|Zero Mile Stone||Located right at the center of the city along the Wardha Road|
|Deeksha Bhoomi (Dhamma Chakra Stupa)||Nested close to the Dr B. R. Ambedkar College in the Ramdaspeth of Nagpur|
|Sri Poddareshwar Ram Mandir||Stationed on the Central Avenue Road (C A Road) of the city|
|Shri Vyankatesh Temple||Located on the Dharaskar Road in Itwari|
|Sri Balaji and Sri Kartikeya Temple||Nestled atop the renowned Seminary Hills of the city|
|Bohra Masjid||Located in the Shantinagar|
|Maharajbaug Zoo||Located in the right in the heart of the city along the Nagpur Amravati NH 6|
|Ambazari Lake||Positioned about 8 kilometers away from the Nagpur Railway Station on the western outskirts of the city along the State Highway No 255|
|Sonegaon Lake||Along the Khamla Road in the proximity with the Nagpur Airport|
|Gorewada Lake||Situated on the north-west corner of the city close to the Ring Road|
|Shukrawari Lake||Sited right in the heart of the city|
|Telankadi Lake||Positioned just outside the premises of the city|
|Futala Lake||Situated in the western part of Nagpur close to the Amravati Road|
|Kasturchand Park||Located at the distance of about 1 kilometer from the central railway station of Nagpur|
|Musical Garden||Placed at Surya Nagar in Nagpur East|
|Lake Garden Sakkardara||Located on the banks of the Sakkardara Lake in Ayodhya Nagar area of Nagpur|
|Raman Science Centre||Located right in the center of the city opposite the Gandhi Sagar Lake|
|Seminary Hill||Sited about 6 kilometers to the west of the Nagpur old city|
|Sitabuldi Fort||Perched atop a small hillock in the center of the Nagpur city|
|Markanda||Situated on the left banks of the Wainganga River|
|Sevagram||Situated about 75 kilometers away from Nagpur|
|Ramtek||Located about 49 kilometers away from the Nagpur city|
|Kundinpur||Located at the distance of about 120 kilometers from Nagpur|
|Navegaon Dam and National Park||Located about 139 kilometers away from Nagpur adjacent the National Highway No 6|
|Pavnar||Sited about 65 kilometers away from Nagpur in the Wardha District|
|Khekranala||About 55 kilometers away from Nagpur on the Nagpur Chhindwaa Road|
|Adasa||Parked at the distance of about 45 kilometers from the Nagpur city|
|Dhapewada Lake||Positioned about 8 kilometers away from Ramtek and nearly 60 kilometers from Nagpur|
|Nagardhan||Sited about 38 kilometers from Nagpur and just 8 kilometers away from Ramtek|
|Pench National Park||Located in the lesser southern reaches of the Satpuda Hills on the border of Maharashtra and Madhya Pradesh states|
Zero Mile Stone
The Zero Mile Stone of Nagpur located right at the center of the city along the Wardha Road is a magniloquent monument that explicitly marks the geographical midpoint of India. Erected during the British Raj, the Zero Mile Stone was used by the British to measure the distances in all the directions. The monument fabricated out of yellow sandstone comprises four horses about to jump and a pillar standing beside them. The pillar bears the engravings indicating the table where the exact distances of country’s chief destinations from the Zero Mile Marker by road are noted. The Zero Mile Stone of Nagpur is parked 493 km from Hyderabad, 734 km from Pune, 798 km from Mumbai, 851 km from Ahmedabad, 1029 km from Delhi, 1062 km from Bangalore, 1117 km from Chennai and 1118 km from Kolkata. In the year 2008, ‘The Times of India’ volunteered to maintain the Zero Mile Marker Monument of Nagpur for 5 years.
Deeksha Bhoomi (Dhamma Chakra Stupa)
Deeksha Bhoomi, nested close to the Dr B. R. Ambedkar College in the Ramdaspeth of Nagpur is a sacred Buddhist monument and a pilgrim destination highly exalted far and wide for its religious, historical, cultural and architectural magnitude. The term ‘Deeksha Bhoomi’ literally means ‘Deeksha’ i.e. embracing a religion and ‘Bhoomi’ i.e. place or land. Thus Deeksha Bhoomi is a place where on 14th October 1956 Dr. Baba Saheb Ambedkar along with his over 380,000 followers converted to Buddhism. A grand Stupa has been established at the Deeksha Bhoomi and millions of devotees and tourists from all over the globe pay a visit to this place throughout the year, particularly on the occasion of ‘Ashok Vijaya Dashmi’ i.e. 14th October. The Deeksha Bhoomi of Nagpur happens to be one of the two most important mementos of Dr. B. R. Ambedkar, the other being the Chaityabhoomi of Mumbai. Celebrated for its architectural magnificence, the Stupa of the Deeksha Bhoomi was designed by an eminent architect ‘Sheo Dan Mal’. Even though the construction started in July 1978, it reached completion many years later and the Stupa was opened to the general public on 18th December 2001. The then President of India K. R. Narayanan had commemorated the inauguration ceremony.
