Junagarh Fort is one of the most decorated forts in India and houses opulent palaces that give you a peek into the lives and times of the maharajas of Bikaner. Unlike most forts in Rajasthan, this one has not been built on a high rock and has lower ramparts and towers. This is indicative of the fact that it was built more for luxury than defense. The fortified complex houses many beautiful palaces, which are reflective of the various rulers who once lived here. Historians say that the Junagarh Fort is a living museum of arts that features an Indo-Mughal architecture. The red sandstone used in the fort is said to have been brought from Jaisalmer.

Palaces within the fort are built around courtyards that are conceived as public squares. These palaces include the Badal Mahal Palace, the Gaj Mandir Palace, the Phool Mahal Palace, the Anup Mahal Palace, the Hawa Mahal Palace and the Vikram Vilas Palace. The famous Anup Mahal is renowned for the exquisite usta work in Mughal style that is seldom encountered anywhere else. It is said that the Badal Mahal was built to please Maharaja Sardar Singh (1895-1911), who was a great lover of music. The blue walls of this palace are beautifully painted with white clouds (badal). The Hawa Mahal Palace at the top floor was built to enjoy cool winds in the summer season while the Gaj Mandir Palace presents a wonderful display of marble inlay work. Inspired from the palaces in Europe, the Vikram Vilas Palace was built by Maharaja Ganga Singh (1888-1943) and became the Darbar Hall, where the rulers held court. Don't miss the DH9 De Haviland war plane, which was presented to Maharaja Ganga Singh by the British government to recognise the contribution of the Bikaner State Forces during the First World War.

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