Introduction:

Orchha literally means ‘hidden’ and this small village is just that, secluded and away from civilisation and still having an old age charm and we felt this, the minute we arrived here. Situated 20 Kilometres across the state border from Jhansi, this charming place lures many foreign tourists and comparatively fewer Indian tourists. This former Bundela capital is a small village on the banks of the river Betwa with more hotels and restaurants than people. The founders of Orchha wanted it hidden from enemies and hence the name.

History:

‘Bund’ literally means drop and that is where the Bundelas get their name from, a drop of blood. Legend has it that a Rajput prince, Hemkaran, who was unjustly robbed of his lands by his half-brothers, retreated to the Vindhya mountain range. He hoped to secure a boon from the goddess, Vindhyavasini, who resided in that range. But, despite spending much time in meditation, Hemkaran received no sign of a blessing from the goddess. Disappointed, he tried to end his life by beheading himself with his sword. He raised his sword and brought it down in an instant, but no sooner had the sword touched his skin than the goddess stopped him. However, a drop (Bund) of blood had already fallen on the ground. The goddess, pleased with his devotion, gave him a boon that from that drop of blood on the ground would arise a brave son who would conquer lands far and wide and earn glory for himself and his dynasty. This sacrificial act earned him the name ‘Bundela’ and his lineage is also known hence. This mythical account was probably used by the Bundela kings to lend some divine linkage to the origin of their dynasty (just like the Chandelas did).

In reality though, the Bundelas trace their descent to the Rajputs of Banaras. In the 11th century, the Bundelas, who struggled to face the Muslim invaders, eventually shifted from Banaras to a region now called Bundelkhand. But their capital, Garkhundar was under attack as it was strategically important but vulnerable; this created the need for a less vulnerable capital. The Bundela king, Rudra Pratap made Orchha his capital in the 16th century by building a walled palace atop a secluded mound near the river Betwa and thus began the story of Orchha. But, it was under the rule of his grandson, Vir Singh Deo, that the capital reached its zenith in terms of art, literature and architecture. He is said to have 52 monuments built on his 52nd birthday. Though a vassal, he maintained cordial relations with the Mughal emperor of his time, Jehangir, who let Vir Singh exert his control over Orchha. Vir Singh even built Jehangir Mahal to honour the Mughal emperor during his visit to Orchha. After enjoying a prominent status during the reign of the Bundelas till the shifting of the capital to Tikamgarh in the 18th century, Orchha once again became a hidden, forgotten place. Most events during the British rule focussed more on Jhansi than Orchha. Present day Orchha still has a few buildings remnant of its glorious past.

Best season to visit:

Unless you want a good tan, we suggest you visit Orchha between the months of July to February. You could choose to visit Orchha during the Ram Navami festival, usually held during Mid-April. This festival celebrates the birth of the Hindu god-king Ram and is held with great pomp and show; the small village is thronged by thousands of devotees at this time.

Tip: One remarkable thing is that inside the palace complex, you can hardly feel the heat, it is because of the material of the stones used in its construction and the type of construction itself.

How to reach:

Orchha is very easily accessible from Jhansi, which is a major railway and bus junction. There are various modes of transport from Jhansi to Orchha – Taxi, Bus, Auto and Vikram/Share-auto which basically is the Indian version of going Dutch. The fare collected is on a per person basis. A bus trip would cost you 30 INR per person one way, an auto would 150 one way, a share auto would 20 INR one way. Note that all these fares are from the Bus stand at Jhansi. There is no railway station at Orchha and the nearest railway station is at Jhansi.

Tip: For those of you wanting to experience the clichéd ‘real India’, share-auto (also called Vikram or Tempo) is the way to go. For a better and faster travel experience, you can offer to pay for an extra person for the extra leg room.

Getting out is easy, you have so many buses that ply regularly from Tikamgarh to Jhansi that pass through Orchha, and it is easy to flag down one. Buses are less frequent after 10 PM though and there aren’t any after 11. There are also buses available to and from Khajuraho.

Accommodation:

Though a small village, Orchha offers quite a number of rooms, many of them on the higher side. The state-run heritage hotel, Sheesh Mahal, which is right next to the palace complex is an excellent choice for those who can afford it. As many tourists do, we stayed at Jhansi and not at Orchha. It was easier as our train was from Jhansi, though most hotels in Jhansi are not professional enough, but since we were merely halting for the night, we did not bother much about the state of hotels.

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That is Sheesh Mahal on the right

Food:

Before we delve into the specifics, we would like to just say one thing – Go for Sheesh Mahal and you will never regret it, food is simply awesome here and you will save a lot of time as it is in the palace complex. That being said, Orchha does not offer a wide variety of cuisines, although a few dishes may crop up on the menu. We even saw local spices being sold in most shops, but they were not of any recognisable brand, so it is better that you think twice before buying these.

Transport:

Since it is a small village, you can cover all places on foot. You do not need a separate medium of transportation inside Orchha. If you must, you could hire Trickshaws, do not go for the one-day sightseeing tours that are on offer, they simply are not worth it.

Sights and places to see:

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Map of the Palace complex

Though there are many places to see in and around the palace complex, they are quite nearby and in this post we will try to focus more on the unique spots rather than on the ones which have the same style of architecture.

