Posted in Entertainment, Little Known Zone

Mandu: A Gem in the Heartland



Mandu: A Gem in the Heartland

Posted on  by Kirti Patwari

A paradise for history buffs and art enthusiasts alike, Mandu is a small town in Madhya Pradesh, not explored by many. Brimming with rich Afghani architecture, this is one place to appreciate the beauty of ancient buildings. Taking you back in time in the most pleasant manner, Mandu is somewhere you can go with both family and friends, or even alone! The resorts and hotels offer a comfortable stay along with a range of exciting activities. Read on to gather all that you must about this quaint town. 

Places to Visit

  • Hathi Mahal

Tucked amidst the Vindhyas is this huge domed structure with a vivid reminiscence to ancient Islamic architecture. The entire construction resembles the figure of an elephant, and so goes the name. An absolutely brilliant building, it is made out of stone and exhibits extraordinary artistic excellence. It is open for visitation 24×7 and makes one of the most popular tourist spots in Madhya Pradesh. The beauty of the palace advances manifold during sunrise and sunset. It has now been established as a mausoleum for Darya Khan whose tomb has become prominent in this palace.

  • Jahaz Mahal

A perfect blend of Mughal, Afghan, Mesopotamian and Hindu architectural styles, the Jahaz Mahal of Mandu is a magnificent structure built in the midst of water. Floating as it seems to be, the palace appears to be like a huge ship on voyage. According to the preserved tale, the palace was constructed by Sultan Ghiyas-ud-din Khilji as a harem for his 15,000 consorts. 

The delicate carvings and on-point engineering of this building makes the visitors wonder of the skill that craftsmen executed without modern machines. The waters of the Munj and the Kapur Talao add to the serenity of the palace. 

  • Baz Bahadur’s Palace

Akbar and Jodha’s is not the only Rajput-Mughal love story that our history has seen. The tragic story of Sultan Baz Bahadur and Roopmati is equally stirring and has become a folk tale to be narrated all over Madhya Pradesh. And Mandu is where it originates. The beautiful Baz Bahadur Palace is figuration to it with Mughal and Rajasthani architecture complementing each other delightfully. This edifice, settled on a hill slope, offers a refreshing view of the green landscape that surrounds it along with the Roopmati pavilion that was constructed nearby. The detailed carvings at the gateway, the wide steps, multiple arches, the centre court with a rustic fountain, the pillars and the expansive rooms are all specimens of wonderful craftsmanship.

Baz Bahadur's Palace (Mandu) - 2020 What to Know Before You Go (with  Photos) - Tripadvisor
  • Rani Roopmati’s Pavilion

A must-visit in Mandu, Rani Roopmati’s Pavilion is another monumental building that reminds visitors of the moving tale of love mentioned above. The construction is one of a kind with artistic value paralleling that of the immensely talented queen. Consisting of beautifully built watch-towers and courtyards, it is a treat to the eyes. Besides, the view of the tranquil Narmada from the terrace here is simply astounding. 

Beautiful fort type architecture - Reviews, Photos - Rani Roopmati Palace -  Tripadvisor
  • Jami Masjid

Experience divinity dwelling in the seam of unparalleled Afghan art at Jami Masjid of Mandu. Its location at the top of a plateau and the sober and airy space makes it a peaceful visit. The most attractive of all the meticulous constructions here is the vast pavilion with parallel arches. Artfully concealed with marble and stone, the mosque is a construction of high praise. The ASI confirms that its construction was started by Hoshang Shah and completed by Mahmud Khalji in A.D. 1454.  

Jama Masjid Mandu, India - Location, Facts, History and all about Jama  Masjid Mandu - ixigo trip planner


  • Rewa Kund 

Sitting by the Rewa Kund at Mandu is one of the most soothing experiences you’ll ever have. And listening to its fascinating back-story makes it even better. The kund was constructed by Baz Bahadur to ensure regular water to Rani Roopmati’s Pavilion. The Kund is fenced with pillars and arches of elegant design and style under the shadow of which tourists and pilgrims can rest.

