Longitudinal India Trip part 4 – Chitradurga Fort by AB Apana

I first saw Chitradurga Fort as a child on a school trip. I recall being awed by the sheer size of everything within the Fort. I swore to return some day, and was finally able to do so.

The fort is situated atop a hill overlooking the town and the surrounding countryside, most of which is pancake-flat. It is known as the Fort of the Seven Rounds, since it is encircled by seven walls. Still further, keeping with defensive architecture, each wall has an independent gate. The approach to each gate is uphill and through passages that twist and turn, thus making it impossible to use elephants or battering rams to break down the gates. Additionally every wall had pigeonholes from where soldiers could rain down arrows on invaders. The facade of these pigeonholes presented just a tiny slit to invaders, thus preventing them from retaliating effectively.

Chitradurga Fort was the formidable fortress of the Nayakas of Chitradurga, the most prominent of whom was Madhukar Nayaka. Eventually the fort fell to the troops of Hyder Ali in 1799.

This is a ‘must visit’ fort’, and being a mere 120 kilometres from Hampi and 200 kilometres from Bangalore, it is certainly ‘visitable’. It lies on the route between Hampi and Bangalore.

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