I was tired by the chaos of Jodhpur; walking from the last 8 hours. The disappointment was taking over my head. My feet are struggling for another step. I got to know why does everyone call Jodhpur, “The Sun City”. As the rays of the sun were getting harsher the density of my sweat was increasing with no sign of relief. Sometimes I asked, Is this what you call the winter season?
During all this, there was a curiosity to wander more into Jodhpur. The chaos was getting attractive minute by minute. Hence, I took the bus no. 7 to the Mandore Gardens of Jodhpur. I had no clue about the sight but only after I visited and came back from it, I realized how amazing the sight is.
Mandore Gardens Jodhpur
Having no idea about what it is I stepped into the unknown. Misguided by the name, I thought the place will be like just another Garden where people came to relax. But only in about the next 15 min. the answers were in front of me.
As you walk through the front gate there will be a sign of relief. Since the trees will cover you like a cap and the wind will feel like a gentle cushion.
You will interact more with “langoors” than humans. But don’t try to get friendly with them. These mischievous animals can be aggressive in a certain mood and if there are 100 of them around you, you can’t trust anything.
History of Mandore Garden
There is nothing more charming about Mandore Garden other than its history. The old capital of the Rathore dynasty, before Jodhpur, was glorified as the kingdom.
Over the centuries Mandore had a love-hate relationship with the Rathore dynasty. It was received as a dowry to King Rao Chunda of Rathore Kingdom. He took over the Junagadh Fort.
After many centuries in 1427, Rao Rinmal Rathore declared Mandore as a seat of Rathore clan. He then became the ruler of Mandore.
But then in 1438 when Rimal Rathore was assassinated by Mewar Ruler. Mandore was capture by the Mewar dynasty. His son i.e. Rao Jodha escaped the assassination and after several years of attempts, he captured Mandore from Mewar Rulers.
Then for many centuries, Mandore remains the glorified kingdom for the Rathore Dynasty. It went through several attempts of invasion by Muslim rulers of Gujrat and Malwa. To avoid this, the capital was shifted to hill-top in Jodhpur which we know as Mehrangarh Fort.
Cenotaphs of Mandore Gardens
Only after 10 minutes of walk, you will be halted by the famous Cenotaphs of Mandore Garden. The beautiful carvings on these Cenotaphs will bound you by your eyes. Your inner urge to know the story will increase even more.
There is something unique about every cenotaph here. There is a mixture of Jain and Hindu architectural styles. They are made out of red sandstone. Built by precision, these cenotaphs are different from any of them you see in Rajasthan.
They are dedicated to the famous rulers of Jodhpur. The biggest cenotaph is of Maharaja Ajit Singh built-in 1793. It is a marvelous architecture, giving you a glimpse of patience and hard work shown by early artists. Outside the cenotaph, there is the name of every wife who died as “Sati”. The number of dead women was 64. Hence, there is a bloody history associated with cenotaphs.
Right from the steps to its ceiling they truly depict the royal legacy of the Hindu dynasty in Jodhpur. The department which maintains the garden lets you down as there is little to no information about these cenotaphs.
Ruins of Mandore Garden
There is a ruined fort inside the Mandore Garden which is being slowly rehabilitated by the Archaeological Society of India. But the process has just started thus it is still open for locals to enjoy. The architecture shows how big the fort must have been.
It also gave a hint that there was a temple inside the fort boundaries.
Thus, visit the ruins of Mandore to explore the most offbeat sight in Jodhpur which is not as polished as Mehrangarh Fort or Jaswant Thada.
Where to stay in Jodhpur
Jodhpur is turning into a backpacking hub so there are many cheap stay options. But the main thing while choosing the accommodation is that you want to stay near the Mehrangarh Fort or Clock tower. This is the place with all the action and charm of the town. The cafes in the area are awesome and you can visit many rooftop cafes around the area. I will only recommend cheap stays.
- Zostel Jodhpur – It is a great choice to stay in Jodhpur since the hostel is in the prime location and you don’t have to walk much for exploring. They have good beds, and great service to go along with it. They even have a rooftop cafe overlooking the Mehrangarh Fort.
- Bob Hostel – It is a good hostel in Jodhpur. They have comfortable beds and have budget personal rooms.
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