A tour to the historic fort of Raisen

Raisen is one of the historic spots of the central Indian state of Madhya Pradesh. It is a town located within the Raisen district and serves as the administrative headquarters of the district. It is located at the foot of a hill and with huge spreads of agricultural land throughout the district, wheat, peas and soya bean being the major crops that are cultivated here. This historical city dates back to the time of 1200 AD, and till the fifteenth century was under the rule of the Sultans of the Mandu and then under the rule of the Rajput.

The Raisen Fort

Raisen derives its name from the Raisen fort located at the top of the hill, the actual name being Rajavasini or Rajasayan. The city experiences a tropical form of climate, with the three typical seasons of monsoon, summer and winter. The best season to visit Raisen is winters due to the mild temperatures and the pleasant weather. Raisen is one of the important districts of the city, lying in close proximity to the city of Bhopal. Hence you can first reach Bhopal through bus, trains or flights and then from there you can get many transports to Raisen.

The most popular tourist destination of Raisen is the Raisen Fort. It is another spectacular architecture of the Indian subcontinent, being constructed in the early medieval period. The fort lies at the top of a hill, at the foot of which the Raisen town is located. The fort stands on a sandstone rock. The fort consists of stone walls which has nine gateways and thirteen bastions. This historic fort is a huge structure, consisting of several buildings within it; which includes a mosque and a school. The fort is an asset of India and is under the surveillance of the Archaeological Survey of India. It also consists of temples and hence is an epitome of national integrity. There is a large reservoir within the fort premises, which proves the excellent water management system of the medieval era.

The Raisen Fort

Visit the Nidhi Soni’s house in the town; this house is sure to amuse you with its numerous doors. Among the religious sites, the Hazrat Peer Fatehullah Shah Baba is a very popular tourist spot in Raisen. It is the shrine built after the famous Muslim sage, Hazrat Peer Fatehullah Shah Baba; there is a belief that a visit to this sacred place will fulfill all their wishes, as the wishes will be conveyed to God via the sage, who is near to God. The village of Sanchi is also located near Raisen. This place is popular for the stupas built at the flourishing era of Buddhism in India. This world heritage site consist of four gateways; the carvings on these gateways bear the stories of the previous lives of Buddha.

bhimbetka-11
Bhimbetka Rock Paintings

The other nearby tourist destinations that you can visit from Raisen are that of Bhojpur and Bhimbetka. Raisen is a charming, small town which is sure to provide you a memorable vacation experience in the tourism capital of India; the state of Madhya Pradesh.

A journey to the land of peace- visit Sanchi

Madhya Pradesh is considered to be the tourism capital of ‘Incredible India’ due to its various types of tourist destinations; from mountains to lain lands, from glorious Hindu temples to the fine Mughal architectural efficacies. Sanchi is another facade of the tourism industry of this central Indian state. This is a small village located at the Raisen district. Known for its Buddhist architectural buildings, Sanchi is easily accessible from the state capital of Bhopal. There is also a railway station located at Sanchi and the other nearest railway station is located at Vidisha.

Buddan Saranan Gachchami
Buddan Saranan Gachchami

The most important tourist spot of Sanchi is the Sanchi Stupa. There are three stupas here, Stupa 1, 2 and 3. The Sanchi Stupa 1 is considered to be the oldest stone architecture of India. It was constructed by Emperor Ashoka after he adopted Buddhism, in the 3rd century BCE.  This semi hemispherical structure is built over the remnants of Lord Buddha and guarded by four gateways, also known as Toranas. The gateways are carved with stories from the earlier life of Lord Buddha and are known as the Jataka tales. The four symbols of the Stupa represent enlightenment, birth, parinirvana and the preaching of the first sermon.

sanchi

The Stupa 2 is less decorated than the 1st stupa and is believed to be built under the rule of the Suganas. This stupa is not guarded by the gateways and also consist of several carvings of mythological figures, like yakshas, human figures with fish tails, nagas and makaras. Stupa 3 was constructed in the 2nd century BC. This stupa is significant as it contains two stone boxes, known as the Sariputra and the Mandgalyayana. The box of Sariputra consists of two fragments of a bone, some pearls, sandalwood, crystals and some other stones. The box of Mandgalyayana consist of a single bone.

The 2nd Stupa
Stupa 2

Besides the Stupas, the Ashoka Pillar is another symbol of Buddhist architecture in the village. The unique feature of this pillar is that it has been carved out of a huge, single piece of stone; the stone is that of chunar sandstone. There are several Prakrit inscriptions. The Great Bowl is a huge stone bowl which was used to store and serve food for monks. This bowl has also been made from a single colossal stone piece. Another important pillar of the region is the West Pillar. There are several spiritual carvings on the pillar, like that of devotees, a Bodhi tree over a pedestal, flowers, deer park and others.

Ashoka Pillar
Ashoka Pillar

Visit the Buddhist Viharas to witness the life style of the Buddhist monks. These Viharas served as the central hub for communal activities. The single chambers served as the resting place for these Buddhist saints. The Modern monastery contains the relics of the Satdhara Stupa, stored in a glass casket. Last but not the least, do not miss a tour to one of the finest architecture of the Gupta period; the Gupta temple. It is located at the intermediate layer of the Sanchi hill. Visit Sanchi to feel the touch of peace and serenity.