Bandhavgarh National Park brings many reasons to attract so many visitors from all around the corners. Apart from the lush surroundings and large varieties of wild species, the most fascinating element in the Bandhavgarh vicinity is the ancient Bandhavgarh Fort. The oldest fort in India, the Bandhavgarh Fort unfolds the legendary of Shri Rama in Ramayana, when Shri Rama upon returning to his state back, after conquering the war from Ravana, stayed at this place and built this fort to gift his dear brother Lakshamana. The name “Bandhavgarh” has been derived from there only which significantly is the combination of two words: ‘Bandhav’ means brother and ‘Garh’ is the fort.
Being spread across an area of 582 acres at an elevation of 811 meters above the sea level, this outstanding fort is believed to be built in the 3rd century. This place had been the ideal destination for ruling for various dynasties including Vaktak, Kalchuri, Solanki, Kuruvanshi and Baghel. In 1917, the Baghels relocated their capital from Bandhavgarh to Rewa as the area was on the outskirt of the region and was difficult to manage.
Historically this played gained much fame from all around its vicinity and considering geographically this fort has many endowments. Like out of 32 hills and hillocks in the Vindhyachal ranges in Bandhavgarh, this place has the highest hill of about 811 mtr which is the safest height on the plateau of 4 sq km. This astonishing fort can be visible from any point from the core and the buffer zone of Tala range. One can definitely find the fabulous sightseeing of the magnificent hills of Bandhavgarh from the fort that encloses the area of 560 acres. Today the fort and the tiger reserve are being interwoven and it seems like the fort rules the whole jungle with the wild creatures being its people.
A visit to this place is really relinquishing and one can find two ways of getting into its entrance, either from a jeep track or through footpath. Although the footpath is the preferred alternative for the tourists that begins from the left of the spot called the ‘Shesh Saya’. This spot brings a unique 11 meters long statue of the Hindu God, Vishnu. A pool of spring water can also be found in front of the statue which is said to be the source of the stream known as Charan Ganga.
The Bandhavgarh Fort area is also filled with many temples where most of them depict the various reincarnations of Lord Vishnu. All these temples date back to around 10th century where one of these temples also has the carvings of Lord Ganesha. There are other three temples in the vicinity of the fort that reflect the 12th century architecture.
Within the Bandhavgarh Fort, the vast grasslands brings much serene and lush beauty and many lakes are flecked over the fort which are still filled with water and prove to be the large reservoir for many turtles.
The total footpath of the fort will take you around an hour and a half guided by an experienced guide or staff. This fort is the most relinquishing part on the earth for those who are interested in archeology and other related subjects and for religious people the existence of number of temples brings heavenly experience. Along with that there are several man made caves with inscription and rock paintings in the fort.
For making a visit to this historical place, a prior permission is needed from the Divisional Forest Office based in Umaria, 32 kms from Bandhavgarh. Umaria is just 80 kms away from Katni and is easy accessible from Delhi by rail. Jabalpur is the nearest airport which is 200 kms by road. The place, Bandhavgarh has different attractive resorts which are offered in the various attractive packages.
The most suitable time to catch the glory of the Bandhavgarh Fort is the summers.