A stunning rural hideaway with sweeping views of the countryside

Ramathra Fort

Ramathra Fort

Near 

Ranthambhore National Park
, Rajasthan
, India

Hilltop Ramathra Fort has a commanding view of the countryside. The ramparts of the fort offer the perfect perch to look out over sweeping views of farmlands, the rugged scrub of the Daang plateau, the Kalisil Lake and its irrigation canal. Sunrises are especially spectacular and at twilight one can watch cattle herds returning from the jungle or blue bulls (Nilgai, India’s largest antelope) grazing in the forest scrub below. What distinguishes Ramathra Fort from other heritage homes is its remoteness and the tranquil natural surroundings, making it a very rewarding stop on a relaxed Golden Triangle holiday.

Comfortable accommodation with ensuite facilities and mod-cons offer a restful night’s sleep. The central courtyard style garden serves as a comfortable sitting area. One of the turrets of the ramparts has even been converted to a jacuzzi, to soak in and look out to stunning sunset views.

Our Rating: Mid-Range
Property Type: Heritage

Destination

Halfway between Jaipur and Agra, Ramathra Fort lies in the verdant farming belt of the Kalisil River Valley in the Karauli district of Eastern Rajasthan. Legend has it that Lord Rama, one of Vishnu’s most revered incarnations stayed here on his way to Lanka, hence the name Ramathra. It was the fiefdom granted to Thakur Brijendra Pal by his father, the Maharaja of Karauli. With no disturbing urban influences, its serene natural surroundings and tranquil atmosphere makes it an ideal escapade for immersions into rural life.

Accommodation

Within the fort complex is the restored and renovated multi-storied palace, containing six guest residences, split into suites and deluxe rooms. Each features its own bedroom, an elegant seating area, a large bed with luxury linen, custom furnishings and hand-woven rugs. The use of Karauli stone and traditional construction practices bestow an authentic and sophisticated ethnicity to these spaces.

The suites have a private terrace with grand views of the landscape and its magnificent sunsets. The deluxe rooms are enclosed by an open courtyard and serve as connecting rooms for use of a small group or family.

In addition, six beautifully designed Luxury Tents are set against the fort’s rampart walls surrounding a lush courtyard lawn. With high ceilings, screened windows, each spacious tent is decorated with modern teak furniture, printed cotton furnishings and traditional woven rugs. The sleeping chamber has comfortable beds and night tables with reading lamps. The sitting area with its cushioned chairs, coffee table and writing desk provides ample room to enjoy morning tea or to spread out a map and plan the days adventure.

Dining

One part of the restored fort has been organized as dining room, lounge and bar. The dining room opens out through arched open doorways to the lawns. Dinner time is very special in Ramathra; beautifully dressed tables are set in the garden under a night sky that deserves a special mention – silent, star spangled and inky blue! Ramathra serves up delicious regional fare from the family kitchen using farm fresh, seasonal produce.

Experiences

The vast Daang plateau, stretching east to the Chambal River valley and as far as south as Ranthambhore, offers many scenic vistas with its secluded gorges and hidden shrines. It is home to a variety of deer, blue bulls, wolves, jackals, hyenas, wild boar, sloth bears and panthers.

Walking & cycling trails in the village and surrounding area are a rewarding experience and popular with guests as are night safaris into the buffer zone area of the Kailadevi National Park.

Other activities on request include birding in the lake and boating on the lake as well as picnics. Water birds abound on the lake which is also a rich feeding ground for the ducks, storks and cormorants that visit every winter. Birds such as local water fowl, kingfishers, saras cranes, stilts and herons can be seen throughout the year.

Perfect For
Individuals, couples, families with kids and small groups, as well as anyone looking for a bit of solitude in beautiful countryside.

Why we love this place

Ramathra offers a ‘wilderness’ experience as well as a tranquil setting in what is still Rajasthan’s pristine country side. Its proximity to the perennial Kalisil lake is its most outstanding locational advantage which makes this a haven for bird lovers.

About your host

Ramathra Fort is the home of Gitanjali and Ravi Raj Pal, owners and hosts in this very special corner of Rajasthan. They are in residence most of the time and look into all aspects of the hospitality and operations.

With a classic and chic ‘Maharaja Moustache’ and an affable personality, Ravi Raj Pal epitomises a modern-day maharaja. Having spent his youth travelling to every corner of Rajasthan, his knowledge of the state is second to none; he is a treasure trove of information on the history, geography and traditional culture. An exemplary statesman, he is often called upon by the local authorities to resolves disputes amongst villages, a role which he take seriously as have his predecessors for eleven generations as owners and custodians of the Ramathra Fort.

Responsible/Sustainable Tourism

The Fort is 350 years old and has been restored using local materials by local artisans and workmen. This has ensured that the restoration was in line with the traditional style with antique furniture used. The Fort lies on a hill that had suffered deforestation in the past years and Gitanjali and Ravi have spent time reforesting the hill. This was carried out with recycled water from the Fort resulting in a thriving forest with animals finding their way back here. Ramathra Fort grows, buys and uses organic vegetables that are grown on the farm below the hill or sourced locally from nearby farms. Meats are bought fresh and cooked the same day.

Other practices such as using solar heaters for water, energy efficient lighting and appliances, water conservation, composting, segregation of dry waste that is sent for recycling, with no single use plastic and discouraging plastic in all forms are followed. The staff including the guides and the boatman is fully local and have been trained in to hospitality with no prior experience.

Our Recommendation

A night safari with Ravi is an unmissable experience. He not only knows the area like the back of his hand, but he is a great storyteller as well.

Can’t find a suitable itinerary that features a destination, experience or accommodation you fancy? All our group tours and holiday ideas can be personalised, or we can create a tailor made itinerary for you.

Our Accommodation Ratings

Opulent: Exceptional, unashamedly the best of sheer luxury. (£££££)

Luxury: Outstanding levels of 5* comfort, hospitality and facilities. (££££)

Premium: Excellent levels of comfort and hospitality and a wide range of facilities. (£££)

Mid-Range: Good levels of comfort and hospitality, with a reasonable range of facilities. (££)

Simple: Clean and simple, no frills. Often in areas of natural beauty or near wildlife reserves. (£)