Alwar is a district in the Indian State of Rajasthan. Formerly known as the princely state of Alwar, today it is a dusty, provincial town boasting some remarkable monuments, palaces, museums, forts, nature reserves, festivals, Ayurveda practices and temples, that attract local as well as international tourists.
One of the best ways to explore the vibrant culture of Rajasthan and to get a peek into the interesting history of the area, consider indulging in some of the best things to do in Alwar which include sightseeing opportunities like Alwar Fort that dates back to 1550 C.E and the Bhangarh Fort, which is supposed to be one of the most haunted locations in India, along with other forts like Bala-Quila, Neemrana Fort, The Bala Fort and the Sariska Palace. Other top attractions in Alwar include the Siliserh Lake, Vijay Mandir Palace, Alwar Government museum, Sariska Tiger Reserve and numerous temples like Shri Mata Mansa Devi Temple, Jagannath Temple, Jain Temple, Narayani Mata Temple and Karni Mata Temple, just to name a few. Alwar is also home to some excellent local markets where one can shop for silver jewellery, handmade Rajasthani decorative items, wafer-thin pottery, terracotta statues, bangles, carpets and jutis. Alwar also hosts numerous festivals throughout the year, including the Kite Festival and the Alwar Festival. The handicrafts, folk music, splendid forts and picturesque scenery of Alwar is sure to take your breath away and show you a hidden side of India.
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#1 of 21 Things to do in Alwar | Added 1323 times in trip plans
Alwar Kachhehri, Moholla Ladiya, Alwar, Rajasthan- 301001, India
10:00 am - 05:00 pm
The City Palace or the Vinay Vilas Mahal in Alwar is the perfect example of a combination of Rajput and Mughal styles of architecture. This stunning monument was built by Maharaja Vinay Singh in 1793. It was the residence of the king.
This palace is a two storey building which is now taken up by many Government offices set up on the ground floor and the Alwar Museum on the floor above. This place is the most important landmark of Alwar which has now become shabby and is almost in ruins. The city palace still attracts people to its exquisite features such as:
The model of a drinking cup cut out of a single, raw piece of emerald which is priceless.
The beautiful lotus made of marble in the middle of the palace complex.
The Vishnu temples on all sides.
The exclusive mirror work on the walls and ceilings of the interior.
15 tall and 51 smaller towers overlooking the mountain slopes.
446 loopholes for musketry
The gates known as Jai Pol, Suraj Pol, Chand Pol, Krishen Pol, Laxman Pol and Andheri Gate.
The Moosi Maharani Chhatri, named after the wife of Raja Bhaktawar Singh. This is where she is said to have died by jumping into her husband’s pyre. Inside this place there are two marble feet strewn with flower petals, representing the feet of the King and Queen.
The Museum on the top floor that houses several miniature paintings of the Alwar School, miniature writings, manuscripts in Persian, Hindi, Urdu and other languages.
The most famous is the Bostan (the garden of spring), Waqiat-E-Babri (autobiography of Babur) and Gulistan (garden of roses). It also has weapons, ancient statues, sandalwood, jade and ivory objects. It also has a lovely silver table to serve the nobles of that time.
The most beautiful feature of this palace is the largest Durbar Hall. This has a small room which is a showcase of marvelous frescos.
Another fantastic spot is the women’s chamber which is also beautifully carved.
There is a two-storey carriage on the right of the entrance which can carry more than 50 people in it and is said to have been carried by four elephants.
The water lakes that are artificially built inside, has an uncommon pea-green colored water in it.
The company garden, known as Purjan Vihar which is a popular picnic spot.
There is the golden throne on a raised platform in the Durbar hall.
This palace is best described as the remaining of a golden era of beauty and grace of the ornate lifestyle of the Rajput Maharajas.
#2 of 21 Things to do in Alwar | Added 2714 times in trip plans
Aravalli Region, Alwar, Rajasthan- 301001
Karni Mata is also known by the names of Ridhu Bai and Nari Bai by some locals. She was originally the wife of Kipoji Charan of the Sathika Village. She later told her husband that she was not being able to concentrate in matrimonial life. All this went unheard by her husband only before it was too serious and she decided to leave home. Karni Mata even arranged the marriage of her sister, Gulab with her own husband. She, herself stayed like a nomad throughout her life.
