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iXiGOers Dec 09 2012

What can be a suitable itinerary for Sariska?

Reet Cheema DEC 10 2012
0 people found this answer useful Useful ?Yes

Sariska is one of those perfect weekend getaway destinations where you can go for a short retreat. But no matter how short your trip is, you’ll still need a proper plan as to how to spend your much awaited vacation. Check this sample itinerary out for Sariska and enjoy this holiday without any planning worries:

Day 1

  • Book yourself a jungle safari and head straight to the Sariska National Park and Tiger Reserve, ideally in the morning. If you’re travelling all the way to this place, you definitely have the unbounded beauty of nature and its many mysteries on your mind. Step into the wild and experience myriad flora and fauna at their natural, uninhibited best. Declared as a protected area in 1958, Sariska National Park is spread across 800 square km, out of which 480 sq km form its very valuable core. Being a part of the Project Tiger, it was declared as a Tiger Reserve in 1971, and is thus naturally home to majestic tigers, apart from leopards, wild dogs, jungle cats, hyena, jackals, sambars, cheetals, nilgais, chausinghas, wild boars and langurs. Explore its endless deciduous and arid forests while you gasp in wonder at sighting a jungle creature. Make sure to carry some light food with you as you won’t find any restaurants or food options inside the sanctuary. A jungle safari typically takes around 3 hours to complete.
  • You could then head to the Pandupol and Hanuman Temple inside the national park area. The region that is now famously known as Sariska was believed to have been a shelter to the Pandavas (from the Indian epic Mahabharata) while they were in exile. Pandupol is a reminder of this legend, housing the famous Hanuman Temple within its premises. The temple boasts of a larger-than-life idol of Lord Hanuman, in an unusual reclining position. This idol pays tribute to the legend where Bhima, one of the 5 Pandava brothers, lost a battle of wits to Hanuman. After this, he lived the rest of his life as a faithful devotee of the deity and this devotion is kept alive even today in the form of this temple. As though adding a greater air of Hanuman-devotion, the surrounding area is abundantly inhabited by langurs and monkeys, who the priests and devotees consider incarnations of Hanuman himself and are thus offered food out of respect.
  • After this, you could choose between the Neelkanth Temples or the Sariska Palace, depending on how much time you have. Of course, if you’re staying at the Sariska Palace, visiting the Neelkanth Temples would be a good idea.
    About the
    Sariska Palace: Before gaining the status of a Tiger Reserve and National Park, Sariska was a popular hunting destination of the royal families of Rajasthan. The Sariska Palace stands testimony to this aspect of Sariska, of its royal past and glorious history. The palace was a popular hunting lodge for the royal family but now serves as a heritage hotel for visitors. Walk around the magnificent complex, with beautifully manicured lawns and pristine exteriors, while the soothing interiors charm you with their lavish and luxurious ambience. Experience a piece of history within, with the several paintings and artefacts carefully kept around the hotel premises to add to its appeal. Dine in at their grand dining hall and you’re sure to feel like royalty themselves!

    And if you choose to visit the
    Neelkanth Temples instead, here’s a little bit about them: So you thought India could only have one Khajuraho? Pay a visit to these ancient temples, built between 6th and 13th Centuries and now in ruins, and you’ll be surprised at how vast and varied the cultural heritage of the country really is. Built in a similar style as the Chandelas built the Khajuraho temples, these are largely dedicated to the Hindu deity, Lord Shiva. But that’s not all. The entire complex offers a great insight into the confluence of Hinduism and Jainism, with a number of ancient Jain temples in the same vicinity. Intricate and delicately carved, the entire complex stands testimony to ancient wisdom that achieved such brilliant feats, especially in the field of architecture.
  • After a long day’s adventure and excursion, head back to your hotel for a hearty Rajasthani meal and some lovely cultural events.

Day 2

  • You can keep this day for heading to places beyond Sariska. You could begin with the Siliserh Lake which is pretty close from here. Just about 13 km from Sariska, this is one of the most beautiful lakes of Rajasthan. Built by Maharaja Vinay Singh as a reservoir for the people of Alwar in 1845, a magnificent palace and hunting lodge looks over the lake. Legend has it that this palace was built by the ruler for his wife Shila as a token of his love, which had since then served as a retreat and hunting lodge for the royal family. Carry a picnic hamper, while you look over the lake with a sense of wonder and sweeping tranquility. Make sure you keep that camera handy!
  • Your next stop could be the Bhangarh Fort, a spooky ruin with mystical tales. Just 50 km from Sariska lies this beautiful town of the 17th Century. Built by Raja Madho Singh, it lies now in ruins, adding a historic, quaint appeal to it. Legend believes that the fort is haunted due to a curse from a Tantrik magician, after which the town was abandoned. Visitors take up the challenge to test their strength of will and gut by visiting this place, other than of course experiencing its sheer beauty and grandeur. The complex also houses temples dedicated to Lord Shiva and Gopinath, which themselves sport beautiful carvings which you can explore. Due to its interesting myths and legends of paranormal activity, entry is forbidden beyond sunset, and most tourists themselves steer clear of its haunting and haunted aura.
  • You could then stop at Alwar for a good, hearty Rajasthani meal. A little shopping could be on the agenda too if you have the time, before you start heading back home.

With this in your pocket, your trip to Sariska is going to be not only stress-free but also absolutely unforgettable. Start packing, start dreaming and leave all your worries behind on this much anticipated holiday!

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