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“Neatly preserved heritage at Mandu”

Historical Monuments Of Mandu
Ranked #2 of 39 things to do in Mandu
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed April 1, 2013

Mandu is awesome and as you go around this beautiful place, you could actually visualise the grandeaur and the culture this place had in the past. You definitely need a knowledgeable guide to explain and take you around. The monuments and its surroundings are well maintained - thanks to the depart of archeology. The Hindola palace, champa bawdi, royal enclave, jahaz mahal etc.. are gorgeous pieces of architecture neatly maintained and even today speaks volumes of the precision and the strategy with which this entire place was created and managed by different rulers. The romantic story of Baz Bahadur and Rani Rupmati and their monuments leave you in awe of the magic of the past. I believe Mandu in rains is gorgeous with the greenery around and I will definitely want to go back and have a different experience of this majestic place.

7  Thank Pervin D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed March 16, 2013

Our family visited Mandu during September 2011.The weather was ideal & village side enchanting just after monsoon.Hiring of a knowledgeable guide is a must for this Romantic city in ruins.Our guide Mr.Bhojpal took us to the period of Parmar rulers, the rule of sultans of Delhi & then Malwa , the invasion of the Mughals & the rule of Marathas & lastly the Holkar's with his vivid explanations of the profile of the fort city ,architectural marvels,engineering & scientific knowledge & skills of the people, the cultural & emotional bonding of Baz bahadur & lady of Lotus Rani Rupamathi, ups and downs of the administration during various rulersetc.It takes more than eight hours to cover the important groups of monuments at Mandu.Start Early in the morning,be prepared with the historical knowledge for a great imagination of that period.carry enough snacks,water,caps,sunglasses & definitely not to miss a note book & pen.With the fort & monuments map it is easy to cover the historical places.The monuments & the sorroundings are well maintained by the dept.of archeology personnel.Ramji ka Mandir & Neelkanth Mahadev temple palace add to the religious fervour for the entire days trip.

7  Thank malavalli
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 24, 2013

The historical ruins of Mandu are awesome! This was one of the towns on our trip through Madhya Pradesh arranged by Chandela Tours. The village sits upon a plateau. It is small and intimate. There are many ruins around the area. The main ruins are the Royal Enclave in the center of town. The Royal Enclave contains many ruins. One of the most beautiful was the Jahaz Mahal or Ship Palace! Supposedly, the whole complex of ruins looks different during the monsoon season. Very few western tourists seem to visit. Mandu is off the beaten tourist track and is a simple MP village.

4  Thank BaltoROberta
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 14, 2013

In my eternal quest to visit important historical places, Mandu was put into the itinerary while visiting MP. Little did I knew that it would be such a rich & eloquent place that would leave a mark in memory.

About Mandu :

Manu or Mandav is a ruined fortress town in the Dhar district in Madhya Pradesh, India. It is around130 Kms from Indore, that's the route we took & the roads were in great condition.
Mandu had its full share of strategic and political importance and names like Raja Bhoj, Ghuri dynasty, Mughal era rulers like Humayun, Noor Jahan and Akbar are directly or indirectly related with the fortunes of Mandu. However, the Bazbahadur-Roopmati tales are the most famous here and perhaps most interesting ingredients to define the character of Mandu in a romantic language.
Lots of structures of this ancient city is now ruins but those still standing tall tmarrates the tale of golden past. About 15 kilometer area at a height of about 2000 ft. above sea level constitute the location with important landmarks like Jahaz Mahal, Hindola Mahal, Jami Masjid, Roopmati's Pavillion, Rewa Kund, Bazbahadur's Palace with lovely surroundings with trees and bushes.

Things to consider for enjoying it the most :

Lots of walk is needed so its a good idea to carry water bottles, hat/umbrellas to beat the heat.
Some transport at disposal to take you around from spot to spot.

When to visit - I visited it in the month of February and was good but the best time to visit Mandu is in rainy season when the water levels of its water bodies go up and there is lots of greenery around the ruins of buildings and palaces. The rains have a softening effect on the natural environment & is less hot of course.

Mandu can be covered in one day, but to re-live the past and romanticize with history, a night-stay in the local M P Tourism outfit is recommended. I would definitely go back in a rainy season with a night at hand !

