Named after Maharana Sajjan Singh, the Monsoon Palace is also known as Sajjan Garh Palace. Posted at the top of a hill, the Monsoon Palace was originally built to overlook Maharana Sajjan Singh’s hometown, Chittorgarh. The Monsoon Palace offers a panoramic view of Udaipur which had risen to prominence under the rule of Maharana Sajjan Singh. The palace was planned to be a 9 storied astronomical observatory which would record the arrival of monsoons by keeping track of the monsoon clouds. Unfortunately due to the untimely death of Maharana Sajjan Singh, the plan of construction was shifted over to his successor Maharana Fateh Singh. He constructed a lake which he named Fateh Sagar Lake, which could be viewed directly from the palace. The royal family used the palace as a hunting lodge too. The palace has been built keeping in mind the Rajput architectural style. The Monsoon Palace has been built with white marble which has been labored in with turrets, towers and pillars which depict beautiful motifs of leaves and flowers. Despite the beauty of the Monsoon Palace along with its unique rainwater harvesting techniques, Monsoon Palace was slowly abandoned and has not been renovated as required due to lack of water. Not until very recently, the Monsoon Palace has been opened to the public and has been added to the list Udaipur’s popular tourist destination.
HISTORY OF THE ATTRACTION
The Monsoon Palace has a rich history as it was the home of the 72nd ruler of the Mewar Dynasty, Maharana Sajjan Singh. During the later years of the 17th century, Maharana Sajjan Singh built this Monsoon Palace to the architectural designs of the Rajputs. This palace was an ambitious venture by the ruler.
Know Before You Go
The Monsoon Palace is about two or three miles to the west of Udaipur and is open to the public until sunset. There is a shuttle service available, for a fee, or you can take an auto or taxi. There’s an entrance fee for the Monsoon Palace and another for the Sajjangarh Wildlife Sanctuary.
A long time ago, during the days of the Mewar kingdom in Udaipur, Maharana Sajjan Singh built a beautiful monsoon palace. Known as the Sajjangarh Palace, it is famously called the Monsoon Palace and was constructed in the year 1884. Sitting on top of a mountain in Aravalli hills, this historic residence is the proof of an illustrious past. Udaipur, the land of great beauty and romance still positions the Monsoon Palace at the centre of Mewar history. In today’s time, a visit to this beautiful palace costs a minimal fee for Indians, and the experience remains unforgettable.
The palace on the hill
The Sajjangarh Palace is on the Aravalli hills, overlooking the beautiful Lake Fateh Sagar and also the City Palace. You can see its imposing presence from the flatland, looking up; it is a great sight for some stellar pictures.
Built with white marble, its beauty is timeless. It was originally planned that the palace would have a total of nine stories but, unfortunately, that did not happen after the death of the King. Eventually, Maharana Fateh Singh completed the palace, and it was then used as a hunting lodge by the royal family. The name, Monsoon Palace, stuck to it as the palace provides beautiful views of the monsoon clouds. The palace was thus used as a place for tracking the weather and monsoon.
Inside, the palace has a central court with staircase, and quarters and rooms.
A world renowned beauty
The Monsoon Palace is actually popular across the world. It featured in the Roger Moore starrer James Bond film, Octopussy, in the year 1983. However, in the movie it was the residence of the antagonist, Kamal Khan.
If Udaipur is considered to be one of the most charming cities of India, then the Monsoon Palace is the centrepiece on its crown. Each night, it is illuminated, and for visitors romancing the Fateh Sagar Lake down below, it is most definitely the shining jewel of the city. Not only this, but there is also the Sajjangarh Wildlife Sanctuary around it, full of wildlife. You can find jackals, wild boars, panthers, tigers, deers, exotic birds, and more.
The Monsoon Palace of Udaipur is really a fine destination to go back in time, and experience the beauty of the wild at the same time. Definitely worth a place in your bucket list.
OPENING/CLOSING TIMINGS AND DAYS
Hours: 0900 hours to 1800 hours.
Open all days of the week.
To gain entry into Monsoon palace, an Indian has to pay Rs.10 and a foreigner has to pay Rs.80. if you’re travelling by auto rickshaw or car, you need to pay Rs.20 and Rs.65 respectively.
BEST TIME TO VISIT
As the name suggests, Monsoon palace is best visited during the monsoon to fully capture its magnificence. It would be a good idea to avoid visiting Monsoon palace during summer time as the temperatures can rise up to 40 degree celsius. Winters are a good time to visit too but you may miss the reason as to why the palace earned this pseudonym.