Our tour started with the Raja Mahal, it is in the palace complex and is a good place to start the tour. Its building was started in the time of the king Rudra Pratap Singh, but was completed only during the reign of his son. There is a fusion of Hindu and Muslim (Mughal specifically) architecture in this palace. Make sure to carry lots of water as there is no water (or restroom) facility available in Raja Mahal. The entry ticket to the complex costs 10 INR for Indians.

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Raja Mahal and the stone wall around it

We hired a guide for 300 INR and he was well worth the money as he showed us the entire complex patiently and clicked our couple pics too. As explained by our guide, there are three portions of the Mahal: Diwaan-e-Aam, Diwaan-e-Khaas and the Family Courtyards.

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Diwaan-e-Aam

The Mughal inspired Diwaan-e-Aam or Durbar-e-Aam, in the northern corner, is an assembly for the Aam junta (common man) to gather and be heard by the king. On one end of the hall which looked like it could seat 100 people at once, is an elevated pedestal on which the king probably sat to listen to his subjects on everyday issues.

There is a lot of graffiti on the walls of this heritage place and this really saddened us. We really wished there were stricter rules in place to prevent offenders from defacing such places of historical importance.

 

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Diwaan-e-Khas on the left

 

The eastern entrance leads to the Diwaan-e-Khaas or Durbar-e-Khaas on the left, this was the hall for the council of ministers; issues of strategic and military nature were discussed here by the king. Our guide showed us this cool escape route from inside that led to the forests nearby. Just opposite the Diwaan-e-Khas is a stage where the dancers including the famous Rai Parveen supposedly performed.

From this fortress of not-so-much solitude, we proceeded on to the Family courtyards where there were private quarters for the king and his wives. We suppose that the room on the right side of the ground floor (from where we entered) belonged to the queen of king Madhukar Shah, son of Vir Singh Deo and the third ruler of Orchha, as it was filled with beautiful murals depicting scenes from the Ramayana and she being a deeply religious person may have been the inhabitant of the room. The colourful murals and the arched doorways leading to them are the highlight of this palace.

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A colourful mural depicting Lord Ganesha, Lord Krishna and scenes from the Ramayana
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A luxurious bath indeed

On the other side of the courtyard were the bath chambers; this pic here is a view from the outside. Notice the steps on the left side, cold water from the river Betwa was poured through both the openings by servants and a fire was lit in the centre during winters. Our guide also showed us a place inside the bath chambers where sandalwood and other fragrant materials used as perfume were stored.

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View of Raja Mahal from atop the eastern entrance

We spent quite a few hours exploring the Raja Mahal before we headed to another architectural beauty further east of the Raja Mahal – the Jehangir Mahal. This story was narrated to us by our guide, it is quite different from the common literature, but it is fun nonetheless. The Mughal vassal, King Vir Singh Deo, who ruled Orchha towards the end of the reign of the Mughal king Akbar, upon hearing the news from his secret informers that the young Mughal prince Salim was hiding in his kingdom rushed to meet him. Salim was not on terms with his father Akbar and Abul Fazal, Akbar’s vizier. When Abul Fazal tried to march against Salim, Vir Singh Deo responded by attacking and beheading Abul Fazal and even presented the severed head to Salim. This act sealed the bond of friendship between the two rulers. When Salim was crowned emperor Jehangir, he released Bir Singh from his vassalage. When Jehangir was to visit Orchha, Vir Singh had a special palace built for him and his troops – Jehangir Mahal. Our guide also said that Vir Singh spent years building a palace for Jehangir who after its completion stayed there for exactly one night post which the palace was never used. The Bundela royalty claimed that the stay of Jehangir had deteriorated the palace and chose never to stay in it.

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View of Jehangir Mahal from Raja Mahal Family Courtyard

There is no entrance ticket for the Jehangir Mahal. The main entrance is from the east side, but there is a shorter way from Raja Mahal which involves climbing not too many stairs and crossing an open ground with Sheesh Mahal on the left. It was quite hot by the time we reached Jehangir Mahal, so when we found a drinking water tap with really cold water we didn’t waste much time in drenching ourselves before our next adventure.

We suppose this palace is really just a huge metaphor, the architecture has elements of Hinduism and Islam and they exist side by side – the Islamic domes and Hinduistic Chattris, the Mughal peacock statues and the Bundela Elephant statues, the green tiles (Islamic) and blue tiles (Hinduistic). It was probably a metaphor to show King Jehangir and also the world that the kingdoms of the Mughals and Bundelas could exist in harmony, and Vir Singh had a lot to gain from peace and stability in that region.

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Water pit in the centre and sandalwood pits at the four corners – Natural room freshener

There are three storeys and a number of rooms to explore; originally there were a 100 rooms, many of them underground, but now access is given only to those above the ground. From the third floor, you can get a good view of the Betwa river on one side and the Chaturbhuj Mandir (Hindu temple) on the other.

windows.jpgOne reason why the rooms inside are cooler can be explained by the type of windows here. The pattern on the windows shown in this picture ensures that due to the Venturi Effect, the air gushing in is cooler than the air outside.

The slanting low rise balusters that lead to the dome on the top provide plenty of opportunities for photography. The dome, a photographer’s haven by itself, is home to a species of vulture, the Indian vulture. Do not be surprised if you find bird watchers waiting to catch a glimpse of this critically endangered species.

