By Catherine Fairweather

In the shadows of the Aravali hills, the 10th-century Ranthambore Fort is a fittingly majestic backdrop to the royal Bengal tiger. From the ramparts and crenellations of this formidable citadel, which rises some 700 feet above the tangle of jungle, you might be lucky enough to spy the tiger lurking on the banks of the Padam Talao lake below.

Pilgrims come to worship at the shrine of Ganesh at one of the several temples within the fort, a seven-square-kilometer complex. It also encompasses a palace, the pavilion pictured, and two tanks or resevoirs colonised by herons and holy men, where protected monkeys and peacocks – as common here as pigeons – strut along the parapets and roost in the cupolas.

Where to Stay.

Khem Vilas is a new retreat with 10 acres of lakes and woodland. The food is organic, excellent and grown on the estate, and the thatched cottages have walled gardens and bathtubs open to the stars. The tents and main villa – with various roof terraces you can sleep on if the mood takes you – are great value.

Harper’s Bazaar: Pavilion at Ranthambore Fort

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