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Akhnoor Fort

Historic and ancient, Akhnoor Fort is an artistic work of craftsmanship that was built in the early 19th century. Situated on the right bank of Chenab River, Mian Tej Singh started building the fort in 1762 AD, with his son Raja Alum Singh completing it in 1802 AD. Some say that the king started the work on the fort to provide food and employment to his people as there was famine during that time.

Well-known for high and strong walls, the fort holds bastions at required distances, topped with battlements. However, the fort is now in ruins and is undergoing construction work. It does however, makes an interesting place for visitors.

The two-storey watch-towers hold battlements and merlons. There’s a two-storey palace on the southern side. Decorative walls in its courtyard hold mural paintings. Visitors can go inside the fort either via a river or from the northern side. The scenic beauty of landscapes of Shivalik Range and Trikuta Mountain Ranges offers a great sight from the fort. Akhnoor fort also has steps leading down to River Chenab. This fort is situated at a distance of 32 kilometers from Jammu city. From Akhnoor, the Fort is situated in a quite location at a distance of 4 kilometers.

Historic Factor

Akhnoor Fort is located on an ancient site called Manda that depicts three cultures. The first one represents Harappan civilization with Harappan graffiti depicting red and grey pottery holding jars, dish stand beakers and goblets. The presence of early historic pottery marks a second culture, while the third culture is signified by Kishana objects and striking walls of debris diaper stonework lined on both sides by a 3-metre-wide street.

Architecture and Legacy

Perched at a height of 301 meters or 988 feet above surface level, the Akhnoor Fort looks ancient and historic. It is believed that the Pandavas of the epic Mahabharata once stayed in the caves of Akhnoor near the Fort for a year while on exile. Akhnoor is a small yet beautiful town that holds historic as well as mythological value that attracts lot of tourists.

However, the fort has now been encroached with some tehsil and police quarters been made in a part of the original structure. The fort was declared a national monument. It is protected under an ancient monuments act.

How to Reach

Reaching the Akhnoor Fort is easy. It’s situated at a distance of 32 kilometers from the city of Jammu and 4 kilometers from the city of Akhnoor.  The nearest railway station is the Jammu Tawi railway station in Jammu city, which is linked with major Indian cities via rail. The station is also connected with western and southern railway station.

Jammu Airport is also well connected with major cities of India such as Mumbai, New Delhi, Leh and Srinagar. Bus and taxi services from Jammu are also well developed and connected with Amritsar, Ambala, Shimla, Manali, Ludhiana and Delhi via NH-1A.

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