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  • Writer's pictureApoorva Shrikhande

Add these 8 hidden places of Madhya Pradesh to your travel bucket list!

Updated: Mar 11, 2023




India is a land of diversities, not only in cultures and languages but in vast landscapes, flora and fauna. The land of many hidden places, yet to be explored. Let's be honest even though we have been to the whole world, India tops in travel list for many people. Every day we see so many exotic and picturesque places popping up in our social media feed that it influences us to edit our travel bucket list over and over again, isn't it? There are many places still to be explored and many such hidden gems exist in the heart of India, Madhya Pradesh. It is one of the many states, which can leave you with surreal experiences. This article will guide you to alter your travel bucket list to a more desi and exciting one. So stick to the end, and see which places out of these you want to visit. We say go for all of these!


Contents

1. Hidden Gems

1.1 Chambal Gharial Sanctuary

1.2 Kuno National Park

1.3 Shivpuri

1.4 Chanderi

1.5 Sagar

1.6 Udaygiri Caves

1.7 Bhojpur Shiv Temple

1.8 Patalkot

2. How to reach

3. Where to Stay

4. Conclusion


1. Hidden gems in the heart of India, Madhya Pradesh.

If you are already bored of hearing about the same places or travelling to the same destinations in India, this list might be a good guide for you to start exploring the hidden places in central India. Madhya Pradesh attracts tourists not only from the country but from all over the globe, with interests in historical sites, lush green forests, wildlife, religious events, temples and classical music events. You can go with your family and friends to enrich your travel bucket list.


1.1 Chambal Gharial Sanctuary

Madhya Pradesh is home to many sanctuaries. One of them is Chambal Gharial Sanctuary also called National Chambal Gharial Sanctuary, which is not as explored as others. It's located on the banks of the Chambal river and close to the tripoint of Madhya Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh and Rajasthan. This place is an abode for endangered species like red-crowned roof turtles and the Ganges river dolphin. Besides crocodiles, Indian Wolves, Bengal foxes, Wild Boar, and Striped hyenas can also be found here. Visitors can get boat rides on several spots near the bank of the river and can get sight of dolphins and crocodiles easily. This is a must-visit place if you want to explore the vast landscapes with amazing fauna and flora.

Nearest City: Agra (90 Kms)



picture by Anurag Karjodkar


1.2 Kuno National Park

This park is located around Kuno river and is one of the most underrated diversified wildlife parks in the state. The area surrounding the Kuno river is so rich in biodiversity that this information is carved out in 30,000 old caves in the nearby area. It is also a second home to Asiatic lions after Gir and Kanha National Park. You can spot Leopard, Chital, Sambar, Nilgai (Blue bull), Indian fox, Barking deer and much more of exotic flora. For wildlife enthusiasts and travel photographers, this place is heaven, a must-visit.

Nearest City: Gwalior (102 Kms)


1.3 Shivpuri

Shivpuri, also known as the summer capital of Scindia’s empire, is one of the most mesmerising and unexplored regions in the state of Madhya Pradesh. The town is filled with Maratha architecture mixed with British designs. Famous George castle, Marble Chhatris and Bhura Kho waterfalls are must visit. Madhav National Park is home to antelopes like Nilgai, Chinkara, Chital, Barking Deer and also tigers ( though they were last seen 60 years ago, the current government is planning to get them back in the park again) Read here

Nearest City: Gwalior (116 Kms)


1.4 Chanderi

Chanderi is a small town which dates back to the 11th century and is full of historical sites, temples and mosques. Surrounded by hills and lakes, this place attracts historian enthusiasts and tourists. Historical sites like Chanderi Fort, Chanderi museum, Jain temples, Koshak Mahal and many more are a delight to visit. It is also believed that Chanderi housed 1200 step wells in the past. This place is also famous for hand-woven Chanderi silk. This is a must-visit town, and it should be top of your list if you are a history lover.

Nearest City: Gwalior (116 Kms)


1.5 Sagar

Sagar is located in the Vindhya Range, and a beautiful lake Lakha Banjara or Sagar lake is in the middle of the city making it picturesque. Even though it is the place of many historians, writers and poets, Sagar is one of the lesser-known places in the state. Other prominent places to explore here are Varun Smriti Park, Jama Masjid, Hanuman Temple, Makronia and many other religious sites to indulge in spirituality and calmness. And don’t forget to try street food here!

Nearest City: Bhopal (169 Kms)


picture by Anurag Karjodkar


1.6 Udaygiri Caves

These caves originated in the 5th century CE, a chain of 20 rock-cut caves and are one of the most underrated places in India. You will be amazed to see the oldest Hindu and Jain temples, which contain the oldest iconography from Shaivism, Shaktism, and Vaishnavism. If you are interested in archaeology, do not skip this place on your visit to Madhya Pradesh, these caves are verifiably from the Gupta period (the golden age of India).

Nearest City: Bhopal (56 Kms)


1.7 Bhojpur Shiva Temple

A Renowned Shiva temple, built out of sandstone blocks, dates back to the 11th century, built by King Bhoja. The temple has brilliant architecture with intricate carvings and sculptures of various gods and goddesses. There is 7.5 feet high and about 18 feet in circumference shiv lingam in the sanctum. This temple is selected as a monument of national importance by the Archaeological Survey of India. There is a small museum around this temple, where you can get more information about the shiv lingam and intricate designs of the temple. If you have an interest in archaeology, do visit this place!

Nearest City: Bhopal (56 Kms)


1.8 Patalkot

If you are looking for hidden offbeat trails and hilly regions to explore, then Patalkot should be on your bucket list. This valley is elevated over 3000 feet and lies in Satpura Range with lush green forests and plantations and is home to Gonds and Bharias, tribal communities. When viewed from the top, dense and deep, Patalkot looks like a horseshoe. There are many activities you can do in Patalkot. The valley offers paragliding, hiking, rock climbing, camping and many such thrilling activities. For us, this place tops our list.

Nearest City: Chinddwara (78 Kms)


2. How to reach these hidden places?

Madhya Pradesh is well connected to major cities from other states by airways, roadways and railways. You can fly to Bhopal or Jabalpur, from your city and go ahead with local taxis. Almost every city in the state is well connected through Indian railways and has many options to look for. If you want to go on a road trip, you will have the best time of your life, because Madhya Pradesh roads are one of the best roads in India.


3. Where to Stay?

Almost all these places have Madhya Pradesh State Tourism stays, local home stays and 3 and 5 star hotels and resorts. In wildlife sanctuaries, you can stay in the forest department resorts and they can also arrange jungle safaris at extra costs.


4. Conclusion

Bucket lists keep changing over time. Adding any of these marvellous hidden places gives a sense of pride. Because anywhere you go not just Madhya Pradesh, but any of the states in India has a lot to offer. It's just we need to look harder beyond regular destinations. So we tried to make this article a guide, a reference for you to keep handy.


Don’t wait any further. Pack your bags and plan your trip today!


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