The Hill Forts of Rajasthan, total six in number got the status of UNESCO World Heritage Sites in 2013. These include Jaisalmer Fort, Amber Fort, Chittorgarh Fort, Kumbhalgarh Fort, Ranthambore Fort and Gagron Fort. Located in the undulating terrain of Aravalli Range, the forts are impressive for its tactical location, architectural brilliance, historic and cultural significance. Built between the 5th and 17th-18th centuries AD the forts belong to different Rajput Princely states. Each fort represents the fortified seat of power of the erstwhile royal dynasties.
Jaisalmer Fort standing guard over the Golden City of Jaisalmer and the Thar Desert is one of the largest hill forts in the world. Built in 1156 AD by Bhati Rajput ruler Rao Jaisal the golden-sandstone fort is settled atop the Trikuta hill. It is one of the oldest forts of Rajasthan, which still retains its impressive beauty.
The pride of Amer, Amber Fort is nestled atop Aravallis near Jaipur. The 16th century fort was built by Raja Man Singh. Overlooking the Maota Lake, the fort is a blend of Rajput and Mughal architecture. It was the royal residence of the ruling family before it was shifted to Jaipur. The marvelous construction is an epitome of the bygone Rajputana grandeur.
An icon of Rajputana chivalry and pride, The Chittorgarh Fort was the former capital of the Mewar Dynasty. The 7th century fort has had a tumultuous past. The fort is associated with many legends of sacrifice, honor and pride, a part of the Rajputana culture. The indomitable hill fort is also known as has preserved its awe-inspiring defense and other incredible architectures.
The Kumbhalgarh Fort is nestled in the Aravali Hills near Udaipur. The fort is known for having the record of the second longest continuous wall after the Great Wall of China. Built in the 15th century AD by Rana Kumbha, the fort has been a part of the Rajputana history and culture. The unique sample of military defence and architecture and also the fact that the great warrior Maharana Pratap was born here makes it a significant site.
Located 481 metres above the sea level on Thambhore hill, Ranthambore Fort is one of the oldest forts of Rajasthan dating back to the mid-10th century. The massive fort is now settled in the hunting grounds of Sawai Madhopur. Recaptured by wilderness and mostly ruined, the fort is now the abode of the animals of the forest, especially the Royal Bengal Tigers.
A unique example of hill and water fort, Gagron Fort is one of the UNESCO World heritage Sites. A testament of history and architecture, the fort was the centre of one of the wealthiest dynasty in Rajasthan. Surrounded by river waters on three sides, the Jhalawar fort is a centre of history, culture and spirituality.