Attractions in Orcha
Mahal - Built by Raja Bir Singh Ju Deo
in the 17th century to commemorate the visit
of Emperor Jehangir to Orchha. Its strong lines
are counterbalanced by delicate chhatris
and trelliswork, conveying an effect of extraordinary
Raj Mahal - Situated
to the right of the quadrangle, this palace
was built in the 17th century by Madhukar Shah,
the deeply religious predecessor of Bir Singh
Ju Deo. The plain exteriors, circled by
chhatris, give way to interiors with exquisite
murals, boldly colourful on a variety of religious
Rai Parveen Mahal
- Poetess and musician, Rai Parveen was the
beautiful escort of Raja Indramani (1672-76)
and was sent to Delhi on the orders of the Emperor
Akbar, who was captivated by her. She so impressed
the Great Mughal with the purity of her love
for Indramani that he sent her back to Orchha.
The palace built for her is a low, two-storeyed
brick structure designed to match the height
of the trees in the surrounding, beautifully
landscaped gardens of Anand Mahal, with its
octagonal flower beds and intricate water supply
system. Skillfully carved alcoves allow light
into the Mahal which also has a main hall and
Raja Temple - The Ram Raja Temple is
perhaps the most important—though unusual—of
all the temples in Orchha. This is the only
temple in the country where Rama is worshipped
as a king—that too in a palace.
Chaturbhuj Temple -
Built upon a massive stone platform and reached
by a steep flight of steps, the temple was especially
constructed to preserve the
image of Rama that
remained in the
Ram Raja Temple . Lotus emblems
and other symbols of
significance provide the delicate exterior ornamentation.
Within, the sanctum is chastely plain with high,
vaulted walls emphasizing its deep sanctity.
Temple - A flagstone path connects this
temple with the Ram Raja Temple. The interiors
contain the most exquisite of Orchha's wall
paintings. Covering the walls and ceiling of
three halls, these murals are lively works of
art and include a variety of spiritual and secular
subjects. They are in excellent state of preservation,
with the colours retaining their bright quality.
Phool Bagh - Laid
out as a formal garden, this complex is witness
to the refined artistic qualities of the Bundelas.
A central row of fountains culminates in an
eight-pillared palace-pavilion. A subterranean
structure below was the cool summer retreat
of the Orchha kings. An ingenious system of
water ventilation connects the underground palace
with Chandan Katora, a bowl-like structure from
whose fountains droplets of water filtered through
to the roof, imitating rainfall.
- There are 14 Chhatris or Memorials to the
rulers of Orchha, grouped along the Kanchan
Ghat of the river Betwa.
Smarak - This commemorates the great
freedom fighter Chandrashekhar Azad who lived
and worked in hiding in Orchha during 1926 and
Getaways near Orcha
- 16 kms away,
is located this famous city named after the fiery
queen Laxmi Bai, who fought the British from here.
The annual Jhansi Festival, which happens in February/March
each year, exhibits arts, crafts and culture of the
Gwalior - 119 kms
away, Gwalior is full of palaces, forts and
ruins and makes the site for an interesting
- 170 kms away from Orchha is this World
Heritage Site renowned for its caves with the
Barua Sagar - Situated 26 km
northeast of Orchha, Barua Sagar is a dam created
on the Betwa River. It provides excellent views
area. You can enjoy a swim in the lake or go
for a walk in its beautiful environs. While
here, also pay a visit to the Pratihara temple
and the Jarai-ka-Math dedicated to Lord Shiva
and Goddess Parvati.
Events in Orcha
If you are here in the month of November, you may
participate in the local Ram Vivah festival, at the
Ram Raja Temple, when trained horses perform amazing
feats. In addition, the festivals of Dussehra and
Diwali are celebrated with great pomp and show.
There & Away to Orcha
nearest airport is Gwalior (119 km) connected
with Delhi, Bhopal, Indore and Mumbai.
railhead is Jhansi (16 km), on the Delhi-Mumbai
and Delhi-Chennai main lines. All major mail
and express trains stop at Jhansi.
on a diversion from the Jhansi-Khajuraho road.
Regular bus services connect Orchha with Jhansi.
Tempos and taxis are also available.
Getting Around in Orcha
Since Orchha is not a very big destination, it is
tough to find taxis and autos. To get around, you
can either hire a tempo, or walk, since the tourist
attractions are relatively close to one another.