It was long time after the Route 66 that I decided to ride back again on my Thunderbird.This time I decided to visit the last of Bundelkhand forts ie Banda fort,Kalinjar Fort ,Ajaigarh fort and Khajuraho .I took the opportunity of two consecutive holidays and planned my ride accordingly.
It was a bright sunny day and I left Jhansi at 0730h,the weather was cold however it was sunny ,it was one perfect day to ride .
Route - Jhansi-Banda fort(Bhuragarh Fort)-Kalinjar Fort-Ajaigarh Fort-Khajuraho.
Condition of road - Good fit for all types of bikes.
Road side assistance - Limited.
Eating joints - I did not have food en route just had tea at few places.
The first halt was at Bhuragarh fort .The Bhuragarh fort has no proper approach road and one has to cross the railway line with no crossing place one just has to take the motorcycle over the tracks..Helped by locals I had to took the bike over the railway track .Howevre I felt after the visit ,that I should have just parked it next to railway track and walked to the fort.
The Bhuragrah Fort or Banda Fort is situated on the bank of Ken river.It became part of Maratha empire as part of gift given to Bajirao Peshwa .In 1787, Ali Bahadur became the Maratha Nawab of Banda .In 1792 he fought a war against Arjun Singh and captured the Banda. It remained under Nawab's rule for some time.However Rajaram Dauwa and Laxman Dauwa won it again from Nawab. After the death of Arjun Singh, Nawab Ali Bahudar once again took the control of Bhuragarh Fort. The Nawab succumbed to injuries sustained during first battle of Panipat and died in 1802 .
Passage going to river front
Remains of main Palace ,the palace was blasted by british forces during capture of the fort.
Beautiful Ken river
Samadhis of martyrs
First glimpse of Ajaigarh Fort
The Ajaigarh fort was build in 9th century and gets its name from king Ajaipala.It remained with the Chandellas till Akbar took over the fort which was being governed by Rani Durgawati.
In 1674 Raja Chhatrasal captured Ajaigarh and remained with the family, till it was captured by Ali Bahadur of Marathas in 1800.However a mercenary Himmat Bahadur along with the british captured the fort.However due atrocities of himmat Bahadur as well as looting in surrounding areas he fell off with the british and in Feb 1809 the fort was attacked by the British.However stiff resistance by troops of Himmat Bahdur led by his danish commander Colonel Meiselback beat back all attacks.
However witty negotiations brought Himmat Bahadur close to British.The british generously awarded him jagirs and took Colonel Meiselback into there service with promotion as a Brigade Commander.
At the main entrance the Kalinjar Darwaza there is a beautiful dancing Ganesha carved on the rock.There are two underground cavers nearby .
Jain Statues indicates Jainism on the fort
Nandi with Shivlinga
Beautiful shlokas written and graffiti!!!! to destroy the same
There is a famous Ajaipal Talao .Also next to it is a colossal Shantinath which explains Jain presence in Bundelkahand.
After the splendorous journey through reserve forest it was time to visit the Khajuraho temples .There is large amount of material available on the history of Khajuraho ,so I will not write about it ,but I will share the photos clicked by me.i would say one should visit these temples at least once in lifetime and please give minimum 04 hours to see and enjoy the beauty of the temples.
After the mesmerizing journey it was time to say good bye to this beautiful place.Untill my next ride Ride safe Firm saddle ,Adios.