From the very picturesque eastern entrance of Jehangir Mahal, we also caught a glimpse of the Unt Khana (Camel stable), the Betwa river, Rai Parveen Mahal with Anand Bagh, and a few other ruins by the riverside. After our photography session inside the Jehangir Mahal, we exited the palace complex and walked down the road to a set of dilapidated ruins containing the Shyam Daua Kothi, Risaldar Kothi and also the Rai Parveen Mahal nearby.

The Shyam Daua Kothi was the house of the Chief Military Commander, Shyam Daua, the grandson of Raiman Daua, a Divan of Vir Singh Deo. When Raiman Daua’s family committed suicide, for reasons unknown, by setting themselves on fire, a saddened Vir Singh called for Raiman’s daughter-in-law to be brought to Orchha and even built a separate mansion for her – the Shyam Daua Kothi. This two-storeyed mansion sports a huge courtyard and two gardens with impressive irrigation facilities. There is also a well inside, but it has been cordoned off. There are very few visitors to this place barring a few dogs and cows. It is said that the Mughals had Shyam Daua and a few others executed when they refused to convert to Islam.

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Entry to a garden of Shyam Daua Ki Kothi

The Risaldar Kothi (Chief of Cavalry) is just another set of ruins beside the Shyam Daua Kothi, we took a quick look and moved on to the three-storeyed Rai Parveen Mahal, it was under renovation when we visited so we were unable to take many pictures. There is a really huge garden behind the Rai Parveen palace – the Anand Mahal Bagh – and a Tope Khana (Cannon foundry). The Rai Parveen Mahal was built for Rai Parveen, the poetess – courtesan – paramour during the time of king Vir Singh Deo.

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Risaldar Ki Kothi viewed from garden at Shyam Daua Kothi

Rai Parveen was a paramour of Kunwar Indrajit Singh, the brother of king Vir Singh Deo. She was not only a woman of dazzling beauty but also a gifted poetess and dancer. News of her beauty and prowess in dance reached the ears of the Mughal emperor Akbar, and he summoned her to perform in his court. She was reluctant at first, but was convinced by the Kunwar who feared the might of the Mughal emperor. To add to her worries, a performer of Akbar’s court, Gulab, grew jealous of Rai and plotted against her. According to folklore, Rai Parveen was in the middle of a performance when Gulab threw a dagger at her injuring her in the leg, but to the surprise of the spectators, Rai did not miss a single step, she instead threw her own concealed dagger right back at Gulab killing her. This spectacle impressed Akbar who desired her to be a part of his court. He sent an envoy to Rai Parveen expressing his desire. But Akbar’s dreams were short-lived as Rai Parveen, being the poetess that she was, responded by reciting her self-composed poem wherein she praised Akbar and also subtly requested him to let her go back to Orchha as she was not his, but Indrajit’s. Akbar who was already impressed by her beauty, courage and grace could only be more impressed with her poetry and had her sent back to Orchha with treasures and riches.

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Anand Bagh behind the Rai Parveen Mahal
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Shahi Darwaja and the path ahead

Just a few steps from Rai Parveen Mahal is the Shahi Darwaja, it was built to welcome the Mughal emperor, Jehangir when he visited Orchha. The rooms upstairs are not open to the public. On the right side, one can get a clear view of the Camel stable (Untkhana) on the right. We passed through the Shahi Darwaja and turned left towards a group of monuments that were supposedly there. A rough sandy path amidst green fields and playful locals led us to these places : Shiv Mandir, Teen Dasiyon Ka Mahal, Panchmukhi Mahadev Mandir, Radhika Bihari Mandir, Vanvasi Mandir. If you are looking for an off-beat nature trail inside Orchha, look no further. And the best part was when we reached the end of the path and dipped our feet in the river Betwa. Architecturally, these monuments are very similar to other monuments in Orchha, but their location makes them attractive off-beat spots. Though these are protected by the Archaelogical Survey of India, locals have found a way to sneak in and plant crops inside these complexes.

Tip: We were chased by dogs on the path to Teen Dasiyon Ka Mahal and had to return, so carry along a stick, just to be safe.

The first stop on our trail, the small Shiv Mandir is dedicated to the Hindu god, Lord Shiv(a), was built in the 17th century AD. The temple has two small structures in an otherwise large temple complex – an octagonal Shikara (spire) and a Mandap (hall). The temple was originally painted in ochre and contained images of Shiv and a Shivling which have now been shifted to the Ram Raja temple.

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Shiv Mandir was locked down when we visited

After our run from dogs, we reached the Panchmukhi Mahadev Mandir complex built by king Vir Singh Deo in the 17th century, inhabited currently by local farmers and cricket-playing kids who use the high boundary wall as their stumps. There are three temples each facing a different direction in varying states of repair. There were many paintings of the Hindu god, Lord Vishnu depicting scenes from the stories of his 10 Avatars. There is a slight resemblance to the style of temples at Khajuraho.

