10 Famous and Royal Palaces in India You Must Visit
India is well known for the rich culture, heritage & historical architecture that makes the country a sought-after tourist destination. The Rulers, Kings and Nizams of ancient times constructed erstwhile palaces for their existence and the administration.
Visit the country to discover the most astonishing regal monuments that offer an unknown look into the bygone era. This also teaches about the social, culture and traditions of royal lifestyle.
1. Mysore Palace, Karnataka
The magnificent palace in Mysore originally belonged to the warriors who were the royal family of Mysore and still reside in the palace. The architecture is an amazing amalgamation of the Rajput, Muslim, Hindu, and Gothic architecture. It took 15 complete years to build this remarkable stone palace which is 3 floors high planned by an architect from Europe.
It consists of many courtyard, lake gardens, exquisite Durbar hall, Antique Doll Pavilion, and a Royal Gallery for Art and Portraits. There are also around 12 temples inside among other great buildings. The best time to visit is on Sunday and on public holiday evenings when 100,000 lights illumine the palace from 7 PM to 7:45 PM.
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2. Umaid Bhawan Palace, Jodhpur
Built over an area of 26 acres with 347 rooms overlooking Jodhpur, the blue city, Umaid Bhawan Palace is presently one of the world’s largest private residences. This great architecture dates back to 1943 with an amazing opening spotting western art decor, classical revival comma and Indo-Saracenic architecture.
A portion of 64 rooms is now a royal heritage hotel run by Taj Hotels. There is an amazing museum where you find ancient antiques and Kings personal stuff. This includes classic cars, varied sizes & shapes of clocks, stuffed wild cat exhibits, old portraits, and memorabilia. Presently, Maharajah Gaj Singh owns this must- visit palace right on top of the Chittar Hill.
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3. City Palace, Udaipur
This amazing palace that dates back to the sixteenth century is situated in Udaipur, the city of lakes amidst the majestic Aravalli ranges. The palace is situated on top of a hill in front of the Lake Pichola. There are several stunning buildings inside including temples, lakes, and palaces.
There are beautiful structures to visit inside like Diwan-i-Aam, Diwan-E-Khas, Mubarak Mahal, City Palace Museum, etc. The inside is decorated with intricate mirror work, murals, silver work, exquisite marble, and ancient wall paintings of the Mewar kingdom. It also has a pool that goes along the spread of rooms. The entrances have colorful structures of great peacocks.
Visiting Timings: 9.30 AM to 5.30 PM
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The palace offers a scenic view as it is built alongside the famous and tranquil Lake Pichola. This is one of the most magnificent palaces of the royal rule of the Mewar Dynasty.
The Taj Group manages this luxury hotel with white marble interiors and 83 rooms & suites. It is one of the world’s royal and romantic hotels that is decorated up beautifully. Indulge in an exciting boat ride across the Lake Pichola to view the palaces inside this eighteenth century structure in a boat crafted in Rajasthani style.
5. Chowmahalla Palace, Hyderabad
This was the princely residence of he Hyderabadi Nizams of the nineteenth century. The ‘Four Palaces’ is divided into southern & northern courtyard. The northern courtyard has a fountain pool in the center and features Bara Imam which is a corridor to all the rooms. It features a mix of Persian & Mughal architecture.
The southern courtyard has the four palaces that feature neo classical style of architecture. The Khilwawr Mubarak or Durbar Hall is a magnificent hall where all the events, gatherings, and ceremonies took place.
Visiting Timings: 10.00 am to 5.00 pm
Closed On: Fridays & public holidays
6. Jai Vilas Mahal, Gwalior
The three storey structure built over 28.4 acres is a Gwalior Palace of Jiyaji Rao Scindia, the 19th century Maharajah. This royal palace features an electric mix of various architectural styles. Tuscan traces are found in the first floor while Italian-Doric is seen in the second storey and Corinthian architecture is found in the last and third floor.
There are gold furnishings, intricate chandeliers and massive royal carpets on display in the main Durbar Hall. Other ancient items include weaponry, manuscripts, and antiques giving a sight into the times of royal era.
10.00 AM to 4:30 PM – October to March
10 AM to 4:45 PM – April to September
Closed On: Wednesdays
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7. Laxmi Vilas Mahal, Vadodara
The World’s largest private residence is spread across 500 acres and 4 times bigger than the Buckingham Palace. The royal family of Gaekwads of Vadodara still occupy this palace. There are many structures, banquet halls, a museum and palaces inside the complex. Explore various collections of antiques from over the world and old portraits here.
There are great exteriors with manicured gardens and lush greenery for a 10 hole golf course inside the compound. The palace is closed on Mondays and public holidays and is open from 9.30 AM to 5.00 PM on all other days.
Visiting Timings: 9.30 AM to 5.00 PM
Closed On: Mondays & public holidays
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8. Falaknuma Palace, Hyderabad
This hotel is perched on the hilltop at a height of 2000 feet providing a great view of the City of Pearls – Hyderabad. A part of this palace is now a premium ultra luxury hotel managed by Taj Hotels. The exteriors are magnificent featuring gardens in Japanese, Rajasthani, and Mughali style.
There are sculptured statues, roman pillars, marble steps, venetian chandeliers, and exquisite period portraits. The interiors give a view of the princely Nizams grandeur which also has a library that has a rare specialty.
9. Rambagh Palace, Jaipur
The grounds of this great jungle hunting gardens of the royal Jaipur maharajah is now a heritage hotel run by Taj Group. Started in the year 1957 this heritage hotel is famous for the grandly appointed suites, accommodating rooms, lush green gardens, corridors made of marble and impeccable hospitable staff and offers luxury services.
Every corner inside provides a ultra luxury feel with regal experience. The best is the suite overlooking the awesome gardens is called Peacock Suite & Mughal Terrace.
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10. Jag Mandir Palace, Udaipur
Built on an island on the tranquil Lake Pichola, this scintillating ultra luxury palace is now converted into a luxury hotel. The three storey building dates back to the 17th century and also popularly called Lake Garden Palace. To reach the island palace you can take an exciting jet ferry ride across the Lake Pichola.
The highlight of this place is the marble life-size elephant structure at the entrance. There are structures octagonal in shape covered with various styled domes. The Durbar halls & suites provide a great experience. Gul Mahal is made from red and black marble stone carved with exquisite murals & ancient paintings. There is also a museum called Jag Mandir museum housed here.
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