There are several places of attraction in and around Varanasi. One of the must-to-visit place is Ramnagar, a city just 14 km from Varanasi. The city might not be big in length and breadth, but historically, its stature is very big. What draws visitors to Ramnagar is a fabulous and massive fort named after the city – Ramnagar Fort. Raja Balwant Singh built this fort in 1650. It has been built on a high platform on the eastern bank of the Ganga River and is still in a mint condition. Its structure is so tall and wide that the entire Varanasi and Ramnagar can be seen from the top of it.
The fort is constructed with chunnar sandstone in yellowish cream and is bordering the Ganga river. It is facing the Tulshi Ghat and overlooking the Ganga River. As the Sun rises, its shadow shimmering on the flowing Ganga offers a fantastic look. It has been built in Mughal architecture style. It has several carved balconies, pavilions, and open courtyards. Inside the fort, there is a temple dedicated to Sage Vyasa as the hermit is believed to have stayed here. The sanctum of the temple has three Shivlingas covered with copper. The main attraction of the fort is its museum that flashes articles of the past belong to the kingdom of Banaras. The main hall is named as ‘Saraswati Bhawan.’ This Bhawan was the Darbar Hall during the rule of the king. The collections comprise of vintage cars, royal palanquins (palkhis), old cannons, guns, swords, and ivory items. Royal costumes, manuscripts, elephant saddles in silver, furniture, ornate hookahs, musical instruments, knives, daggers, portraits, jewellery, and a antique clock are all the assets of the musuem. The speciality of the clock is that it still shows the time, day, week, month, and year, including the astronomical details of all the nine planets. It was built by an astronomer in 1852.
The arched entrance of the Ramnagar fort and museum is guarded by two cannons. After entering into the fort, a huge and well-maintained courtyard welcomes visitors. Access to rooms, and temples are through gates inside the fort. However, the part of the fort in which the Kashi Naresh still lives with his family is restricted for visitors. The main palace can be approached through a well laid-out garden. Accessing the fort from the Tulsi Ghat is also possible, and the view it offers is breathtaking.