About Mandu

Country: India | State: Madhya Pradesh

Ideal Trip Duration: 1-2 Days

Nearest City to Mandu: Indore (98 Kms)

Best Time to Visit Mandu: October to March

Peak Season: November to February

At a distance of 35 km from Dhar, 40 km from Maheshwar, 98 km from Indore, 102 km from Omkareshwar, 150 km from Ujjain, 157 km from Khandwa, 241 km from Jalgoan, 286 km from Bhopal, 296 Vadodara, 335 km from Bharuch, 358 km from Saputara, 361 km from Nashik, and 392 km from Surat, Mandu is an ancient fort city located in the present-day Mandav area of the Dhar district, Madhya Pradesh. Also called Mandavgad, it is one of the popular places of heritage in India and among the must-include places in Madhya Pradesh tour packages.

Located in the Malwa and Nimar region of western Madhya Pradesh, Mandu or Mandavgad is the epitome of architectural excellence. The city sits over a plateau and is surrounded by walls of stones and dotted with 12 gateways. Declared as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO, the beauty of Mandu is visible in its palaces, monuments, and widespread lawns, among the prime attractions of Mandu tour packages. Mandu was a pleasure resort under the Mughal empire and is a testament to the romance between Baz Bahadur and Rani Roopmati. With a perimeter of 82 km, the Mandu fort is considered the biggest fort in India. Mandu can be visited along with Indore tour packages.

The history of Mandu goes back to the 6th century when it was a fortified city. Later, it was named Mandhavgarh in the 10th or 11th century, by the rulers of the Parmara kingdom. In the year 1261, even the capital of the Parmaras was transferred from Dhar to Mandu. Later, the Parmars were captured by the Khiljis in 1305. It was in the hands of Hoshang Shah (1405-35) that Mandu has reached its highest glory. Under his rule, came up the magnificent buildings and structures of Mandu. Subsequently, it was then occupied by Muslim rulers from 1401 to 1561. Later, Mandu was invaded and captured by Mughal emperor Akbar in 1561, and then taken over by the Marathas in 1732. At this point, the capital city was reassigned to Dhar and Mandu almost remained uninhabited.

Dotted with palaces, mosques, tombs, and gardens, Mandu is a fine example of the rich heritage of India. The city of Mandu is adorned with spell-binding Afghan architecture surrounded by baobab trees, native to Africa. The grand palaces are still alive with royal romance while the gateways speak of a history of imperial conquests. Mandu's architectural heritage is so huge its sites need to be classified into 5 broad groups. Some of these groups include the Central Group or Village Group, the Royal Group, Sagar Talao Group, Rewa-Kund Group, and Darya Khan Group. Jahaz Mahal, Rani Roopmati Pavillion, Hindola Mahal, Hoshang Shah's Tomb, Baz Bahadur's Palace, Hathi Mahal, Bagh Caves, Jami Masjid, Rewa Kund, etc., are some of the top places to visit in Mandu. Besides, many other architectural sites are scattered all over Mandu.

With a blend of Hindu and tribal culture, Mandu Festival is an annual festival celebrated in September/October at Mandu. The 3-day festival is organized by the state government of Madhya Pradesh to showcase every aspect of the ancient city of Mandu. The Mandu festival will showcase live concerts, adventure sports, cycling expeditions, and much more. Relive the art, culture, heritage, and cuisines of Mandu.

About 94 km away, Devi Ahilya Bai Holkar International Airport, Indore is the nearest airport that has well-connected direct flights from Mumbai, Bangalore, Delhi, Hyderabad, Kolkata, Ahmedabad, Goa, Nagpur, and Raipur. Indore Junction Railway Station is the nearest railhead which has well-connected trains from Jodhpur, Bangalore, Bhopal, Ratlam, Allahabad, Gwalior, Jhansi, Bhind, Chandigarh, Pune, Bikaner, Puri, Dehradun, Rewa, New Delhi, Amritsar, Khajuraho, Bareilly, Jaipur, Jabalpur, Nagpur, Kochuveli, and Gandhidham. Mandu has well-maintained roads which are connected with some of the major cities of Madhya Pradesh like Indore, Bhopal, and Ratlam. From Indore, one can hire a cab or bus to reach Mandu.

