As the remnants of India’s glorious past; the forts and palaces in India offer a glimpse into the rich history, royal heritage, and architectural brilliance of the country. Some of these heritage palaces turned into luxurious hotels over time while a few others got converted into museums where several historical and cultural relics are preserved. From Mysore Palace in Mysore to Laxmi Vilas Palace in Vadodara, here are some of the most beautiful palaces in India.
Mysore Palace – Mysore, Karnataka
Famous for its imposing structure and impressive architecture, Mysore Palace is widely considered as one of the most beautiful palaces in the world. It is the second-most visited place in India after the Taj Mahal. Set amidst well-manicured gardens, the three-storied palace (also called Amba Vilas Palace) features reddish-pink domes, stained glass ceilings, carved wooden doors, stunning chandeliers, huge durbar halls, several courtyards, art galleries, and 12 Hindu temples. This palace is the focal point of the Dasara celebrations in Mysore, and hence, the festival month (September or October) is the ideal time to witness the grandeur of the magnificent Mysore Palace.
Visiting hours: 10.00 am to 5.30 pm, all days.
Entry ticket: INR 100 for Indian adults & INR 50 for children between the age group of 10 and 18; INR 200 for foreign tourists.
Umaid Bhawan Palace – Jodhpur, Rajasthan
A list of royal palaces in India is incomplete without a mention of the palaces in Rajasthan. This Indian state has more than a dozen palaces with architectural splendor worthy of capturing the imagination of visitors. Umaid Bhawan Palace in Jodhpur is known to be the largest palace in India and also one of the largest private residences in the world. Located on top of Chittar Hill, this palace overlooks the Blue City. Its architecture is a blend of the Indo-Saracenic, Art Deco and Classical Revival styles. The royal family of Jodhpur still lives here, and a part of it has been converted into a hotel. There’s a museum inside the palace where you can also see classic cars used by the royal family.
Visiting hours: 09.00 am to 5.00 pm, all days.
Entry ticket: INR 30 for Indian adults & INR 10 for children; INR 100 for foreign tourists.
Falaknuma Palace – Hyderabad, Telangana
Perched on a 2000 ft high hill, Falaknuma Palace was once the residence of the Nizams of Hyderabad, who were among the richest people in the world. This palace is every bit lavish, hinting at the opulent lifestyle of the Nizams who ruled the city for over two centuries or so. It boasts of Venetian chandeliers, period furnishings, marble staircases, exquisite statues, objets d’art, and Japanese, Mughal and Rajasthani gardens. Its huge library with carved walnut roof and its dining hall (which is the largest in the world) are some of its major highlights. The palace has been converted into a heritage hotel and is being managed by the Taj Hotel Group.
Visiting hours: 24 hours, all days.
Entry ticket: INR 3100 for Indian adults & INR 2480 for children.
Laxmi Vilas Palace – Vadodara, Gujarat
Built by Maharaja Sayajirao Gaekwad III in the 18th century, Laxmi Vilas Palace is one of the famous royal palaces in India. This palace spreads across an area of 700 acres. Can you believe Laxmi Vilas Palace is nearly four times the size of London’s Buckingham Palace? It took about 12 years to build this mammoth palace. It still serves as the residence of the royal family of Vadodara. The huge complex comprises several buildings and a part of it has been converted into a museum, where a diverse collection of paintings and artifacts collected from across the world are exhibited.
Visiting hours: 09.30 am to 5.00 pm, all days.
Entry ticket: Palace entry ticket – INR 200. Museum ticket – INR 60 for Indians & INR 40 for foreigners.
Apart from the above, other famous places in India you can visit include City Palace in Jaipur, Lake Palace in Udaipur, Bangalore Palace in Bangalore, Neemrana Fort Palace in Neemrana, Leh Palace in Ladakh, and Jai Vilas Palace in Gwalior. So, when you are traveling to India and which palace are you going to visit first? Book your cheap flights from the USA to India with Indian Eagle and get reward points.