you will be able to see abundant vivid and striking flower beds that appeals various tourist to relax here after traveling to Orchha. The Phool Bagh here was the well known as the summer palace of majestic rulers of the capital city Orchha during the cultural and traditional times.
This garden symbolizes the rich architectural bequest and the imaginative sense of the sovereign of Orchha. The attractive structure was build as a sign of honor to the great spiritual soul named as Dinman Hardaul. He was the one who sacrificed his own life for his older brother named as Jhujhar.
The Phool Bagh is the most popular travel attraction for voyagers in Orchha while wandering in the state of Madhya Pradesh. This garden is embellished with a striking cascade which is usually related as ‘Chandan Katora.’ This fountain adds another beauty to this region with the supply of water to the impressive housing of the royal sovereigns of Orchha. Another tourist attraction in this garden is the Badgir Sawan Bhadon Towers. The ambience at this place is calm and tranquil where visitors can relax down near the colorful flower beds while they are on a day trip to Phool Bhag.
Dinman Hardaul's Palace :
Dinman Hardaul's Palace is a vital site to watch in Orchha. This place in the state of Madhya Pradesh speaks about the love, affection, and mainly the respect between the two brothers. It is an amazing architectural site that was constructed during the earlier times which marks as a symbol of love. The Dinman Hardaul's Palace contains remaining the cultural ancestry and rich dutiful history of this place during the former period.
According to the historical stories, this enduring palace was build in respect of the great spiritual leader known as Hardaul. He was the man who sacrificed his own life for his elder brother. Jhujhar was the older brother of the Dinman Hardaul, which suspected that his own younger brother was passionately involved with his prolonged friend and companion. Since Hardaul was very highly religious and alone person, so he decided to finish his life just to illustrate his honorable nature to his elder brother Jhujhar.
The local aboriginal population of the Orchha city had a great honor for the Dinman Hardaul during the religious period. Later on a beautiful palace was constructed because he was considered as a part of Divine Entity. After his death, Dinman was worshipped as a god for his innocence and truthfulness; even today the village people of Bundelkhand consider this palace as their sacred place or shrine.
Dinman Hardaul's Palace creates a center of attention for around several visitors and devotees who hail from far away regions and countries to glance at this palace. The castle constructed in this region is extremely overwhelmed by the magnificence of rich architectural structure. The background of the River Betwa gives a picturesque view for the visitors where it stands tall with various attractions.
Sunder Mahal :
The Sunder Mahal is considered as one of the wonder of Orchha which is preserved from the ancient times in the state of Madhya Pradesh. The architectural structure of this holds remnants to old grandeur and rich sacred fervor of Orchha city. It is a worth visiting site for tourists who travel from far away places to see this enchanting palace. The mahal represents the vivid love and affection of Prince Dhurbhajan and his lover. According to the historical tale, the Prince Dhurbhajan was son of Raja Jhujhar Singh who fell in love deeply with a beautiful Muslim girl. He recurred to engaged in deep speculation and spiritual prayers to find purity and peace of soul and mind. Therefore, he left all his imperial palace and empire and started heading for a life of hermit. The Prince Dhurbhajan was deeply considered as religious saint between the Muslims area.
Chhatries (Cenotaphs) :
The Chhatries (Cenotaphs) in Orchha assumes leftovers to the imperial beauty and magnificence view of this place during the previous era. It is located next to the forceful Betwa River; in this place visitors can stop at the Chhatries which is a famous attraction here. The beautifully and skillfully constructed Chhatries that are preserved in Orchha was mainly structured to symbolize the huge part of each and every sovereign’s dynasty in the province of Bundelkhand village in earlier period.
The structure and design of the cenotaphs are built very beautifully that represents the richness and architectural skills and talent of the local artistic during the ancient period. While exploring in the village of Bundelkhand, tourist can notice that each dynasty has chhatries on the top of the palace or fort that are beautifully carved and designed, it also adds beauty and charm of the place.
It is a sign of respect and honor for the majestic aristocrat of the impressive rulers of the Bundelkhand dynasty. The Chhatries or a cenotaph signifies regarding the enriched ethnic heritage and customary legacy during the ancient times. There are total around fourteen Chhatries that are preserved in the capital city of Orchha in the state of Madhya Pradesh. This chhatries are still standing erect and are named after the leaders of the imperial dynasty of the village Bundelkhand. They are marked as a crown for their success in a number of wars where they played with their intruders and neighboring rulers.
Shahid Smarak :
A monument honors the calvary of the great insurgent Chandrashekhar Azad. The Shahid Smarak was located in the capital city of Orchha at Tikamgarh district. It is one of the mesmerizing attractions for tourist that is preserved in the state of Madhya Pradesh. Even if this monument is a modern tribute, a huge amount of visitors from all around the world gets attracted for its great historical significance. This was the place were the radical freedom fighter of India stayed for independence and spent his long days of deport or 'agyatvaas' in the year 1926 to 1927.
Orchha is one of the small cities in the district of Tikamgarh at Madhya Pradesh. This township also comprises a beautiful river bank known as Betwa. It was the most important city for the Bundela rulers. Other attractions that are worth seeing while exploring in Orchha are the temples or religious shrines of the Janki Mandir, Siddh Baba Ka Sthan, Jugal Kishore, and spiritual Hanuman Mandir located at Ohharedwara.