Thursday, April 12, 2012

Travelog: Sanchi and Udaygiri

Finally after staying for couple of decades in Bhopal, I decided that it is high time I need to pay a visit to Sanchi. It is approximately 50 to 70 kms from Bhopal depending on the route that one takes. One can go to Raisen and then go to Sanchi. This route is longer. The other option is to go to Vidsha and Sanchi is around 10 kilometers before Vidisha.
The place is very nice, the ticket price  is cheap, only Rs. 10 per adult and children up to 15 years are free. There is a very good audio tour available and provides good information about the monument.

Sanchi is part of Vidisha tourism circuit which is littered with ancient archaeological discoveries around that place. One can check Madhya Pradesh Tourism. There are many places which have archaeological finding ranging from BC to few hundred AD time frame.
Coming back to Sanchi, it is a buddhist monument and decently preserved. Most of the construction was carried during Gupta dynasty.
Food & Stay
There is only one decent hotel in the city, called Gateway Retreat and us run by Madhya Pradesh Tourism. MP Tourism is the government of MP undertaking responsible for development of tourism in the state. Since it is directly run by the government, hospitality is not one of their strong point. I would suggest any visitor to not have hopes for great service here. They should stay in Bhopal and drive down to Sandhi. The drive should not take more than one and half hour.
Road Condition
Road to Sanchi is in pretty good condition, the road towards vidisha is much better compared to one via Raisen.
Udaygiri Caves
Udaygiri caves are around 10 kilometers from Sanchi and have a set of caves that were constructed around 5-6 BC. The caves have sculptures cut from monolithic rocks. There is no entry fee here.
Important Facts

  • Around 50-70 kilometers from Bhopal, roads are good and easily reachable from Bhopal. Should take around one and half hours. The Sanchi monument opens at Sunrise.
  • Best to start from Bhopal after early breakfast, visit the monument in Sanchi, either carry packaged lunch, or have lunch at Gateway Retreat in Sanchi, and be back in Bhopal at night.
  • No fee for camera in Sanchi, tripods are prohibited
  • Great audio tour available at entry of Sanchi monument, they also rent out umbrellas at a rent of Rs. 20 per umbrella.

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