Witnesses of glorious days

In the early morning in Gwalior, Madhya Pradesh, the majestic abandoned palace towering above the city was empty except for some bats that inhabited the lower floors. I quite enjoyed having the gorgeous palace almost to myself (I didn’t mind the bats). It has been restored, but perhaps not fully to its former glory: the guide pointed out that there were some embarrassing mistakes in the number of legs of some creatures on the outer walls.

There is an archeological museum in Gwalior, but I wonder if it ever gets any visitors (except me). It seemed much more abandoned than the abandoned palace, in spite of being full of the most amazing artefacts (not pictured here).

In Datia there is yet another ghost palace, not yet restored, so the resident bats have a great place to roam about. Already on the way up to the palace I was taken in by the lovely town. There was a spontaneous guide waiting, desperate for some people to show around. I was a little short of time, very unfortunately: this was a palace with a soul that spoke to my imagination, with its rundown, unlit stairwells, superb arches and the promising bright light at the end of the corridors …

Orchha also boasts an abandoned palace, where bats most certainly live. I didn’t see any though. However, I had some close encounters with the stern-looking vultures who have made this their dwelling.

To further enhance the spooky atmosphere, there was a morning mist and, as I was now getting used to, no other visitors. There were spider webs, bird droppings, empty niches, holes in the floor and blackened walls, but in the middle of it all some amazing outbursts of colour, allowing for a glimpse into a bygone era.

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