A Brief Hike up Kangra Fort and Brush with History

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Kangra Fort is maybe the oldest Fort in India perched up on the hills among the gushing Manjhi and Ban Ganga Rivers. Even though the precise date of building is not recognized it is assumed to be constructed by the Katoch Dynasty who have been the Royal Rajputs of Kangra State. The Chandravanshi Katoch Dynasty traces its origins to the ancient Trigarta Kingdom who come across mention in Mahabharata. Raja Sansar Chand who had taken more than the Fort from the Mughals in late 18th century remains one particular of the most celebrated kings and the name sake museum at the base of the Fort displays a wide collection of memoirs. Everybody had their eyes on the Fort because it was believed that who ever presides more than the Kangra Fort will be the ruler of the Hills. Immediately after exchanging hands among many parties for practically a 1000 years, it was devastated for the duration of the Kangra Earthquake in 1905 creating it unlivable.

Kangra Fort: History on the Wall 

The fort is accessed via a series of gates beginning with the Ranjit Singh gate. This was committed to Maharaja Ranjit Singh who had assisted the Katochs to ward off the Gurkhas and had presided more than the fort in early 19th century till 1846.

I climbed the gently ascending stairs towards the Ahini Gate and Jahangiri Gate which were erected for the duration of the Mughal period. Jahangir was the only Mughal emperor to have captured the Fort apart from the early invaders Mahmud Ghazni and Muhammad Bin Tughlaq. There is a crest among these gates exactly where the sculpture of the patron Goddess Ambika Devi and the emblem of a deer is inscribed. Kangra FortThe aerial view of the winding way to the Fort and the distant view of Jayanti Mata Temple on the hill are basically breathtaking. I guess the splash of rain just prior to I reached produced it all the extra attractive. Kangra FortKangra FortUltimately, I passed via the Andheri Gate which was meant to be a narrow passage permitting only two guys to pass via at a time to safeguard undesired intrusion into the Fort. It seemed to be a lot wider following the restoration perform. Kangra FortThe passage with a sharp turn led to the actual entry of the Fort via the Darshini Gate. To the correct a gentle descent led to the region exactly where arms and ammunition have been stocked which was blown away when the British fired a cannon from a point across the hill.

Kangra Fort: Temples and Palace

I walked via the Darshini Gate with Ganga and Yamuna standing guard, witness to the ravages of time.Kangra Fort A brief flight of stairs led to the Temple courtyard with the giant Peepul standing shade. A compact temple to the left is committed to Ambika Mata the patron deity of the Katoch Kings and a attractive statue of Adinath Jain. I discovered solace in that temple because my thoughts quietened down effortlessly as I sat cross legged on the floor. Kangra Fort Kangra FortHuge blocks of stone, pillars, components of pillars lay about decreased to rubble for the duration of the devastating earthquake of 1905 and degenerated more than the years. Kangra FortOn the correct side is the lone surviving wall of the Lakshmi Narayan Temple, exquisitely carved and it does not call for a lot to consider how attractive it would have been for the duration of its days of glory. Kangra FortThe subsequent flight of stairs led to the Palace Courtyard and Terrace. There is nothing at all a lot left of this region apart from beautiful views of the valley. It is believed that the revered Fort and the Katoch kingdom which as soon as lorded more than the hills earned the wrath of the patron goddess for constructing the palace larger than her abode. Kangra FortI was fortunate to stop by the fort following a splash of rain it was cool and breezy. I discovered a gap in the wall to peep out under and wondered how life would have been these days inside the walls of the fort for the palace mates with each and every other and hills for corporation.Kangra Fort

Travel Tip 
  • Kangra Fort is positioned in old Kangra about three kms from the Kangra Bus Stand and 20 kms from Dharamshala. Autos charge about Rs 100/- from Kangra Bus Stand whilst a city bus would charge Rs five to drop off at the bus cease from exactly where it is a down hill stroll to the entrance of the Fort
  • It is open among 9am and 7pm every day except Tuesday. The adjoining museum is closed on Friday
  • Please take the Audio Guide for Rs 100 because the narration by a member of the Royal Household is full with History and anecdotes
  • It will take about 1 to two hours to go about the Fort based on interest. Greater visited in the evening because it may perhaps get also hot for the duration of the day.
  • Combine it with a stop by to Bajreshwari Temple on the way.
  • Kangra does not have superior hotels. There are a couple of ordinary ones close to the bus stand.
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