3  Thank PrachetaB
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 4, 2013

Having taken leave from office and not planned anything in particular, I made an impromptu plan to travel to Mandu.
There are two approaches to Mandu – one from Indore and the other from Ratlam. Mind you, localities know Mandu as Mandav. Hence dont be lost in names - Mandu and Mandav are the same. I tried the Indore route. There were three options for me to travel to Indore from Mumbai - flight, train or Bus . Flight is expensive and I wanted a thoroughly budget trip. Train in India gets booked three months in advance. I tried tatkal. However the IRCTC website got disconnected four times- once after payment had been made. Its the most frustrating experience and i was at the height of my exasperation. However I was stubborn in my intention- hence, I booked bus tickets to Indore.
This is the first time, I travelled by Sleeper buses. And I will admit it’s not bad. Indore is an overnight travel and I reached Indore (Naulakha bus stand) at seven in the morning. When I had googled on buses to Mandu from Indore, there was a news clipping on a 14 seater bus arranged by MP tourism. Hoping to catch it, I took an auto to MP tourism center in Indore where I came to know that the bus service has stopped. The auto guy then guided me to Gangwal Bus stand in Indore.
There are very few direct buses from Indore to Mandu and hence I had to break the journey. So I had to go to Dhar first. Buses from Indore to Dhar are decently frequent ( 1 every half an hour ). The road is quite bad in most patches and amidst loud Bollywood music and screeching of the bus parts and your own bones rattling, you somehow reach Dhar. Don’t expect the travel to Mandy any better. It’s a smaller bus and way more crowded.
Mandu is essentially a village and suddenly in 4 hours ( 2.5 hours to Dhar and 1.5 hours to Mandu ) you are transported from an Indore urban environment to a quintessential rural set up. You can see thatched huts with walls made of mud and dung- kids running around, women combing hair for hours, slightly elderly women basking in the sun, men folk sitting still and staring into nothingness – time suddenly runs way slower and this environment is the first step of the unwinding process in Mandu.
MP tourism has two accommodation arrangements – Malwa retreat and Malwa resort. I chose the former because its on the bus route to the Mandu village. I got down at the Malwa retreat stop and checked in. Booking is mostly by internet. It’s a nice open place and I loved by stay. I chose Non AC rooms because they were the cheapest ( still not too cheap at Rs 1800 )
After Having lunch I rented the cycle ( from Malwa retreat , where I was staying ) and started for Rani Roopmati Pavilion. One more word of caution. The cycles I rented were a pain in the a** (literally) . I am not used to geared bicycles and the seats and the overall posture in these cycles was so bad, I had a tough time. I recommend you rent a cycle you are comfortable.
Now Rani Roopmati Pavilion is the further most point and about 7 km from the Malwa retreat. I started for the pavilion and was adequately rewarded post a strenuous cycle trip. The breeze at the top is rejuvenating and you can sit there for hours. Winter is a nice time to visit Mandu. Guess rainy season is equally good because it becomes windy and more importantly all the lakes and water bodies start shimmering with water. That’s another thing about Mandu. Its full of lakes. No doubt it had inspired King Baz Bahadur to woo Rani Roopmati in such a picturesque setting. Even later Mughal rulers have adequately bestowed praises on the joyous nature of Mandu.
Some of the monuments to visit in Mandu are mentioned below. Because I was in a cycle I could explore most of them. Mandu is spread over a large area and most tourists end of seeing only a few. I recommend one and a half day of stay to do justice to Mandu. Some of the places are not restored and are covered in dense bushes. I found few of them interesting – an old temple of the Hindu kings (Paramaras, pre Afghan invasion ) , a dilapidated Saray ( inn ) , broken tombs here and there.
Some of the monuments I visited on Day 1– Roopmati Pavilion, Baz Bahadur’s palace, Jali Mahal, Dai ka Mahal ( there is an Echo point nearby ) , Dai ki Chhoti Behen ka Mahal, a huge Sarai, Malik Mghith’s mosque, Hathi Mahal, Jahaz Mahal, Hindola Mahal and the entire Royal enclave
Day 2 – Jami Masjid, Ashrafi Mahal, Hoshang Shah’s Tomb, Lohani Caves, Sunset point and Chisti Khans Palace
Must to see are Roopmati Pavilion, Baz Bahadur’s place, Jami Masjid , Hoshang Shah’s tomb and Jahaz Mahal. I will delve a bit on two complexes – Jahaz Mahal and Hoshang shah’s tomb along with the Jami Masjid. Jahaz Mahal was built by Ghiyatudin Khilji who at one time had 15000 women in his royal harem. In a historical avatar of Gadhafi he had Turkish women soldiers protecting him. In spite of his fancy for women, he was a teetotaler and never touched wine. Jahaz Mahal , shaped like a ship and built on a strip of land between two lakes must be a wonder treat during the monsoon. The adjoining complex was apparently built to house 15000 women and had six floors, two underground and four above - Only a few survive. The Hoshang Shah’s tomb is equally fascinating because it was believed to serve as the prototype for the Taj Mahaal.
Mandu was called –Shadiabad by the Muslim rulers. It means city of joy – and they were quite on the mark.

19  Thank Pritmuk
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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