|Facts and Figures|
|Languages||Rajasthani and Hindi|
|Best time to visit||Winters|
The town of Kota was once the part of the erstwhile Rajput kingdom of Bundi. It became a separate princely state in the 17th century. Apart from the several monuments that reflect the erstwhile glory of the town, Kota is also known for its palaces and gardens.
Kota is located in the southern part of the state of Rajasthan, in the northwestern part of India. It is located on the eastern bank of Chambal River and is drained by its tributaries. Kota is on a high sloping tableland forming a part of the Malwa Plateau. The Mokandarra hills run from southeast to northwest axis of the town. It is 36 km from Bundi. Summers are quite hot (April-June) while winters are cool (October-February). It experiences scant rainfall between June and August.
The best time to visit Kota is between the months of October and February, but one may also visit it in October, when the Dussehra festival is celebrated here.
The history of Kota is linked with the history of Bundi. Both Bundi and Kota came under the rule of the Chauhans in the 12th century. The descendents of the Chauhans set up their capital at Bundi and ruled from here. While Bundi was the capital, Kota formed the land granted to the eldest son of the ruler. This arrangement continued until 1624. In 1624, Emperor Jahangir, the great Mughal ruler, partitioned Bundi and made Kota an independent state. Rao Madho Singh, son of the ruler of Bundi, ascended the throne of Kota. It became a part of the British Empire in 1818 and later became a part of the Indian state of Rajasthan, when it gained independence in 1947.
There are a number of interesting places to be visit in Kota. The city fort and palace, one of its main attractions, is located on the eastern banks of the Chambal River, near the Kota Barrage. This type of fort-palace complex is one of the largest to be found in the state of Rajasthan. The museum within the city palace is worth visiting, as it houses a good collection of artifacts. Kishore Sagar tank, built in 1346, located near the palace is an important tourist attraction.
The little Jagmandir palace, built on a small island at the center of this tank by one of the local rulers in 1740, is another place to visit. Adjacent to the Kishore Sagar is the Brij Vilas Palace Museum, a small government museum. Other tourist spots in Kota include a number of gardens. The Chambal gardens and the Chhattar Bilas gardens are the main ones to be visited. Chhattar Bilas gardens has a number of royal cenotaphs.
The town of Bundi is 36 km from Kota and was the capital of one of the erstwhile Rajput princely states. A number of monuments are to be found in Bundi. Baroli, 56 km southwest of Kota, is known for its ancient temples. These temples date back to the 9th century and are some of the oldest temples to be found in the state of Rajasthan.
FAIRS AND FESTIVALSDussehra, an important festival of the Hindus commemorating the victory of good over evil, is celebrated in Kota like other parts of India with great fervor. The specialty of Dussehra in Kota is the Dussehra Mela celebrated in the month of October.
HOW TO REACHKota does not have an airport of its own. Kota railway station is located at the extreme northern end of the town. As Kota is on the main Delhi-Mumbai railway line via Sawai Madhopur, a number of trains pass through and stop here. Trains to Madhopur take about 2½ hours. There is a daily train for Chittorgarh via Bundi, from Kota. The journey to Bundi takes about 1½ hour, while it takes 5 hours to reach Chittorgarh from Kota. The trip to Jaipur takes about 5 hours, while it takes 10 hours to reach Delhi from Kota.
The main bus station in Kota is located on Bundi Road near the eastern bank of the Chambal River. There is a good bus service from Kota to Ajmer (6 hours), Chittorgarh (6 hours), Jaipur (6 hours), Udaipur (6 hours), Jodhpur (11 hours) and Bikaner (12 hours). Buses leave for Bundi every half an hour and the travel time is 50 minutes.To move within the city, travelers can either use auto-rickshaws or cycle-rickshaws. Minibuses link the main bus station with the railway station.
PLACES TO STAYBudget hotels are few in Kota. Most of the accommodation available here is mid range. One can also find erstwhile palaces converted into hotels here. Umaid Bhavan Palace and Brijraj Bhavan Palace are two such hotels. Most of the important hotels in Kota are located on or around the Station Road.
PLACES TO EATKota does not offer any special cuisine to the traveler, but one can try food at the restaurants and hotels within the town. For cheap snacks, there are several eating joints on the Station Road.
INFORMATIONOne can obtain information from the Tourist Reception Center (Ph: 327695), located in the government-run Hotel Chambal.
|Indian Culture History|