It’s not for nothing that Madhya Pradesh is called the Heart of India, this beautiful and regal state does have what it takes to be the centre of a country as unique as India. Like the heart, which pumps the blood into our body keeping it alive and healthy, Madhya Pradesh is a life giving factor in our country. Adding to the richness of history, culture, tradition and art & craft, this central state is a credential for making India a diverse country. Madhya Pradesh owes much to the reign of different dynasties over a long period of time for its rich history and majestic monuments that are incredibly famous amongst world travellers. The state is indeed a perfect reflection of India as it blends in both urbanity and historical events so well. Here are some of the best places in Madhya Pradesh that will make you plan a trip soon to this undoubtedly beautiful state:
Khajuraho can rightly be called the epitome of Indian art. A group of 22 temples is all it takes to make Khajuraho famous amongst world travellers. The intricate carvings and the fine erotic sculpture art are enough to make any history lover fall in love with the Indian art. The temples at Khajuraho are divided into three categories i.e western group, southern group and eastern group among which, the western group of temples has attained maximum fame. Apart from the temples, Khajuraho also houses two lakes. A small city, Khajuraho in Madhya Pradesh can be a wonderful getaway for those having keen interest in history.
Known as the Buddhist hub, Sanchi in Raisen district of Madhya Pradesh is a must-see. The city is famed for the Ashoka-built Sanchi Stupa. Sanchi boasts about rich history of the region as this city witnessed different ruling dynasties. Sanchi was the hotspot for merchants and traders when it was called Vidishagiri. Today’s Sanchi is a paradoxical land with remnants collection from different empires and offer excellent destination for spiritual tourism in Madhya Pradesh
The Bhimbetka Caves in Bhiyanpura in the Raisen District of Madhya Pradesh offer a walkthrough to the prehistoric era of India. The caves are like the natural gallery that treasures wall paintings from prehistoric era ranging from Upper Paleolithic to the medieval period. The exploration of these caves is no less than an adventure; one tends to time travel while looking at these mesmeric wall paintings. Apart from the art-rich rock shelters, Bhimbetka preserves the relics of citadel and mini stupas that indicate towards Buddhist influence. Several inscriptions have also been found here that are reckoned to have belonged to Sunga, Kushan and Gupta periods along with an undeciphered era. Bhimbetka is absolutely a perfect place for history buffs and indeed one of the best places to visit in Madhya Pradesh.
Situated on the bank of Betwa River, Orchha is a quaint yet royal town that enhances the charm of MP, which is the essential part of incredible India. A small hamlet of beautiful and articulate structures, Orchha is a reminiscence of the Bundela Era. The architecture is the prime attraction that draws history buffs to Orchha. Apart from architecture, Orchha is quite a bliss in terms of being less populated and obviously lesser crowded. The quaint and regal settings and the quietude in the air make Orchha a perfect getaway in Madhya Pradesh.
The rich wildlife reserve, Kanha has been a major tourist attraction in MP. Reflecting a variety of flora and fauna this national park has been famous ever since Rudyard Kipling wrote his masterpiece called Jungle Book (It is believed that Kipling was inspired from Kanha National Park). Kanha is expanded in an area of 1,940-sq-kms and is most famous for helping the species of Barasinga (Swamp Deer) to not to go extinct in India. The thick forest mostly comprises of Sal, Bamboo and infamous Mahua trees. The park is also known for frequent sightings of Tiger, Blackbuck and Peacock. A large variety of birds can also be seen in Kanha National Park making it a popular place to visit in MP.
Situated in Chhatarpur district of Madhya Pradesh, Panna National Park is amongst the well-maintained wildlife reserves in the state. Panna is also one of the most important shelters for the Royal Bengal Tigers and is amongst the best national parks to visit in MP. Sprawling in an area of 542.67 sq kms, this national park is also the home to species like leopard, wild dog, wolf, hyena, sloth bear, chital and chowsingha. The park is inhabited by 200 species of birds. The location of the national park is an asset as it is situated at a short distance from famous town of Khajuraho.
A city of amazing maze alleyways, Ujjain is the temple town of MP. An ideal escape for the spiritual souls, the city is a charming place undoubtedly. Find yourself at peace at the majestic temples that are dedicated mostly to the Shaivite and Vaishnavite sect of Hinduism. The temples at Ujjain are excellent specimen of Bundela art and architecture. The holy embankments of River Kshipra are amongst some places to spend time and feel tranquility at this otherwise chaotic city. Ujjain is also famed for celebrating the largest Hindu fair – Kumbh Mela and makes an ideal destination for religious tourism in Madhya Pradesh.
Gwalior has been reckoned as one of the important cities that contributed towards the historic richness of India. Right from the Vedic Age to the time of Mutiny, this city of Madhya Pradesh remained a prominent land. Gwalior is rich in art and architecture, which suggests that it makes a great destination for sightseeing tour in MP.
