New Palace / Shahu Palace Kolhapur
The New Palace is also known as Shahu Palace constructed between 1877–1884. It is located in Bawada, Kolhapur. It built using black polished stone and it has been an attraction for tourists.
The palace is blessed with extensive premises with a garden, fountain and wrestling ground. The whole building is eight-angled and has a tower in the middle with a clock on it which was fixed in 1877.
It is the residence of Chhatrapati Shahu, the direct descendent of Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj, the founder of Maratha Empire. It’s a Kings Palace where the King himself lives.
The ground floor of the New Palace accommodates the Shahaji Chhatrapati Museum, given over to memorabilia of the Kolhapur rulers. Several tourists from across the country visit the New Palace each year. This museum exhibits royal ways of existence.
Shahu Palace Museum
The Museum is dedicated to a fine collection of possessions of Chhatrapatis of Kolhapur like costumes, weapons, games, jewellery, embroidery and paraphernalia such as silver elephant saddles.
The Shivaji Maharaja’s life events are painted on every single glass.
A letter from the British Viceroy and Governor General of India is the other memorabilia. There is also one sword of Aurangzeb at the Shahaji Chhatrapati Museum.
One section has stuffed Tigers, Tiger heads, Wild Dog, Sloth Bear, staring Wild Buffalo, Lion, Black Panther, Wild Boar, Black Buck, a number of other Deer varieties, and a Himalayan Black Bear.
The Darbar Hall occupies a huge-height space in middle of the Palace. On the side walls display lobed arches filled with stained glass illustrating scenes from the life of Shivaji Maharaj. Carved columns with temple-like brackets support the cast iron balcony above.
At the end of the hall a raised throne is placed. And the photos include one of the Maharajah with his hundredth dead tiger, elephant hunts and a series detailing how to train a cheetah.
Entry to New palace premises is free of cost. Only the museum requires a ticket. One can purchase a ticket for the same on the left side of the first entrance gate at the very beginning.
There is a parking place inside. And a main entrance gate for the palace right beside it.
The palace has a small zoo in front of it having deer and peacocks and ducks. And the ground lake makes the view even spectacular. The area of the lake is sealed but you can enjoy the amazing view. And the peaking animals through the bars.
During the flood this year in August. the water of the Pancha-Ganga river was so close to the New palace.