Bundelkhand Circuit : Jhansi
Bundelkhand Circuit : Jhansi
This city is linked with the legend of Rani Laxmibai. In 1857
at the age of 22, she led her troops in the war for independence against the
British and sacrificed her life for independence.
Jhansi is also known as the home town of the Indian hockey legend Dhyan Chand. This hockey stalwart took the flag of Indian hockey to great heights at the international level.
In recent years, the annual event Ayurved Jhansi Festival held in November-December has also emerged as a showcase of art, craft, culture, heritage and health through herbal and Ayurvedic products.
It is a peaceful town with strong historical and cultural roots. It is a big Railway town as well, with several establishments and workshops. The impact of the British era and the Railways is visible on the city.
Being on a rocky plateau, Jhansi experiences extreme temperatures that range from 4 degrees minimum in winter to 47 degrees at the peak of summer.
In pre-historic times this region seems to have been inhabited by certain primitive peoples like the Bhils, Kols,Saberiyas, Gonds, Bhars, Bangars and Khangars. The earliest known Aryan people associated with this region were the Chedis, who lived in the land lying between the Yamuna and the Vindhyas. In the 9th century, the region of Jhansi came under the rule of Rajput Chandela dynasty of Khajuraho. About the 14th century the Bundelas gradually spread themselves over this region. The Muslim governors of the Mughal empire were constantly making incursions in this region. In 1732 the Bundela king Chhatrasl called in the aid of Marathas and they came to his assistance. In 1806 the British offered protection to the Marathas. In 1853 the Raja of Jhansi died childless and the territory was annexed by the British Governor General of India. The revolt of 1857 saw Jhansi ripe for rebellion. Rani Laxmibai died valiantly in Gwalior and in 1858 Jhansi was brought under British control. After independence it was added to the then United Provinces.
What to see
Jhansi fort, Rani Mahal, Barua Sagar, Government Museum, Raja Gangadhar Rao ki Chhatri, Laxmi Tal, Goddess Kali Temple, St Jude’s Church, Kargaun Jain Temple, Pani Wali Dharamshala, Jhokan Bagh, Narayan Bagh, Garhmau Lake, Sukwa-Dhukwa Water Fall, Kedareshwar-Mauranipur, Government Museum.
King Bir Singh Judeo of Orchha built this 17th century fort on top of a hill, as an army stronghold. The fort has been a witness to the fiery battle led by Queen Laxmi Bai. There are beautiful temples of Lord Shiva and Ganesha inside the fort where Karak Bijli and Bhawani Shankar cannons of the Queen are kept.
Reception office at Fort- Tel. 0510-2442325.
Entry ticket: Indian Rs. 5/- and Foreigner Rs. 100/-
Visiting hours: Sunrise to Sunset.
Sound and Light Show (Son-et-lumiere) is held every evening at the Fort, depicting the story of the war of Independence in 1857 and the life and struggle of Rani Laxmibai.
Show timing : every evening 6.30 (winter), 7.30 (summer)
Tickets : Indian - Rs.20/- and Foreigner - Rs.250/-
The palace of Queen Laxmi Bai is a fine piece of traditional
architecture, which has now been converted into a museum. It houses a collection
of archaeological remains of the period between the 9th and the 12th century
Entry ticket : Indian - Rs.5/- and Foreigner - Rs.100/-
Maha Laskmi Temple
At the edge of Lakshmital is situated the magnificent Lakshmi Temple, built at the time of Marathas. It is said that the queen Laxmibai used to come to the temple by boat from the Lakshmi gate every Friday for offering prayers. The temple is built like a palace. At present the temple is under the patronage of the State Archaeology Department.
Situated on the banks of the Betwa river, it is named after the Barua Sagar Tal, a large lake created almost 260 years ago by Raja Udai Singh of Orchha. Here atop a hill is a historic fort where Marathas fought the Bundelas in 1744.
Baruasagar : 24 km from Jhansi, on the route to Khajuraho,
Baruasagar is the historic spot where the battle between the Peshwa’s troops and
the Bundelas was fought in 1744.This is where Job Bhau, the elder brother of
Maharaja Madhuji Scindia was killed.
The place is named after the Baruasagar Tal, a large lake formed about 260 years ago, when an embankment was erected by Raja Udit Singh of Orchha. A fine, old fort built by him, picturesquely situated on an eminence, commands an excellent view of the lake and the surrounding landscape.
To the north-east of the lake are ruins of two old Chandela temples. Built of granite, the older one is known as Ghughua Math. Nearby is the later Gupta period temple known as Jarai-ka-Math. It is dedicated to Shiva and Parvati. The eastern side of its shikhara is lavishly ornamented with massive stone sculpture.