Gwalior is a city in Madhya Pradesh, India, lying 76 miles (122 km) south of Agra, and known as the tourist capital of Madhya Pradesh. The city has a population of over 1.2 million; its greater metropolitan area is the 46th most populous area in the country. Gwalior occupies a strategic location in the Gird region of India, and the city and its fortress have served as the center of several of historic northern Indian kingdoms. That the location of the city still is considered militarily important is signaled by the presence of a major air force base at Maharajpura.
Called Bhojpal in the 11th century, today’s Bhopal is a perfect blend of history and urban planning. A rich influence of 19th century Muslim rulers is evident in Bhopal and it surely has gifted this city an identity that overcomes all. Divided into two parts by pair of lakes, this capital city of Madhya Pradesh offers a great opportunity for exploration to any history buff.
Being one of the oldest cities of the country, Bhopal has a glorious past. The History of Bhopal tells tales of interesting, heroic and amazing incidents. It can take pride in its excellent blend of Islamic and Hindu cultures. Various dynasties have ruled the city over the years, contributing to its architectural and historical richness.
Apparently, Bandhavgarh National Park in Umaria District of Madhya Pradesh is the best place to tiger tourism in India. This 446 sq km wildlife reserve is famed for being a large biodiversity. Home to a large number of tigers, Bandhavgarh is like a dream destination that enhances wildlife tourism in Madhya Pradesh. Apart from the tigers, the park is the host to about 250 species of birds, 80 species of aquatic animals and 37 species of mammals. A thrilling place, where you never know what will you spot at the corner of the turn, Bandhavgarh National Park is the highlight of the state of MP.
Often referred as the ‘Varanasi of Central India’, Maheshwar is a small town dedicated to Lord Shiva. Located on the bank of Narmada River, Maheshwar has lot of religious importance and is one of the major popular pilgrimage destinations in Madhya Pradesh. Infact, it is said that this holy town was once one of the eminent spiritual centres for the Hindu devotees. Today also, Maheshwar is a hotspot for those seeking spiritual experience. Apart from spiritualism, Maheshwar is an excellent hub for those wanting to treat their eyes with some fine Indian architecture as well.
Mandu is a perfect place for the history aficionados. This small town is sometimes referred as Hampi of Central India. Perched on a hilltop, Mandu has history dating back to 10th century AD. Like other historic places, Mandu is also replete with the architectural grandeurs that reflect the influence of different ruling eras. This majestic city is a treasure-trove hidden in the heart of Madhya Pradesh and is indeed a must-visit place in the state.
Bhind is known for its architectural beauty and stands as another important landmark for the state of Madhya Pradesh. Located in Chambal division, Bhind has all the potentials to become a famed tourist spot in Madhya Pradesh. Replete with fine temples and other historic structures, Bhind invites history buffs from all over the world to enjoy its exquisite architectural specimen.
Omkareshwar is seen as one of the most revered places in Madhya Pradesh. It is reckoned to be amongst the 12 Jyotirlingas in India, so one can very well estimate the importance of this sacred town. Soaked in a spiritual feel, Omkareshwar can be your perfect escape from the hectic and bustling crowd of a city and retire to a place that offers nothing but tranquility. In many temples of Omakareshwar, you shall be bound to spend extra time only to imbue yourself into more spirituality.
On the bank of Betwa River, Bhojpur is a historic site in Madhya Pradesh and is said to be a city that could never be completed. The town is believed to have been established by the famous Paramara dynasty ruler Raja Bhoj. Bhojpur preserves many heritage attractions that date back to 11th century. The temples, rock paintings, caves and palaces are all adorned with the work of art, which can definitely woo any history lover. Bhojpur is indeed a right place to learn about the rich history of Madhya Pradesh.
The Hill of Many Wonders, Chitrakoot stretches in both MP and Uttar Pradesh. Chitrakoot is reckoned to be a sacred town that bears historic significance. The legend has it that it was the forest of Chitrakoot where Lord Rama and Sita stayed for 11 long years of their exile. Thus, Chitrakoot gained attention of many Hindu devotees along with those of history lovers. Although a small place, Chitrakoot is not short of any charm and if there has to be a choice to pick a place that you must visit in Madhya Pradesh then this can be it.
Located at the southern edge of Malwa plateau and tracing its root back in 16th century, Indore is the commercial hub of Madhya Pradesh. Although the city is infamous for being too crowded, but when seen from the eyes of an explorer this city too can be interesting. Right from palaces to the museums and from temples to parks, Indore has it all! So, the modern day Indore is a blend of a modern and historic world.
Known for unmatched natural beauty and several tourist attractions, Jabalpur is considered amongst the best destinations to visit in MP. The city is surrounded by granite and sandstone hills and is most famous for its Marble rocks and the national park in its proximity. Jabalpur is situated on the bank of Narmada River and is a perfect place to spend a holidays in Madhya Pradesh.
Katni seems to have an interesting history behind its name. Katni is said to have attained the name as this village was rewarded to brave people who used to behead others. A similar story comes from British rule era, it is said Katni is a place where they used to cut heads of rebellions and plunderers, and hung them in squares to frighten people. Today’s Katni is a rich reserve of cultural heritage as one can see relics from Mahakausal, Bundelkhand, and Baghelkhand here. A great place to learn about the history of Madhya Pradesh, Katni is indeed a destination to cherish.
