INDIA / RAJASTHAN
Ajmer

Destination  /  Ajmer  /  See


Religion
The Dargah of Khwaja Mu'inuddin Chishti
(1143-1235) is the tomb of the Sufi saint (also called  "The Sun of the Realm")

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dargah

Festival & Religious
URS Festival at Ajmer
Urs Festival, commemorating Khwala Muinuddin Chishti' death in 1235, is celebrated with 6 days of almost continuous music, and devotees from all over India and the Middle East make the pilgrimage.

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Fun & Family Sight seeing
Ana Sagar
An artificial lake (circa 1150), was further enhanced by Emperors Jahangir and Shah Jahan who added the baradari and pavilions. The Foy Sagar, 5km away, another artificial lake, was a famine relief project.

Anna Sagar Lake
Architectural
Mayo College
Mayo College (1873), only 4 km from the centre, was founded to provide young Indian princes with a liberal education, one of two genuinely Indo-Saracenic buildings designed by De Fabeck in Ajmer, the other being the Mayo Hospital (1870). The college was known as the "Eton of Rajputana" and was run along the lines of an English public school. Access is no longer restricted to Rajput princes.

Mayo college


Religion
Nasiyan Jain Temple
The ornate Nasiyan Jain Temple (Red Temple) Prithviraj Marg, 0800-1700, 5, has a remarkable museum alongside the Jain shrine, which itself is open only to Jains. It is well worth visiting. Ajmer has a large Jain population (about 25% of the city's total). The Shri Siddhkut Chaityalaya was founded in 1864 in honor of the first Jain Tirthankar, Rishabdeo, by a Jain diamond merchant, Raj Bahadur Seth Moolchand Nemichand Soni (hence its alternative name, the Soni temple). The opening was celebrated in 1895. Behind a wholly unimposing exterior, on its first floor the Svarna Nagari Hall houses an astonishing reconstruction of the Jain conception of the universe, with gold-plated replicas of every Jain shrine in India. Over 1000 kg of gold is estimated to have been used, and at one end of the gallery diamonds have been placed behind decorative coloured glass to give an appearance of back lighting. It took 20 people 30 years to build. The holy mountain, Sumeru, is at the centre of the continent, and around it are such holy sites as Ayodhya, the birthplace of the Tirthankar, recreated in gold plate, and a remarkable collection of model temples. Suspended from the ceiling are vimanas - airships of the gods - and silver balls. On the ground floor, beneath the model, are the various items taken on procession around the town on the Jain festival day of 23rd November each year. The trustees of the temple are continuing to maintain and embellish it.
Sight seeing
Taragarh Fort
Built by Ajaipal Chauhan in 1100 with massive 4"m thick walls, stands on the hilltop overlooking the town. There are great views of the city but the walk up the winding bridle path is tiring. A road accessible by road has reduced the climb on foot and made access easier.

Jeeps charge 500 for the trip. Along the way is a graveyard of Muslim 'martyrs' who died storming the fort.


Sight seeing
Roopangarh Fort, Kishangarh
map icon27kms from Ajmer