REWA KUND GROUP - Hotelvirasatmandu
  • Water Sports

For the adventure seekers out there, there is the captivating island of Hanumantiya, less than 100 kms from Mandu. There is a range of exciting water sports that you can indulge in here. These include speed boating, rafting, jet skiing, and parasailing over the calm waters of the Indira Sagar dam. Hanumantiya is a must-add to your trip to Mandu. It’ll add a refreshing dash of nature to the historical vibe of your vacay.

Indore To Hanuwantiya By Car Road Distance |Indore To Hanuwantiya Tour

How to Reach?


The nearest airport is at Indore, 99 km away. Regular flights connect Indore with Delhi, Mumbai, Gwalior and Bhopal.


Ratlam is the nearest railhead (124 km) on the Delhi-Mumbai main line. Ratlam is a major station and almost all trains stop at the station.


Mandu is connected with other cities by a good road network. Regular bus services connect Mandu with Dhar (35 km), Indore, Ratlam, Ujjain (154 km) and Bhopal (285 km via Indore).


Tips for Smart Travel

  • Check visitor’s timings for forts and palaces
  • Carry sufficient ID proof 
  • Do not disrespect the history and culture of the place in any manner
  • Try visiting in cooler months
Posted in Entertainment, Little Known Zone, Uncategorized

Rupshu: Level Up Your Trip to Ladakh



Rupshu : Level Up Your Trip to Ladakh

Posted on  by Kirti Patwari

Set amidst the mighty ranges of Karakoram and Himalayas, is the ethereal land of Ladakh. Most of you might know about its attractions and some of you might have been there too. In fact, the idea of motorbiking around the majestic mountains has become so cliché that it is on every other youngster’s bucket-list in India. However, not many know of the enchanting valley of Rupshu which houses some of the best aesthetics of nature in its lap.   

Rupshu Valley Trek, Rupshu Trek Itinerary, Rupshu Valley Trekking  information

A few days in Rupshu, a lush green valley lying in the south-east of Ladakh, can give you some of the most soothing experiences you’ll ever have. Your tour planner might not put it on your itinerary but it is definitely worth a visit. Do you ask why? Read on to find out!

Places to Go


Kibber is a small village with little population but abundant greenery. It is not really a part of Rupshu, but of the Spiti valley. However, it works as a gateway to the Parang La pass, one of the most scenic routes which connect Himachal Pradesh to Ladakh. A great start to your journey to Rupshu, the place is dotted with bucolic houses and furry cattle.   Located at a height of around 4200 meters above sea level, the beautiful village of Kibber holds the distinction of being the highest motorable village in the world. The high altitude and an impeccably pollution-free atmosphere of Kibber is a boon for sky gazers and photographers, who often stay here for days to capture the wonders of nature. Moreover, the metallic-shaded mountains that surround the barren landscape and green meadows are a treat to the soul.

Kibber Village – Highest Village in Spiti Valley – Mysterious Himachal

One of the most breathtaking spots in Kibber is the Chicham bridge. The bridge is Asia’s highest and runs over a 1000ft deep river gorge. Looking down from the bridge is a real spectacle. The village also claims to house the world’s highest post-office.

Chicham Bridge (Lahaul and Spiti District) - 2020 What to Know Before You  Go (with Photos) - Tripadvisor

Climbing on to the right side of the valley, one crosses springs and a small pass before reaching a pleasant campsite called Thaltak. From here one gets a complete view of the Kibber Wildlife Sanctuary area and the snow leopard ridgeline (one of the most probable areas to spot one). Thaltak is also a highland pasture for ibex and blue sheep.

Norbu Sumdo

Norbu sumdo is a broad valley which hosts the confluence of the Pare Chu with the Phirtse Phu at Norbu Sumdo. A river crossing here brings one to a pleasant change of scenery while walking towards the Rupshu plains of Changthang. The mountains around hold dull yet calming hues of gray and brown and the wetlands that lie at their feet make the whole place seem like it has never been encroached. This broad oasis with a river and greens, in the middle of a cold desert makes Norbu Sumdo a great camping site. This is also the most preferred route to enter the beautiful Changthang valley .