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Panchmukhi Mahadev Mandir

As we trod down the path, we came upon a temple without a fence or a wall – the Radhika Bihari Mandir, consequentially it is in a dilapidated state. Built by king Vir Singh Deo, it is considered a fine example of Bundela architecture and many temples built later draw their inspiration from this beauty. Inside the temple sanctum, there are carvings of Ganesh and Dwarapalas (Gatekeepers) believed to be a source of good luck and defence to the temple. Vanvasi Mandir, the other temple built by Vir Singh Deo is the temple of Lord Rama. The idols of this temple have been shifted to the Ram Raja Mandir and the temple is mostly empty, barring the really dense grass in and around the temple. It is at the end of the trail and near this temple we could actually hear the gushing sound of the Betwa river. We wasted no time in rushing to the water and dipping our feet. There is a very narrow and slippery trail right along the river which we chose to avoid, but if you crazy enough we would suggest it.

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Radhika Bihari Mandir
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Vanvasi Mandir
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The Betwa at the end of our trail

After we sat at the riverside for some time, we rushed back to the entrance of the palace complex. We crossed the bridge and proceeded to the Chattris or cenotaphs, they are also along the river-bank, but in the south. It is quite a walk and we suggest that you get an auto (although it was difficult for us to find one) and ask for Chattris or Kanchan Ghat. Though calling these structures Chattris or cenotaphs would be a misnomer as the burial spots, in a few cases, are right next to the structure. Misnomer or not, these are beautiful structures and are worth at least a short visit. For a good panoramic view, cross the river and view these strucures from the other side.

The tradition of building cenotaphs for royalty and nobility,thought to have been introduced by the Turks, is very common with the clans of the Bundelkhand region. The size and the extravagance of each Chattri shows the prosperity of Orchha at various times. It was believed that the grander the structure, the better would be the afterlife and in this, these structures are comparable to the pyramids at Egypt. They were also built with cross ventilation with the belief that the spirits of the dead would visit them. The cenotaph of Vir Singh Deo in particular even has a river facing entrance so the spirit could take a bath in the river. Other than this Chattri that is like a palace, the rest resemble the temples of this region, some with space for funeral ceremonies to be held. The other Chattris found here are those of kings Bharti Chandra, Sujan Singh, Indramani, Jaswant Singh, Bhagwant Singh, Prithvi Singh and Sawant Singh.

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Cenotaphs of Jaswanth Singh and Bhagwant Singh

We spent some time exploring the cenotaph of Umed Singh of Banka Pahar, a princely state of Orchha. Umed Singh, who is also called Banka Umed Singh was the landlord of Banka Pahar and Qiledar (Fort-Keeper) of Orchha fort in the 18th century. This two-storeyed structure with a miniature spire and domes on the roof is the only Chattri in this complex that has been built for someone who was not a ruler of Orchha. The doors are locked and we could only take a look from the outside, but we had no qualms as we had a scenic view of the river. The locals told us that the Ghat gets more crowded during festivals.

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Cenotaph of Banka Umed Singh

We were quite worn out by this time and moved on to the Chaturbhuj temple dragging our feet beneath us. But the legend behind the Chaturbhuj and Ram Raja temples kept alluring us and we pushed on. The legend goes like this, the queen of king Madhukar Shah was a devotee of Lord Ram while her husband himself was a staunch devotee of the Hindu god, Lord Krishna. So staunch was he that he neglected his kingdom and was driven out by the Mughals and Vir Singh Deo, but that is another story. It is said that Lord Ram appeared to the queen in her dream in the form of an infant and played with her. The queen took this as a signal from the Lord asking her to bring him to Orchha. She was ridiculed by the king, however, who claimed that his god, Krishna, was supreme. But this did not deter the determined queen who set out to Ayodhya to bring back an idol of Lord Ram. She commissioned the building of a temple for the Lord too (Chaturbhuj temple) when she returned. She managed to get an idol of Lord Ram, but to travel to Orchha the Lord had his conditions stated clearly – First, they would travel only during the Pukh Nakshatra (according to the Hindu calendar),  second, he would be the king of Orchha upon arrival and third, he would be seated wherever she seated him first. The queen agreed to these demands and started on her journey which was to take months.

Meanwhile, the king, in his dream, is visited by Lord Krishna who rebukes him for ridiculing Lord Ram who is in fact another Avatar of Vishnu (Ram and Krishna are both Avatars of the Hindu god, Vishnu). Realising his mistake, he makes all the necessary arrangements for her return. Though the construction of the Chaturbhuj temple was hastened, it was not complete by the time the queen returned. The queen, tired from the journey, proceeded to her palace with the idol and forgetting the third condition, placed the idol in her palace, Rani Mahal. This fixed the idol and it became impossible to move the idol from the queen’s palace. Thus Rani Mahal became Ram Raja Mandir and the Chaturbhuj Mandir became bereft of the statue it was meant for. This explains the architecture of the Ram Raja Mandir, it is in the shape of a palace rather than that of a temple. The Chaturbhuj temple, on the other hand, is a representation of the four arms of Vishnu. The view from the arched windows of the three floors of this temple is simply stunning.

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Chaturbhuj temple on the left and Ram Raja temple (white) on the right

The best time to visit the Ram Raja Mandir is in the evening at 8 PM when it opens to the public and any time before 7 PM is good to visit the Chaturbhuj temple. We visited the Chaturbhuj temple and Phulbagh in the evening around 6 PM. We felt there was not much to see at Phulbagh except the two cooling towers nearby. We had spent most of our time at Jehangir Mahal and the sandy trail, so we had to skip Lakshminarayan Mandir and finish our trip.

