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HILLMAN INDIA ADVENTURE
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North India: Gallery 27a


ORCHHA PALACE II
View from the Second and Third Levels
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    The palace is built in four levels with elegant architectural features of both Muslim and Rajput architecture. Its layout is a symmetrical square built in the inner courtyard of the fort and has eight large domes. It has a plethora of rooms with arcaded openings, projecting platforms and windows with lattice design work. The roof above the top floor of this Mahal is accessed through a steep stairway. It provides picture perfect views of the temples and the Betwa River outside the fort complex. 

    The entrance gate from this palace, which was earlier the main gate and which has carved ornamentation, leads to the royal baths and then to an elegant small dwelling unit built exclusively for Rai Parveen, the female escort of the Raja Indramani. She was a poet and musician. It is said that Emperor Akbar  who was enamored by Parveen's beauty had taken her to his palace in Agra to be his courtesan. But Parveen, who wanted to get out of the situation, composed a gazal or a couplet which stated her status as an already used woman not fit for an emperor, which enabled her to get release from Akbar's court and return to Orchha.

    The building is a double storied structure built with bricks, rising to the height of the trees in the well tended garden called Anand Mahal. The garden is laid out with octagonal flower beds and has good network of water supply. There are niches in the Mahal which permit natural light to the main hall and smaller rooms.

    After sunset we made our way to the evening ceremonies at the Chaturbhuj Temple

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Sunset


Walk to the Temple for the Evening Ceremony
Cameras not allowed in the temple


Stop along the way for refreshments
A chance to observe the parade to the temple


The Entrance to the Chaturbhuj Temple
Separate queues for men and women
The cattle wander at will

GALLERY 27a
ORCHHA'S JAHANGIR MAHAL PALACE and TEMPLE

Photos 1 | Photos 2 | Photos 3 | Photos 4 | Outtakes


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