At a distance of 3 km from Indore Junction, Rajwada Palace is a magnificent palace situated in the heart of Indore city of Madhya Pradesh. Located on Mahatma Gandhi Road, it is one of the prominent places of heritage in Madhya Pradesh, and among the must-include places in Indore tour packages.
Also known as the Holkar Palace, Rajawada Palace is one of the oldest structures and among the famous places to visit in Indore. The palace was constructed in 1747 AD by Malhar Rao Holkar, the founder of the Holkar Dynasty. Rajwada has two major parts - a temple and a grand palace. The palace is a seven-storied structure located near the Chhatris and serves as an excellent example of royal grandeur and architectural skills. The palace was once the center of all the trading activities in the city.
The seven-storey Rajwada Palace has influences of Maratha, Muslim, and French styles of architecture. The lower three floors of the palace are made up of stone, while the top levels are made of wood. The entrance of the palace has a lofty archway with a giant wooden door that is covered with iron studs. The palace has many balconies, windows, and corridors. The entrance leads to a huge courtyard, which is surrounded by gallery rooms and the arcaded Ganesha hall, which was once the venue of all state and religious functions.
Nestled between the crowded streets of the Kajuri Bazar, the huge structure of Rajawada has been burnt three times in history. The Palace was set on fire for the first time in 1801 by the commander Sarjerao Ghadge of the Sindhiya Dynasty. Reconstruction took place between 1818 and 1826, and five floors were reconstructed during this time. In 1834, a second fire took place, and the topmost floor was destroyed. The last fire, which broke out in 1984, had caused the maximum destruction to the structure and the backside of the palace was destroyed entirely. The temple of Malhari Martand, which is located inside the palace, was also fully ruined during the riots of 1984. Now, only the front part of the original structure remains.
Under the instruction of H. H. Ushadevi Holkar, the Maharani of Indore, the palace has recently been renovated, which has managed to bring back the old glory to some extent. Today, the building is rectangular in shape with cylindrical bastions on the four corners. The Rajwada Palace also has a well-maintained garden that houses a statue of Queen Ahilya Bai, an artificial waterfall, and some beautiful fountains. The palace hall is now used for art exhibitions and classical music concerts as well. Besides, the palace now consists of the office of the Joint Director, Archeology, and a Souvenir Shop managed by the Archeology Department of the State.
A splendid sound and light show takes place at the Rajwada Palace from Tuesdays to Sundays. It is a key attraction for tourists, especially for history lovers who wish to know more about the palace.
Timings: 10 AM - 5 PM, Closed on Mondays
Light & Sound Show Timings: 6.30 PM (Hindi) & 7.45 PM (English)
Entry: Rs. 10 for Indians & Rs. 250 for Foreigners, Rs. 200 for Light & Sound Show, Rs. 25 for Camera, & Rs. 100 for Video