Ranikot Fort: Discover the Glory of the World’s Largest Fort
Located close to the town of Sann in the Jamshoro District of Sindh, Ranikot Fort is the World’s Mighty Fort, approximately 32 Kilometers (20 mi) in circumference and 35 Kilometers in length. The fort is situated inside the second biggest national park of Pakistan, the Kirthar National Park. The fort’s structure is similar to the Great Wall of China. The driving distance from Karachi to Ranikot Fort is 244 km. While the driving distance from Hyderabad to Ranikot Fort is 121 km. Furthermore, the distance from Sukkur to Ranikot Fort is almost 300 km.
Ranikot Fort is full of historical mysteries and archaeologists have found evidence of coins, pottery, weapons, Hindu temples, and Buddhist convents there. Being a unique heritage, this destination has a lot of marvels that remain a hidden treasure.
As suggested by the National Commission of Pakistan to be a historical site in 1993, Ranikot Fort has been tentatively placed on the UNESCO World Heritage Sites. Under the Antiquities Act 1975, this fort is recorded as an ancient site and offered preservation.
Despite being magnificent and striking, this enigmatic fort has an unclear history of its origin and creation. Though it was erected by Sindh Prime Minister Nawab Wali Muhammed Leghari during the Talpur Dynasty era, the motive behind the construction of this fort is still unrevealed. Some archaeologists presume that Ranikot Fort was built in the 1800s while some people believe that the fort was built in the early 20th century.
As Isobel Shaw puts it, “Ranikot Fort stands in the middle of nowhere, defending nothing.” The first local scholar to really dig into the history of Ranikot Fort is Badar Abro. He wrote a 300-page book called “Ranikot: The Wall of Sindh”. He’s been regularly visiting Ranikot to uncover stories about the Talpur Mirs’ link with the city since 1985. During his research, he found an engraving dating back to the Gupta Dynasty, which was around the 3rd century C.E.
In 2019, some archaeologists decided to excavate this mysterious fort out of curiosity. As reported by Kamal Hyder from Al-Jazeera, Ranikot Fort is so massive that it could easily house San Marino, which happens to be one of the world’s tiniest countries.
Ranikot Fort is constructed on a high level with its one side facing the Kirthar Range. A major part of its wall is built with rocks and mountains with some as high as 2000 feet. While other sides are made with yellow sandstone and lime mortar. The total area of the fort is as wide as 65 square kilometers which earns it the title of “The World’s Largest Fort”.
This giant fort connects different lonely mountain peaks in the Kirthar Hills. Three of the many towers around the fort are shaped like half-circles. The northern side of the fort is naturally steep and rugged. The land around the fort is usually empty, but that doesn’t hide the fact that the fort is truly magnificent.
Archaeologists in Sindh have figured out that during the Talpur dynasty in 1812, about 1.2 million rupees were spent to rebuild some of the structures we see today in Ranikot Fort. When one visits this place, one can see the fort’s massive structure from a distance of five kilometers.
Ranikot Fort Sindh is full of wonderful sights that keep the visitor captivated. Along with the fort itself, there are exquisite ponds, valleys, places to store weapons, hills, a mosque, and watchtowers that make it even more fascinating. One of the coolest things is that it has both curved and rectangular towers connected together, giving tourists a stunning view of the area all around.
The fort has entry gates that are shaped like diamonds and are built in a zig-zag pattern. These gates are named Mohan Gate, Shah-Pere Gate, Sann Gate, and Amri Gate. There are three fortresses inside the Ranikot Fort popularly known as Miri Fort, Sher Garh (Abode of lions), and Mohan Kot.
Nawab Wali Muhammed Leghari, former Prime Minister of Sindh who served during the Talpur dynasty, was the first to initiate the reconstruction of the fort. Work started on different parts of the fort, especially the Sann Gate area which included the mosque, and the Meeri fort inside the main fort.
The restoration was conducted by multiple groups, including the Archaeology Department of Pakistan, the Department of Culture of Sindh, and the Dadu District Administration. However, in 2005, there were complaints about negligence in construction and doubts about the unfair contract awards which led to a launched investigation.
The investigation reports demonstrated that the restoration work wasn’t done properly. They used cement and new stones without following the guidelines called the “Venice Charter for the Conservation and Restoration of Monuments and Sites.” Because of these findings, they decided to stop any more restoration work on the fort in 2006.
Witnessing the grandeur of this fort is a must if you visit Sindh. Guide to Pakistan presents you with a visual tour of Ranikot Fort. Have a view of the pictures listed below:
If you are an architectural enthusiast or adventure seeker who gets excited about discovering historical sites, then you can book a customized trip with GTP to find out the secrets of Ranikot Fort.
There is plenty of space available for parking in Ranikot Fort so you wouldn’t have to worry about it at all. There are no specific timings for the fort as it remains open around the clock. So you can visit the place at whatever time you like but it is preferred to have a tour between 8 am to 7 pm. Also, you don’t have to buy any tickets or pay any fee to enter the fort.
Ranikot Fort Pakistan is an adventurous treat for fun lovers as this fort has mysteries that will enliven your soul and awaken your inner detective. The surroundings offer splendid sights.You will discover a lot of marvels to experience in this place and cherish the memories that you will take along.
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