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Dramatically positioned on the rocky banks of the Betwa River, Orchha was once the capital of the fiery Bundela clan of Central India from the mid-15th to late 19th century. This quaint old town with its enchanting palaces has hardly changed over the centuries and gives travelers a peek into the India of yonder.
Khajuraho, a small town in Central India and a UNESCO World Heritage Site, is known for its magnificent group of temples that are adorned with exquisite sculptural embellishments. Of the 800-odd sculptures that cover the temples it are the ones with the erotic scenes that are most famous and aptly give the place the title of ‘Land of Kamasutra’! A must see here is the Sound and Light show that narrates the story of these magnificent temples and brings the sculptors to life.
See author William Blake’s famous words, “Tiger, Tiger, burning bright, in the forest of the night” come alive at the Bandhavgarh National Park which boasts of the highest density of the Bengal Tigers in the World. The scenic park, once the hunting reserve of the Maharajas of Rewa, sits on a rocky outcrop with lush deciduous forests and marshes. The famous sub - species of White Tigers also originated from this region.
Arguably, India’s finest game sanctuary, Kanha National Park has an extremely rich variety of wildlife. It is said that the mesmerizing landscape with its lush Sal & Bamboo forests, grassy meadows and meandering streams provided the inspiration to Rudyard Kipling for his famous novel "Jungle Book ".
The only hill station in Madhya Pradesh, Pachmarhi is blessed with breathtaking natural beauty. It still retains its colonial ambience and has many relics from its British past. The jeep safaris take you deep into the heart of the Satpura National Park with its endless nature spots, lush greenery, waterfalls, mountain streams and a rich & varied wildlife.
Perched on the Vindhya Ranges, at an altitude of 2000 feet, Mandu, with its natural defense system, was originally the capital of the Malwa Sultans. Its magnificent fort is even to this day appreciated as an architectural gem. Mandu is also famous for its love story, that of the poet Prince Baz Bahadur and his beautiful consort Rani Rupmati which is today narrated through a cultural show held on the ramparts of the fort.
The ancient town of Ujjain, situated on the banks of the sacred river Shipra, is among the holiest cities of the Hindus and one of the four sites that host the Kumbh Mela which attracts millions of Hindu pilgrims. It was used as the prime meridian by Hindu astrologers, and was placed as the center of the world in numerous ancient world maps. Nearby is the small town of Ratlam which boasts of the Cactus Garden, home to 1208 species of cacti and the largest of its kind in Asia.
The beautifully landscaped city of Indore is situated on the banks of River Saraswati and Kahn and traces its roots to its 16th century founding as a trading hub between the Deccan and Delhi. It was also a princely state ruled by the Maratha Holkar dynasty. Indore fascinates with the charm of its architectural grandeur and historical enigma spanning distinct historical and cultural periods of Maratha, Mughal and British era. It is also home to the Daly College, founded in 1882, and one of the oldest co-educational boarding schools in the world.
Situated 25 Kms southeast of Khajuraho, Panna National Park is one of the premier national parks in Central India and was given the Award of Excellence in 2007 by the Ministry of Tourism. The location of the National Park is also important because its situated where the continuity of the forest belt, which starts from Cape Comorin in the south, is broken and beyond this the great Gangetic plains begin. Embark on an exciting boat ride on the Ken River which straddles the National Park to see the aquatic wildlife at close quarters!
Pench National Park is nestled in the southern slopes of the picturesque Satpura Ranges. The river Pench splits the park into two and is its lifeline. R.A. Strendale’s semi-autobiographical book “Seonee” talks about camp life in Satpura Hills and this place was one of the inspirations behind Rudyard Kipling’s “Jungle Book”. Infact many locations in Jungle Book are actual locations here!
Gwalior occupies a strategic location in the geography of India, and the city and its mighty fortress have served as the center of several historic Northern Indian kingdoms. Gwalior Fort, also called ‘Gibraltar of India’, was built in 8th century on an isolated hillock overlooking the town. It is one of the biggest forts in India and has had enormous influence on its history.
The tiny state of Goa along the lush green Konkan Coast has a distinct culture than the rest of the country, owing to the 400 years of Portuguese colonial rule whose influence extends from cuisine, music to the religion of this region. It also has rich flora and fauna, owing to its location on the Western Ghats range, which is classified as a biodiversity hotspot of the world. Goa is hugely popular with Indian & International travelers alike who come here in droves to enjoy its idyllic beaches, beautiful churches, coconut plantations, lush green landscapes and colorful carnivals that make it a perfect holiday destination.
Called ‘Maximum City’, Mumbai is the most dynamic and cosmopolitan city of India. Resting on the shore of the Arabian Sea, this city of skyscrapers & slums is called home by fifteen million people, from business tycoons to film stars to slum dwellers.
Aurangabad, founded in the 16th century & meaning "Built by the Throne") is named after the last great Mughal Emperor, Aurangzeb. Surrounded with many historical monuments, like Bibi Ka Makbara, a near copy of the Taj Mahal, and the famous Ajanta and Ellora Caves, which are UNESCO World Heritage Sites, Aurangabad features prominently on the tourist map of India. The Ajanta & Ellora caves include paintings & sculptures described by archeological experts as "the finest surviving examples of Indian art, particularly painting", and which are masterpieces of Buddhist religious art.
A wondrous mix of arts, nature and culture, Gujarat, has centuries of history and is unique in its geological and topographical landscape with mountain ranges, dense forests, vast expanses of salt deserts and a coastline running 1600 kms, the longest in India. From volcanic outpourings to fossil fields of indigenous dinosaurs to cave art and stone masterpieces, this region has it all. It is the one and only place in the world to see the Asiatic lions in the wild and on the other end of the spectrum is monetarily one of India’s richest states with a world class infrastructure in place for business development. Gujarat is also the birthplace of Mahatma Gandhi, that great apostle of peace and an iconic figure in modern Indian & World history.
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