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You must have heard the name of Gwalior – a City of Forts,  highly Pollutied and with glorious legends to its credit.  Insiders say there is more to the city than meets the eye.  Architecture, History, Music, Education and Commerce and Food are all elements that make up this city old-modern city named after a wise sage Gwalipa.

Gwalior photo

Photo by Nagarjun

Lets us have a tour of the city to understand its Complexity:

Land of Architectural marvels and cultural Heritage


Gwalior is a Historical city with incredulous heritage attractions.  Some of them are

Gwalior Fort:

It is also called the “Gibraltar of India”.  Said to built in the 6th Century according to legends it was controlled by Tomars, Mughals, Sher Shah Suri, Marathas, the British and the Scindias.   This fort is also called the Pearl in the necklace of Forts in India. Some places to watch here are

Gwalior photoPhoto by Nagarjun

  • The Man Mandir Palace: is also called a painted Palace beacause of the use of colors such as turqouise, Green and yellow in geomentric patterns.
  • Gujari Mahal is converted into a museum and has rare Hindu and Jain sculptures
  • Garuda monument
  • Gurudwara Data Bandi is a memorial dedicated to the Sikh guru Hargobind.
  • Sahastra Bahu temple was built in 1092-1093 and is dedicated to Lord Vishnu.
  • Teli Ka Mandir is dedicated to Lord Vishnu and incorporates both North Indian and South Indian style architecture
  • Chaturbhuj Mandir

The Light and Sound show in the Amphitheatre at Man Mandir Place highlighting the fort’s history.

Jas Vilas palace

This was a residential Palace of the Scindias.  It has now been turned into a museum and houses the World’s largest Chandeliar.  Many old-time gadgets and antique items can be seen in this Museum.

Visvaan temple is dedicated to the Sun.  It is similar to the temple at Konark and is visited by many pilgrims every day.

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Gopal Chand Parvat has Gaint Jain Tirthankara Statues. The largest statue is that of Prasavanth at 40feet height and 37 feet breath.

Shyam Vatika a banquet hall that has entered the Guinness Book of Records for having the largest indoor mural.

Tombs: The tombs of  Rani Lakshmi Bai, Tansen, Scindia rulers and Sufi saint, Mohamad Gaus are situated right in Gwalior

Music

Classic Music enthusiasts can visit the city during the Tansen Sangeet Samaroh (Tansen Music Festival).  Gwalior is the birthplace of Mian Tansen or Tansen one of the Navratnas of Akbar’s court.

The Whos of Who of Hindusthani Classical Music are in Gwalior at this time to participate in the Festival dedicated the legendary Tansen.   This festival is celebrated in the month of December at Tansen’s Tomb.

Birth Place of many Indian Greats

This city is a birthplace of Indian greats like Tansen, Atal Bihari Vajpayee, Javed Akhtar- Lyricist, Amjad Ali Khan -Sarod player, Roop Singh and Shivendra Singh – Hockey players, Pran -creator of Chacha Chaudhary comics and many film and theatre artists.

Fairs and Festivals

Gwalior Trade Fair is very famous and was started by Maharaja Madhav Rao Scindia in 1905.  It is one of the largest fairs in North India and is conducted at Pragathi Maidan between the second week of January until end of February.

Some of the events at the trade fair are Kavvali Dangals, Mushairas, Cultural Evenings, Cattle fair and Shilp Bazar – with stalls of handmade products from different parts of the country.

Educational Centre

Some of the Educational institutions in Gwalior include

  1. ABV(Atal Bihari Vajpayee) Indian Institute of Information Technology and Management – it has NAAC Accreditation of A-grade institute of national importance.
  2. Jiwaji University – Education in all Mainstreams
  3. Indian Institute of Travel and Management
  4. The Lakshmibai National University of Physical Education – specializes in Physical Education. A deemed university it has departments such as Physical education Pedagogy, sports psychology, sports biomechanics and more
  5. RajmataVijayraje Scindia Krishi Vishwavidyalaya (KVSLVV) – Provides educations to youth on horticulture, Veterinary Science  and Animal Husbandry
  6. Raja Mansingh Tomar Music & Arts University – specializing in art, music, Dance, Drama Interior and Fashion designing
  7. Institute of Hotel Management Catering Technology and Applied Nutrition(HMCT)
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Scindia School is also very famous here.

Sports

This is the city where Sachin Tendulkar scored his First Double Century.  The ancient city has many modern Sporting arenas such as

  1. Captain Roop Singh Stadium – where Tendulkar reached the above landmark
  2. Railway Hockey Stadium
  3. Women Hockey Stadium

There is also a deemed University dedicated only to Physical Education in the city.

Gwalior Street Food

Gwalior is very famous for its street food. Gwalior residents like their Poha, Kachoris,  and Paneer Jalebis.    For authentic taste enter the market at Nayi Sadak and Dala Bazdar area:

  • Bahadure wale ki Laddoo – Laddos,
  • Pandit ji                         – Soup,
  • Agrawala Poha Bhandar                         -tasty  and healthy Poha,
  • SS Kachouriwala                         -Jodhpurwala Kachouri,
  • Jodhpur Mistanbhandar             -Paneer Jalebi
  • Daulat Ram Gajak Bhandar -Moreana Gajak

Other Street food include Chaat items like Lambi panipuri(The puri here is oval-shaped) and Karela Chat(Papri chat in a new name). Tourists should never give this a miss as it is one of the attractions of Gwalior.

This and many more attractions in the city make it worthwile to tour the city many times over

Cover Photo by Nagarjun

Gwalior –  An Ancient City With Modern Trappings

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