The city of Ujjain once served as the capital of Avantika, and finds mention in the Mahabharata. Originally known as Ujjaini, the city also served as the capital of the great Mauryan king Vikramaditya, and later flourished under the Sungas and Satavahanas. It was a major astronomical and mathematical centre, where eminent scholars Varahamihira, Brahmagupta, and Bhaskaracharya lived. Although, the city was decimated by the Delhi Sultans, it rose to prominence again during the reign of Akbar. At the very first glance, the similarities between Kashi and Ujjain are apparent – the Shipra River is to Ujjain what the Ganga is to Kashi. The holy city that feeds many sadhus (spiritual men) is also one of the sites of the Kumbh Mela, held every 12 years, during which millions take holy bath in the Shipra river. Ujjain also has the sacred temple of Mahakaleshwar, which enshrines one of the 12 holyjyotirlingas.
Hi How to get there
By Rail: There are mainly three major railway stations in Ujjain, the Ujjain City Junction, Vikram Nagar and Chintaman (metre gauge). There are regular trains that connect Ujjain to other important cities in India.
By Road: The major bus stations in Ujjain are Dewas Gate and Nana Kheda. It is located 180 km from Bhopal. There are extensive private bus services connecting Ujjain to other cities in India.
Hi Place of interest Mahakaleshwar Temple: It is one of the 12 jyothirlingas of the country, which draws most tourists and pilgrims to this city. The jyotirlingam is south-facing and thus known as Dakshinmukhi. When Ujjain was invaded by Altamish in 1235, the temple was destroyed and was restored later in the 19th century by the Scindias.
Harsiddhi Mandir: Built during the Maratha period, this temple enshrines a beautiful image of goddess Annapurna and is one of the Shaktipeeths of Hindu Mythology. The temple turns vivacious on the eve of the Navaratri festival, when hundreds of lamps on the 15 feet lamp stand are lit together. Vedh Shala (Observatory): Built by Maharaja Jai Singh between 1725 and 1730,
this observatory is known as Jantar Mantar in local parlance. According to Hindu geographers, the first meridian passes through Ujjain, and going by modern calculations, the Tropic of Cancer is only 3 km away. Perhaps this was the reason why Jai Singh of Jaipur constructed one of the Jantar Mantars in Ujjain, the others being in Delhi and Jaipur. Vedh Shala is located on the site of India’s first scientific observatory. The instruments at the Vedh Shala are used to determine the locations of heavenly bodies for astrology purposes. The observatory is also used for weather forecasting.
Kaliadeh Palace: The Palace, built by the Mandu sultans, is located in an island-like setting on the Shipra River. The landscape provides a spectacular backdrop to this imposing structure. Constructed in 1458, the Kaliadeh Palace has 52 tanks into which river water is diverted to create cool breezes. The central dome of the palace is an excellent example of Persian architecture. Reduced to ruins with time, the Kaliadeh Palace was restored by Madhav Rao Scindia in 1920 before sinking into disrepair again