challenges · Heritage · Travel

Story Of my Spirited Hike To The Daultabad Fort.

A fort on a steep plateau like hill was the Daulatabad Fort in Aurangabad. Other than a faint outline, not much was visible from a distance. The fort sang its siren song and I was spellbound. I had a sudden urge to walk its highest ramparts.

Climbing up to the fort was not easy even though the path was well marked. It gradually inclined as it wound through the serene hillside. There was no serenading sound of silence. I instead had scores of noisy fellow tourists trudging along to keep me going. As the trail became more punishing, it took all of my steely resolve to keep pushing.

The orange tower inside the Daulatbad Fort in Aurangabad
A staggering sight for soaring eyes.

That was when my History lesson from school came swooshing back.

Gosh !

This was the same place that inspired Muhammad bin Tughlaq to move his capital from Delhi. Oh yes! He moved everyone too- men, women, young and old. Unfortunately, his plans for Daulatabad as a capital failed epically in a short time. I suppose as the ruler of India then, he could get away by snappishly ordering, “Pack up. We leave for Delhi, lock, stock and barrel.” And everyone travelled back from Maharashtra to the north once again. That was in 1327. Since then, Delhi has reigned supreme as the country’s capital.

Looking around, Daulatabad Fort was pretty spectacular in size and looks. It had a rough hewn, battle ready, impregnable quality.

There was a moat that was only visible when one climbed half way up the plateau. Rows of shiny canons overlooked from the heights. Dark maze like tunnels riddled the hillside. I saw one such dark opening but the squeaks and the squawks of the bats inside made me skip that .

Of course the blind turns, narrow passages and even narrower, steep staircases were perfect to halt any interloper.

Entrance to Daultabad Fort in Aurangabad
Stark Stronghold !

Cut to many years later and yours truly was huffing and puffing and crawling her way to the very top. Those narrow, steep, crumbling steps were my nemesis.

Flushed face and totally out of breath, I made it to the summit. The valley laid stretched wide open as far as eyes could see. The outer fort walls snaked across the hillside towards the city where tiny roofs of houses gleamed like scattered Lego bricks. The sun was fading and the sky had taken a fiery orange hue. It was a staggering sight.

‘Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious!’ Mary Poppins found me the perfect describing word.

Honestly, I didn’t fancy the march downhill. My legs were screaming already.

Sigh!

A gentle breeze ruffled my hair. Took me more than a few seconds to steel myself but I was in high spirits by the time I reached the car. My heart had swelled with happiness and I didn’t care for the sweat drying off my back.

I felt victorious like Caesar, “Veni, vidi, vici.”

I came, I saw, I conquered.

Lens- Artists Photo Challenge#136: Subjects starting with the letter-S

Jo’s Monday Walk

29 thoughts on “Story Of my Spirited Hike To The Daultabad Fort.

  1. Well you conquered indeed Sheetal! Nothing as exhilarating as the feeling one gets when accomplishing a difficult goal – especially a physical one. And I found the story of moving the people along with the capital extremely interesting. Imagine trying to accomplish such a thing in today’s day and age?! Terrific story well told.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Tugalaq’s story is amazing . He was a ruler said to be ahead of his times . Unfortunately, his brilliant ideas were let down by poorly executed plans. I was fascinated to see Daulatabad as well. To think he moved the whole city in 1327 from Delhi in the north to Maharashtra in the south. Then once again ordered the whole city to pack up and move back to Delhi a few years later. Incredible, how they managed that during that era. My History class came to life . I guess that’s the best part about travelling, Tina. 😊

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Marlene, thank you for your kind words. Honestly , remembering it makes me feel so euphoric and satisfied too. Plus the fort was breathtaking and so was its historical significance. Happy you enjoyed this virtual trip.

      Like

  2. How fantastic! As Tina says “Nothing as exhilarating as the feeling one gets when accomplishing a difficult goal – especially a physical one” I recall wanting to get to a particular Cathar castle over a decade ago, which was a real challenge as my MS was starting to cause me problems, but I did it. The last time I did anything like that

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  3. This sounded like such an adventurous day for you, Sheetal. Daulatabad Fort in Aurangabad seemed like a challenging climb but well worth the climb. It’s good that the tourists around you motivated to keep going. For me noisy tourists are annoying…but they would probably make me want to climb faster so I can get away from them. That sunset at the end must have been stunning and a good sunset is not something you see everyday. Maybe you will return to the fort again some day for another climb 😀

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Mabel, what an engaging commentary on my post!

      I for one didn’t expect the visit to the Fort to affect me so much, either body or in spirit. I was wrong on both accounts. The climb didn’t look fatiguing and the topography was definitely misleading. It never looked tough but it was brutal on my knees and lungs. Perhaps I was unknowingly doing exactly what you say you do, trying to get away from the other tourists. 😊

      Still the satisfaction on reaching the summit was unbelievable. It made all the tears and pain worthwhile.

      Will I do it again? Ahem… the jury is out on that but I’d definitely caution myself before taking the plunge. 😁

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Sometimes you don’t know how something feels or how it will affect you unless you give it a go. Good to always be cautious as these sorts of adrenaline adventures can leave you exhausted…but so worth it 😁

        Liked by 2 people

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