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Gingee Fort, Gingee

#1 of 7 in Historic Sites in Viluppuram District
Must see · Historic Site · Tourist Spot
Gingee Fort or Senji Fort (also known as Chenji, Chanchi, Jinji or Senchi) (Marathi: जिंजी किल्ला) in Tamil Nadu, India is one of the surviving forts in Tamil Nadu, India. It lies in Villupuram District, 160 kilometres (99 mi) from the state capital, Chennai, and is close to the Union Territory of Puducherry. The site is so fortified that Chhatrapati Shivaji, the Maratha king, ranked it as the "most impregnable fortress in India", and it was called the "Troy of the East" by the British. The nearest town with a railway station is Tindivanam and the nearest airport is Chennai (Madras), located 150 kilometres (93 mi) away.

Originally built by Ananta kon of the konar Dynasty around 1190 AD and later fortified by Krishna Konar, it was later modified in the 13th century to elevate it to the status of an unbreachable citadel to protect the small town of saenji. It was also the headquarters domination in northern Tamil Nadu. The fort was built as a strategic place of fending off any invading armies. As per one account, the fort was further fortified during the 15–16th century, the lieutenants of the and who later became independent kings. The fort passed to the Marathas under the leadership of Shivaji in 1677 AD, Bijapur sultans, the Moghuls, Carnatic Nawabs, French and the British in 1761. The fort is closely associated with Raja Tej Singh, who unsuccessfully revolted against the Nawab of Arcot and eventually lost his life in a battle.

The Gingee Fort complex is on three hillocks: Krishnagiri named after Krishna Kon to the north, Rajagiri or Anandagiri named after Ananda kon to the west and Chandrayandurg to the southeast. The three hills together constitute a fort complex, each having a separate and self-contained citadel. The fort walls are 13 km (8.1 mi) and the three hills are connected by walls enclosing an area of 11 square kilometres (4.2 sq mi). It was built at a height of 800 feet (240 m) and protected by an 80 feet (24 m) wide moat. The complex has a seven-storeyed Kalyana Mahal (marriage hall), granaries, prison cells, and a temple dedicated to its presiding Hindu goddess called Chenjiamman. The fortifications contain a sacred pond known as Aanaikulam. On the top of the hillock, there are minor fortifications. The fort, in modern times, is maintained and administered by the Archaeological Survey of India. The fort is one of the prominent tourist destinations in Villupuram district.

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TripAdvisor traveler rating 4.5
109 reviews
  • One of the most beautiful place that I happen to visit on a road trip. Though just ruins now, it still holds a certain charm of the old Indian architecture. Built by the Kona dynasty and then further....  more »
  • Very nice fort, condition so so. Climb up to the top not easy, maybe 90-120 minutes. Beware of aggressive monkeys.  more »
  • It's the perfect destination for a one day trek, especially for Chennai people. The architecture of the temples near the base is amazing! The trek itself is fairly easy and quite fun. One is treated to absolutely spectacular views upon reaching the top. You simply can't click enough pictures to satisfy your inner shutterbug at this place. Highly recommended for young trek enthusiasts.
  • Nice place to visit. You should carry food, water and all necessary items with you and beautiful place u need at least 7 to 8 hrs to see restaurant s near by…Good place, would like to go again. Best month to visit Dec or January than Very good place to see with family and friends, well maintained.
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