Bundi, not the Indian sweet which you all buy on Tuesday, but a small heritage city of southern Rajasthan which is just next to Kota. I planned to visit Bundi this August, as I have heard that this region still possess its gratitude which is fading from all other tourist destinations.
The reason I am saying this is because many foreign (even domestic) travelers are now complaining that popular tourist sites are becoming like Palika Bazaar of New Delhi (locals are becoming greedy). Well, I don’t like complaining, so let’s bring our focus back to Bundi.
This city is more than 1000 year old but from the late 13th century, it came under the rule of Hadoti Rajputs (Hadoti is a region where Bundi, Kota is, and the local language here is known as hadoti boli). Since then, the city has developed a lot, and anther fact of Bundi is that these Hadoti Rajputs ruled Bundi till 1947, for more than 700 years (one family). Now that must be a record as in India, stories of royal families is full of traitors who killed their king for the throne, but not here.
So before coming here, I had sorted out all the sites which I have to visit and even the right order. All thanks to Google Map.
And in this post, I am sharing the first attraction which I saw in Bundi, and that is Chaurasi Khambon ki Chhatri or 84 Pillared Cenotaph.
Chaurasi Khambon ki Chhatri or 84 Pillared Cenotaph is a famous temple type structure which is devoted to Shiva and was built by Maharaha Anirudh Singh or as they call in Hadoti language Rao Raja Anirudh Singh. Rao Raja means King.
The structure is as tall as a three storey house and built in the year 1683 AD. The main attraction of this site is its 84 pillars. There is no story mentioned here that why 84, not 83 or 85, it’s because in Hinduism, it is said that a soul gets 84, 00,000 chances to take birth on planet Earth as got created the same amount of species.
Many of the Bundi kings were raised by the nanny’s, and thus they had respect for these ladies and their children whom they treated as they brothers and sisters., So this monument by Maharaja Anirudh Singh was built to honor is foster brother Deva. That’s the information I was able to collect from locals, and it’s also on the entry board.
So while entering this temples, I saw some amazing artwork which on marble stones, two wall paintings, a lovely painting on the ceiling just above a white marble Shivalinga. The Raja Rao (king) must love his brother as the details of this monument are a fantastic example of Indian architecture.
Now in the temple, some locals were giving me details and even challenging to count all 84 pillars and said that I couldn’t. Age old psychology trick of saying on a man face that you couldn’t do this which makes one more anxious to do that. Well, it worked for him, and I started counting pillars.
So there are 48 pillars on the ground floor and 32 on 1st (counted three times) which makes it 80. And when I told them “it’s 80, not 84, and you win.” Then they showed me that the remaining four pillars are just in front my eyes. There is a trick.
I think I should share the method, but you might not like it. I mean I read it on Tripadvisor that locals try to play this game with travelers to count all 84 pillars (and there are) so let’s not take the fun out of it.
Just visit the palace and count it yourself. But you can check some pictures I took of Chaurasi Khambon ki Chhatri which you can view below.
Images of Chaurasi Khambon ki Chhatri
And with this, my 1st site tour of Bundi is finished. It took like half an hour, and I picked this place as this was the closest from my entry in Bundi, via Kota Highway.
I plan to share more posts in Bundi marvels like Bundi Palace, Raniji ki Baori, Sukh Mahal, etc. in coming week. So if you are planning to visit Bundi anytime soon, I have some great info for you.
How to reach or how I reached Bundi
I first planned to reach Bundi by flight which I couldn’t as the closest air terminal is Jaipur Airport which is 210 km away, So I booked a train ticket but for New Delhi to Kota Railway Station (Kota Janshatabdi Express) which is 38 km from Bundi. There is a railway station in Bundi (not a bad one), but it has limited trains to it.
Like my return trip to Delhi was from Madgaon Rajdhani (the fastest train from Kota to Delhi as it takes just 6 hours) doesn’t stop on Bundi Railway station.
One can also reach Bundi by road if you are 300-500 km away as the city is well connected with National Highways, but rail route is the best option here.
Beautiful and amazing!!
Well its just the tip of the iceberg. I plan to share 5 more sites of Bundi in coming weeks which are way more Beautiful and amazing than Chaurasi Khambon ki Chhatri.
It is :)
Hello. I saw your reply on the Michael Moore post. I am a big fan of him also. I am, as are thousands of Americans, a big fan of Bernie Sandersas well, for whom the DNC felt too threatened by and sabotaged his campaign.
I thought it was very interesting that you were mentioning that India would be modeling some of their political ideology after the US. We have freedom, of speech and written word, to be sure, but one must always be willing to pay the price. Depending on where you live,the reactions could be almost nothing to massive. I live in a very liberal, open minded, area so it’s a non issue.
I’m dying to visit India and Tibet. I was wondering where you would suggest starting as a first timer. I would also like to do some volunteer work while there as an act of gratitude.
Thank you for sharing.
Sure, it will be a pleasure.
So normally you will land at Indra Gandhi International Airport at New Delhi. Well Delhi has some amazing places to see but its dose not offer the real image of India. So I would suggest to rest a day here and move. For hotel, I would suggest to check Tripadvisor India as they have some great reviews and the best rates you can get from MakeMytrip.
So from here you visit Agra (Taj Mahal) and Fatehpur Sekri which is 250 km from Delhi. You can either hire a one way cab or grab a train from IRCTC.in. If you are opting for train, then I would suggest to book train ticket for AC coaches (not very expensive). If you are a group of more than three, that cab won’t be expensive too. (Around INR 3000-4000)
Spend 1-2 days in Agra and then move towards Jaipur, and enter Rajasthan. One the route do visit Chand Baori, in Abhaneri which is on Agra Jaipur highway route. FYI – A scene of 2008 Batman movie was filmed here, where Batman is poisoned in a stepwell.
Now Jaipur is an amazing city where you can stay for two-three days and then from here plan to 10-12 days trip of complete Rajasthan like exploring cites like Bundi, Pushkar, Ajmer, Jodhpur, Jaisalmer, Bikaner etc. 10-12 days are minimum
And if you have no issue with time, then give 8-10 days for Kerala which is the number 1 tourist state in India (Rajasthan is 2nd)
And some other popular sites which I know are Banaras in Uttar Pradesh, khajuraho in Madhya Pradesh, Hampi in Karnataka etc. And finally I would suggest you to grab a copy of 2016 Lonely Planet India as that the best guide I have ever read.
Hope I was able to assist
I could only count 80 at first and 82 in my second term but couldn’t reach to 84. And left without counting complete.