We sat on a bus headed to Jhansi winding up our trip, satisfied with our slice of history, architecture and adventure, with our slice of Orchha. From an unknown place to the capital of a kingdom to being forgotten to finally being a tourist destination, Orchha had come a long way and its spectacular history is sure to impress many.

 

Reference:

For further reading on monuments of Orchha, you may buy this book. A detailed description of the lineage of the rulers of Orchha can be found here.  For info about the Ram Raja Mandir, visit this site. Most of the information we have provided here is from our guide.

Orchha

144 thoughts on “Orchha

  • May 3, 2016 at 18:17
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    Visiting Orchha is in my to do list since a long time, but somehow it has not materialized up till now. I am impressed by rather detailed article on this historic place with light thrown on architecture and history of the place. I will love to read more such posts on other places of tourist interest. Thanks a lot.

    Reply
    • May 3, 2016 at 20:40
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      Thank you so much for your nice comment and words of inspiration… You really must visit Orchha some time, it is a really nice place, and if my post makes you want to visit Orchha, then that would be great.

      Reply
  • May 4, 2016 at 07:02
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    I have always dreamed of visiting India… what a fantastic post. I had never heard of Orchha and now I have another must see place if I ever make it over to India (some day…. I hope). My big problem now is.. how does once choose what to visit in a country that has so many interesting things and places to see… (in your opinion is this in the top 5?)

    Reply
    • May 4, 2016 at 12:23
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      One can draw a comparison between India and Europe, each state has its own language, culture and customs. And you are right, this is confusing. Frankly, Orchha might not make it to the top 5 on my list. But it does have its own advantages including proximity to Delhi. So if you are visiting Delhi, then this is a must.
      If you could tell us what you are looking for, maybe we can help you out better.

      Reply
  • May 4, 2016 at 13:37
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    A very nicely written article….

    Reply
  • May 4, 2016 at 15:45
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    Good write-up and very detailed too. Finely researched i must say. I have been to Orchha as well and its a nice break and close to Lucknow too. Supposed to be really mesmerizing during monsoons. The light and sound show at the fort was one of the best I ever watched even better than Khajuraho.
    Great work Yash

    Reply
    • May 4, 2016 at 17:20
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      Thank you mam for your compliments, and yes, Orchha is a nice break.
      We did not stay for the entire light and sound show as we were rushing back to board a train.
      And actually Great work by Tanushree and Yaswanth

      Reply
  • May 4, 2016 at 18:51
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    Double thumbs to your explanation!!
    How nicely it has written. I’m so much impressed.
    Tell me one thing guys “how you have remembered all the factual details?”

    Reply
    • May 4, 2016 at 23:24
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      Thanks Sandhya…
      Actually we read a lot about this place before travelling and referred a couple of books too. If you interested, they have been mentioned in the References section.

      Reply
  • May 6, 2016 at 04:35
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    I was very impressed by the wealth of pictures you took and are now sharing with us, your readers. Personally, I love the architecture. It looks hot and dry, but I realize this is the region. I especially enjoyed reading the explanation of that window that encourages cooler air inside. It struck me that perhaps there isn’t air conditioning. Your mention of being chased by dogs gave me a little scare. It also caused me to remember being chased by “Uncle ‘Mo” as a child. No fun. Now I do carry a stick when I’m walking in the country. There may be no place to run for shelter, and you have to be ready to defend your self. They say dogs can smell fear, and equate running as a fear response. I’m not sure what I would have done in your situation. But I’m happy you had each other, and good strong legs. Excellent post with lots of interesting information. I almost felt that I was traveling with you.

    Reply
    • May 9, 2016 at 10:58
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      Honestly, with respect to the pictures, we simple used an iPad, and we are not professional photographers, though we wish we were. We are saving up to buy our own DSLR, so we can capture the essence of these places in a better way.
      And yes, we both are engineers, so the geek inside sometimes explains stuff to us in a geeky way. 🙂
      About the dogs, we must say, it was the fault of a couple of kids there who started pelting those dogs. But, as you know, it is better to carry a stick. We just pretended to pick up stones and throw at the dogs. This technique is actually useful. Perhaps, we should put this up as a Tip. 😛
      If you ever do think about visiting Orchha, please feel free to ask us for our help.
      PS: Were you referring to the racehorse, when you talked about Uncle MO?

      Reply
  • June 6, 2016 at 22:54
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    I visited Orchha on my first college trip, and though I remember the place vividly still, I never knew the place had such a rich history behind it.. I thoroughly enjoyed reading!

    Reply
  • June 7, 2016 at 04:46
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    Though lengthy, it was very informative. This would definitely appeal to people that are interested in history. I think all of the myths, legends, and historical accounts of this place make it all the more interesting. The architecture is beautiful in all of the pictures, and it seems like it’s well worth the visit!

    Reply
    • June 7, 2016 at 06:54
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      It is worth a visit indeed. If you ever do plan on coming to India, let us know. We would be happy to help.

      Reply
  • June 7, 2016 at 10:46
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    Very detailed and informative. But a tad bit long. All in all, good read.

    Reply
    • June 7, 2016 at 19:27
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      Thanks a lot Akshay, yes, it is slightly long, but we have tried to give as much information as possible.

      Reply
  • June 8, 2016 at 01:49
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    Wow, a very nice post! I loved how you explained everything into detail and told about the history. Your pictures are also very lovely!