The Stupa of the Deeksha Bhoomi is modeled after the world famous Sanchi Stupa, however, unlike the Sanchi Stupa the Stupa of the Deeksha Bhoomi is completely hollow from inside. This Stupa of Nagpur happens to be the largest hollow Buddhist Stupa in the whole world. The ground floor of the Stupa comprises a large square hall where an idol of Lord Buddha is enshrined. The library and the photo exhibition of the Deeksha Bhoomi portray the life episodes of Lord Buddha and Dr. Ambedkar. The central dome of the Stupa embellished with a small slab and a tiny umbrella is girdled by a verandah and attractive fountains are placed on the all four directions of the dome. The large arches crowning the entryways of the Stupa are festooned with the motifs of Ashok Chakra, horses, elephants and lions. The statues of Dr. Ambedkar and Lord Buddha are placed in the garden surrounding the Stupa while a Buddha Vihara is sited to the right of it. Moreover, a Bodhi Tree i.e. a sacred fig tree is planted here which was brought from Anuradhapuram of Shi Lanka.
Sri Poddareshwar Ram Mandir
Sri Poddareshwar Ram Mandir dedicated to Lord Ram, Lakshman and Devi Sita is one of the foremost religious destinations of the ‘Orange City’ Nagpur. Stationed on the Central Avenue Road (C A Road) of the city, this Hindu shrine was established by Late Shri Jamnadhar Poddar, a descendent of the prominent Poddar family of Bisau in Rajasthan and a rich businessman of India at that time. The sudden death of his only son moved Jamnadhar Poddar thoroughly and leaving all the materialistic pursuits behind he took to religion. In the fond memory of his departed son, Shri Jamnadhar Poddar erected the Poddareshwar Ram Mandir of Nagpur in the year 1923. The term ‘Poddareshwar’ means the Lord of the Poddar Family. Constructed out of sleek and shiny marble and sandstone, this Ram Mandir is predominantly noted for its stunning exterior and its equally dazzling interior. Greatly frequented by the Hindus, this Lord Ram temple beckons myriads of locals and tourists in all seasons. It is believed that if you pay a visit to the Poddareshwar Ram Mandir you will attain incomparable peace of mind and solace of heart. Every year, the temple celebrates the festivals like Ram Navami and Hanuman Jayanti with unparalleled pomp and zest. Apart from the Lord Ram Temple, Shri Jamnadhar Poddar has also constructed a huge Dharamshala sanatorium near the Nagpur Railway Station which is considerably affordable and an ideal place for lodging in Nagpur.
Shri Vyankatesh Temple
Shri Vyankatesh Temple of Nagpur located on the Dharaskar Road in Itwari is a Hindu shrine dedicated to Lord Vyankatesh; the manifestation of Lord Balaji or Lord Vishnu. Established under the leadership and the guidance of Swamiji Shri Dharacharyaji the construction of this temple commenced on 9th April 1963 which attained completion in 1968 AD. The sanctum of the Shri Vyankatesh Temple enshrines the enticing effigy of Lord Vyankatesh made of black stone and adorned with gold ornaments. In addition to that, three festival statues of Lord Vyankatesh made out of gold are also placed just below the chief idol of the presiding deity. These smaller figurines are specially made by the proficient artists from Chennai whereas the main idol of Lord Vyankatesh is believed to have brought all the way from South India. The main entrance of the temple garlanded with ornately carved figures of numerous Hindu Gods and Goddesses is also bedecked with burnished silver foil. The daily offerings performed at the temple include the special worship, Abhishekam, Rajbhog, mantra recitation, and so on. Vyankatesh Temple of Nagpur is noted for its ostentatious festivals like the Ramanuja Jayanti, Ram Navmi, Krishna Janmashtami, Waman Jayanti, Narsingh Jayanti, etc. Apart from that, the temple celebrates its 3 days long annual festival in the month of February which involves the ceremony of God’s wedding, special Abhishekam, Kalash Pooja and ShobhaYatra. On the special occasions and festival days, the Vyankatesh Temple is thronged by over 10,000 devotees. The Vyankatesh Temple of Nagpur also undertakes some welfare programs such as running a Homeopathic Hospital and Sanskrit language classes.