Karni Mata is the family deity of the royals of Jodhpur and Bikaner. She was highly respected throughout her lifetime and is said to have blessed many kings and their families. Her first temple was built was built in Mathaniya Village by her disciple Amara Charan in 1472. Other important temples of Karni Mata were built in Deshnoke, Jodhpur and Bikaner.
Karni Mata is said to be the fiercest incarnation of Goddess Kali. Some people also say that she is an incarnation of Goddess Durga. This temple is also known as ‘The Rat Temple’. The mystery of the name will be cleared once you enter the temple and see rats all over the area. Moreover, the idol of Karni Mata holds a trident and is surrounded by many rats. The rodents are said to be originally from the Charan category, which was also the origin of Karni Mata. Some locals say that the rats there protect the temple from evil powers from entering into it. They are considered to be holy and are carefully preserved in the temple.
This temple was the most important religious place built during the Mughal rule. The architecture is stunning. As soon as you enter the temple you will see walls, large doors and pathways with intricate craftwork and designs all of the late Mughal style.
You will also find many rats drinking milk from a large container. The locals have so much belief in here that they even take the rats on their laps and feed them with milk and other different temple stuffs and seek the blessings of the Goddess.
This place altogether is perfect for God lovers with an exclusive experience of spending time with so many rats which you will not find anywhere else. If you see a white rat, then consider yourself to be very lucky. The locals say that spotting a white rat means that Karni Mata has blessed you.
#3 of 21 Things to do in Alwar | Added 4656 times in trip plans
Alwar, Rajasthan- 301001
06:00 am - 05:00 pm
In the land surrounding the royal fort of Kankwadi, is situated the ‘Land of the Carnivores’. This is the same place that used to be the hunting estate of Raja Jai Singh II during the 16th century. Here stands the famous Sariska Tiger Reserve. Initially, it was declared a National Park in 1958 and later designated as a Tiger Reserve in 1979. It comes under the “Project Tiger” program in India.
The Sariska Tiger Reserve is located in the Alwar district of Rajasthan. It is the best place if you are brave enough to experience an adventurous journey through the habitats of the beautiful beasts here. It is one of the most popular Tourist Attraction of India. The main beauty of this place is the Royal Bengal Tigers. Other than it, you will also find- Leopard, Jungle Cat, Caracal, striped Hyena, Golden Jackal, Chital, Sambhar, Nilgai, Chinkara, four-horned Antelope, Wild Boar, Hare, Hanuman Langur, Rhesus Monkeys.
The beautiful birds that you can find here are- Peafowl, Grey Partridge, Bush Quail, Sand Grouse, Tree-pie, golden Backed Woodpecker, crested Serpent Eagle, black-humped Flameback, yellow-footed green Pigeon, grey Francolin, painted Stork, Ibis, pheasant tailed Jacana, pied Kingfisher, white-throated Kingfisher, red-wattled Lapwing, ring Dove, spotted Dove, Spoonbill, Asian paradise flycatcher, stone Curlew, Rufous treepie and the most famous is the Great Indian Horned Owl.
Some of the other mammals that can be found here are- small Indian Civet, Palm Civet, Giant fruit Bat, Porcupine, Sloth Bear and Ratel. The reptiles here are- checkered Keelback, common Cobra, marsh Crocodile, common monitor, Asian rock Python, Rat Snake, soft-shelled Turtle and Whip Snake. It is a place of dry vegetation and the most common tree is the dhok. Other tree varieties that you can find here are- salar, karaya, dhak, gol, ber, khair, banyan, arjun, gugal and bamboo.
Many relocation efforts have been taken up to make some more developments to this place. The forest officials are trying to raise the number of tigers in this reserve. The best part is that there are now about 8-10 tigers which is much more than the number in the past years. It can be expected that the conservation project will continue being successful in rescuing the tigers from being poached and thus save them from becoming extinct.
#4 of 21 Things to do in Alwar | Added 3073 times in trip plans
Dhausa Village, Alwar, Rajasthan
06:00 am - 06:00 pm
Once, a beautiful town with palaces, markets, people and armies is now a ruined site. The Bhangarh Fort was built in the year 1573 as the residence of Madho Singh. He was the son of Raja Bhagwant Das and the younger brother of Man Singh I. After the decline of the Mughal Empire and the famine of 1783, the population of this place declined almost completely. This place is also known to be one of the most haunted places on earth and is called “The House of Ghosts” by the locals here.