    Reply
    • June 8, 2016 at 06:34
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      Thanks a lot Elisabeth, glad you enjoyed it. Hope the curly girl comes to India to visit this place.

      Reply
  • June 8, 2016 at 21:10
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    I cannot begin to imagine the amount of time you must have invested in this post! I found this very informative indeed. Definitely worth a read. And for those who are just skimming through the post, you have provided a good number of pictures too!

    Just one suggestion, with the length of this article, it might be better if you publish it in two parts.

    Really good work. Loved reading it 😀

    Reply
    • June 8, 2016 at 21:23
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      Thanks a lot for your nice words and yeah, we did spend an awful lot of time reading on the internet, we just hope we have referenced each of our links. Actually, this was our purpose in writing this post, when we went online we found that most travel blogs were by people who were more interested in showing off rather than actually providing something useful to the reader. So, we have tried to include as much info as we could, hence the lengthy post too. We are thinking we could do a Storypick-type post with top 10 things to do in Orchha, but we are usually busy planning our next trip or writing about previous one. Glad you found it informative.

      Reply
  • June 11, 2016 at 13:17
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    That is an extraordinarily thorough travelogue. Have you considered writing for magazines or travel blogs other than your own? You should as people hardly put up so much efforts into writing about a place.

    Great post, I enjoyed reading this!

    Reply
    • June 11, 2016 at 14:48
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      Thanks a lot Mayur.
      And yeah, as you said, people hardly put in any effort into their blogs, which was one of the reasons why we decided to write such a blog. We are up for writing for travel magazines, though we felt we should first create a base of at least ten posts and we are in the process of doing so.
      Thanks for stopping by and appreciating our work.
      PS: Would you mind telling us from where you got the link to our blog so we could know which of our publicity activities worked out?

      Reply
  • June 18, 2016 at 19:18
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    What a lovely post. I love the blend of facts and story background. The pictures look amazing. Will be reading more.

    Reply
    • June 18, 2016 at 22:58
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      Thank you for your lovely comments. Your encouragement will definitely make us write more and better.

      Reply
  • June 21, 2016 at 10:18
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    Amazing sirji, I am sure want to visit Orchha now.

    Reply
    • June 21, 2016 at 19:52
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      Thanks Ketan, you really should visit Orchha.

      Reply
  • June 23, 2016 at 07:28
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    Oh! Such a nice place !!! I am sure your other posts would be more interesting !

    Reply
    • June 23, 2016 at 07:31
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      We are currently drafting a piece about Langkawi and Yogyakarta, the thing is we have a lot of information, but very few pics taken by us and we do not want to post a pic taken by someone else because we feel that it would not do justice to our post. Hence we are taking much time to complete these posts. Thanks for visiting and do read the other post(s).

      Reply
  • June 23, 2016 at 12:43
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    I have been to this place and your words just perfectly picture everything about the place! great article!

    Reply
  • June 24, 2016 at 00:59
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    It’s very, very interesting!!!

    Reply
  • June 25, 2016 at 01:53
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    Thank you for giving me a travel bug! I’ve been craving to go to India for ages, and you really bring Orccha alive – think I’ll take this as my travel guide if I ever make it there! 😉

    Reply
    • June 25, 2016 at 06:47
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      Your comment just made our day. And pack those bags and come on out over here. India is waiting.
      If you need some more info, then do ask us.

      Reply
    • June 25, 2016 at 06:51
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      Thanks a lot Abby, it really is incredible. Do read about our post about Khajuraho too.

      Reply
  • June 25, 2016 at 14:52
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    It is thrilling. This place looks majestic than what i have seen in Bahubali movie. Heard that those are settings. I like to visit these type of locations. Will certainly visit. Thank you for exploring about orchha and taking time for such a good write up.

    Reply
    • June 25, 2016 at 15:05
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      Thanks a lot NA NA. Orchha is waiting for you. Go ahead and plan your trip, hope this post of ours helps you.

      Reply
  • June 25, 2016 at 18:44
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    This is a really nice and informative post! I love learning about new cultures, especially those which involve the diversity and beauty of India! You have educated me on a new place I had never heard of and I thank you for that! Y’all have a very nice blog 😀

    Reply
    • June 25, 2016 at 22:28
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      Thank you Ashwini, very nice of you to say that. We too love learning about new cultures and we are constantly being amazed at so much that this world has to offer.

      Reply
  • June 26, 2016 at 02:06
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    Love the pictures. Too much words for me to read personally, but the pictures are absolutely stunning 🙂

    Reply
    • June 26, 2016 at 07:07
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      Thank you very much and yes, there are too many words, but what we have attempted is to give out as much info as possible. We looked up many other travel blogs about these places and they were all the same, so we wanted to do something different.

      Reply
      • June 29, 2016 at 21:27
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        It’s definitely different and I think information is good. If I was venturing to one of the featured places, I would certainly appreciate all the information. Very handy! I’m into photography personally so it could be why the pictures captured me 🙂

        -HP

        Reply
        • June 30, 2016 at 22:48
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          We did research a lot before writing each post, probably why we publish a post a month. 🙂

          Reply
  • June 26, 2016 at 02:43
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    I have never heard of Orchha, India or thought about visiting India. After reading your post I am intrigued and interested. I look forward to reading more about your travels. I do love reading the About on blogs and could not find one for yours. Do you live in India? Thanks for reading, liking and following our blog :). This is Wendy the mom of Mom and Me Publishing.

