Exploring the Grandeur of Chitnavis Wada: A Glimpse into Nagpur’s Heritage

Exploring the Grandeur of Chitnavis Wada: A Glimpse into Nagpur’s Heritage

Exploring the Grandeur of Chitnavis Wada: A Glimpse into Nagpur’s Heritage

Continents such as Asia and Europe, as well as the rest of the world, offer various destinations for holistic living. A recommended place to stay in the Shekhawati region is Piramal Haveli, while those looking for luxury travel in a pilgrimage city can consider the Westin Pushkar Resort & Spa. Immerse yourself in the Lucknow lifestyle at Clarks Awadh or explore Nagpur's heritage by visiting Chitnavis Wada, a grand house in the city's old town. This introduction to Nagpur began with a tour of Chitnavis Wada located in Chitnavispura, within the Mahal area.

This particular Wada is unique in its ability to maintain the elegance and traditional allure of the esteemed houses. I made my way inside through a gate that had an arch and a wooden door. A sign displayed outside provided the name and location of the Wada.

Exploring Chitnavis Wada in Nagpur was an interesting experience. As I entered through the gate, I was surrounded by buildings arranged around an open space. It was hard to determine whether I was inside or outside the Wada due to the seamless integration of the structures. The construction on the main door side had a distinct colonial feel, with wooden blind panels that reminded me of similar architectural features in Colonial Calcutta.

The tall trees, which seem to have been around longer than the buildings, provide a dense canopy. I entered what I was informed was the office. The room contains a variety of old wooden furniture, such as palanquins, wooden boxes, writing desks, and wooden bullock carts scattered around. It became clear to me that this is the main Wada. The structures I observed outside were additional sections that served as a guest house during the time of British rule.

I received assistance from a man who oversees the location, and he aided me in obtaining a brochure. Additionally, he requested the staff to unlock the Wada for me. I had low expectations and only anticipated the presence of well-crafted wooden pillars within the Wada. However, surprises are never too distant, as I was pleasantly surprised to find intricately carved wooden pillars encompassing the front courtyard when I first arrived.

Chitnavis Wada is a traditional Indian mansion known as a Haveli, which consists of three courtyards arranged in a row. This architectural design is reminiscent of the Havelis found in Shekhawati. The first courtyard, known as the First Chowk, typically serves as a public space where guests and individuals conducting business would visit. In the case of Chitnavis Wada, this area functions as an outer courtyard that also serves as the office for the head of the family.

Chitnavis was the title given to the highest-ranking documentation officer of a king. The Chitnavis Wada, a building in Nagpur, was constructed by Rakhmaji Ganesh Randive, who held the position of Chitnavis for the Bhosle kings. Randive arrived in Nagpur in 1744 CE alongside Raghuji – I Bhosle. Based on its stylistic features, it is estimated that the Chitnavis Wada is approximately 200 years old.

As I entered the initial courtyard, I found myself immersed in a vibrant display of paintings. The courtyard, which is now sheltered with wooden structures, had a calming mud floor throughout the surrounding corridor.

On the walls, I noticed paintings that portrayed the life of Krishna, who I later learned is the revered deity of the family. These paintings depicted scenes from well-known epics like Mahabharata. Additionally, there were framed lithographs of artworks by Raja Ravi Varma.

Located in a corner of this courtyard stands a charming wooden temple that bears resemblance to many temples found in the Rajasthan region. This temple is devoted to Krishna and exudes a captivating beauty. When one sits in front of this temple, they are completely enveloped by the presence of Krishna. This courtyard is aptly named Deoghar Chowk, signifying it as the sacred space of the deity.

At the intersection called Family or Fountain Chowk, there was a doorway that led us to a square with a fountain in the center. Surrounding the fountain was a corridor with a floor made of mud. We found a spot by the fountain to appreciate this humble yet inviting section of the Wada. It was a designated family space where people would gather to eat together. I could envision the women of the family coming here to have conversations or bask in the warmth of the sun.

Kitchen Square

We entered through another doorway into the final square, which was likely frequented more by the household staff. This area used to be the kitchen. Here, you can observe the presence of a grinding stone and grooves for pounding. Additionally, there is a well and a Tulsi plant. Colorful Palkis were scattered throughout the space.

