The Talatal Ghar, also known as the Rangpur Palace, is a remarkable example of Tai Ahom architecture located in the northern region of Assam. Nestled in the heart of the Ahom Kingdom's capital, Rangpur, this splendid palace was initially constructed as a military stronghold by the illustrious Ahom Swargadeo Rajeswar Singha during the years 1751 AD to 1769 AD. Interestingly, this refined edifice boasts a pair of tunnels and three subterranean floors ingeniously designed to enable rapid evacuation for the monarch and his troops in the event of a crisis. The intricate maze-like layout of the passageways was crafted with such precision that any hostile invaders who dared to breach the stronghold would be left hopelessly disoriented and lost amidst the labyrinthine alleys. It serves as a remarkable testament to the vibrant Assamese culture and its opulent history, as well as being the largest Ahom edifice globally. Enthusiasts of history and architecture should undoubtedly include the Talatal Ghar in their itinerary.
This majestic structure boasts a distinctive Mughal architectural style, and its upper ground floor, popularly referred to as Kareng Ghar, was once used as a royal living palace by the Assam royalty. During the reign of Raja Swargdeo Rudra Singha, the successor of Swargadeo Rajeswar Singha, the top floors were added, transforming the Talatal Ghar into a magnificent and truly magnificent seven-story royal palace.
The fact that this magnificent monument was built entirely out of organic materials, including bricks and organic cement made out of a mixture of rice powder and duck eggs, is particularly interesting. What's even more impressive is how long-lasting this structure has been, standing strong and tall for centuries. It has truly stood the test of time.
Since Talatal Ghar was primarily constructed as an army base, it has two hidden tunnels: one that connects to the Garhgaon fortress, which is located 16 kilometers away, and another that connects to the nearby Dikhow stream. These were built as hiding chambers and escape routes for the king and his army. Tourists are allowed to visit the upper three levels of Talatal Ghar. The underground floors are closed to visitors.
The Talatal Ghar in Sibsagar, Assam is best visited during the months of March to April, when the temperature ranges from 8 to 28 degrees Celsius and seasonal showers provide pleasant relief from the humid climate. Winters can be quite cold, with temperatures ranging from -6 to 10 degrees Celsius, while the monsoon season brings moderate temperatures between 11 and 20 degrees Celsius, but heavy rains can impede exploration. To fully appreciate the magnificent structure, it is advisable to visit during daytime hours as the premises are not well lit at night. The Sibsagar Railway Station, only 4.7 km away, is the closest railhead, offering easy access to major cities and towns. Buses from the Sibsagar Bus Stand also provide affordable and frequent transportation options for visitors.