The historic town nestling amidst Vindhyas and Aravali ranges is more popular as the ‘gateway’ to the famous Ranthambhor Fort and National Park.
Ranthambhor National Park (14 kms.):
The famous park is named after the Ranthambhor fort, set within its precincts. The park sprawls over an area of 392 sq. kms. of dry deciduous and tropical thorn forest with nullahs and waterfalls. It is perhaps one of the best sites for observing and photographing the majestic tiger. Other carnivores here are leopard, hyena, jackal, fox, caracal, jungle cat, sloth bear, and ratel. The herbivorous population includes chital, sambar, blue bull and chinkara, etc. Sambar, the largest Asiatic deer is also the pride of the park. In fact, nowhere else one may see sambars so frequently during the day time. Wild boars and langurs are a common sight in the park. Among the reptiles, crocodiles can be seen basking in the sun near the lakes and there is also a small presence of pythons. There are over 300 varieties of birds in the sanctuary. The commonly sighted birds include peafowls, parakeets, doves, partridges, storks, egrets, flycatchers, eagles and owls. Migratory birds like greylag goose, ruddy shelduck, and pintails visit the park during winters. Some rare birds like the black eagle and the crested hawk-eagle can also be seen here. The three artificial lakes, Rajbag, Padam Talab and Malik Talab add to the beauty of the reserve and are also the main source of water for the wildlife. These are fine places to observe the wildlife, as animals congregate here for a drink. The beautiful Jogi Mahal overlooking the pretty Padam Talab, at the foot of the fort has a Forest Rest House. The best season for visiting Ranthambhor depends on the special interest of the visitor, The park is open for visitors from October to June. But, November to March is considered to be the best month for observing wildlife.
The ancient fort perched atop a steep high creek has been a focal point of historical developments of the region. It is said to be built in 994 A.D. and has been a symbol of strength and inaccessibility. The fort witnessed several attacks and seizes by the rulers of Delhi and Agra. Rao Hamir was the most illustrious ruler to sit on the throne of Ranthambhor fort. He fought against Alauddin Khilji in 1301. Within the ramparts are relics of magnificent monuments, chhatris (cenotaphs), ponds and lakes reflecting the grandeur of the bygone era. It is indeed a splendid sentinel to the ancient character of Indian culture and philosophy. Toran Dwar, Mahadeo Chhatri, Sameton ki Haveli, 32 pillared chhatris, Mosque and the Ganesh temple are worth seeing. The 8th century Ganesha temple has emerged as a major attraction of the fort. Thousands of devotees visit the shrine and seek blessings for happiness and prosperity. A large number of wedding invitations are received through postal mail, inviting Lord Ganesha to visit and bless the wedding ceremony.