Bhangarh: India’s Most Haunted Fort
Welcome to the eerie and spine-chilling world of Bhangarh Fort, considered India’s most haunted fort. The Bhangarh Fort has a mysterious aura around it and seems to conceal some dark secrets and mysterious aura, due to which the fort has been a subject of fascination for generations. Let us explore the history, legends, and paranormal experiences associated with this iconic fort.
Bhangarh Fort was built in the 17th century by Raja Bhagwant Das, who was the Raja of Amer and a general of Mughal Emperor Akbar. He constructed the fort as a royal residence for his younger son, Madho Singh at Bhangarh. His elder son Man Singh was one of the 9 navratnas (9 gems) in the court of Emperor Akbar. The entire Bhangarh fort complex comprises temples, palaces, and gardens spread over an area of 4 square kilometers.
Bhangarh holds a significant historical and cultural importance as it reflects the grandeur and richness of the bygone era. The Bhangarh history is quite interesting. How much is fact and how much is fiction is debatable. The place was the meditating place of a Baba Balau Nath who gave permission to Raja Bhangan Das for the construction of Bhangarh Fort on the condition that no construction should be taller than his house. This condition was followed by his son Raja Madho Singh who ruled Bhangarh his entire life. After him the reins of the fort passed to his son Ajab Singh. It is said that Raja Ajab Singh raised the height of the fort which became taller than the Baba’s abode casting a shadow on the Baba’s house. This resulted in the destruction of the Bhangarh fort and turning it into a ghost town. The fort today is a very popular tourist destination, attracting thousands of visitors every year not only from India but from abroad as well.
Bhangarh Fort is infamous for its paranormal activities and therefore considered one of the most haunted forts in India. There is another legend that says that a sorcerer named Singhia fell in love with a princess of Bhangarh named Ratnavati. When all his tactics to lure the princess failed, the sorcerer tried to use black magic to make her fall in love with him. However, the Princess Ratnavati caught him red handed in the act and ordered that he be executed. It is said that before dying, Singhia cursed the fort. Locals believe that his spirit still haunts the place and that anyone who enters the fort after sunset never returns.
Bhangarh – Location and Geography
Bhangarh Fort is located in the Alwar district of Rajasthan, India and is 90 km from Alwar city. The distance from Delhi to Bhangarh is 280 km. The fort complex is situated at the foot of the Aravalli mountain ranges and is surrounded by lush green forests. The fort is built on a rocky outcrop, giving it a commanding view of the surrounding area. The location and topography of the entire complex is very impressive.
Architecture and Design of the Fort
The Bhangarh Fort is an excellent example of Mughal and Rajput architectural fusion styles. The entire fort complex comprises several structures that includes, temples, palaces, and gardens. Before the entrance to the main fort there are markets lined on both sides of the path leading to the fort. The fort is built of stone having high walls and ramparts for protection. In fact the fort has a commanding view of the surrounding area as it stands atop of high ground.
There are various temples inside the fort that are beautifully decorated with intricate carvings and sculptures. The Gopinath Temple, dedicated to Lord Krishna, is one of the most well-known temples in the complex. There are temples dedicated to Hanuman, Shiva. Someshwar temple is another beautiful construction with idol of Nandi standing guard outside. The palace of Raja Madho Singh, with its beautiful gardens and courtyards, is another attraction to be seen.
Trip to Bhangarh
We were four families who visited Bhangarh a few years ago, driving all the way from Delhi in our own cars. On the way we halted at Tijara Jain Temple, then went to see Sariska Tiger Reserve Park, going all the way upto the Hanuman Mandir. Thereafter we reached Alwar in the evening and decided to halt there for the night. After some rest and refreshments, we went on a tour of the city. Alwar also has some beautiful places of interest and historical monuments. However, we could manage to see only the Bala Quila Fort which is also known as Alwar Fort.
The distance from Delhi to Bhangarh is 280 km. It is almost 5 hours drive from Delhi to Bhangarh. However, if you are not in a rush, I would suggest spending the night at Alwar if you are with family. You can take your time driving while halting for brief periods on the way you at Neemrana, Sariska Tiger Reserve, Tijara Jain Temple etc. From Jaipur, the capital of Rajasthan Bhangarh is 80 km. One can take a flight from Delhi to Jaipur and from there hire a taxi for Bhangarh.
Bhangarh – Best time to Visit
Bhangarh today is a famous place in all over India and abroad. The best time to visit Bhangarh Fort is from the months of October to March. During this period the weather is pleasant and comfortable. During summers Bhangarh and for that matter, Rajasthan can get extremely hot, and it is not advisable to visit Bhangarh during this time.
Though visiting Bhangarh Fort can be a thrilling experience, however, it is important to be cautious and take some necessary precautions to ensure a safe and enjoyable trip. The Archeological Survey of India has also put up a sign board which reads :-
Do not visit Bhangarh before sunrise or after sunset.
Cattle entry is strictly banned inside the fort premises.
Do not pluck kewda plants/tress (fragrant screwpine).