Following the valley of the Parang towards Norbu Sumdo ` | Nick Hardcastle

Norbu sumdo basically means the ‘joining of three paths’; one to Halne , one to Rupshu and one to Spiti. Walking on dry river-beds and crossing several glacial streams in this region will be an experience to cherish. Moreover, with herds of mules and wild ass accompanying you, this is undoubtedly one of the best Himalayan trails to trek on.

Kiangdom – Tso Moriri – Tso Kar

 One of the most beautifully painted spots on the canvas of earth,  the vast and pristine plain of the kiangdom lays bare contrasting its color with deep azure lakes of Tso Moriri and Tso Kar. Opened only 1994 for visitors, Kiangdom 

 lies at the southern edge of the Tso Moriri (15,000 feet), a high-altitude lake 27 kilometers long and nearly 8 kilometers wide. This lake is the breeding ground for the bar-headed goose, the black-necked crane, and the Brahminy duck. Exceeding the popular Pangong Tso in terms of scenic beauty, Tso Moriri will provide you the perfect click to upload with #wanderlust! 


A four-hour drive from the Tso, passing through an equally picturesque terrain, lies Tsokar, a salt lake which was once the source of nearly all of Ladakh’s salt supply. On this route, you’ll also pass through Kiagar Tso which is believed to be a part of Tso Moriri itself. The dusty road climbs on to Polo Gonka, a small pass that’ll take you to the huge bowl of Tsokar. Large salt mounds are seen scattered in the lake, and the water is obviously extremely salty. You might get to witness kiangs galloping around the lake, the native animals after which Kiangdom is named.

Watching the lakes tucked comfortably in the lap of the herculean mountains makes the visitor realize how ephemeral we all are.

Best Experiences

La Darcha Cultural Fair

A celebration of the trade and commerce between the Himalayan hinterlands of Lahaul, Spiti, Ladakh, Rampur, Busher, Kinnaur, Bhutan and Tibet, the La Darcha Fair offers a glimpse into the lesser-known, virginal culture of these hills, and exhibits artifacts, handicrafts and a wide range other exquisite goods produced in these regions. The fair is held in the month of August at La Darcha, Spiti every year.

You’ll find authentic jewellery, beads, vessels and other antiques along with mesmerizingly beautiful paintings and crafts that are unique to the Himalayan culture. Drool-worthy Tibetan dishes and engaging performances by the Tibetan Institute of Performing Arts are also major attractions here. 

La Darcha Cultural Fair

Interacting with the Changpas

Spending a few days in Kiangdom is a great way to get a peek into the Buddhist way of life. From the alleviating sounds of the prayer chants and the singing bowl to the simplicity of the staple cuisine, the culture has its way to enchant you. In the higher planes of Kiangdom, you’ll find Changpa settlements where natives live in yak-skin tents and breed yaks and pashmina, one of the most treasured trade items. However, Changpas have settled all over Changtang and have an indeed unique lifestyle to talk about. They work as hard as possible during the few summer months every year to relax and celebrate life during the winters.


Parang La

With spectacular views of rocky landscape and fast-flowing Pare Chu river, Parang la is the most famous trek route that connects Spiti to Ladakh. It is no less than a photographer’s paradise as it takes you through a delightful journey of differently coloured desserts from Spiti to Ladakh ending at Tso Moriri Lake. 

Best Time to Visit 

July to September (depending on the opening of the higher passes)

How to Reach

From Delhi: Fly/ Drive to Kullu. Drive on to Manali. Cross the Rohtang and take a diversion at Gramphoo to Chatru. Continue on to Spiti via Batal, Kunzum La, Losar and Kaza. Kibber is two hours from Kaza.

Spiti Valley Jeep Safari 2020

Hire a jeep from Manali to Kibber. For self-driven vehicles, high suspension is a must.

Tips for Smart Travel

  • Carry enough woollen wear to keep you warm.
  • Carry comfortable shoes, suitable for walking on rocky routes.
  • Carry all necessary medicines and consult your doctor if you have asthma, vertigo, motion sickness, or other similar conditions.
  • Carry your own water bottle.
  • Avoid littering the place. 
  • The absence of mobile network is an issue in Ladakh. You can get yourself a BSNL sim card (which sometimes helps), or use the local STDs.