    Reply
  • June 27, 2016 at 23:23
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    History and food and the pictures! Amazing work on this and so much information included. Definitely was a treat reading it. Would love to see more of these. :’)

    Reply
    • June 27, 2016 at 23:31
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      Thank you so much! Stay tuned for more posts. Presently drafting a post about Langkawi, but have very few pics and even lesser info.

      Reply
      • June 28, 2016 at 08:18
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        I’m sure it’ll still be amazing to read. You put it all together very nicely. Defo looking forward to that.

        Reply
  • June 28, 2016 at 00:27
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    Great photos and amazing storytelling! I felt like I was right there exploring with you. I especially liked how you incorporated the history and legends behind these places. Looking forward to reading more!

    Reply
    • June 28, 2016 at 06:59
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      The history seems to spice things up for us, we are curious as to how some structure cropped up and why.
      Stay tuned for more. 🙂

      Reply
  • June 30, 2016 at 09:04
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    Amazing photos and great length of history and explanation. I haven’t read the whole thing yet, due to work pressures. But I can see myself, reading a little bit everyday and falling in love with each place. Thank you.

    Reply
    • June 30, 2016 at 19:56
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      Thank you for the nice comments. Do read it, you will surely like the place.

      Reply
  • July 2, 2016 at 16:48
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    What a great blog! I’ve never been to India, but I have always wanted to go! And after reading your blog, it’s definitely making it way up higher and higher on my list of places to visit! What a great post with really great information and wonderful pics!! Can’t wait to read more about your adventures!!
    (This is Whitney, the daughter in our “mom and me” duo.)

    Reply
    • July 2, 2016 at 16:54
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      Thanks Whitney, we would be happy to have you guys in India, in case you guys do need any help with places to see, do let us know, we have been to many places in India and would love to help you out.

      Reply
    • July 9, 2016 at 21:52
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      Thanks a lot, any special comment on the History section? 🙂

      Reply
  • July 15, 2016 at 20:35
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    Nice post. 🙂
    The pictures revels the place. 🙂

    Reply
  • September 1, 2016 at 10:54
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    This is exactly what I wanted. Thank you for this beautiful piece.

    Reply
  • January 3, 2017 at 23:58
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    Hey Yaswtanu, to be frank I just saw your article on Facebook in suggested list and thought to go through it as I am visiting this place in mid of this month. And I must say what an article; I loved your writing, especially the detailing part. I had an rough idea of this place but now after reading this I can say I now the history of Orchha. Thanks to you I don’t need a guide anymore but still I will hire one to relieve those moments. I am great lover of Indian architecture and art; and has some knowledge of our history which makes me attract this kind of places. I like to travel a lot and would be great full if you suggest some more place offbeat destinations.
    Thanks for your information, it was good reading your blog👍👍

    Reply
  • January 11, 2017 at 23:12
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    It felt great reading your lovely comment. And please do get a guide there, they tell you so much more that is to know about the place. Follow our blog for further posts, there are a few offbeat destinations that we have in mind. Not all of them are in India though. For starters, you can choose Yogyakarta or Rantepao in Indonesia. In India, you can choose Hampi or Matheran. And if you like our blog posts, do share them.

    Reply
  • April 14, 2017 at 23:02
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    You have a lot of history in this article. and seem to be quite an expert. It’s a shame as you said that there is a lot of graffiti on the walls. Yes, it really is a shame people do this and destroy history. Thanks for sharing your knowledge.

    Reply
    • April 14, 2017 at 23:14
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      Thanks a lot for your kind words, although I am not an expert.
      Yes, it is saddening to see graffiti.

      Reply
    • April 15, 2017 at 09:57
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      Thank you for your kind words, Erin. Do visit this place and let us know if you need any help.

      Reply
  • April 15, 2017 at 00:18
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    Hi Yaswtanu,
    You guys seem to have done your homework. It shows in your post. I would love to visit India sometime and after reading your post Orchha is on my list.

    Reply
    • April 15, 2017 at 09:58
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      Thanks a lot, Steve. Orchha is a wonderful place and you must visit it sometime.

      Reply
  • April 15, 2017 at 12:40
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    I love discovering small, hidden places everywhere I go. I haven’t heard about Orchha before, but you totally manage to convince me to visit it when I travel to India.

    Reply
    • April 15, 2017 at 13:19
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      Orchha was like the girl next door to us, small, quaint, unnoticeable, but simply beautiful.

      Reply
  • April 15, 2017 at 16:21
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    The Rahja Mahal looks really impressive. I’ve never heard of Orchha before reading your post but it’s definitely on my list next time I go back to India. Definitely looking forward to doing the Heritage walk.

    Reply
    • April 15, 2017 at 21:47
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      Thanks a lot, Nadine. You may subscribe to our blog for more such places.

      Reply
  • April 18, 2017 at 12:19
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    What a great take on India. Usually we hear about the usual places so this post gave us some nice insights to less “touristy” places. Thank you – great article 🙂

    Reply
    • April 18, 2017 at 19:46
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      Yes, we have tried to cover a few spots that are good, but are not so popular. Thanks for stopping by.

