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Indore reached its cultural peak during the Holkar Dynasty in the 18th century when it was firmly established as an important trade route between New Delhi and the Deccan in the south.
It is now a bustling city with a thriving economy. The state government is running an initiative to encourage local and international investors to set up base in Indore, and has hosted a successful Global Investors Summit.
The initiative, which includes tax breaks and attractive land deals, has been largely successful. Automobile manufacturers, IT companies, pharmaceutical and textiles manufacturers have flocked to Indore to set up base there.
Indore, and nearby Pithampur, is fast becoming a hub for the automobile industry in India.
The Centre for Advanced Technology was established to bolster technology research in Indore.
When to go:
The best time to visit Indore is from October to March. Temperatures start averaging above 30 degrees Celsius in mid-March, although due to its elevation of 553m above sea level, it can be pleasantly cool in the evenings.
- Don’t miss Bada Ganpati, the world’s largest idol of Lord Ganesh. Built in 1875 it stands 8m tall and is Indore’s most popular attraction.
- The Lal Bagh Palace is a magnificent remnant of the Holkar Dynasty. The gates leading to its large garden are replicas – only double the size – of the gates of Buckingham Palace. The design, also with Greek and Italian influences, reflects the Holkars’ western outlook.
- Visit the Central Museum, or Indore Museum as it is sometimes known. It is another beautiful Holkar building and houses an impressive collection of Hindu sculptures.
- Wonder at the splendour of the Kanch Mandir, a Jain temple made of glass and mirrors. The walls, doors, floors, pillars and even the ceiling is adorned with glass and mirrors to give off a rather spectacular impression.
- Stop by Ghandi Hall, the prettiest building in Indore. The town hall was built in 1904 in an Indo-Gothic style and remains the landmark of modern Indore. The clock tower out the front is known popularly as Ghanta Gar.
- Pamper yourself with a luxurious spa treatment at the Sky Salon and Spa at the Radission Blu Hotel.
- Spend some time admiring the opulence of the Holkar rulers at Rajwada, which was used at the Holkar rulers’ palace.
- Take in the Chhatris, which exemplify the fine architectural skills of the Marathas. The stone cenotaphs commemorate the Holkar rulers of Indore.