Sri Balaji and Sri Kartikeya Temple
Sri Balaji and Sri Kartikeya Temple of Nagpur nestled atop the renowned Seminary Hills of the city is a Hindu temple where Lord Balaji; a manifestation of Lord Vishnu and Lord Kartikeya; the son of Lord Shiva and the mythological commander of the heavenly army of Hindu deities are enshrined. Distinguished for its incredible architectural splendor, the Balaji Temple of Nagpur depicts the brilliant amalgamation of North and South Indian architectural orders. While the daunting Rajagopuram or the main entrance of the temple reminds us of the South Indian temple style, the capacious and well-ventilated mandapams illustrate the bearing of the present day North Indian temples. The Temple Complex also accommodates a community hall, a library and the residential quarters for the priests. The temple hall can be rented for religious ceremonies at reasonable prices. The Balaji and Kartikeya Temple Trust is run by the ‘Motibagh Shri Skanda Samaj’. A Vedic Pathshala is also run by the temple trust that provides training in the Hindu Vedic Shastras. Above and beyond, the temple is also celebrated as the flourishing cultural core that is marked with a number of artistic, cultural and spiritual activities organized here. The Balaji and Kartikeya Temple of Nagpur is cram packed with devotees and tourists at the time of various temple festivals celebrated here.
The Bohra Masjid of Nagpur, to be found in the Shantinagar locality of Itwari is a mosque where the members of the Dawoodi Bohra community of the city pray and perform Namaz and other religious services. Widely recognized for its architectural grandeur, this impressive Masjid of Nagpur witnesses the deluge of devotees particularly at the time of Friday prayers, other auspicious occasions and Islamic festivals. The edifice of the Masjid is bequeathed with a large community hall that is used for the community gatherings, religious and cultural celebrations and Muslim weddings. Very popular amongst the Muslim residents of Nagpur, the Bohra Masjid beckons the believers of Islam as well as general tourists from all across the globe.
The Maharajbaug Zoo cuddled right in the heart of the city along the Nagpur Amravati NH 6 is the central zoo of this metropolitan that is administered by the Central Zoo Authority (CZA) of India and maintained by the Punjabrao Krishi Vidyapeeth (PKV) of Nagpur. Earlier a garden, established by certain erstwhile Bhonsle and Maratha rulers of Vidarbha region, the Maharajbaug is now converted to a zoo where lion, tiger, leopards, peacock and other endangered and rare species of animals and birds are sheltered. Julie and Gopal was a well-known pair of leopards of this zoo who passed away of old age in 2006 AD but a little cub of this couple still resides in the Maharajbaug Zoo of Nagpur. In 2006, this zoo had to go through inspection for the issues related to the animal healthcare. The zoo was dreading a possible closure but all the objections raised by CZA were cleared out in 2007 and the zoo continued its subsistence. Presently, the Maharashtra State Government has approved a new safari park to be found near the Gorewada Lake which will be designed after the international standards and the animals from the Maharajbaug Zoo will be shifted here. Subsequently, the Maharajbaug Zoo will be ready to shelter newly arriving animals. The Maharajbaug Zoo of Nagpur endowed with plethora of pristine pulchritude and verdant green botanical gardens attracts innumerable local as well as outside visitors and nature lovers all round the year. These picturesque and fascinating gardens of Maharajbaug proffered with immaculate gorgeousness provide an ideal and idyllic location for picnicking and merry making in the vicinity of nature away from the hustle bustle of mechanical city life.
The Ambazari Lake, positioned about 8 kilometers away from the Nagpur Railway Station on the western outskirts of the city along the State Highway No 255 is a titanic water reservoir that yields a romantic glamour to this industrial conurbation. Covering an extensive area of 15.4 square kilometers, the Ambazari Lake happens to be the largest of all the natural and manmade lakes dotting the terra firma of Nagpur. Embroidered with a dexterously landscaped garden that is developed by the Nagpur Municipal Corporation as a model garden, the Ambazari Lake offers an excellent outing and hangout spot well-liked both by the locals as well as the tourists. The neighborhood is greatly crowded in the evening and on the weekends. The garden that skirts the Ambazari Lake is a theme garden that is brimming with numerous fun activities that would equally intrigue both kids and adults.
Some of the highlights of the Ambazari Lake include the pleasure boat ride for the entire family, the eye-catching musical fountains, a mini train for children, the exciting ride of the Columbus boat, see saw for the kids, and so on. At the entrance of the Ambazari Lake garden an enormous model of dinosaur welcomes the visitors while the colossal air filled lion and a teddy bear allure the children. The scintillating Ambazari Lake is deemed as the most beautiful lake of the city and people love to repose on the lake banks and keep staring at the far flung lagoon all the evening. Moreover, the promenades paved along the lake are used by the citizens and tourists for jogging in the morning and leisure strolls in the evening.
The extraordinary attraction of the Ambazari Lake is its aero-modeling display organized on the weekends wherein remote-controlled toy sea planes gracefully land on the unruffled waters of Ambazari Lake and take off again. The Ambazari Lake and Garden enriched with plentiful recreational activities and endowed with incomparable scenic beauty is truly a hub of entertainment for the entire family.