There are few accommodations available for tourists to stay and explore the places of Mandu. For better accommodation, one can stay in Indore which has several hotels to stay ranging from budget to luxury. From there, you can have a day trip to Mandu.

The best time to visit Mandu is from October-March when the town experiences moderate weather that is suitable for sightseeing. The summers are quite hot from March to May, just like the other parts of Madhya Pradesh. Monsoons, on the other hand, are also enjoyable, with occasional rainfall which keeps the temperature on the lower side compared to summers.

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Other Info
Internet Availability: Poor
STD Code: 07292
Languages Spoken: Hindi,Urdu, Malwi, Nimadi & English
Major Festivals: Mandu Festival

How to Reach Mandu

By Air

Nearest Airport: Indore - Devi Ahilya Bai Holkar Airport (94 Kms)

By Train

Nearest Train Station: Indore Junction (98 Kms)

By Bus

Nearest Bus Station: Mandu Bus Stand (0 Kms)

Top 11 Places to Visit in Mandu

#1 of 26 Places to Visit in Mandu

At a distance of 1.5 km from Mandu Bus Stand, Jahaz Mahal is an ancient palace located inside the Mandu Fort in Mandu, Madhya Pradesh. Also called Ship Palace, it is one of the prime places to visit as part of Mandu tour packages.

A part of the Royal Group of Monuments, Jahaz Mahal was built in the 15th century by Emperor Mohammed Shah's son Ghiyas-ud-din who had a vast harem of about 15000 women. This double-storeyed structure was constructed to accommodate the royal women. Here, the Sultan's consorts enjoyed a life of luxuries and pleasures. However, Jahaz Mahal lost its original splendor after Ghiyas-ud-din Khilji's death. This double-storeyed palace is encircled by twin ponds Munj and Kapur that give an impression to the spectators that it seems to be floating gently above the surface of the water and hence it is also named as Ship Palace. Here 'Jahaz' refers to a ship and 'Mahal' refers to a palace.

Emulating the appearance .....

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#2 of 26 Places to Visit in Mandu

At a distance of 1.5 km from Mandu Bus Stand, Hindola Mahal is an ancient palace located inside the Mandu Fort in Mandu, Madhya Pradesh. Situated just beside Jahaz Mahal, it is one of the top heritage places near Indore, and among the prime places to visit in Mandu.

Hindola Mahal is one of the buildings making up the royal palace complex at Mandu, which consists of the Jahaz Mahal, the Hindola Mahal, the Taveli Mahal, and the Nahar Jharokha. The Hindola Mahal might have been constructed in 1425 during the reign of Hoshang Shah but may date to the end of the 15th century during the reign of Ghiyas-ud-din. This palace was majorly used by Mughals for leisure.

Also known as Swinging Palace, it is one of the beautiful structures and the whole structure gives the impression of being on a swing because of the slanting walls and arches. A sample of the Malwa style of architecture, this T-shaped building .....

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#3 of 26 Places to Visit in Mandu

At a distance of 5 km from Mandu Bus Stand, Roopmati Pavilion is an old observation post located in Mandu, Madhya Pradesh. Situated on the southern side of the Baz Bahadur Palace, it is one of the must-include places in Mandu holiday packages.

Constructed during the 16th century, Roopmati Pavilion is a part of the Rewa Kund Group of monuments in Mandu. It is perched regally on the edge of a 365m precipice overlooking the Nimar Valley. It is amongst the many monuments and palaces that adorn the historical city of Mandu famous for the legendary tragic love story of Prince Baz Bahadur and Roopmati. The structure was originally built as an army observation post and was later transformed into the abode of Roopmati.