There are two myths surrounding the fort- first is that it was cursed by Guru Balu Nath, who said that if the shadow of any building reached his abode, the whole city will be finished. It is believed that once a king built his palace higher than the saint’s dwelling and after a few days the whole palace collapsed.
The second story known about Bhangarh fort, Alwar, Rajasthan is that a wizard called Singhia who was bewitched by the beauty of Princess Ratnavati tried to possess her by replacing her oil with a magic potion. But the princess got to know about this and she dropped the oil on a boulder which crushed the wizard. Singhia cursed that Bhangarh will be finished and the following year there was a battle which killed everyone who lived there including Ratnavati. It is still said that the fort waits for its princess to return.
Once you enter the fort, you will find:
A tall entry gate followed by lush green gardens.
Beyond the gardens you will find beautiful little water bodies commonly known as ‘Bowli’. It is said that here people have noticed strange sounds of anklets tinkling.
Further down, there is a ruin called the Dancer’s Haveli. Beyond this is the Purohit’s Haveli which has various temples in it.
The main temples here are: Hanuman Temple, Gopinath Temple, Someshwar Temple, Keshav Rai Temple, Mangla Devi Temple, Ganesh Temple and Naveen Temple.
Another aspect of this place which is very attracting is that the fort has 5 different entries known as- Lahori Gate, Hanuman Gate, Ajmeri Gate, Phulbari Gate and the Delhi Gate.
Thus, this place is a wonderful view of the countryside in the Aravalli range. It is spine chilling with mysteries unfolding at each step and then it is up to you to decide after the visit if this place is actually haunted or are these mere stories of the locals here!
#5 of 21 Things to do in Alwar | Added 2244 times in trip plans
Lake Palace Siliserh, Siliserh Circle, Alwar, Rajasthan-301022
The Siliserh Palace was a gift of love from Maharaja Vinay Singh of Alwar to his wife Rani Sila. It was built around 1845 and served as the residence of the Queen. The Lake reservoir was name Siliserh after the name of the Queen. The lake was built to supply water to the district of Alwar.
The lake palace is now turned into a mesmerizing heritage hotel. It is the perfect place for visitors to Alwar. It is now owned by the Rajasthan Tourism Development Corporation. The location of this hotel over-viewing the beautiful lake is the most important reason for its popularity.
The Lake Palace has so much for you to enjoy-
It has 12 guest rooms, divided into the varieties of Luxury Suites, Air-conditioned and Non-Air conditioned rooms.
The rooms are filled with all modern amenities like attached bathrooms with 24 hours hot/cold water available, color TV, laundry, doctor on call and 24 hours efficient room service.
The view of the lake from the dining hall is just mesmerizing and to underline this effect, the hotel serves you with delicious Indian cuisine, especially lip smacking Rajasthani traditional dishes.
There are also large conference hall available for the visitors.
The hotel also arranges for pedal and motorboat rides in the Siliserh Lake.
The most exclusive facility here is that the hotel arranges for theme dinners in the artificial lighthouse set up in the middle of the lake.
All in all, the Siliserh Lake Palace is a must visit if you want a luxurious treatment throughout your holiday.
#6 of 21 Things to do in Alwar | Added 2498 times in trip plans
Jaisamand Lake, Umren, Rajasthan- 301001
Jaisamand Lake, also known as Dhebar was built by Maharana Jai Singh in 1685 while building a dam on the Gomti River. This was built for the purpose of accessing the waters of River Ruparel. The Jaisamand Lake is now the second largest artificial lake in Asia after the Aswan Lake in Egypt.
After visiting the lake you will get an idea of how religious the Rajasthani kings were. There are a number of temples around this lake, all built during the 17th century. The most attractive feature of Jaisamand Lake is its extensive area. The lush green surroundings of the place during the monsoons are simply a visual treat.
Once you visit the lake, you will also be able to admire the beauty of-
The summer palace of the Udaipur Queens which makes the perfect background.