The Sonegaon Lake of Nagpur positioned along the Khamla Road in the proximity with the Nagpur Airport is one of the ancient man made lakes of the city constructed during the governance of some erstwhile ruler of the Nagpur Princely State. The periphery of the lake is fringed with a well laid boulevard where scores of benches are installed. The lake premises are cram packed with the locals as well as the tourists particularly in the evening who like to repose on the benches and unwind in the vicinity of the shimmering Sonegaon Lagoon. The lake serves as a perfect idyllic locus to chill out with your family or friends. A graceful and peaceful Buddha Vihara and an imposing Goddess Durga Temple are also nestled on the banks of the Sonegaon Lake. An additional attraction of the Lake is that this tarn is teeming with numerous migratory birds particularly in winter. However, the glory of the Sonegaon Lake vanishes in summer as its dries up during these four months and creates a semblance of a widespread playground.
The Gorewada Lake of Nagpur situated on the north-west corner of the city close to the Ring Road (State Highway 260) is a fresh water reservoir constructed by damming the Pili River. A Water Treatment Plant is also set up adjacent the Gorewada Lake.
The Shukrawari Lake of Nagpur sited right in the heart of the city is a 275 years old water repository that has today rendered itself as one of the thriving picnicking destinations of this Orange City. Earlier reckoned by the title Jumma Talab, the Shukrawari Lake; a clam hub of several sub water bodies is also known by the appellation; the Gandhi Sagar Lake. Girdled by stoned ramparts and embroidered by the wreath of emerald green verdure all around the Shukrawari Lake provides the boating facilities to the visitors. Moreover, an ancient temple dedicated to Lord Ganesha adds religious and spiritual appeal to the vicinity. Endowed with immeasurable scenic splendor, the Shukrawari Lake beckons numerous vacationers, picnickers and devotees to mellow out in the proximity with the cosmos. This panoramic picnic berth nested in the lap of nature far away from the hullabaloo and hustle bustle of city life is indeed a composed and unruffled venue to spend your weekends with family and friends. One of the most notable attractions of the Shukrawari Lake is the ‘Centre of Rheumatic Diseases’ established close by which is sponsored by the Municipal Corporation of Delhi. The very well equipped Centre of Rheumatic Diseases along with the Panchakarma centre is famed far and wide for the treatments it offers aimed at curing various rheumatic disorders. People from all over the country come here to get treated.
The Telankadi Lake of Nagpur positioned just outside the premises of the city is yet another grand water lagoon that offers a perfect milieu for a quiescent evening with your near and dear once. Bedecked with soft creamy sand and sanctified by the presence of the Lord Hanuman and Lord Shiva temples, the Telankadi Lake attracts both the tourists and the devotees alike. The Telankadi Hanuman Temple reckoned all over the place for its mystical wish fulfilling qualities is thronged by the devotees of Lord Hanuman all round the year, particularly on the occasions of Hanuman Jayanti and Ram Navami festivals. Apart from its religious magnitude, the lake is celebrated for the enchanting prospects of the rising and setting sun it offers. Most of the tourists after having a hectic day of traveling around and sight seeing in the city choose to loosen up on the sandy banks of the Telankadi Lake. A lovely and dazzling garden bequeathed with spacious walkways, playing fields for the kids and an aquarium put up nearby acts as a big draw amongst both the kids and the adults. At the end of the Navaratri celebration and the Durga Pooja Ceremonies, the Telankadi Lake serves as one of the top most lakes of the city where the majority of the Durga idols are immersed in the water. This ceremony is performed with unlimited pomp and grandeur and the Telankadi Lake is packed out with the devotees of Goddess Durga who congregate here in large numbers. The Telankadi Lake, picturesquely cuddled on the outskirts of Nagpur is one of the preeminent picnic spots to escape and relax.
The Futala or Phutala Lake situated in the western part of Nagpur close to the Amravati Road is an ancient water reservoir existing for past 200 years. Recently revamped by NIT on a large scale with an aid from the government, the Futala Lake furbished with immense finery and magnificence is one of the must visit tourist attractions of the Nagpur city. Commended amongst the supreme hangout places of the conurbation, the Futala Lake is an exemplary locus to relax and revitalize in the evening after a hectic day. Sitting by the enchanting side of the lake, gently seeping the charm of the environs, perceiving the diminishing radiance of the setting sun and gobbling the delicious bhuttas or other snacks is truly an Arcadian experience. One can take the family for dinner at the restaurants set up along the banks of the charismatic Futala Lake. Horse carriage ride is an additional magnetism of this place. Spread over an extensive are of 60 acres, the Futala Lake enclosed by the guard walls on all the sides and encircled by a granite stone paving is also bequeathed with a fascinating garden that allures the kids to no extend. The walkway around the lake is ornamented with benches, decorative lamps and attractive dust bins. Not only that, two colored fountains of the height of 15 feet and one majestic 100 feet tall fountain add to the pizzazz of the Futala Lake. The southern side of the lake is bounded with an immersion ghat where devotees and tourists enjoy a tantalizing and invigorating bath in the cold waters of the lagoon.
