Sunday, 19 February 2017

Information About Panhala Fort

Panhala comes from the word ‘Panalla’, meaning the home of serpents. Located 20 kilometers northwest of Kolhapur, Maharashtra, the Panhala fort or Panhalgad was once one of the major trade centers of the state.

Built between the years 1978 - 1209 CE, the remains within the fort prove the rule of Raja Bhoj for a particular duration.  And it is perhaps because of this, that the famous colloquial quotations “Kahaan raja Bhoj or kahaan Gangu teli” is related to Panhalgad according to many history lovers. After being reigned by a number of rulers, Panhala was then taken over by Shivaji Maharaj in the year 1659.

Pavan Khind

Panhala Fort is famous for the battle of Pavan Khind. In the year 1960, Adil Shah II sent his army to blockade Panhalgad under the commandment of Siddi Jauhar. Shivaji’s army stood strong and fought back Adil Shah Forces for sometime; however, as the siege continued, the fort forces got exhausted, and Shivaji had no options apart from escaping from the area to gather and train enough army to fight back.

In this battle of Pavan Khind, Shivaji lost one third of his army and the fort was taken over by Adil Shah. It was only in the year 1673, that Shivaji recaptured the fort and housed 15,000 horses and 20,000 soldiers.  Over the years, Shivaji’s son Shambhaji had points of disagreement with his own father and fell out of favor with the king. Therefore, he was imprisoned in Panhalgad from where he managed to escape within a few years of time.

In and around Panhala Fort:

Panhala is one of the largest forts in Deccan. Standing 400m above the Sahyadris, Bijapuri style architecture featuring a peacock motif is very prominent in most of its structures. Some of the important fortifications of Panhala are discussed below:


One of the most popular destinations of this fort is the Ambarkhana centrally structured and built by the Marathas, as the administrative division and granary. It consisted of 3 sections known as Ganga, Yamuma and Saraswati Kothis, out of which Ganga was the largest with maximum storage capacity.

The Three important Darwaza:

Panhalgad has three important Darwazas, known as - Teen Darwaza, Char Darwaja and Wagh Darwaza. Teen Darwaza is a double gate and is the main entrance to the fort. Char was destroyed during the British siege and has no remains for historical study. Wagh Darwaza was the second entrance to  Panhalgad and has a beautiful Ganesh motif designed, that stands as a center of attraction for all tourists. Wagh had an interesting design that helped to elude invaders and then get them trapped inside.

Kalvanticha Mahal:

Also known as Nayakini Sajja, meaning Courtesans Terrace Rooms, it was mostly used during the Bahmani Sultanate as Rang Mahal or court of the ladies.

Temples and Mausoleums: 

Panhalgad has different temples devoted to Shambhaji  II, Someshwar, along with Ambabai, and Mahakali. Out of these, Ambabai was the oldest where Shivaji made offerings after every expedition and major event. Next, Shambaji II temple is another masterpiece gaining much of tourist attention.

Mausoleums of Jijabai and Ramchandra Pant Amatya have been superbly crafted in memories of their struggle and contribution towards Maratha emprire.

This was all about Panhala fort and the untold history behind. The place is suitable to be visited at any part of the year and therefore remains crowded by history lovers all over the country. 

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