The six cenotaphs with stunning marble carvings.
The beautiful palace with a courtyard, situated on the northern side of the lake. From the courtyard here you can get the best view of the sparkling waters of the lake.
The 12 pavilions lined on the banks all made of red sandstone and marble. All these are based on lovely lotus motifs made of marble.
The island in the middle of the lake which is said to have served the guests of the Royal Families during parties and celebrations.
The seven islands that surround the lake. One of it is still inhabited by the Bhil Minas tribe. Out of all the biggest is known as ‘Babaka Bhagra’ and the second largest is known as ‘Piari’. There are marble steps to go down to the waters from all these islands.
The beautiful Shiva temple located within the lake.
The sanctuary attached to lake houses cute little migratory birds and also the beasts like Tigers, Leopards, Panthers, Wild Boars and Crocodiles. This is made on the place which is said to have been the hunting grounds of the Mewar Kings.
There is also a game sanctuary, which has equipments for many water sports. You can also enjoy paddling and boating while you admire the, serenity and beauty of the place.
This place is a very popular picnic spot. Adding to its beauty is the recently built ‘Sunset Point’, which lets you take a picture perfect view of the sun.
#7 of 21 Things to do in Alwar | Added 1932 times in trip plans
Nikumbha Mahal Palace, Alwar, Rajasthan- 301001, India
10:00 am - 04:30 pm
The Bala Quila Fort is one of the oldest forts of Rajasthan. It was said to be built by Hasan Khan Mewati in 1550 AD. It is also said by some legends that the monument was built by the Nikumbh Rajputs in 928 AD. It later passed on to The Pathans, The Marathas, The Mughals, The Jats, The Kacchwaha Rajputs and at the end was captured by Maharao Raja Pratap Singh, the owner of Alwar in 1775 AD. History says that the fort was visited by Mughal Emperors such as Babur and Jahangir. Babur is said to have spent a night over here and he had also taken away the hidden treasure from here and gifted it to his son Humayun. Later, Akbar sent his son Salim there on exile for three years and a part where he stayed is known as Salim Khana.
The Bala Quila is said to be ‘The Pride of Alwar’. It is a shining example of bravery and graciousness of the Rajputs. The Bala Quila fort underlines the meaning of ‘fort’ mentioned in the ancient scriptures which says that it is ‘the strength of a king’.
The fort is situated at around 15kms from the main city and is at a height of above 300 meters. It is said to have been built at such a height so that every detail of Alwar can be viewed from there. The beautiful architecture of the fort includes-
15 large and 51 small towers.
446 loopholes for musketry, grand gates with striking designs and 8 towers to strengthen the construction.
6 different gates, namely- Jai Pol, Suraj Pol, Lakshman Pol, Krishen Pol, Chand Pol and Andheri Gate.
The remains of the Jai Mahal, Nikumbh Mahal, Salim Sagar Pond, Suraj Kund and many other temples.
The radio transmitter station and the army area inside the fort.
The beautiful Sitaram Temple, Chakradhari Temple and the Hanumanji Temple.
Ruins of a fortress built by Alagh Rai.
The most attracting feature is the view of the city of Alwar decorated with lakes. This place is an example of Indo-Islamic architecture and stunning craftsmanship. The scriptures inscribed inside are worth a visit.
Thus, this place is a page of history, which takes you 1100 years back to the delightful era of the Royals.
#8 of 21 Things to do in Alwar | Added 1511 times in trip plans
Moholla Ladiya, Alwar, Rajasthan- 301001
10:00 am - 05:00 pm
The Government Museum, located inside the City Palace of Alwar on its 1st floor was set up in 1940 by the then rulers of Alwar who contributed the entire collection of the museum, which included- 234 sculptures, 11 inscriptions, 9702 coins, 35 metal objects, 2565 paintings and manuscripts, 2270 arms and weapons and 1809 objects of local art, craft and old musical instruments. It reflects the history and grandeur of the royal days of Rajasthan. The multipurpose museum dates back to 1908 when it was not open publicly.
The museum is divided into three parts and all the three are large halls-
The first part has famous archeological findings. This is worthy of a visit with its large collection of sculptures and ancient inscription. You will also get to see awesome collections of skins of tigers, lions and leopards from the hunting expeditions of the royals.