The Kasturchand Park to be found at the distance of about 1 kilometer from the central railway station of Nagpur is the largest convention center of this conurbation nuzzled right in the heart of the civic. This gargantuan auditorium has the capacity of accommodating thousands of people at a time and most of the grand scale processions carried out in Nagpur city terminate here. Numerous trade shows and a number of religious and cultural festivals are held at the coliseum of the Kasturchand Park and it is thriving with all kinds of activities and event all twelve months of the year. The most popular and most noteworthy gala organized here is the Ganesh Chathurthi celebration when other than the religious ceremonies and rituals, many carnivals and fairs are also held. The core of the Kasturchand Park is bejeweled with an imposing palace like structure which along with its lofty minarets yields an imperial outlook.
The Musical Garden of Nagpur placed at Surya Nagar in Nagpur East is established under the patronage and direction of Shri Jaiprakash Gupta; the NIT trustee. Christened in the honor of the music queen of India i.e. Lata Mangeshkar, this sprawling garden is based on the theme of music. Noted for its marvelously landscaped lawns and pleasing & enjoyable ambience, the Lata Mangeshkar Musical Garden is studded with several arresting musical fountains which are operated by the musicians. The water dances to the tunes of symphonic classical compositions marked with various musical notes and melodias, ragas and raginis. Even some of the architectural structures are based upon the classical ragas and notes of Indian Classical music. The garden also houses an enormous an open air theater which has the capacity of accommodating around 2500 people at a time. This open air theater serves as the venue of various musical concerts held in Nagpur. Apart from entertaining the visitors and music lover and also providing a platform to the masters of music in India, the Lata Mangeshkar Musical Garden also aims at inspiring the children to take up music as their career. An additional lure of the garden is that USP devices are installed in the walking paths at various sensitive spaces at a regular interval and if you step upon them, a sweet music starts playing immediately. Besides, the Musical Garden is also equipped with three viewing galleries where visitors can repose and enjoy the beauty of nature. What augments the glamour of this garden is its artificial waterfall that fascinates the beholders to no limit.
Lake Garden Sakkardara
The Lake Garden Sakkardara, also known as the ‘Sakkardara Garden’ is a conservatory landscaped on the banks of the Sakkardara Lake in Ayodhya Nagar area of Nagpur. This extensive greenhouse swarming with immense natural pulchritude is one of the popular weekend destinations for the residents of the city. This is the most breathtaking berth where along with indulging in leisurely recreations one can also spend some quality time with family, friends or even one’s own self in the cradle of Mother Nature. Much loved by young and old alike, the Sakkardara Garden has something for everyone in its casket. Possessing 5 expanses of playing fields in total, the garden absolutely entices the kids, whereas the young hearts are beguiled by the enthralling panoramas of sunset and sunrise. The adjoining lake amplifies the romance of this place and locals over and above the tourists throng this garden to experience the gentle and fondling stroke of nature on their body and mind.
Raman Science Centre
The Raman Science Centre of Nagpur located right in the center of the city opposite the Gandhi Sagar Lake is an interactive science center that functions in the affiliation with the Nehru Science Centre of Mumbai. Inaugurated on 7th March 1992, the Raman Science Centre; named after the glorified memory of India’s Nobel Prize winner physicist ‘Chandrasekhara Venkata Raman’ was developed with an objective of promoting the scientific approach, portraying the development of science and technology so far and their relevance in the industry and in the welfare of human race in general. The Raman Science Centre carries out various programs and organizes science exhibitions in order to spread the knowledge regarding science and technology amongst the general public. A 133 seat planetarium was added to the Science Center in the year 1997 which was opened to the public on 5th January. Presently, the Raman Science Centre houses about 45 different interactive galleries including the planetarium, prehistoric Animal Park, fun science and so on. Other than the planetary shows, the Raman Science Centre of Nagpur holds various science based lectures, science film shows, 3-dimensional science shows, planet watching and other celestial phenomena and various other science related activities. From 1st April 2006 to 31st March 2007, the centre had reached the visitor count of 307,074. The Raman Science Centre is a part of the National Council of Science Museums (NCSM) India which happens to be the largest network of science centers and museums assembled under a solitary administrative umbrella in the whole world. The Raman Science Centre covering the total floor area of 4333 square meters has been ranked by NCSM as a regional level Science Centre. The Raman Science Center remains open from 10:30 am to 6:00 pm between November and February and from 11:30 am to 7:00 pm between March and October.
