Mesmerizing Mandu, Madhya Pradesh, India

Madhya Pradesh the state in the heart of India. After changing buses a couple of times we arrived to the last 35 km of potholed road  which takes us to the high plateau and Mandu. Before arriving we are getting a small taste of what to come, deserted cupola shaped ruins of a long lost golden age, the best preserved afghan ruins in India, and of course the kitsch of Indian made dinosaurs in a theme park bumping  past.

P1210913Mandu is a quiet corner of India, the surroundings breath space and time. The bus leaves us at the imposing mosque at the center of the village, we are the only tourists in sight and no one trying to get us to their guesthouse.

Oh so quiet until the next morning when the Rama temple starts its tape recorder at 5.30 and you get your ears blown off with Ram and Sita. P1210971There seems to be something still forgotten in these ruins and many well preserved tombs, mosques and palaces, scattered around the whole plateau and sometimes on the verge of the cliff with a view of the valley below.

The history of a once important village on a plateau of Mughal golden ages, love, death and decay, the circle of life.

The silent beauty of having a place solely to your self seems to be a feat difficult to obtain these days, getting lost in the country side on Indian bikes that  look deceivingly comfortable.

Indian bikes look sturdy and are heavy and difficult to maneuver.

They are short from the the saddle to the steering handles which makes you bang your knees repeatedly. A bit of muttering while the Hercules bicycle stops in the middle of a small hill,  the pedals seem impossible to push forward. Forget small ascends this is a bike made for flat straight potholed roads.  Heavy and sturdy you better think before you make a move beacause you might not be quick enough.

The turning radius is at least “one and a half  Indian” road”.P1220035P1220055P1210947