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A must for those with an interest in ornithology, Bharatpur is famous for its World Heritage- listed bird sanctuary, the Keoladeo Ghana National Park. The best time to visit the sanctuary is form October to February when many migratory birds can be seen, though population densities differ from year to year. In the 17th and 18th centuries, the town was an important Jat stronghold. Before the arrival of the Rajputs, the Jats inhabited this area and were able to retain a high degree of autonomy, both because of their prowess in battle and because of their chief’s marriage alliances with Rajput nobility. They successfully opposed the Mughals on more than one occasion and their fort at Bharatpur, constructed in the British in 1805 and a long siege in 1825. This siege eventually led to the signing the Indian states of north-west India and the East India Company.
The town itself, which was once surrounded by an 11-km-long wall (now demolished), is of little interest.

 Keoladeo Ghana National Park
No less than 415 kinds of birds have been recorded at the Keoladeo sanctuary, 117 0f which migrate from as far away as Siberia and China. The sanctuary was formerly a vast semi-arid region, filling during the monsoon season only to rapidly dry up afterwards. To prevent this, the maharaja of Bharatpur diverted water from a nearby irrigation canal and, within a few years, birds began to settle in vast numbers. Naturally, his primary concern was not the environment but, rather, his desire to take guests on shooting sprees.
The best way to see the park is to hire a bicycle. This allows you to easily avoid the bottlenecks  which inevitably occur at the nesting sites of the larger birds. It’s just about the only way you’ll be able to watch the numerous kingfishers at close quarters- noise or human activity frightens them away.

Lohagarh Fort
The Iron Fort was built in the early 18th century and took its name from its supposedly impregnable defences. Maharaja Suraj Mal,   the fort’s constructer and founder of Bharatpur, built two towers within the ramparts, the Jawahar Burj and Fateh Burj, to commemorate his victories over the Mughals and the British.
The fort occupies the entire small artificial island in the center of the town, and the three palaces within its precincts are in an advanced state of decay. One of the palace houses a small and largely unexciting museum; perhaps the most interesting exhibits is the huge punkah (hand-operated fan) still in place in one of the upstairs rooms. The fort is open Saturday to Thursday from 10 am to 4:30 pm.

Places to Stay
LAXMI VILLAS PALACE, (Government Approved) Heritage
BHARATPUR FOREST PALACE, (Government Approved)

Getting There & Away
: Bharatpur is on the Agra to Jaipur road, just two hours by bus from Agra or an hour from Fatehpur Sikri.

Train: Bharatpur is on the Delhi to Bombay broad-gauge line as well as the Delhi- Agra- Jaipur- Ahmedabad meter –gauge line, ensuring a good choice of trains. Be certain that the one you choose is going to stop at between Jaipur and Agra is currently being converted to broad gauge so you may find it closed.

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