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Junagarh Palace, Bikaner
Where is the Junagarh Palace?
The Junagarh Palace is located in Bikaner in the northwestern Indian state of Rajasthan. The palace is popular for its impregnable status, pulling in a huge number of tourists and travellers from far and wide.
How will you gain access?
The Jodhpur Airport (250 km) is the closest airport from the city of Bikaner. Bikaner has its own railhead, with all the major trains stopping here. By rail-route, it has links with Delhi, Jaipur, Jodhpur, Bhatinda, Kalka and Kolkata. It has got good road-network as well. The Rajasthan State Transport runs deluxe and semi-deluxe buses connecting to places like Delhi (456 km), Jaipur (334 km), Uttar Pradesh etc.
What are the timings and the entry charges?
The Junagarh Fort remains open from 10-00 hours to 16-30 hours on all days except Sundays. For Indians, Rs 10 is charged per head as the entry fee and for the foreign nationals, it is Rs 50 each.
What does the past say?
The Junagarh Palace was built by Raja Rai Singh in the year 1593. This is the only palace that is not built on a hilltop.
What goes behind the architecture?
Built-in red sandstone and marble, the Junagarh Fort is strikingly beautiful. The numerous small palaces, that are housed by the fort, are widely known for their sprawling courtyards and intricate carvings. Fabulous paintings and stone-carvings can be observed on the walls of the fort. There are 37 bastions guarding the palace. The interiors bear excellent mirror work, gold polish, enamel work and lime plaster. There are a number of beautiful palaces and buildings located in the surroundings of the Junagarh Palace like the AnupMahal, the GajMandir and the Darbar Hall Museum. The GajMandir is popular for its ivory inlaid bed, exquisite swing seats, silver chairs with polished wooden chests and cupboards.
What are the nearby attractions?
1. Lalgarh Palace
Built by Maharaja Ganga Singh, the Lalgarh Palace is one of the key attractions in Bikaner. The palace, painted in vibrant red colour, is a wonderful mix of the Rajput and the European style of architecture.
2. Har Mandir
Standing on the turf of the Junagarh Fort, the Har Mandir is no less attraction for the travellers and visitors. The royal chapel once served as the site of royal weddings and births.
3. Camel Research Farm
At a distance of 8 km from Bikaner is the Camel Research and Breeding Farm. The farm, one of its kind in the whole of Asia, carries out breeding and training of camels. The farm is managed by the Government. A visit to the farm is a must for visitors.
4. Shiv Bihari Temple
The Shiv Bihari Temple lies at a distance of 6 km from Bikaner. It was erected by Doongar Singhji in the late 19th century. Here, there are beautiful paintings to be seen and the bronze-made Nandi facing the Shiva Lingam is no less attraction.