An iconic region in Madhya Pradesh, Malwa represents the historic and ancient India like no other place can. Occupying a plateau of volcanic orginin, Malwa is located in central North India, encompassing parts of Madhya Pradesh and a bit of Rajasthan. Malwa derives its name from ‘Malaw’ which translates into Goddess Lakshmi; signifying the prevalent religious ethos of the place. These are the absolute must-visit places of Malwa.
The fort capital of Parmar Dynasty, Mandu is home to the biggest fort in India called the Mandu Fort. There’s tons to see here in terms of sightseeing, such as Jahaz Mahal, Hindola Mahal, Roopmati Mahal, Hoshang Shah’s Tomb, Jami Masjid and Baz Bahadur that have stunning architecture with traces of Afghani influence.
Madhya Pradesh is a land of national parks, and Malwa region especially is home to some diverse flora and fauna. From Bandhavgarh National Park, Pench National Park, Ranthambore National Park, to Kanha National Park and Rewa White Tiger Sanctuary are some of the most important ones to visit.
A group of Hindu and Jain monuments, Khajuraho is known for their Nagara style of architecture. Built by the rulers of the Chandela Dynasty, though Khajuraho is centuries old, it is considered much ahead of its time, courtesy of the erotic sculptures on display and the exquisite, intricately carved statues.
Arguably the most interesting rock caves in India, Bhimbetka rock shelters depict the earliest traces of the human existence in the Indian sub-continent. A World Heritage Site near Bhopal, some of the paintings found on the walls of the rock caves are close to 30,000 years old.
While Bhopal and Indore are great cities with distinctive Malvani cultures, Ujjain is a must visit for its religious significance. Much revered in the Hindu culture, it is home to over 100 ancient temples, exhibiting the finest ancient Indian architecture. The Mahakal Temple is especially a delightful attraction, and a trip here during Simhastha Mela, (it happens once in 12 years) is a must.