Here are some more tips to follow
It is advisable to wear comfortable clothes and shoes as you will doing a lot of walking up and down and around the fort.
Carry enough water and snacks as there are no restaurants, food stalls or any source of drinkable water.
Do not touch, remove or damage anything from the fort as it is a protected monument.
Respect local culture, traditions and religious sentiments of the locals.
Bhangarh – Local culture and traditions
Bhangarh Fort is located in Rajasthan which is famous for its culture and tradition. The Rajasthani people are friendly and welcoming, and take great pride in their heritage. Rajasthan is also famous for its vibrant folk music and dance. The local cuisine which is the traditional Rajasthani dishes like dal bati churma, gatte ki sabzi, and pyaaz ki kachori are a must try when you visit Bhangarh or for that matter any place in Rajasthan.
Bhangarh ka Kila
The Bhangarh ka kila has so many features and aspects to it that makes this place so fascinating, interesting and intriguing. Lets see how different it looks.
The Different Sections of the Fort. Bhangarh Fort is divided into several different sections with each having its own unique features and attractions. The main sections of the fort are the Palace, the Hawa Mahal, the Jauhari Bazaar, the Gopinath Temple, and the Nachan Ki Haveli.
The Haunted areas of the Fort. There are several areas in the fort that are believed to be haunted and spooky. The most haunted areas of the Bhangarh fort are the Palace, the Hawa Mahal, and the Jauhari Bazaar.
Despite its haunted reputation, Bhangarh Tourism is on the rise with people from all over India and other countries coming here in droves. The Fort is spread in a large area and it takes quite a lot of time to see the entire place. Some of the must-see attractions in Bhangarh Fort complex include the Gopinath Temple, which is a beautiful example of Rajput architecture; the Nachan Ki Haveli, famous for its intricate carvings and designs and the Jauhari Bazaar, which once used to be a bustling market back in its hey day. For those of you who are a bit more adventurous, can climb up to the top of the fort to get a panoramic view of the surrounding landscape.
Bhangarh Entry Fee
There is no entry fee for entering Bhangarh Fort.
Bhangarh can be visited only after sunrise and one has to leave the place before the sun sets in. There is a signboard put up by the Authorities that strictly says these things.
Bhangarh Haunted Stories
Over the years, many visitors who have come to Bhangarh Fort have reported experiencing paranormal activities such as hearing strange noises, feeling cold sweats, and seeing ghostly apparitions. Some people have even claimed that they have been physically attacked by unseen entities. These reports and stories of eerie incidents have aroused people’s curiosity and visitors continue to flock to the fort in search of adventure and excitement.
Bhangarh Fort at Night
The eerie atmosphere of the Bhangarh fort at night at night is not for the faint-hearted. The entire fort area is surrounded by dense forests which is shrouded in darkness. In fact the location of the fort is in such a way that it is surrounded by hills on three sides and entry and exit is only from one side. The entire place which is in ruins creates an eerie atmosphere that is sure to give you goosebumps. The silence of the night and the occasional sound of leaves rustling in the wind, falling twigs make it an ideal setting for a horror movie. No wonder the government has barred people from entering the place before sunset and to leave the place before the sunset.
Bhangarh Fort Risks
Visiting Bhangarh Fort during the day is relatively safe; however visiting the fort at night comes with its own set of risks. The entire fort complex is surrounded by dense forests that are home to wild animals. Leopards, hyenas and even tigers cannot be ruled out. It is also believed that the fort is said to be haunted by the spirits of the cursed tantrik and his followers may also be frequenting the area, making it a hot spot for paranormal activities. In spite of this if some visitors try to visit Bhangarh during the night it is advised to take extreme precaution and avoid exploring the fort alone at night.
The Supernatural Experiences of Visitors at Night
Despite the risks and the warnings, many visitors have been drawn to Bhangarh Fort to the supernatural experiences that are said to occur at night. There have been reports that people have seen ghostly apparitions, have heard strange noises, and felt cold sweats while exploring the fort during the night. Some visitors have even claimed to have been physically attacked by some unseen entities. Though these experiences cannot be scientifically proven, they have only added to the fort’s reputation as one of the most haunted fort.
Scientific Investigations and Research
There have been several scientific investigations and research studies conducted to understand these phenomena at Bhangarh. One such study was conducted by the Paranormal Society of India using variety of tools such as electromagnetic field detectors, thermal imaging cameras. Hey also used digital voice recorders to capture evidence of paranormal activities, if any at the fort. While the results of these studies remain inconclusive, they have only added to the intrigue and mystery of Bhangarh Fort making it more famous.
Bhangarh Fort is not just a haunted attraction, it is also an important historical and cultural landmark of India and a testimony to the architectural and cultural achievements of the past. Bhangarh Fort reminds us of the rich cultural heritage of India. It is therefore essential that landmarks like Bhangarh Fort should be preserved and safeguarded for our future generations. Bhangarh Fort is a treasure trove of history, culture, folklore and off course the paranormal mysteries. Visiting Bhangarh fort is an experience in itself that is sure to stay for a lifetime.