There is a fascinating aspect in the wall which is linked to the granary. By simply opening the window, one can easily access the grains needed for cooking. This opening can also be referred to as a service area or the behind-the-scenes operations for maintaining the wada.

Located on the side of this square is the entrance to the family temple, known as the Murlidhar Temple. In the past, it was common for large traditional homes, known as wadas, to have their own personal temple dedicated to their family deity. The Murlidhar Temple is a small temple with a garbhagriha (inner sanctum) and a shikhara (tower) designed in the Nagar style. Inside, the mandapa (hall) is adorned with wooden pillars, a common feature in many temples in Nagpur. Additionally, there are small temples dedicated to Hanuman and Garuda positioned on either side of the main temple.

Upon exploring the insides of Chitnavis Wada, we step outside and appreciate the exquisite woodwork displayed on its exterior. One notable feature is a hanging corner adorned with carvings of a peacock and parrot, which serves as a distinct representation of the skilled woodcarvers associated with this place. Additionally, the presence of Banana flower endings is reminiscent of the architectural style seen in Peshwa wadas located in Pune.

The higher levels of the building are linked to the guest houses located on the outer areas. It is possible that the colonial section of these guest houses was utilized for entertaining or accommodating European visitors. This specific section is joined to the main wada, but it remains distinct, establishing a division between the family section and the area designated for guests.

Across from the wada, there was a garden designed in the style of Charbhag, which featured walking paths that divided the garden into four sections. The garden, although not as vibrant as it once was, still held some remnants of its former glory. One intriguing discovery I made was a vintage handpump that was still functional and being used.

At the top of the Wada building, you have a clear view of the inner courtyards and the Murlidhar temple. Additionally, you can also enjoy a panoramic view of the city that surrounds it. I had the opportunity to be there during sunset, and the slanted red tiled roofs added a special ambiance to the scenery.

Throughout the years, the current owners of the Wada have made efforts to incorporate modern amenities such as bathrooms. Additionally, a section of the Wada is utilized as an office space for different organizations. The owners also offer the venue for rent, specifically for events like weddings or small gatherings. Interestingly, traditional wooden planks are used to serve food in this setting.

At the moment, the location is not accessible to the general public. To arrange a visit, you will need to get in touch with the office of the Sh Gangadhar Rao Chitnavis Trust. The heritage tour of the Wada is conducted by Architect Nitika Ramani, so it would be advisable to go through her for the visit.

The amount of time it takes to see it can vary from 1 to 2 hours, depending on how interested you are

There are numerous Wadas and temples that can be observed by taking a walk through the lanes near Chitnavis Wada.

Additional articles from the same author:

– Ramtek: The Influence of the Ramayana in the Vidarbha region

– Lingaraja Temple in Bhubaneshwar: A Masterpiece of Kalinga Architecture

– Matheran: A Charming Hill Station in Maharashtra

Comment section:

There are two comments expressing gratitude for the article and the new information they learned about Nagpur.

I consider your blog as a valuable source of knowledge about the world. Your captivating stories and breathtaking images have introduced me to hidden places I didn't even know existed. Your talent for capturing the true essence of a location is truly impressive. Please continue sharing your adventures, as they constantly fuel my desire to explore and travel!

Please provide a response. Cancel your reply. Keep my name, email, and website saved in this browser for future comments.

In the code, we are using the getElementById method to select an element with the id "ak_js_1". Then we are using the setAttribute method to set the value attribute of that element to the current timestamp obtained from

Get updates by subscribing to our website. Check out our most popular posts which include a list of 47 travel books that will ignite your desire to wander. Discover the Neemrana Fort Palace, a luxurious hotel that embraces its heritage. Learn about the delicious dishes of Kumaon cuisine in Uttarakhand. Explore the beautiful Utorda Beach in Goa, a must-visit destination in South Goa. Lastly, find out more about the Nandankanan Zoological Park in Bhubaneshwar. Don't forget to explore our other blogs as well.

Leave a Reply