The Seminary Hill of Nagpur sited about 6 kilometers to the west of the Nagpur old city is a mound that is renowned all over the place as one of the principal tourist attractions of this Orange City. This hillock parked on the outskirts of Nagpur derives its title from the name of the Seminary of St. Charles that is perched atop this knoll. Not so difficult or dangerous for climbing up, the Seminary Hill is famous amongst the trekkers, mountaineers and adventure seekers as a favorite trekking destination around Nagpur. Moreover, the Seminary Hill is also exalted for the breathtaking vistas of the surrounding landscape and the entire Nagpur city it offers.
The Sitabuldi Fort of Nagpur perched atop a small hillock in the center of the Nagpur city is a historic stronghold that served as the site of the legendary ‘Battle of Sitabuldi’ of 1817 AD. Erected by Mudhoji II Bhonsle (Appa Sahib) just before the Third Anglo-Maratha War, this ancient fort now serves as the habitat of the Indian Army’s 118th infantry battalion. The area of Nagpur city adjoining the Sitabuldi Fort is now known as Sitabuldi and is reckoned as a booming commercial hub and shopping center of this metropolis. The Nagpur Railway Station is located to the south of the Sitabuldi Fort whereas the famous Tekdi Ganapati temple is sited at the back of the fort. Boasting of its illustrious and eventful history of more than 200 years, the Sitabuldi Fort today houses the graves of the British soldiers who died in the Battle of Sitabuldi. Moreover, a mosque has been built at the place where Tipu Sultan’s grandson Nawab Kadar Ali along with his 8 accomplices was hanged to death subsequent to the 1857 rebellion for fighting against the British East India Company. Mahatma Gandhi was also imprisoned in the Sitabuldi Fort between 10th April and 15th May 1923. Not only that, King George V and Queen Mary visited this fort and gave audience to the public from here during their visit to the British India. A pillar was raised to commemorate this event which can be seen in the fort even today. Formerly, the Sitabuldi Fort was open to the public two days a year i.e. 26th January and 15th August. However, since 19th May 2007 it is not open to the general public as the infantry battalion of Indian Army is dwelling here.
Markanda a dandy little hamlet situated on the left banks of the Wainganga River and christened in the honor of a legendary Sage Markandeya who is believed to have dwelt and performed penance here is a temple town noted all over the country for its cluster of about 24 temples resembling the architecture of the world famous Khajuraho Temples. This potpourri of history, architecture, mythology and religion is a must visit attraction for the tourists, devotees, historians, photographers, archaeologists as well as the students of architecture. Spread over an extensive area of 196 by 168 meters, this congregation of temples is estimated to be dating back to 9th and 11th Century AD when Rashtrakuta Kings were in power. Nevertheless, some inscriptions found here indicate the possibility of them being built in 8th century AD and later renovated in 11th century AD. Out of the 24 temples only 18 have survives till today out of which only 4 shrines are in considerably good condition.
The chief Markanda Temple was struck by lightning and destroyed about 300 years back. Opulent in its architectural and structural majesty, the Markanda temples are highly praised for their exquisite carvings depicting various Hindu Gods and Goddesses, celestial nymphs and erotic figurines. Each of the sculpture adorning the outer walls of the temple is festooned with intricately carved ornaments and is distinguished for its unique and appealing posture and gesture. Every God or Goddess is accompanied with his or her mythological vehicle (an animal or a bird) which renders the identification of the deity easy. So far, about 409 images have been spotted here. On the occasion of Mahashivratri Festival which falls in the month of February or March, a grand religious fair is held at Markanda which receives thousands of devotees every year.
Sevagram, located about 75 kilometers away from Nagpur in the Wardha District is a small historical village that served as the venue of Mahatma Gandhi’s ashram during the period of India’s freedom struggle. The term Sevagram means ‘a village for service’. In earlier times this hamlet was reckoned by the name Shegaon which was later rechristened by Gandhiji as ‘Sevagram’. The Ashram consisted of small houses for Gandhiji and Kasturba and other residing quarters which resembled the typical huts of small rural communities. The specialty of this Ashram is that the Harijanas who were treated as untouchables during those times were employed in the Ashram kitchen to propagate and promote social equality. Sevagram Village is also a home to Vinoba Bhave’s ‘Param Dham Ashram’ which is situated on the banks of the river ‘Dhaam’. Additionally, the first rural medical college of India; ‘Mahatma Gandhi Institute of Medical Sciences’ and an engineering college (Bapurao Deshmukh College of Engineering) run by a rural trust are also stationed at Sevagram.
