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The name Bandhavgarh is derived from the ruined fort, located on the hill-top plateau of Bandhavgarh national park. In past, it was part of Baghelkhand. It lies in Umaria - Rewa road, under Umaria district of Madhya Pradesh state in Central India. This fort is located at the 2662 ft. height, from sea level. Now a days, this fort is in ruined condition. It lies in Tala zone of Bandhavgarh tiger reserve. It is approximately 41kms from Umaria city, 120 kms from Rewa city and 8kms from Tala village. As per legends, it is gifted by Lord Rama to his younger brother Lakshmana. History of this region is 2000 years old. As per available record, it was first ruled by Magh rulers in 2nd & 3rd century. After that, it was ruled by Bhar Shiva Nag ruler followed by Sengar dynasty in 5th century. After Sengar rule, Kalchuris gain power and took over the rule over this region. They ruled for long period and this region was named Dahal Desh. Baghels begun their rule since 13th century and thus it was popularly known as Baghelkhand. By doing various compromises and treaties, they maintained their control over the region, despite of adverse conditions.
Their are lot of historical statues, temples and monuments which are not accessible to normal tourists. Those who have visited Bandhavgar in year like 2010, 2011, 2012, they might have enjoyed the Bandhavgarh fort safari and witnessed its hidden treasure. I am one such lucky person who undertook two times of fort safari. First time when vehicle is allowed till Sheshshaiya and second time then vehicles are allowed to reach till top of hill. It was a great experience to visit Bandhavgarh fort and actually try to understand its great past. I believe that without visiting this fort area, we will miss 50% of Bandhavgarh. In order to understand the greatness of this region, one should must undertake this safari, with due permission of park authority. Now a days, fort safari is closed but we hope it will re-open with some conditions. Earlier fort safari was operated in between morning and afternoon safari timings so that if anyone can cover 3 safaris in a day. In such safaris, tourists are accompanied with guide and driver. Watching forest from hill-top is a different experience. Fort safari was also popular among bird-watchers as it offers chances to see Vultures nest and do birds photography in valley area. It was good place to see rare Malabar Pied Hornbills.
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