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Overview

Off India's beaten track, Madhya Pradesh is a treasure trove of historic monuments and national parks that are home to tigers and other wildlife. Centered on the ancient Islamic city of Bhopal - whose reputation is unfairly tarnished by association with the 1984 Bhopal Disaster - this is one of the least visited parts of North India, which adds to its appeal. All the great cultures have left their mark here - Khajuraho boasts some of the finest Hindu temple architecture in all of India, while Sanchi is home to one of the world’s oldest Buddhist stupas and Mandu is adorned with relics from the time of the Afghan sultans. Away from the cities ...

Off India's beaten track, Madhya Pradesh is a treasure trove of historic monuments and national parks that are home to tigers and other wildlife. Centered on the ancient Islamic city of Bhopal - whose reputation is unfairly tarnished by association with the 1984 Bhopal Disaster - this is one of the least visited parts of North India, which adds to its appeal. All the great cultures have left their mark here - Khajuraho boasts some of the finest Hindu temple architecture in all of India, while Sanchi is home to one of the world’s oldest Buddhist stupas and Mandu is adorned with relics from the time of the Afghan sultans. Away from the cities are peaceful, forested hill stations and pristine national parks, including four of the largest reserves covered by Project Tiger. Many people visit Khajuraho as a detour from the popular Delhi-Agra-Varanasi circuit, but fewer travelers get to see the epic fortress at Gwalior, the temples and mausoleums of Orchha, or the sacred pilgrim cities of Ujjain and Maheshwar.

Joe Bindloss
About the Expert

Joe Bindloss has written more than 30 guidebooks for Lonely Planet, Time Out and other publishers, with a focus on Southeast Asia, the Indian Subcontinent and island nations.

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Joe Bindloss for Triporati

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Facts at a Glance

Climate

  • Best Time to Visit:

    October to May; most of the national parks are closed from July to November.