Ramtek located about 49 kilometers away from the Nagpur city is a municipal council of Nagpur District that serves as a home to a historic temple dedicated to Lord Ram. As the legend goes, Lord Ram had rested at this place for a while during his exile. It is believed that Sage Agastya and many other sages used to reside here in a hermitage and perform Yagnas and other religious rituals and Poojas. While the sages used to perform the religious rites, the demons used to disturb them by throwing flesh and bones in the Yagna and thus desecrate and violate their solemnities. Moreover, they also killed several sages. Lord Ram distressed and enraged on learning this, vowed to demolish the demons and save the sages of the hermitage from their brutality. The term Ramtek means ‘the place where Lord Ram had taken an oath (tek)’. The locals of Ramtek and the devotees of Lord Ram hold a belief that those who take any oath at Ramtek are blessed by Lord Ram for its fulfillment. The present day Lord Ram temple of Ramtek is assumed to have been erected during the governance of Maharaja Raghuji Bhonsale; the king of Nagpur after his conquest of the Deogarh Fort in Chindwara. The Padukas (wooden foot wares) of Lord Ram enshrined in the temple are believed to have been worshipped at Ramtek over the centuries. Other than its association with Lord Ram, Ramtek is also related to the great Sanskrit poet Kalidasa who composed ‘Meghdootam’ in the hills of Ramtek. The Khindasi Lake located close by serves as one of the most popular landmarks and a thriving tourist attraction of Ramtek.
Kundinpur, also known as ‘Kundinapuri’ or ‘Kaundanyapur’ of Amravati district, located at the distance of about 120 kilometers from Nagpur is a historical town and the mythological capital of Vidarbha Kingdom that was governed by King Bhima, King Bhishmaka and his son King Rukmi. Two of the prominent female characters mentioned in the Mahabharata, Damayanti and Rukmini were based in Kundinpur. Damayanti was the daughter of King Bhima who was married to a Nishadha prince Nala and had to face many difficulties due to the disgrace of Lord Shani. Rukmini was the daughter of King Bhishmaka and the sister of King Rukmi who eloped with Lord Shri Krishna from Kundinpur and got married to him. Presently, Kundinpur is celebrated for its 10 days long annual Karthik Purnima festival when the city receives over 50000 devotees from different parts of the country.
Navegaon Dam and National Park
The Navegaon Dam and National Park located about 139 kilometers away from Nagpur adjacent the National Highway No 6 is one of the most renowned forest resorts of the Vidarbha region. The Navegaon Dam nestled in the midst of verdant green woods and breathtaking sceneries was constructed by Kolu Patel Kohli in early 18th century. Endowed with charismatic parks and gardens and adorned with a scintillating picturesque lake surrounded by seven peaks, the Navegaon Dam and National Park serves as a leading picnic destination and a weekend getaway from the hustle bustle of Nagpur in the proximity with the Mother Nature. A paradise for nature lovers and adventure seekers, Navegaon comprises a deer park, a Salim Ali Bird Sanctuary, three mesmerizing gardens and a children’s park. Nawegaon National Park, covering an extensive area of 135 square kilometers functions as the foremost attraction of this place. The park enriched with affluent flora, fauna, and avifauna is proliferating with numerous deciduous trees such as teak, mahua, jamun, bhel, bhor, etc.
The worth mentioning fauna of the National Park includes tiger, panther, wild boar, bison, nilgai etc. Besides, Navegaon is also noted for its migratory and local birds of different species, including over 60% of all the bird species found in Maharashtra. Spotting kingfishers, scarlet minivets and many rare migratory birds flying around the forest is indeed a treat to the bird lovers and ornithologists. The period between June and October is the most ideal time for bird watching at Navegaon. Several watchtowers have been erected in the Navegaon National Park from where tourists can observe the movements of the wild animals in their natural habitat. Other attractions of the park include safaris, sail boating, and tree top retreats. The National Park can be visited from 4:00 am to 7:00 pm and even though lodging is not available at Navegaon Dam, several Rest Houses are operated at Navegaon by Forest Department and Zilla Parishad.
Pavnar, sited about 65 kilometers away from Nagpur in the Wardha District is a small town that derives its name after a legendary Rajput king Pavan. Set up on the banks of the river Dham, this tiny civic is known all over the place for the Ashram established here by one of the great freedom fighter and social reformer of India - Vinoba Bhave where the patients suffering from leprosy are lodged and treated. The historical ashram of Mahatma Gandhi is also situated close by. Moreover, Pavnar is also noted as the most antediluvian colonies existing in the Wardha District.