According to legend, Roopmati was a Hindu singer and shepherdess with whom Sultan Baz Bahadur, the Muslim ruler of Malwa fell in love. She agreed to marry him and became the Queen of Malwa. Mughal Akbar decided to conquer .....

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#4 of 26 Places to Visit in Mandu

At a distance of 5 km from Mandu Bus Stand, Baz Bahadur Palace is another ancient palace located in Mandu, Madhya Pradesh. A part of the Rewa Kund Group of Monuments, it is one of the famous tourist places in Mandu.

Baz Bahadur Palace is situated on the hill slope to the east of Rewa Kund and is set amid picturesque greenery. As per the Persian inscription on the entrance arch, it was built in 1508 by Nasir-ud-Din, the Sultan of Malwa. Incidentally, Nasir-ud-Din Shah Khilji is credited with designing this aesthetic structure which underwent repairs and renovations during the period of Baz Bahadur. The King became fond of this palace because of his eternal romance with the accomplished singer Roopmati who used to visit the nearby Rewa Kund.

With the blend of Rajput and Mughal style of architecture, the main gateway to the palace is approached by 40 broad steps. Tall, sleek arches welcome the visitors .....

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#5 of 26 Places to Visit in Mandu

At a distance of 500 m from Mandu Bus Stand, Jama Masjid or Jami Masjid is an old mosque that belongs to the Central Group or the village Group of Monuments in Mandu. Situated opposite Ashrafi Mahal, it is one of the wonderful and among the most visited Mandu tourist places.

Located in the center of Mandu Bazar and adjacent to Hoshang Shah's Tomb, the mosque is believed to have been built during the reign of Hoshang Shah and completed during the reign of Mahmud Khilji in 1454. The doorway has an inscription written on it which indicates that the mosque was modelled on the mosque of Damascus. The mosque was once a place for thousands of worshipers is now nothing but bears history.

Built-in Mughal style of architecture, the Jami Masjid was conceived on a grand scale. The eastern side is the main entrance of the mosque, which has a domed entrance hall and a wide flight of steps. In addition, there .....

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#6 of 26 Places to Visit in Mandu

At a distance of 500 m from Mandu Road, Hoshang Shah Tomb is a mausoleum located in the Village Group of Monuments in Mandu, Madhya Pradesh. Situated beside Jama Masjid, it is one of the wonderful heritage places to visit as part of the Mandu tour.

Hoshang Shah Tomb is the mausoleum of Sultan Hoshang Shah Ghori, the first formally appointed Sultan of the Malwa Sultanate of Central India. This edifice is a part of the Village Group or the Central Group of Monuments in Mandu. Stands in a courtyard to the west of the Jami Masjid, the construction of this cenotaph was started by Hoshang Shah and was completed by Muhamad Khilji in about 1440 CE. The tomb was constructed entirely with white marble and is considered to be the first marble mausoleum in India. Legends have it that the construction of the Taj Mahal was inspired by this tomb.

Built-in Afghan style of architecture, the tomb is a square structure on a plinth crowned by .....

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#7 of 26 Places to Visit in Mandu

At a distance of 500 m from Mandu Bus Stand, Ashrafi Mahal is an ancient structure located in the center of Mandu, Madhya Pradesh. Situated opposite Jama Masjid, it is one of the wonderful heritage places to visit as part of Mandu sightseeing packages.

Known as the 'Palace of Gold Coins,' Ashrafi Mahal is a part of the Village Group or the Central Group of Monuments in Mandu. Initially, it was constructed as a Madrasa, an Islamic School of learning, by Mahmud Khilji, the successor of Hoshang Shah. As you wander in the ruined compound, you will see rows of cells and long corridors, cornered with four tall towers which make the mahal entirely look like a school building.

The madrassa courtyard was subsequently filled in to create a terrace 27' high on which the royal mausoleum of Mahmud Khilji could be built. The terrace was approached by a grand flight of steps projecting from the front on top of which a pillared portico was .....