The second part is the most important part of the museum. This houses Urdu, Arabic, Persian and Sanskrit manuscripts. The examples of the rare documents exhibited here are the Gulistan (garden of roses), Waqiat- e- Babri (autobiography of Babur) and Bostan (the garden of spring). There are also stunning paintings of the Rajput and Mughal origins and you will also get information about them to understand the styles of painting during the 18th and 19th centuries.
The third part is a pretty section that comprises of a rich collection of armory. It includes rifles, daggers, swords, pistols, shields, etc. the famous copy of The Mahabharata, painted by the Alwar School of painters is one of the most popular attractions here.
Other objects in the museum are bidri work, pottery and brass works and also musical instruments from all over Ceylon, Multan, Jaipur and Bengal.
Also not to forget the rare range of coins.
The museum is just extraordinary with the range of more uncommon objects like Akbar’s sword, and artifacts related to Aurangzeb and Mohammad Ghori.
It also has a Peacock shaped sitar in the display.
A visit to this place will take you more than 100 years back for you to get an insight into the ornate lifestyle of the Maharajas.
#9 of 21 Things to do in Alwar | Added 1492 times in trip plans
Moholla Ladiya, Alwar, Rajasthan- 301001
10:00 am - 05:00 pm
The cenotaph is a monument of love. It was built by Maharaja Vinay Singh, son of Maharaja Bhaktawar Singh in his father’s honor. This is also known as Moosi Rani ki Chhatri, named after one of the mistresses of Maharaja Bhaktawar Singh. Moosi Bai is said to have performed Sati by jumping into the pyre of her husband in this place only. After this incident, she was given the status of a Queen.
This monument is built outside the main palace. It is a two-storey building made of red sandstone. It is based on many small white marble pillars. There are also many domed pavilions on the ground floor.
The Bengali styled arches and the just opposite red and white color just increases the grandeur of the beautiful monument. You can also find the following features here:
A line of tanks known as ‘Ghats’ surrounding this building along with houses of local families.
The ceiling of the dome is decorated with inscriptions from The Ramayana and The Bhagavad Geeta.
Inside the building there are raised footprints of the couple covered with flower petals and candles left by the visitors, especially women who come to pray over here.
There is also said to be a small hole, from where water is taken out for prayer purposes.
The remaining of some beautiful sculptures and paintings of horsemen and other blue and gold geometric motifs.
#10 of 21 Things to do in Alwar | Added 1151 times in trip plans
Sector 7, Alwar, Rajasthan- 301001
09:00 am - 05:00 pm
Purjan Vihar is one of the landmark attractions of Alwar. It was initially known as The Company Gardens. Later, Maharaja Jai Singh changed its name to Purjan Vihar. The first stone was laid during the rule of Maharaja Shivdan Singh is 1868 and was at last completed into a large vaulted structure by Maharaja Mangal Singh.
The structure was mainly built to prevent the strong sun rays from entering into the garden and escaping from the heat of the deserts. This was named as ‘Shimla House’, which means house of summer.
The garden is located in the complex of the City Palace of Alwar and is an attractive part of it. It serves as a very popular tourist attraction and a picnic spot by the locals. The garden is famous for-
Intrinsic visual beauty.
The splendid lush green lawns that relax your eyes. The lawns were created in the 19th century and surprisingly still remain just as beautiful as they were a 100 years back.
There are beautiful pathways laid out for you to enjoy the scenery while you take a walk amidst the garden.
This place is surely a colorful and fresh treat to the eyes in the middle of the sandy deserts. The beauty of this place strongly attracts the tourists who come to Alwar.
The food is great in this main road restaurant, which offers a wide variety of vegetarian and aneer dishes. The place is popular amongst local people, especially business people meeting over business lunches, and couples. The ambience is a bit gloomy, but the food makes up for it.
In a city not known for its vibrant nightlife, the theatre makes for an evening out entertainment. One can watch the productions from the theatre and enjoy a night out and about town. This is probably one of the best entertainment options one has in Alwar.
This is the best restaurant which offers home cooked Indian meals and a variety of cuisines, including vegetarian. The food is just great and many patrons are repeat visitors, due to the tasty meals offered. This is definitely a must visit restaurant in Alwar.