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Vellore Fort, Vellore Overview

The Vellore Fort which is said to have been built during Channa Bommi Nayaka and Thimma Reddy Nayaka in the 15th century and happens to be one of the best examples of military architecture in South India. These two who built Vellore fort were Chieftains under Sadashiva Raya who was the ruler of Vijayanagara at that time. It is one of the most massive forts built during its time and is considered as one of the unique forts in India. It is spread over an area of more than 500 meters, situated at an altitude of 220m. Located right in the centre of the city, it has a giant moat at its entrance, where 10,000 crocodiles used to swim earlier.

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Vellore Fort
Vellore Fort

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Vellore Fort - Entry Fee and Timings

The entry fees for Vellore Fort is INR 5, which includes the entrance to all the Museums and religious architectures. The timing of the fort for tourists is from 8 A.M. to 6 P.M. The fort is open on all 7-days of the week.

Attractions in Vellore Fort

Inside the premises of the fort, you have the beautiful Jalagandeeswarar Temple, which has superb-intricate carvings on its wall. The architecture of the temple truly showcases the creativity of the workers during the Vijaynagar Empire. It has a St. John’s Church built in 1846 by the East India Company. The premises also has a mosque built in 1750. Apart from the religious institution, it also has a museum of Archaeological Survey of India that showcases the history of the fort. Tipu Mahal and Hyder Mahal are restricted from the general population.

Jalakandeswarar Temple
Dedicated to the Jalakandeswarar, this ancient temple once served as an arsenal for the time before it had an idol of Lord Shiva. The temple is well known for the Stone Carvings and Sculptures of the Vijayanagara period.

St. John’s Church
Raised in the year 1846 for the sake of the Christians in the East India Company Military Station; this longest standing Church in the Diocese of Vellore is now under the control of Archeological Survey of India.

Archeological Survey of India Museum
This Government Museum, run by the ASI holds 2896 exhibits in a cluster of its eight galleries and has different types of Articles and Artefacts.

History of the Fort

Vijaynagar Empire built the fort, and in its later years, the fort went under the command of many rulers and witnessed gruesome battles between empires in pursuit of power. After 14 months of prolonged battle, Chatrapati Shivaji conquered the fort for the next 29 years. The excellent defense strategies were upgraded during the Maratha Empire, which defended the fort successfully for an extended period.

The Bijapur Sultans became the reason for the end of Vijayanagara lineage of rulers with the death of Sriranga Raya. The Fort had to witness the massacre of Sriranga Raya and his family. After the rule of the Sultans of Bijapur came Marathas followed by the Mughals. The Mughals captured the fort and ruled for the next 53 years, under which they left their mark by building a mosque for the local Muslim population.

Somewhere between the 1760s, the British Era of dominance started and Vellore fort came under the British. After gaining some momentum, East India Company took over the fort until the independence of India. The Vellore Mutiny has been considered as the first significant military rebellion in India. The Archaeological Survey of India now maintains the fort.

Best time to Visit Vellore Fort

The best time to visit Vellore Fort is during winters. Between November to February, the weather remains calm and pleasant and offers you an excellent opportunity to explore the entire fort. The ideal time of the day to visit the fort is the winter mornings. July to September is also an excellent time to visit the fort since it is the monsoon season, but the amount of rainfall is scarce and suitable for sightseeing.

How to Reach Vellore Fort

Vellore Fort is 7 km away from the railway station and 11 kms from the Airport, you can hire a taxi or take a bus to reach the fort. The Tamil Nadu state transports just as the private transport administrations makes it feasible for all to visit the city easily and at a reasonable expense. If you're in Vellore Town, the fort is only at a walkable distance.

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