Lal Bagh Palace, Raj Wada, Kanch Mandir,
Central Museum, Chattris etc.
Best Time To Visit :
October to March
Indore, the second largest city in Madhya Pradesh is also called the
commercial capital of the state. A big city in the Malwa region of Central
India, Indore lies just south of the Satpura range. Situated at the
confluence of the Saraswati and Kham rivers, Indore was an important
stopover for the pilgrims to Omkareshwar and Ujjain. In the 18th century,
Indore became the capital of the Holkar dynasty, under Malhar Rao. Later,
Rao's daughter-in-law Ahilya Bai, took control over the state, which at its
height stretched up to Punjab. Once served as the princely state of Indore,
the city is now the administrative headquarters of the Indore District.
Nowadays, Ujjain is the biggest business and commercial centre of the
region. Despite its commercial significance, Indore still draws large number
of common travellers as well. In the city you will see a number of
picturesque palaces, interesting temples, well-managed museums and many
other attractions. So, visit the commercial hub of Madhya Pradesh for seeing
its historic as well as modern attractions on your own.
How to Reach Indore
By Air :
Devi Ahilyabai Holkar Airport, Indore is located
10 km out of the city centre. Indian Airlines, Jet Airways and several other
airlines offer flights from Indore to Mumbai, Bhopal, Delhi, Ahmedabad,
Hyderabad, Kolkata, Jaipur and other important cities of India. From the
airport auto-rickshaws are available for various parts of the city.
By Train :
Indore Junction is an important
railway station on the Central railway. In the Indore city both meter gauge
and broad gauge railway tracks are operational. A number of trains are
available to Indore from Mumbai, Delhi, Kolkata, Chennai, Pune, Ahmedabad
and other major towns of India.
By Bus :
National and State Highways connect Indore with
important destinations of Madhya Pradesh and neighbouring states. Regular
bus services are available from Indore to Bhopal, Barwani, Ujjain, Khargaon,
Dhar, Dewas, Ratlam and Jhabua.
Local Transport :
Local modes of transport available in
Indore city include city buses, mini buses, auto-rickshaws and tempos.
Places Where You Can Stay
Most of the hotels in Indore cater for needs of business travellers and
dotted around the suburb of Tukoganj, 1 km east of the railway station. All
the hotels in Indore offer good accommodation facilities at cheaper rates.
Some of the noted hotels of city include Indotel Manor House, MPTDC Tourist
Bungalow, Hotel Neelam, Hotel Payal, Hotel President, Hotel Purva, Hotel
Surya, Hotel Shreemaya and Hotel Samrat.
Tourist Attractions in Indore
Lal Bagh Palace :
Lal Bagh Palace is situated on the banks
of the Kham river. The palace took two generations of the Holkar family
around 30 years to complete. In the year 1987, the state government
inherited the property and installed a small museum in the reception hall
and renamed it as the Nehru centre. The main entrance to the palace is
through a pair of grandiose wrought iron gates, which bear the motto of
Holkar family "Success attends he who strives" inscribed in Hindi
below. One of the rooms of the palace contains a fine collection of tribal
artefacts including terracotta votive statues, clothes, jewellery, murals
and brass stricture.
Raj Wada :
Raj Wada, the Holkara's old palace
is the principal landmark of Indore city. Constructed in the style of a
western Indian town house, Raj Wada has seven-storey gateway. Raj Wada's
upper floors were originally made of wood, which made it more prone to fire,
most of the palace was collapsed after the last fire in 1984. Now only the
facade and the family temple located just inside the main courtyard survive.
Kanch Mandir and Bazaars :
Kanch Mandir or Mirror Temple
is one of the most eccentric religious monuments of Indore city. The
interior of the temple is dotted with multi-coloured glass mosaics while the
entrance hall is lined by vivid tableaux. The bazaars in the vicinity of
Kanch Mandir are great for stroll in the evening. You will find the rows of
stalls and open-fronted shops in the bazaars. Sarafa Bazaar, the gold and
silver jewellery market is Indore's most famous market.
Central Museum :
Indore's Central Museum lies in the
south-eastern part of the city, near the GPO. The museum displays a large
collection of finds from nearby prehistoric sites, fine Jain and Hindu
sculpture from the ruined 11th and 12th centuries temples at Hinalajgarh.
The downstairs gallery of the museum houses a handful of priceless Harappan
terracottas excavated at Mohen Jodaro, now in Southern Pakistan.
The chattris of memorial tombs of the former
rulers of Indore region are now neglected. The chattris stand in the Chattri
Bagh on the banks of the river Khan. The two main concentrations of chhatris
are adjacent to the riverside fruit and vegetable market. Several exotic,
onion-shaped cenotaphs dotted around the Indore city are dedicated to former
Holker rulers and their family members. The cenotaph of Malhar Rao Holkar I,
founder of the Holkar dynasty is the most impressive.
Tourist Attractions Around Indore
Situated 55 km north of Indore, Ujjain is one of
India's seven holiest cities. Set on the banks of the Sacred river Shipra,
Ujjain plays host every 12 years to the country's largest religious
gathering the Kumbh Mela. Ujjain is home to a number of Hindu temples and
also known for its ghats where devotees perform pooja.
A bustling market town, Dhar is 65 km west of
Indore. Dhar was founded by Raja Bhoj, the legendary founder of Bhopal and
Mandu. The place was also the capital of Malwa until Mandu rose to power.
From the ramparts of Dhar's well preserved fort you will get the excellent
views of the surroundings. Dhor also houses the large stone Bhojashala
mosque and tomb of the Muslim saint Kamal Maula.
Omkareshwar island is 80 km from Indore and
is one of the most sacred Hindu sites in central India. Set along the
Narmada river, Omkareshwar was said to be the site of two of India's 12
great Shiva temples which were later destroyed by Mahmud Gazni in 1024 AD.
Today the temples on the island and nearby river banks are no more but there
are still some very fine buildings to be seen.
The medieval ghost-town of Mandu is located at a
distance of 98 km from Indore. Set against the rugged backdrop of the Vidhya
hills, the Mandu fort is one of central India's most atmospheric historical
monuments. Elegant Muslim Palaces, mosques and onion-domed mausoleums are
other attractions of Mandu.
Maheshwar lies 100 km away from Indore on the
banks of the Narmada river. The chattri of Maharani Ahalya Bai, who died in
1795 is situated here. Ahalya Bai was the widow of Malhar Rao Holkar's son
and after his death she ruled with great ability.