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#8 of 26 Places to Visit in Mandu

At a distance of 500 m from Mandu Bus Stand, Suparshvnath Swetamber Jain Mandir is a holy place located in Mandu, Madhya Pradesh. Situated near Jami Masjid, it is one of the best religious places to visit in Mandu.

Amidst ancient architectural marvels inspired by Islamic methods, stands Suparshvnath Swetamber Jain Mandir in Mandu. Dedicated to Shri Suparshwanath Bhagwan, it is a modern-day structure boasting silver, gold, and marble statues of Jain Tirthankaras. There is a 3 feet high white stone idol of Shri Suparshwanath Bhagwan in the padmasana posture in the sanctum sanctorum of the temple.

The temple complex also has a theme park Jain museum which is inspired by Shatrunjaya, the hilltop temple complex at Palitana in Gujarat. The place is well maintained and also an ideal place to visit with friends and family. Besides, a trust called the Shri Jain Shwetambar Teerth Pedhi manages this temple, along with the nearby Dharamshala and bhojanshala.

Timings: 5.30 AM .....

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#9 of 26 Places to Visit in Mandu

At a distance of 3 km from Mandu Road, Nilkanth Mahadev Mandir is an ancient Hindu shrine located in Mandu, Madhya Pradesh. Situated near Sagar Lake, it is one of the best Mandu places to visit.

Nilkanth Mahadev Temple is dedicated to Lord Shiva and is situated at the very edge of a steep gorge. The temple was built of red stone in Islamic style and resembled more of a palace or a meeting court. Apparently, it was originally a Shiva Temple which was demolished and a pleasure house was constructed by one of the governors of Akbar. After the fall of the Mughals, Lord Shiva made his way back into his original home.

The sanctum sanctorum of the temple houses Shivaling slightly below ground level and can be reached by a metal ladder. Water from the natural stream flows from behind the 'Shiva Linga' and collects in a tank in front of the temple. There were other idols in the adjoining rooms. About 60 .....

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#10 of 26 Places to Visit in Mandu

At a distance of 5 km from Mandu Bus Stand, Kakda Kho Water Fall is a seasonal waterfall located in Mandu, Madhya Pradesh. Situated on Mandav - Dhar Road, it is one of the wonderful places to visit in Mandu.

Situated at an altitude of about 633 m, Mandu is separated from the main plateau of Malwa by a deep gorge called Kakda Kho. This deep gorge is the venue for the stunning Kakda Kho Waterfall and is the first scenic spot where almost all the tourists will stop to see the stunning ruins of Mandu. It cascades down from a height of about 250 to 300 feet. The waterfall looks stunning in the monsoon season, and there is no water during summer.

Kakda Kho Valley and Falls is located on the main road of Mandu. The government has built a fence over the waterfalls so that no accidents happen. There is a viewpoint just a short distance away from the waterfall, from where one can get a beautiful view of the valley. To reach this viewpoint, one has to cross the waterfall. There were .....

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#11 of 26 Places to Visit in Mandu

At a distance of 1 km from Mandu Bus Stand, Chappan Mahal Museum is an archaeological museum situated in the historical town of Mandu. It is one of the must-visit Mandu sightseeing places.

Chappan Mahal Museum is situated inside the Chhappan Mahal, a forgotten mausoleum constructed in the sixteenth century AD. It embodies the last and most mature phase of Mandu's medieval architecture. In 1899 (Vikram Era 1956), the Puar rulers of Dhar started the restoration work of this monument to give relief to the drought-affected population. In memory of Vikram Era fifty-six (Chhappan in Hindi), this monument has come to be called Chhappan Mahal since then. In 1989, the wife of the erstwhile deceased Puar ruler of Dhar, Anandji Rao Puar IV, Ms. Mrinalinidevi Puar donated this property to the collector for setting up a museum. Exactly 100 years later in 1999 ( Vikram Samvat 2056), a museum was inaugurated here.

Chappan .....

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