The Chunargarh Fort lies in the district of Mirzapur, Uttar Pradesh around 45 kilometers from the holy city of Varanasi, which welcomes innumerable pilgrims every year. It is a popular belief that the Chunargarh Fort was built during the reign of one of India’s legendary kings Vikramaditya, the ruler of Ujjain in the 56 BC. Despite of being more than two thousand year old, the ancient fort has miraculously sustained the test of time and is a popular tourist destination today. During its mammoth lifetime, the fort has been under the possession innumerable kings and has witnessed several struggles and upshots. It strategic importance lured many great conquers starting from the Afghan Governor Sher Shah Suri to Babur, Humayun to Emperor Akbar who came to capture is architectural marvel. However, some succeeded some were thrashed in battles. To learn all about this magnificent age-old fort of Chunargarh, go through the following lines.
Location: Chunargarh, Uttar Pradesh
Built In: 56 BC
Built By: Maharaja Vikramaditya
Dynasty: Paramara dynasty
Chunargarh Fort Varanasi Uttar Pradesh
History Of Chunargarh Fort
To honor the stay of his brother Raja Bhrithari at Chunar, Maharaja Vikramaditya, the King of Ujjain built the Chunargarh Fort in around 56 BC. According to legends, Raja Bhrithari left his mortal abode and took Mahasamadhi at this fort. Even today, many devotees still worship the place and offer their homage to the Raja every day. The fort of Chunar in the course of time came under possession of several rulers. In around 1029 AD., King Sahadeo made this fort his capital and erected the statue of Naina Yogini in a cave of Vindhya hill, which was named as Nainagarh. Later, King Sahadeo also erected a stone umbrella which was placed on 52 pillars to commemorate the the victory of 52 other kings. His brave daughter was betrothed to Alha, the King of Mahoba and the place of their marriage is still there which is known as the ‘Sonya Mandap’. Apart from these, some historical records reveal that the fort was also renamed as Magna- Deogarh, Ratan Deo’s Burj (tower) and Patthargarh (by King Pithaura). Later, the fort came under the possession of Sher Shah Suri when he married Taj Khan’s widow. The British East India Company captured the fort in 1772 AD and converted ot into an arsenal. In 1781, Maharaja Chet Singh of Benaras gained control of the fort temporarily.
- Babur’s son Humayun attacked the Chunargarh Fort in 1531and was defeated by Sher Shah Suri.
- Emperor Akbar later in 1574 attacked and conquered Chunargarh Fort after the death of Sher Shah Suri. Till 1772 the fort remained under the possession of the Mughal Emperors.
Architectural Layout Of Chunargarh Fort
The Chunagarh Fort built in 56 BC exhibits a blend of several architectural features. A defunct sundial which perhaps was installed during the reign of King Vikramaditya is awe-inspiring. The fort also encompasses a deep well which perhaps was the only source of water for the inhabitants of the fort in its heydays. Through the west embankment, one gets a magnificent view of the Ganges. The stone cravings on the ceiling of the Chunargarh Fort are certainly one of its most astounding features.
Chunargarh Fort in Mirzapur is now held by the Uttar Pradesh Police. The government of Uttar Pradesh and ASI both are responsible for the mantainence of the fort.
Best Time To Visit
During the summers the temperature can soar up to 43°C in Varanasi. Once the monsoons arrive, the climate becomes mild and pleasant. The best time to visit the fort is during the period between October and March.
How To Reach
- By Air: The nearest airport is in the city of Varanasi which is just 65 Kms from the fort and has direct flights to many important cities of the country.
- By Train: Chunar Railway Junction is an important railway station in the district of Mirzapur. There are direct trains to major stations like Delhi, Howrah, Tata Nagar and Varanasi.
- By Road: National Highway 7 passes through Chunar connects the city of Varanasi to many important cities within the state of Uttar Pradesh.
Other Tourist Spots In & Around Chunargarh Fort
Apart from the fort the tourists can also enjoy the magnificent view of the sandstone battlements of Chunar that overlook a bend in the Ganges from the northernmost point of Kaimur Hills.
The fort of Chunargarh has been the center of attraction of many rulers and invaders. A detailed account of the history, architecture and several other aspects pertaining to fort has been encompassed in the article above. Read and gather all the information.