Raja Gangadhar Rao Ki Chhatri
This is the ancient monument built after the death of Maharaja Gangadhar Rao in 1853. He was the ruler of Jhansi, as accepted in 1838 by the British since the financial position of Jhansi was critical due to inefficient administration of past subedars. Under his rule, the administration and financial position of Jhansi improved. He had married Mannikarnika in 1842; and after marriage she was named Lakshmi Bai, the legendary Jhansi ki Rani. After the death of Maharaja Gangadhar Rao in 1853 this monument was built that is situated on the Laxmi Tal. It has intricate architecture.
This is an ancient pond that has the famed 18th century temple dedicated to Goddess Mahalakshmi, who, as per Hindu belief, is the deity of good fortune and it is believed that sincere adoration of this goddess would fetch you high rewards. This temple is a much-revered centre in Jhansi and is located in Laxmi Tal outside the Lakshmi Darwaza. It displays great splendor in terms of architecture and witnesses large influx of devotees especially on the occasions of Laxmi Puja and Diwali. This temple witnessed many historical events during the reign of Rani Lakshmi Bai.
Goddess Kali Temple
This famous temple with Godess Kali as presiding deity is situated in Cantonement area of Jhansi. It is highly revered by the local people. This is among the temples that were renovated later and are receiving ardent worship. Mother Kali was held in highest veneration by the ruling princes and they sought her blessings during peace and crisis. The temple located near Sainyar shows some signs of modernization but retains its antiquity in traditions, decorations and rituals. Its vast courtyards are always crowded and daily worship is conducted with due veneration and the periodical festivals are held on a grand scale befitting the status of a historic city.
A temple of goddess Mother Kali is situated in the downstream of of Lakshmital. In terms of architecture its seems to have been built in the time of Bundel kings. There is a attractive statue for goddess Mahakali in the sanctum sanctorum. Till some years ago, this temple was the focal point of astrology.
St Jude's Church
The St. Jude’s Shrine of Jhansi is very important to Catholic Christians as St. Jude’s bone is buried in the cathedra’s foundation. The St. Jude’s feast lasts for a week, with a procession on the last day of the fair. For this feast devotees from as far as Goa, and people from all religions and faiths visit Jhansi on October 28.
Kargaun Jain Temple
Kargaun is situated at a distance of 5 km from Jhansi, located on a foothill. The Jain Temple here is an underground temple dedicated to Bhagwan Parshwanath having idols dating back to 14th century. It is located amid picturesque landscape.
Pani Wali Dharamshala
It is located on G.N. Road in Jhansi. There is a small pond and an ancient temple here having Lord Shiva as the presiding deity draws big crowd of devotees.
It is a busy area of the city, known for the location of the famous Christian Hospital. Originally established as Mary Ackerman Hoyt memorial Hospital in 1900 by American missionary staff during the early years, it is one of the oldest hospitals in Jhansi. The place itself is known for fierce fighting between Indian fighters and the British troops during the freedom struggle.
The Government Gardens are located in Narayan Bagh area. This park is host of many species of plants, flowers, etc. and some very old trees. It is favourite spot for morning walk and evening strolls. People come here for far corners of the city for walking and exercises. An annual exhibition of of vegetables, fruits, and flowers is organized here every February. Another attraction of this exhibition is the city’s Dog show.
This 14-km long lake is located 2 km outside Jhansi on the NH 25 towards Kanpur. It is surrounded by low lying hills and is a popular getaway for tourists and Jhansi residents alike.
Shukwa-Dhukwa Water Fall
About 39 km from Jhansi, there is the Dhukwa reservoir built in 1909 on the Betwa river. During rainy season one can see a 1-km wide waterfall from a tunnel below Betwa river.
Mauranipur is a tehsil town in Jhansi District . The Kedareshwar temple is located 70 km from Jhansi on a hillock. There are 600 stone steps leading to the temple. It has a unique Shivalinga placed on the back of Rishabh, the ‘nandi’ of Lord Shiva. Mauranipur is a textile production centre and was known as Madhupuri in ancient time by its rulers.
The State Government Museum of Jhansi is situated in the
heart of Jhansi and is surrounded by beautiful parks. It has a fine collection
of terracotta, bronzes, weapons, sculptures, manuscripts, painting and coins of
gold, silver and copper. Weapons, statues, dresses and photographs that
represent the Chandela dynasty and a picture gallery of the Gupta period are the
highlights. There are also terracotta bronzes and manuscripts, paintings and
Closed on Mondays & second Sunday. Tel: 0510-2330035, Visiting hours : 10:30 am to 4:30pm,
Entry Fee : Indian-Rs. 5/-, Foreigner-Rs.25/-
8 km from Jhansi, the Pahuj Dam and waterfall on the Pahuj river is a beautiful picnic spot on Jhansi-Gwalior route.
Parichha Dam, built on the River Betwa, is about 25 km from Jhansion the Jhansi-Kanpur National Highway No. 25. Its reservoir – a placid stretch of water that runs to Notghat bridge, 34 km away, is ideal for water sports. The whole area is rich in scenic beauty, surrounded as it is with farmland and unbroken stretches of woods. Water sports are a popular feature during the week- long celebration of the Jhansi Festival held in February-March every year. Parichha with its large water body and idyllic surroundings holds the promise of an unforgettable holiday, not only for adventure seekers and anglers but also for picnickers.
