Vellore Fort is a large 16th-century fort situated in the heart of the Vellore city, in the state of Tamil Nadu, India. It was built by Vijayanagara kings, who ruled over South India from 1336 to 1646 CE. The fort is one of the best examples of military architecture in South India, and is known for its grand ramparts, wide moat and robust masonry. The fort’s ownership passed from Vijayanagara kings, to the Bijapur sultans, to the Marathas, to the Carnatic Nawabs and finally to the British, who held the fort until India gained independence in 1947.
The fort witnessed many historical events, such as the Battle of Thoppur, the Carnatic Wars, the Vellore Mutiny and the Indian Rebellion of 1857. The fort also houses several monuments of religious and cultural significance, such as the Jalakanteshwara Temple, the St. John’s Church and a Muslim mosque. The fort is one of the most popular tourist destinations in Vellore, and is maintained by the Archaeological Survey of India. Visit during One Day Vellore Local Sightseeing By Private Cab.
Location of Vellore Fort
Vellore Fort is located in the centre of the Vellore city, which is about 140 km away from Chennai, the capital of Tamil Nadu. The fort is easily accessible by road, rail and air from various parts of Tamil Nadu and neighbouring states. The nearest airport is Chennai International Airport, which is about 130 km away from the fort. The nearest railway station is Vellore Cantonment Railway Station, which is about 2 km away from the fort. There are also regular bus services to Vellore from Chennai, Bangalore, Tirupati and other cities.
Timing/Entry Fees Vellore Fort
Vellore Fort is open for visitors from 8 am to 6 pm every day. There is no entry fee for visiting the fort, but there are charges for photography and videography. The photography charge is Rs. 25 per camera, and the videography charge is Rs. 150 per camera.
How to Reach Vellore Fort
Vellore Fort can be reached by road from various parts of Vellore and nearby towns. There are auto rickshaws and taxis available for hire from the railway station, bus stand and other places. Alternatively, one can walk or cycle to the fort from nearby areas.
Things to Do/Must See Vellore Fort
There are many things to do and see at Vellore Fort, such as:
- Exploring: The main attraction of Vellore Fort is exploring its massive structure and its various features. The fort has a circumference of about 2.5 km, and covers an area of about 133 acres. It has four main gates, each facing a different direction. The main gate is called Delhi Gate, which faces north. The other gates are Arcot Gate (east), Thiruvalam Gate (south) and Krishnagiri Gate (west). The fort also has a huge moat that surrounds it on all sides, which was once filled with crocodiles to prevent enemy attacks. The fort also has several bastions, watchtowers, ramparts and cannons that display its military prowess.
- Visiting: The fort also houses several monuments of religious and cultural significance that are worth visiting. The most prominent among them is the Jalakanteshwara Temple, which is dedicated to Lord Shiva. The temple was built in 1550 CE by Chinna Bommi Nayaka, a chieftain under Vijayanagara king Sadasiva Raya. The temple is famous for its exquisite carvings and sculptures on its pillars, walls and ceilings. The temple also has a mandapam (hall) with a lotus-shaped stone roof that rests on a single stone pillar. Another monument in the fort is the St. John’s Church, which was built in 1844 CE by the British. The church is one of the oldest churches in South India, and has a Gothic-style architecture with stained glass windows and a bell tower. The church also has a cemetery where several British officers and their families are buried. Another monument in the fort is a Muslim mosque, which was built by Nawab Chanda Sahib in 1750 CE. The mosque has a simple structure with a dome and minarets.
- Shopping: Vellore Fort is also a good place to shop for souvenirs, handicrafts, leather goods, silk sarees and other local products. There are many stalls and shops near the fort that sell these items at reasonable prices. One can also bargain with the vendors and get good deals.
Nearby Tourist Attractions Vellore Fort
There are many other tourist attractions near Vellore Fort that are worth visiting, such as:
- Sripuram Golden Temple: This is a Hindu temple dedicated to Goddess Lakshmi, who is also known as Sri Lakshmi Narayani. The temple is located about 9 km away from the fort, and is famous for its golden exterior that covers an area of about 1500 kg of gold. The temple also has a star-shaped path that leads to the main shrine, which symbolizes the path to enlightenment.
- Amirthi Zoological Park: This is a zoological park that is located about 25 km away from the fort, and covers an area of about 25 hectares. The park has a variety of animals and birds, such as deer, monkeys, peacocks, crocodiles, eagles and parrots. The park also has a waterfall and a children’s park.
- Yelagiri Hills: This is a hill station that is located about 90 km away from the fort, and has an altitude of about 1100 m above sea level. The hill station has a pleasant climate and scenic views of the valleys and hills. It also has several attractions, such as nature park, boating lake, adventure sports and trekking trails.
Significance of Vellore Fort
Vellore Fort is not only a tourist attraction, but also a source of history and heritage for Tamil Nadu. It is a place that witnessed many historical events, such as the Battle of Thoppur, the Carnatic Wars, the Vellore Mutiny and the Indian Rebellion of 1857. It is also a place that showcases the art and architecture of various dynasties and cultures, such as Vijayanagara, Bijapur, Maratha, Carnatic and British. It is also a place that reflects the diversity and harmony of Tamil Nadu, as it houses monuments of different religions, such as Hinduism, Christianity and Islam.
Q: How big is Vellore Fort?
A: Vellore Fort has a circumference of about 2.5 km, and covers an area of about 133 acres.
Q: How old is Vellore Fort?
A: Vellore Fort was built by Vijayanagara kings in the 16th century CE.
Q: What is the best time to visit Vellore Fort?
A: Vellore Fort can be visited throughout the year, as the climate is moderate and pleasant. However, the peak season is from October to March, when the weather is cool and dry.
Vellore Fort is a must-visit destination for anyone who loves history, culture and nature. It is a place where one can explore, admire and learn. It is a place where one can experience the glory and spirit of Tamil Nadu.