Another feather in the hat of Madhya Pradesh, Chhatarpur is a beautiful historical town. The place is famed for its heritage tourist sites. It can be a perfect place for those seeking both peace and beauty. The natural charm shall offer peace of mind whereas the historical sites will render the opportunity to learn more about the cultural richness of MP. Chhatarpur seems ideal as a holiday destination for all.
Pachmarhi is a popular travel destination in Madhya Pradesh. In order to get relief from the scorching summer heat many seek shelter in Pachmarhi. This beautiful hill station is famous for cave paintings in the forest, viewpoints, waterfalls and a lake. The beauty of Pachmarhi has also been shown in Bollywood flicks like Asoka and Chakrvyuh. It is a touristy place, so one can see the availability of all those things that are necessary for the tourists.
Here is one destination that is an absolute pride for Madhya Pradesh tourism; Pench National Park is a rich reservoir of flora and fauna. The park, which is partially in MP and partially in Maharashtra, is a safe shelter for many endangered species. Spread in an area of 758 sq kms, Pench is home to species like Bison, Cheetal, Sambar, Nilgai and leopards. A large variety of birds and reptiles can also be found in this park and that is why it is a perfect destination for wildlife tour in Madhya Pradesh.
Rewa is a small yet significant place in MP. Mostly known for its museum, waterfalls and historical villages, Rewa has become popular amongst many backpackers as a perfect destination for nature tourism in Madhya Pradesh. The forts and palaces make this place even more attractive to the tourists. A laidback yet informational trip is what can be guaranteed here as the town runs at this own pace yet in no time take one back in history.
Known for architectural grandeurs, Vidisha has a charm like no other. A resplendent historical site of Madhya Pradesh, Vidisha endures a lot of appeal to the history buffs. One might also get a clear picture of the rich past of Madhya Pradesh from the relics found in Vidisha. Truly an out an out historical destination in Madhya Pradesh, Vidisha is worth investing your time upon.
An ancient town, Shivpuri boasts about the rich history of Madhya Pradesh. The town was once the summer capital of Scindia rulers of Gwalior. There are number of ancient buildings including forts, palaces and chhatris (cenotaphs), the town is also famous for national parks, wildlife sanctuary and waterfalls, which makes Shivpuri a complete holiday destination in MP.
Situated in the Lalitpur range of hills, Deogarh is a beautiful village in Madhya Pradesh. River Betwa that flows through this lovely little place enhances the beauty of this village. Deogarh was once a fortified city and was an important place to see the Jain architecture. Although now mostly in ruins; Deogarh is still a majestic travel destination in MP.
Chanderi is yet another historical town of Madhya Pradesh, where each meandering road makes you meet history. The history of Chanderi is extracted from myths and folklores as no written evidence could be found here. Today, Chanderi is a reminiscence of the ancient MP, where Gurjara-Pratihara used to rule.
A rich archaeological site, Mandsaur in Madhya Pradesh adds to the historical treasure of the state. What makes Mandsaur famous is its Lord Pashupatinath temple, which is located on a river’s bank. The idol of Pashupatinath is similar to that of the highly famed Pashupatinath Temple in Nepal. What more, Mandsaur is also popular for producing high quality opium. A blend of history and modernization has made Mandsaur quite a place to visit. Infact witnessing the Pashupatinath Temple here is one of the things you must do in Madhya Pradesh.
Tikamgarh was once the part of the kingdom of Orchha and is believed to have been found by Bundela ruler Rudra Pratap Singh. This small yet significant town is situated to the south of Orchha and is famed for its majestic fort. Boasting of rich architecture, Tikamgarh can be a great destination for a day-trip from Orchha and Jhansi.
Situated at the bank of Tapti River, Burhanpur is known for its rich past in Madhya Pradesh. This mid-sized city is named after Sheikh Burhan-ud-Din and is famed as a pilgrimage for Bohra Muslims as well as for Sikhs. Burhanpur is also popular as a place where the body of Queen Mumtaz was kept before shifting it to the majestic Taj Mahal. Since Burhanpur was an integral part of Mughal kingdom, it has a large number of big and small monuments which must be seen.
Situated at the meeting point of Vindhya and Satpura forests, Amarkantak is a beautiful destination in Madhya Pradesh. Two rivers i.e Narmada and Sone flows through Amarkantak in two different directions making this place look more pleasing to the eyes. Amarkantak is a famed Hindu pilgrimage also. Blessed with a holy pond, waterfalls and lofty hills, this small town is a perfect place for family vacations in Madhya Pradesh.
Famed for its Railway Junction that is reckoned to be the central crossing for west to east routes and north to east routes, Itarsi is a trading hub in Madhya Pradesh. This town is significant for the handloom clothing and art & craft industry. At Itarsi one has the opportunity to witness vivid attractions like churches, temples and a wildlife reserve.