Agra is everything that India promises to be from historic architectural sites to glorious palaces…
The Sariska National Park, the abode of tigers in the state of Rajasthan, India, has many attractions within the forest reserve. Kankwari Fort is one such ancient fort located inside the Sariska National Park, which is a must visit for those interested in history and architecture.
Kankwari Fort – History And What to Experience there
Raja Jai Singh of Amber built the beautiful Kankwari Fort. Raja Jai Singh served as the senior general in the legendary Mughal emperor Aurangzeb’s army. Another interesting fact, Raja Man Singh was his grandfather, he was one of the 9 precious jewels of Emperor Akbar’s court. The architecture of the fort is thus of Rajasthani style of old times with huge arched gates, domes, steep stairs, and marble carvings structures and interiors. The fort also has a Mughal connection. When Aurangzeb had a bitter battle for succession to the Mughal throne with his brother Dara Shikoh, he imprisoned the prince at the Kankwari Fort.
The fort is set on a hillock and is tough to access without forest department permission as it is located in the protected area of the Sariska National Park. To reach you may have to hire a safari jeep affiliated with the forest department for the purpose. The fort though of heritage value is quite deserted as it doesn’t get many visitors. The quietness of the fort can be enchanting as one can stroll around at ease and absorb the grandeur of the ancient structures. Since Kankwari Fort is located on a hillock, one can get a 360-degree view of the surrounding Sariska forest from the top.
The Fort is far from human civilization except for few families, who have been living there since ages. The government is making efforts to shift all the inhabitants of the Kankwari village outside of the forest area as it falls under Project Tiger zone. The surrounding of the fort are the jungles of Sariska, which are full of wild animals, deciduous trees and bushes. Of course, the royal cat also lives in the vicinity of the fort.
When and how to visit the Fort?
Since the fort is located in deep interiors of the Sariska Tiger Reserve, one can’t visit it without help from the forest department safari and designated guides. There is a fees to be paid for the safari jeep and a guide for the visit. The Fort is open for public during the same timing as the Sariska reserve timings, which is 7 am to 10 am and 2.30 pm to 5.30 pm. The road to the fort is quite muddy and bumpy, but it can be a fun experience driving through the forest. One can see many wild animals like chinkara, sambhar, nilgai, etc on the way. There are two gates of the national park, the fort is nearer to the Tehla gate, but mostly tourists prefer the main Sariska gate for faster access. The fort is open from October to July for visitors. The nearest town with railway access to Kankwari is Alwar and the nearest airport is Jaipur, which is 88 km away. One can also drive from Delhi to Sariska for the visit. If you plan a visit to the Tiger Reserve, then you can book an extra day for visiting the fort.