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The only Jat kingdom in the state, the rock hard mud fortifications of its fort proved invincible even under repeated seige. Bhartpur is also known as Keoladeo Ghana National park. Before monsoon hundreds of these exotic birds roost and nest building activities start on the babool and kadam trees of the park. Water coming through the Ajan Bandh starts filling the various ponds and lakes of the Park.
As the monsoons arrive birds from every part of the country start pouring into the park. Migratory water-fowls, including the pride of Keoladeo Siberian Cranes form the indispensable part of Park. The water-fowls visit the park in millions during the month of October.
Vehicles are only permitted upto Shanti Kutir inside the park. The Electra Van of forest department can be engaged in the sanctuary, although the best way to explore the park is on foot or bicycles which are available on hire. Cycle rickshaws can also be hired.
How to reach
By Air - The nearest airport is Agra(55 kms). Daily flights to Delhi, Mumbai, Varanasi and Lucknow are available from Agra
Ry Rail - The nearest railway station is Agra(55 kms)
By Road - Bharatpur is connected with other parts of the nation by roads. There are regular bus services from Delhi(184 kms), Mathura(39 kms), Jaipur(176 kms), Alwar(117 kms) and adjoining areas.
Places to see
The 18th century fort by Maharaja Suraj Mal. It is loacted in the heart of the old city and the enterance is through a crowded street that leads to a massive enterance. The fort has a well preserved palace complex which combines Rajput and Mughal architecture. One can also visit the Deej which is 32 kms away the summer retreat of the Jhats. One complex is the Monsoon complex which has coloured fountains and it has the machinery which recreate the sound of thunder.
Jawahar Burj and Fateh Burj
A few of the eight imposing towers still stand erect within the glorious ramparts of the fort. Especially two of them –Jawahar Burj and Fateh Burj are of special interest.These were built by Maharaja Suraj Mal to commemorate his victories over the Mughals and Brirtish respectively.
KEOLADEO NATIONAL PARK
The Park is known as the Bharatpur Bird Sanctuary, and is named after the Keoladeo (Shiva) temple located in its midst. Situated in Bharatpur, the park is a four-hour journey from Delhi. It is also easily accessible by train and well connected by roads.
It was made a sanctuary in 1956 and in 1982 it was up graded to a national park. The park supports a population of 375 species of birds, numerous mammals and reptiles. During monsoon, rain water and water channeled from the Ajan dam inundates an area of nearly 11 square km leading to abundant aquatic vegetation. The park is spresd over an area of 29 square kilometers. In winter, migratory birds from all over world come here. The visitors include Coot Snipes, Spanish Sparrow, Red Crested Porhard, Rosy Pelican, Flamingo and the rare Siberian Crane.
In addition to having a sizeable population of Pythons, the park is also rich in Spotted Deer, Sambhars, Blue Bull, Black Buck, Jackals, Otters, Fishing Cats, Monitor Lizards ect.
This area can be best explored by cycles, which can be hired at the entrance of Sanctuary. Keoladeo park has some marked trails that take you around the sanctuary in a planned manner. The map of these trails and treks can be obtained at reception counter of the park.
Deeg (32 kms)
The summer resort of the rulers of Bharatpur, it is known for its Jat architecture and for the coloured fountains and pleasure pavilions that are contained within a fortified environment. In Deeg is the Gopal bhavan and has a beautiful garden. Bengal chamber has the royal chess room, the deeg fort has a glorious past to say and is sorrounded by moats, gateways and ramparts.