Kangra Fort, probably, the largest fort in the Himalayas and the oldest fort India. The keeper of Kangra! The fort is strategically located at the Sangam (the confluence) of holy rivers Ban Ganga and Majhi.
As per local legends, Rajanaka Susherma Chandra (234th ruler from the founder Rajanaka Bhumi Chandra) built the fort. The story references to the epic Mahabharata. Rajanaka was in alliance with Kauravas and he retreated to Kangra valley after the defeat from Pandavas. This royal Rajput family of Kangra was the discipline of Katoch dynasty which traces its origins to the ancient Trigata Kingdom mentioned in Mahabharata.
The strength of the great Kangra Fort lies in the 400 ft cliff on which it stands. It’s the 8th largest fort in India.
The highest point of the fort is palace courtyard and a courtyard below that is occupied by some famous stone carved temples of Lord Laxmi Narayan, Ambika Devi and the Jain temple with Lord Mahavir. This courtyard is closed with Darshani Darwaza (the gate of worship).
The mighty fort has many grand gates like Mahlon ka Darwaza (palace gate), Andheri Darwaza (dark gate), Jahangir Darwaza (gate believed to be built by Jahangir), Amiri Darwaza (gate of Nobels) and the Ahini gate (Iron Gate). Each of the gates has it’s own story and usage to defend the fort.
The owner of the fort was believed to be the owner of entire Kangra valley. Hundreds of battles have been fought over the fort from the ancient to the modern times. The fort experienced a devastating earthquake of 1905 but still standing tall with pride.
Kangra fort is also popular as Nagarkot. It is accompanied by well-known Nagarkot museum. The fort has good connectivity and is located in Purana Kangra i.e. old Kangra which is nearby Kangra town.
Find the fort on the map: