{On the Road} : Bharatpur, Rajasthan

By 11:52 Monday 7 September 2015 , , ,

Bharatpur had always been that familiar place I had read about in my school textbooks almost every year. All I ever knew about it was that there's this grand bird sanctuary but I never really thought I'd pay a visit, that too at a time when I could kill for a fun getaway. We ran out of options this Independence Day weekend- every place that was even remotely touristy was booked full. But thankfully, Bharatpur crossed the minds of only a few. Driving to Bharatpur from Delhi is convenient. You can easily cover the distance of 219 Km in 4 hours- even lesser if you choose the Expressway.  Thus, making it at ideal weekend getaway. I never thought I'd have such a good time.

Where to stay

We easily got reservations at Bharatpur's best ranked (on most online travel portals) resort- Amritara Chandramahal Haveli, 25km from main Bharatpur city. I know, I know, the name isn't all that fun but PUHLEASE WAIT FOR IT! The Deluxe rooms are charming and cozy- nothing fancy but complete with all basic facilities. The decor is minimal, very vintage and mostly wooden. There's plenty of space to move around, and there was even an extra cabin with a bed in one of our rooms. You can also opt for a Suite which can easily accommodate 4-6 people.

The resort has a well-maintained pool, multicuisine restaurant, a spa that would start operation soon, and daily activities like pottery, henna, folk dances etc. in the evening. The resort lies in a village called Pahersar and they organise tour of the area on request. The food is excellent- we thoroughly enjoyed the North Indian dishes, although, the Rajasthani preparations didn't match up to the expectations. The menu isn't very extensive and so you don't have many choices but the chef is happy to prepare custom dishes with advance notice. The staff is very cooperative and attentive to guest needs.

I loved the whole experience and definitely recommend Amritara if you're looking for a quick, quiet getaway that strikes the right balance between affordability and luxury.

What to see

Keoladeo National Park

Love bird watching? This is just the place to be! The Keoladeo bird sanctuary (18km from Chadramahal Haveli) is home to over 230 species of birds that are easily spotted- simply hire a bicycle (or a rickshaw) and binoculars at the entry point. The best point of my 11km ride was a particular bird's colony- I could see thousands of different birds at this particular spot on the trees in the middle of the water. It actually looked like a painting. The rickshaw wallas are excellent trained guides who narrate fascinating facts all through the tour. They identify the sounds of all the birds and don't get irritated if even you ask stupid bird-related questions.

Bharatpur Fort- Lohagarh

Built by Maharaja Surajmal, the fort includes monuments like Kishori Mahal, Mahal Khas and Kothi Khas. Moti Mahal and towers like Jawahar Burj and Fateh Burj were erected to commemorate the victory over the Mughals and the British army. We were running short of time and didn't visit the fort. It is however, a popular tourist spot.

Bharatpur Government Museum

Within the Lohagarh Fort is a grand museum that displays rare artefacts that date back to the 2nd century. The architecture has both Mughal and Rajput design sensibilities. It provides the visitors a glimpse of the journey and transition of the art, culture and lifestyle of the region. A definite must visit for history buffs!

Other places that are within drivable distance from Bharatpur (main city) include Fatehpur Sikri- 25km, Agra- 58km, Jaipur- 187km. That's all about my visit to Bharatpur, let me know if I missed something or if there's anything else you'd like to know- cuz I always wanted to be a tour guide. Just kidding. Maybe not. 

Until next time. <3

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  1. You're a great writer anyways, but the pictures in particular are beautiful. <3