Khekranala snuggled amidst the Khapra range forests of Maharashtra about 55 kilometers away from Nagpur on the Nagpur Chhindwaa Road is a dainty little town noted for its extravagant water reservoir dotted with immense scenic bloom. The luxuriant foliage of Khekranala coupled with its pristine milieu and in the pink environment draws hordes of tourists and nature lovers from all quarters of the state and country. The splendid Khapra forests and an enrapturing water lagoon offer a perfect weekend getaway and an idyllic holiday destination for those romantic souls who love to explore the recesses in the heart of nature. The lake and its surrounding region is fringed by dense forests and this out-of-the-way niche is by no means overcrowded by the tourists so visiting Khekranala can be a pleasurable experience of witnessing Arcadia preserved in its immaculate form. Adventure enthusiasts can indulge in various water sports and trekking & mountaineering expeditions. Trekkers can camp at the base of the Khapra ranges and discover the interiors of the rugged hills those provide home to several species of flora and fauna. One can even encounter some wild animals while meandering across these dense forests. The irreproachable charm of the vicinity, the boundless panorama and the calm and salubrious clime of Khekranala yields a truly memorable experience.
Adasa, a peachy little township of Nagpur District parked at the distance of about 45 kilometers from the Nagpur city is a marvelous locale reckoned far and wide for its congregation of outstanding ancient temples. The most remarkable amongst them is the Ganapati Temple where an idol of Lord Ganesha chiseled out of a single stone is enshrined. On the brink of Adasa is sited a hillock where a temple dedicated to Lord Shiva is to be found. This shrine of Lord Mahadeo is particularly noted for its three lingams of Lord Shiva. The locals believe that these three Shiva Lingams are self originated and they have naturally emerged out of the earth. To reach Adasa from Nagpur regular buses are quite easily available.
Dhapewada positioned about 8 kilometers away from Ramtek and nearly 60 kilometers from Nagpur is a groovy hamlet set up on the banks of the river Chandrabhaga. A small temple dedicated to Lord Vithoba is erected on the banks of the Chandrabhaga River which renders Dhapewada a moniker; ‘the Pandharpur of Vidarbha’. This temple was constructed under the benediction of Umaji Aba, the Diwan in the court of Raja Bajirao Bhonsle. Khindsey Lake of Dhapewada is an additional attraction of this locus where varieties of water sports are made available for the tourists and picnickers. This angelic water body set amidst the emerald green stretch of the Ramtek hill justly serves as one of the principal picnic destinations and weekend getaways around Nagpur.
Nagardhan sited about 38 kilometers from Nagpur and just 8 kilometers away from Ramtek is an ancient conurbation of Maharashtra ubiquitously famed for its ostentatious stronghold and the hill temple it houses. Previously known as Nandivardhan, Nagardhan served as the first capital of the Vakataka Kings. The present fort and township of Nagardhan most likely developed by Raghuji Bhosale I in 1740 AD approx. protected Nagpur from the eastern assaults. Square in its outline, the fort of Nagardhan is enclosed by an outer rampart which is towered with bastions. The outer fortification is escorted by an inner barricade that surrounds the main fort and the interior buildings as a means of an additional protection. The main gate of the citadel facing towards north-west is still in pretty good condition. Besides, a temple is put up below the ground level where an idol of Goddess Durga is enshrined on a protuberance of a well like construction. The palace built inside the fort is almost in ruins however, it is easy to note the architectural dexterity and sculptural grandeur achieved by the artisans of the times gone by. Round the corner of the Nagardhan Fort is discovered a site where old and antique large sized bricks are often revealed. It is believed that this was the site of the capital of the erstwhile Vakataka sovereigns.
Pench National Park
Pench National Park located in the lesser southern reaches of the Satpuda Hills on the border of Maharashtra and Madhya Pradesh states is a celebrated tiger reserve that has achieved a rank of eminence on the world front. Christened after the Pench River that flows through the sanctuary, the Pench National Park spread over an extensive area of 758 square kilometers comprises three sections namely Indira Priyadarshini Pench National Park, Mowgli Pench Sanctuary and the buffer area of the Pench National Park. Boasting of its elongated and illustrious historical heritage, the Pench National Park also finds citation in the Ain-i-Akbari; the biography of the greatest Mughal Emperor Akbar written by Abu’l-Fazl ibn Mubarak. Not only that, even the world famous composition of Rudyard Kipling; The Jungle Book is also based in the regions of Pench National Park and its surrounding areas. The Pench National Park happens to be the 19th project tiger reserve existing in India. Covered by southern tropical deciduous forest, this tiger reserve, other than the tigers also shelters other animals and birds like leopards, wild dogs, wild boar, civets, gaur, blue bulls, sambhars, langur, macaque, bears, deer, chitals, blue kingfishers, barbets, minivets orioles, bulbul, wagtails, mynas, munias, waterfowls and so on. As per the tiger census of 2011, the total count of tigers living in the Pench National Park comes to 25. The best time to visit the park is between February and April while it remains closed during July, August and September. The Pench National Park can be visited from 6:00 am to 10:30 am and 3:00 pm to 6:00 pm.