The Mandore Garden is this hauntingly beautiful tract of land housing. All the ruins of the ancient royal fastness of the Rathore clan. The Mandore Garden, with its high rock terrace. This also houses Chhatris for many of the kings that once ruled from here. These cenotaphs are unlike any you’ll find in Rajasthan due to their umbrella-like structures. They have been erected by taking a cue from the architecture of a Hindu temple. Made of red sandstone, these structures are four-story high and have remarkable spires along with finely defined columns. The best dewal is that of Maharaja Ajit Singh. Soothe your eyes with the colours of this lush garden and red sandstone structures nestled on a hill outcrop.
Founded back in the 6th century, Mandore was earlier the capital of the Rajputana Kingdom. Set at a distance of 9 km from Jodhpur city, Mandore Garden is a major tourist attraction of Jodhpur. Mandore Garden is built around the royal cenotaphs (Chhatris) of the Rathore rulers. The natural charm of the garden makes it truly alluring. The garden is immensely beautiful and is studded with temples, lawns, galleries and high rock terraces.
After a while, In 1427 Mandore under the rule of Rao Rinmal Rathore. He was also the administrator of the kingdom of Mewar until 1438. The Mewar ruler Rana Khumba overtook the throne of Mandore by assassinating Rao Nirmal. During the assassination of Rao Rinmal his son escaped and tried a lot to recapture the Mandore but not worked. In 1453, Mandore underwent the rule of Rao Jodha.
An ancient town to the north of Jodhpur, Mandore is a famous tourist attraction of Rajasthan. One can easily figure out the significance of the place from a mythological fact that the demon king, Ravana, got married in the town. And to testify this event, here one can see a Ravana temple. This was built at the native place of Ravan’s wife Mandodari. Until 1459 AD, Mandore was the princely state of Marwar (Jodhpur State). Later Rao Jodha, a Rathore chief, shifted the capital to the newly found city, Jodhpur.
After many invasions, Mandore became the capital of Jodhpur kings. Even though many dynasties invaded the Mandore like Muslim rulers of Gujarat and Malwa. The capital of Jodhpur was changed to Mehrangarh Fort which is safe for the kingdom’s wealth, to protect Mandore.
This is the history of Mandore in Jodhpur. Even though it faced many invasions, it was there for us to experience the bygone era of Jodhpur through the architectural styles and royal cenotaphs.
What They Entail
As you step inside the gates of Mandore Gardens of Jodhpur, you will suddenly feel like entering into a different world. For, the vast expanse of greens and sudden peace will be the first ones to welcome you. The road inside leads towards the Cenotaphs. Instead of the usual chhatri-shaped cenotaphs typical of Rajasthan, the cenotaphs of the famous Mandore garden of Jodhpur, Rajasthan are built along the lines of a Hindu temple. They are four stories high, with fine columns and an elegant spire, all in red sandstone. The most impressive dewal is the dewal of Maharaja Ajit Singh. These cenotaphs are set in beautiful landscaped gardens. The cenotaphs of the Maharani are set on a rocky outcrop over the hill.
It also has a Government museum where one can find various artefacts belonging to the bygone era. The star attraction of the garden is the temple dedicated to 330 million gods. The temple houses pictures of various Hindu Gods who are worshipped all over India and abroad.
Rich flora and fauna of Mandore Gardens create captivating natural scenery. Royal cenotaphs in the garden are worth watching for history and archaeology buffs.
Hall of Heroes
Mandore Garden also has a gallery where one can find beautifully carved pillars and sculptures of Lord Krishna and the Gopis. The site also has a ‘Hall of Heroes’ which has 15 figures carved out of a rock wall. These figures depict images of Hindu deities or local Rajput heroes on horseback.The hall is dedicated to various deities and Rajput folk heroes. The statues of the deities and heroes are carved out of rock and painted in bright colours.
Temple of Three Hundred Million Gods
That is not all. There is a huge temple in Mandore garden, the Hindu temple with the images of several Hindu deities with beautiful paintings. The Mandore Gardens of Jodhpur feature ‘The Shrine of the Three Hundred Million Gods’ which is filled with brightly colored images of the various Hindu Gods. Moreover, the vibrant illustrations are present and depict the brilliance of the artists of those times. As you climb up the hill, you come to the ruined city of Mandore, with its old palace.
The Government Museum in Mandore gardens is another attraction. This museum displays the artefacts and the old relics of this region. Almost all the artefacts and things found in this area are secured in this museum. Therefore to experience the date back to the 6th century you have to visit the Government Museum.
Tips on Visiting the Mandore Gardens
- The best time of the day to visit is the morning or evening, post 4:00pm.
- Carry enough drinking water with you, there is no source of drinking water inside the gardens – although you might come across a vendor selling bottled water.
- Plan to exit the Gardens before it gets dark as there is no provision of lighting inside the park.
- Gardens are open from 8:00am to 8:00pm.
- There is no entry fee for the Gardens but there is an INR 50 fee for the museum inside the garden.
- Beware of the monkeys in the park!
In recent times, due to their beauty and historical significance, the Mandore Gardens have become quite the tourist hotspot. Barely a few kilometres from the frequently visited city of Jodhpur, the Mandore Garden is a serene spot, great for a family outing. The Mandore Garden now offers tourists the opportunity to be close to serenity while introducing them to the roots of the great powers that once ruled this land. All in all, this beautiful garden stands as a proof of the royalty of the serene town of Mandore.
If anything, this garden is very underrated amongst the places to visit in Jodhpur. And we must admit it is a little neglected as well. While the Mehrangarh Fort of Jodhpur boasts proudly as one of the most well maintained forts of India, the Mandore Gardens at the other end are crying for more attention.
This architectural marvel from the past will impress you with its rocky terraces, dark-red cenotaphs of Jodhpur’s rulers and its stunning green garden that displays a huge range of flowers and plants. One of the most impressive features of this red stone structure is the chhatri of Maharaja Ajit Singh, which looks stunning to write the least. Do not miss out on visiting this grand structure when on a trip to Jodhpur.
Also follow Rajasthan Studio on Instagram for more amazing travel content. Reach out to us on email at contact[at]rajasthanstudio[dot]com. This blog is curated by Rajasthan Studio and written by Samira sarin.
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