Last winter I decided to take a one day trip to the Bhangarh Fort. I was enjoying my solo trip to Jaipur, the pink city of Rajasthan when I heard haunted stories about the fort. Being an inquisitive person, I wanted to experience the magnificent fort myself. It is around 83 kilometres away from Jaipur and is an exciting place to go for a day with family and friends. You can easily avail a reliable car rental in Jaipur with a driver for a hassle-free experience. I took a car rental in the morning and reached the Bhangarh fort within three hours.
On my way to the fort, I thought of all the haunted anecdotes we would share in school among friends. My excursion to this fort was a cheap thrill instilled by curiosity. The hassle-free and comfortable taxi service in Jaipur made my journey easier. I basked in the natural beauty of small hills, flora and fauna, fresh air and a peaceful atmosphere. On reaching the fort, I was amazed by the majestic glory with which the fort stood. It is a magnificent example of Indian architecture. I learned a lot about its history, architecture, and the curse that befell the fort, thus making it a haunted destination.
- History of Bhangarh Fort: Cradled among the green hills of Aravallis, is built the grand fort of Bhangarh. The fort of Bhangarh is located 50 kilometres from the Sariska Sanctuary between the city of Jaipur and Alwar. It is approximately 83 kilometres away from Jaipur. The fort was constructed in the 17th century by Raja Madho Singh. He was the younger brother of the great Mughal general, Man Singh of Amber. Bhangarh had over 9,000 houses until 1720. The relics of the fort indicate grand Havelis, temples, and marketplaces. Although the fort is declared to be a haunted place, it nevertheless attracts swarms of tourists. Some come to enjoy the architectural marvel, while others, like myself, visit the place for an adventurous thrill.
- The Marvel of Bhangarh Fort: When I went inside the Bhangarh fort premises, I saw ruins of temples, palaces, and Havelis. It is a gem of the Aravalli hills. The fort has four entry points in addition to the main gate – the Lahori Gate, the Ajmeri Gate, the Phulbari Gate, and the Delhi Gate. The photogenic fort, even in its ruins, looks majestic. At the fort’s main entrance I marked a number of Hindu temples. It was an ecstatic experience. The prominent temples include the Gopinath Temple and the Someshwar Temple. My guide told me that the royal palace used to be a seven-storey structure, however, now only four of it remain.
- The Curse of Bhangarh Fort: My curiosity led me to ask my guide about the curse that befell Bhangarh fort. He told me there are two stories associated with the infamous haunted halls of Bhangarh fort.
The first legend is that of a sadhu named Baba Balau Nath. The area was a meditating spot for Baba Balau Nath. King Mado Singh decided to construct a fort by the sadhu’s permission on the condition that the fort or any building within should not be taller than his house and if the shadow of any structure fell upon his house, it would result in the annihilation of the fort town. The king’s grandson, Ajab Singh is said to have ignored this warning and raised the height of the fort to seven storeys. The shadow falling on the sadhu’s home led to the destruction of the town.
The other legend is associated with princess Ratnavati of the royal family. She was very beautiful and had a number of suitors from around the country. A wizard fell in love with the princess. He tried to bewitch one of the princess’ possession by a love potion. The princess, however, came to know of the wizard’s trickery and threw the potion onto a boulder nearby. This resulted in the boulder rolling towards the wizard and crushing him to death. Before being crushed to death, he cursed the city, stating that it would be destroyed soon and that no one would be able to live within its premises.
My visit to the fort was an astonishing experience. Not only did I get to see the most haunted place of India and hear anecdotes from visitors, but I also immersed myself in the sublime example of architecture and workmanship from the 17th century.