The fort covering an area of 5 acres, is built on a hillock and is surrounded by three massive stone walls. It is divided into 4 main parts - the oldest and the uppermost being Gusain Mahal, the next being 'Ranwas', the third, Rajgarh Palace and the fourth the Rangmahal Palace, which is a splendid four storied building embellished with paintings on the walls and ceilings.
Samtnar lies at a distance of 66 km from Jhansi and 13 km from Moth. Formerly called Samshergarh it is now known as Samthar. It was an independent principality under the great Gujar warriors of the 17th and 18th centuries. Chandrabhan Bar Gujar and his grandson Madan Singh, governors of the state of Datia, are credited with the creation of the independent state of Samthar.
Talbehar and Matatila
50 km from Jhansi. Here is a vast Mansarovar Lake situated on the Jhansi-Lalitpur-Deogarh highway at Talbehat. On the bank of the lake are Fort of Mardan Singh, Hazaria Mahadev Temple and Ghats. 10 km. away is Matatila water reservoir built on the Betwa river. The lake is ideal for water sports.
18 km. from Jhansi, it was founded in the 16th century by the
Bundela chieftain, Rudra Pratap Singh, who built this new capital on the bank of
river Betwa. Today, remains of the fort and palaces speak eloquently of Orchha’s
time of glory and its splendid legacy of art and culture. Though little more
than a village today, stepping back in time and exploring Orchha's fortress and
palaces is an enjoyable experience.
The places of interest in Orchha include the multi-tiered Jehangir Mahal, within the fort, built in 1606, the Raj Mahal is noted for its fine murals and the Rai Praveen Mahal and also Anand Mahal a palace set in the gardens. Orchha has tall spired temples that are certainly worth a visit. Notable among them are the Ram Raja Temple, Laxminarain Temple with its exuberant frescoes, and the Chaturbhuj Temple. These shrines have some of the best preserved murals in Orchha. Across the river are Fourteen Chhatris - the cenotaphs or memorials built for the rulers of Orchha. Saket museum is worth seeing.
28 km from Jhansi,. Datia is an ancient town, which is mentioned in the Mahabharat as 'Daityavakra'. The main historical monument here is the seven-storied Palace of Raja Bir Singh Ju Deo, built atop a hillock with a splendid view over looking a lake. A temple with Mughal style frescoes and the Gopeshwar Temple are other attractions here. It is also a pilgrimage spot for devotees of Siddhapeeth Shri Peetambara Devi and a Shiva Temple of the Mahabharat era.
45km. It is another famous Jain site.
142 km. Kalpi has been associated with the war of Independence in 1857. Mantrana Kaksha. Vyas Tila Temple, New Vyas Temple, Lanka Meenar are the attractions here.
101 km from Jhansi lies Shivpuri, the summer capital of the
Scindia rulers of Gwalior. It is located on the main Delhi – Bombay highway,
south of Gwalior. Shivpuri's dense forests were once used by the Mughal emperors
as their hunting grounds and even today, it is famous for its reserved forests,
wild animals and natural surroundings.
Among the places of interest is the Madhav National Park - a wildlife sanctuary with the Sakhya Sagar Lake within it. The two royal residences - the Madhav Vilas Palace, the summer residence of the Scindias and the amusing, turreted, stone hunting lodge - the George Castle built by Jiyaji Rao Scindia are worth visiting. The Bhadaiya Kund, a pretty spot noted for its mineral springs is also a popular picnic spot.
101 km from 45 km from Jhansi, this sacred Jain hill lies 3 km to the north-west of Datia. There are some 77 Jain temples, built along the hill and its slopes which date back to the 17th century. Of these, the temple dedicated to Chatranatha, the 8th of the 24 Tirthankaras, is the most beautiful.
70 km. Situated on the hillock. There are 600 stone steps leading to the temple which is situated on top of a hillock. It is a unique Shiva Linga placed on the back of VRASHAB- the Nandi of Lord Shiva.
A three hundred year old fort is now a Heritage Home Stay
property approved by UP Tourism. For accommodation
contact: Mob.no. 94150-32466.
Jagmanpur Fort (Jalaun District)
170 km. from Jhansi. A heritage property having natural rural scenic beauty.
155 km. The ancient capital of the Chandela Kings, Mahoba is known for its lakes, temples and betel farming.
270 km. This hallowed center is famous for its religious importance and close association with Lord Rama.
280 km. This ancient fort is a reminiscence of glorious history and mythology.
How to get there
Air : Nearest air ports are Gwalior -103 km and Khajuraho -175 km.
Rail : A junction along the Bombay - Delhi route on Central Railway, Jhansi is well linked by rail.
Road : Jhansi is situated on National Highways No. 25 and 26 and is well connected with the entire country.