Gingee Fort (also called Senji Fort) is an ancient fort in the south Indian state of Tamil Nadu . It is known to be one of the earliest surviving forts in southern India.
The Gingee Fort was originally built in the 9th century AD by the then-ruling Chola dynasty in Tamil Nadu region. It was then just a small fort which was later modified by other rulers who subsequently ruled the region (including the popular Vijayanagar empire during the 13th century, and the Marathas of Maharashtra under the leadership of Chhatrapati Shivaji in 1677 AD).
The fort was built and developed with the main goal of fending away any invading armies.
The fort is currently maintained and administered by the Archaeological Survey of India, and has become a prominent tourist destination in Pondicherry.
The Gingee Fort stands on three hillocks –
These three hillocks are connected by some bastions and gateways that provide access to some inner parts of the fort complex.
The walls of the fort are 13 km (8.1 miles) high, and the fort is at a total height of 800 feet (240 m).
It has various elements like –
Gingee Fort is open to visitors between 9 AM and 5.30 PM every day, on all days of the week.
An entry fee of INR 30 per head is applicable for every Indian national (adult) visitor to this place, and for foreigners (adult), the entrance fee applicable is INR - per head. Entry is free for kids and children up to the age of - years.
The fort lies on a hill (that takes visitors an hour or so to climb) in Villupuram District, 160 kilometres from the state capital, Chennai, and is close to the Union Territory of Puducherry. Puducherry (or Pondicherry) is well connected to cities across India as well as other parts of the world. The city can be reached by air, rail or road.
Visitors can reach the airport from any part of India or the world, and can hire a cab, bus or autorickshaw from here to reach - within - hour.
The ‘’most impregnable fortress in India’’ as called by the great Maratha warrior Shivaji, the Gingee Fort is built in such a strategic location in Villupuram, Tamil Nadu, that makes it extremely difficult to invade. Constructed in the 16th century by the Vijayanagara Empire, the fort was abandoned in the 19th century and now is mostly visited by locals because of its starring in many movies.