It was just week after we had visited Auli for skiing and I had made one more trip with a new set of friends and to an entirely different place. Now we have boiled it down to Sariska Tiger Reserve in Rajasthan. We wanted to have a complete weekend trip and while planning we realized that Sariska is just a one day fare. So we has planned for Bhangarh Fort as well.
We have started from Delhi on a Saturday morning and reached Sariska on time at 2pm and we are just in time for the afternoon safari. Pre-booking is required for safari in Sariska and you can choose the routes as well. Once you reach Sariska, you have to pay only for hiring a vehicle (jeep/canter).
The Bengal Tiger is the main attraction here and people flock to witness the wild beast in the jungle. But to our disappointment we did not spot any Tigers. We have seen every animal except the wild cats (Tigers and Leopards). The Sariska Palace is within the Tiger Reserve close to the booking center, built by Maharaja Jai Singh II. This palace was used as hunting lodge of Maharaja. This makes me thinking that every national park was once a hunting ground for the Kings, Emperors and British elite. It is the same with Ranthambore. These were made into national parks post-independence.
We stayed back near Sariska for the night (Sterling Hotels, Sariska). And the next morning we had started for Bhangarh fort. It is around 40 kms from Sariska, but the road is such that it will take you 90 mins easily.
Bhangarh Fort, known as the most haunted place in India, is a 17th century fort built by Man Singh I. There are many stories about the history of the fort which is reported as haunted. Of those, two legends were very famous. It is better to read those online yourself (:P). And most say it was a curse that ruined the palace and brought down the city as well. It is considered to be so haunted that no one is allowed to remain in the fort area during the night and the board is also put up by Archeological Survey of India. Entering the “Bhoot Bunglow” or “House of Ghosts” gives you an eerie feeling. Overall it was a overhyped location which was just a ruined fort.
How to get there??
We started from Delhi and looking at the roads and the destinations, it is better to have a separate vehicle at your disposal (either own/chauffer-driven/self-driven) as there is no public transport to these places. It takes around 5 hours to travel from Delhi to Sariska and 1-2 hours from Sariska to Bhangarh. The roads are vehicle friendly and looks like village roads.
P.S:- We did not travel by NH-8 (Delhi-Jaipur Highway) which also takes you the same duration.