      Reply
  • April 20, 2017 at 22:43
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    Beautifully put across, very helpful to travellers who have no clue when they visit such places. I love traveling, would definitely look to your blog if I do visit these places. Keep doing it. Best of luck.

    Reply
    • April 21, 2017 at 07:54
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      Thanks a lot cheegeevee. You can count on us to add more places.

      Reply
  • June 18, 2017 at 22:28
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    Oh my these places are so breath taking. I must visit one if not all these places.

    Reply
    • June 19, 2017 at 08:02
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      Thanks you so much for your words of appreciation. We do try to cover every place so this can be a comprehensive list of things-to-do.

      Reply
  • June 19, 2017 at 00:32
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    Wow I thought I was reading a book, so exciting very detailed and the pictures are great. Thank you for sharing.

    Reply
    • June 19, 2017 at 08:02
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      Haha, thank you so much for stopping by.

      Reply
  • June 19, 2017 at 03:24
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    omg what a wonderfull place really look amazing ,, ı would like to see there,,thanks for share them for us

    Reply
  • June 19, 2017 at 05:38
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    Orccha is beautiful! What an incredible place to visit. I did not know about this bit of history from this region of the world. Very informing article and a great step into another world!

    Reply
    • June 19, 2017 at 08:07
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      Yes, this is another world. We are Indians and we ourselves cannot wrap our heads around the display of erotica on the walls of a sixth-century temple. But, the world never ceases to amaze us.

      Reply
    • June 19, 2017 at 08:10
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      Thank you so much. We are a married couple and writing is one of the activities that we do together. We are trying to get better photos though, frankly. Thanks for stopping by.

      Reply
  • June 19, 2017 at 12:35
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    This is an article I’m bookmarking for later. I’ve never heard of this place but it looks wonderful and the murals…awesome. I need to take my time and read through this properly so I can soak it all up. Thanks so much for sharing.

    Reply
    • June 19, 2017 at 12:53
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      Orchha is a must-visit destination in India. Since this is a free account, we have chosen very few of some awesome pics, but let us assure you that there are many more stunning sights there.

      Reply
  • June 19, 2017 at 18:00
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    hope one day i can go there with my family… very nice place

    Reply
    • June 19, 2017 at 18:56
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      Well the founders of Orchha did want it to be hidden. 🙂

      Reply
  • June 19, 2017 at 22:03
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    Orchha really appears to be a long lost kingdom. Very interesting to read about it. Thanks for sharing.

    Reply
    • June 20, 2017 at 21:45
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      A long lost kingdom that has resurged. Do visit it when you can, you will be impressed.

      Reply
  • June 20, 2017 at 09:32
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    Very nice and detailed description of the history.I feel like I have already visited Orcha by reading the history itself

    Reply
    • June 20, 2017 at 21:47
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      Wow! That comment just made our day. When a reader says this, we, as writers, feel that we have done what we set out to do.

      Reply
  • June 23, 2017 at 20:44
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    Wow…I have never heard about Orchha talking about India. I hope one day to visit it. It seems a nice day trip to take from Agra or Delhi. I am so fascinated by the legend of the drop of blood. thanks for sharing such a detailed content. 🙂

    Reply
    • June 23, 2017 at 23:34
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      Yes, it can be done as a day trip considering you reach there by 9 in the morning.

      Reply
  • June 25, 2017 at 11:41
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    That is a vey detailed account of Orchha….a lot of research went into this. Interesting factoids about the history and architecture of the region. We plan to go by train from Delhi to Jhansi and spend a day there. I guess that should suffice.

    Reply
    • June 25, 2017 at 12:44
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      Thanks for stopping by.
      Yes, a day should suffice, but do remember to start early. If you start your tour by 9 in the morning, it would be sufficient. You could end your tour with a visit to Ram Mandir by 8 PM.

      Reply
  • June 25, 2017 at 22:50
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    A real adventure wasn’t it? The complex does look very interesting.

    Reply
    • June 26, 2017 at 08:19
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      Indeed, an adventure is what we would call our day.

      Reply
  • July 9, 2017 at 08:59
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    so beautiful place to visit, really great post, thanks for sharing

    Reply
  • July 9, 2017 at 22:49
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    Wow! the descriptive nature of this post makes me feel like i travelled to orchha and back. A very beautiful place. Good job.

    Reply
  • July 10, 2017 at 02:04
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    What a beautiful place and stunning photos. You are very talented!

    Reply
    • July 10, 2017 at 16:55
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      Thanks a lot for your kind comment. 🙂

      Reply
  • July 10, 2017 at 03:54
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    Very interesting article! I never knew so much about India. Hoping to visit one day <3

    Reply
    • July 10, 2017 at 16:55
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      To be fair, this is an off-beat destination. Do visit it some day and you will not be disappointed.

      Reply
  • July 10, 2017 at 19:47
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    Wonderful pictures!! Thanks for sharing! I hope I get the chance to visit this place soon! 😀

    Reply
    • July 10, 2017 at 23:22
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      Do visit soon, it is worth every buck spent.

      Reply
  • September 2, 2017 at 20:56
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    These are beautiful photos ! Looks like a fun trip . I’d love to go here and explore the culture

    Reply
  • October 7, 2017 at 16:54
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    This guide is perfectly written. I’m sure this town is historic and the pictures are just great.

    Reply
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