"Let your life lightly dance on the edges of Time like dew on the tip of a leaf" ~ Tagore



The city derives its name from the 18th century Indreshwar temple. Situated in the heart of the Malwa Plateau it was the base of the Holkars, former rulers of this erstwhile state. Indore, in fact, was planned and built by Rani Ahilyabai Holkar. Today, it is a throbbing, vibrant city coloured by its brave past. It is naturally endowed with a beautiful landscape and salubrious climate. Of interest here are numerous monuments associated with the Holkars.

What to See:
Rajwada: Two hundred years ago, this seven storeyed historical building formed the nerve centre of all trading activities. Even today it stands proud in the market place, a silent tribute to the craftsmanship of unknown artisans of centuries ago.

Kanch Mandir: The `Palace of Mirrors' is a quaint Jain Shrine, close to Rajwada. The attraction of this palace, as the name indicates, is in the myriad mirrors studded on the walls and the ceiling giving rise to multiple reflections..

Lal Baugh Palace: Currently this is the residence of Usha Raje, direct descendent of the Holkars, whose ancestral palace it used to be. Exquisitely constructed with great detailing, it reflects the royal taste of the Holkars.

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Chhatri Baugh: Across Rajasthan and Madhya Pradesh the tradition of erecting chhatris or cenotaphs was quite prevalent. An example of this can be seen here at Chhatri Baugh where the cenotaphs were erected in memory of the Holkar rulers and their family.

Near Indore:

Kasturba Gram: Situated about 8 kms. from Indore on the Khandwa Road, the Kasturba Gandhi National Memorial Trust was founded by Mahatma Gandhi. The headquarters of this trust were shifted from Wardha to Indore in 1950.

Mhow: 22 kms. from Indore, you will find the old military ambience at picturesque Mhow. Now a small city , it was an old British Cantonment and Military Hearquarters.


Mandu : (99 kms. from Indore) Perched along the Vindhyan ranges, at an altitude of 2000 feet, Mandu, with its natural defences, was originally the fort capital of the Paramara rulers of Malwa. Later towards the end of the 13th century, it came under the Sultans of Malwa, one of whom renamed it as Shadiabad - the city of joy.

Some of the structures worth seeing in the fort complex are the tomb of Hoshang Shah, Jami Masjid, Ashrafi Mahal, Jahaz Mahal, Roopmati's Pavilion, Baz Bahadur's Palace and Hindola Mahal.

Omkareshwar: (78 kms. from Indore) Situated at the confluence of the Narmada and Kaveri are temples built in the medieval Brahmanic style. Omkareshwar has one of the 12 Jyotirlingas enshrined at the temple of Shri Onkar Mandhata, set in picturesque surroundings.

Patal Pani: Another scenic spot towards Mhow, Patal Pani is famous for its waterfalls. The water falls from a height of 150 ft. into a kund whose depth, till date, remains unfathomable. Hence the name Patal Pani.


Dhar: Dhar is 47 kms. away from Indore and it used to be the capital of the former Paramara kings. Famous among them is Raja Bhoj. Earlier, Dhar boasted of an exquisite image of Goddess Saraswati at the Bhojsala temple. The same image is now displayed in the British Museum, London.

Bawangaja: About 175 kms. away from Indore, you can see a 72 foot high statue hewn from one rock, at Bawangaja. It is also an important Jain pilgrimage centre belonging to the 15th century.

Festivals: Anant Chaudas: On the night of Anant Chaudas, large processions are taken out and idols of Lord Ganesha are immersed in water. The festival takes place around September.

Rangapanchami: Another festival of colours follows the original festival of colours, Holi. Just five days after Holi, this festival takes place but instead of colours, it is the colours of music that fill the air. It is a traditional festival which was celebrated during the Holkar reign. The spirit of the festival continues even today.


Ahilya Utsav: The death anniversary of Rani Ahilya Bai is observed annually.

Indore is famous for its glass bangles and leather toys. The handicrafts are mostly made by tribals using the wax method of casting. This is now a rare, lost art which you will not find anywhere else.

Getting There:
Air: Indore is connected by air with Bhopal, Bombay, Delhi and Gwalior.
Rail : Indore is on the Western Railway line and is connected with all major cities in India.
Road: Indore is connected by good motorable roads with Agra (605 Kms.), Ahmedabad (456 Kms.), Bhopal (187 Kms.), Bombay (602 Kms.), Delhi (809 Kms.), Gwalior (486 Kms.), Khajuraho (574 Kms.), Meheshwar (90 Kms.), Mandu (105 Kms.) and Ujjain (53 Kms.)


Accommodation: There are a number of hotels with moderate tariffs. In addition, there is a Tourist Bungalow belonging to M.P. Tourism.

Information: Courtesy Government of India

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Editor: Romola Butalia       (c) India Travelogue. All rights reserved.