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The Cactus Garden Sailana is a hidden gem nestled in the heart of Madhya Pradesh, India. This unique botanical wonder showcases an impressive collection of cacti and succulents worldwide, thriving in an unexpected landscape. Founded by the visionary Maharaja Digvijay Singh, the garden is a testament to his passion for exotic plants and horticultural innovation. Visitors are transported to a desert oasis, where towering saguaros stand alongside delicate echeverias, starkly contrasting the surrounding lush greenery. Whether you’re a plant enthusiast or simply seeking a tranquil escape, the Garden Sailana offers a captivating experience that challenges preconceptions about India’s flora and invites exploration.

About Cactus Garden Sailana

See baby cactus at the Cactus Garden Salina

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The Cactus Garden is a unique attraction in Sailana, a town near Ratlam in Madhya Pradesh, India. It is located inside the Jaswant Niwas Palace, a former royal home. This garden was once the biggest garden in Asia, with about 1200 types of cacti. Recent reviews suggest that the collection might be smaller now, but visitors can still see many different cacti in different shapes, sizes, and colours. There are tall cacti that are twice as tall as a person and small, delicate ones as well.

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Top Places To Visit Nearby Cactus Garden Sailana

Cactus Garden Sailana has several attractions that enhance the overall visit experience. Some of the popular ones include the following:

1. Kharmour Wildlife Sanctuary

Discover the various species of birds at the Kharmour Wildlife Sanctuary near Cactus Garden Sailana

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The Kharmour Wildlife Sanctuary, also known as Sailana Bird Sanctuary, is wonderful for nature enthusiasts and bird watchers. It’s located in Madhya Pradesh and named after the rare Kharmour bird. Covering an area of 13 square kilometres, it is home to a wide variety of plants and animals. Visitors can explore the thick forests and grasslands on jeep rides, looking for animals such as tigers, leopards, sloth bears, and different kinds of deer. The sanctuary is especially loved by bird watchers, as it hosts over 200 species of birds. Migratory birds come here between July and September, making this the best time to visit.

Location: Ratlam district near Sailana village in the northern part of Madhya Pradesh
Timings: 6:00 am to 10:30 am and 3:00 pm to 6:00 pm

2. Kedareshwar Temple

Experience spiritual tranquillity at the historic Kedareshwar Temple.

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The Kedareshwar Temple is on Mandhata Island in Omkareshwar, Madhya Pradesh. It’s a Hindu temple dedicated to Lord Kedar, another form of Lord Shiva. The temple was built in the 11th century and is famous for its beautiful architecture and views. Situated where the Narmada and Kuberi rivers meet, the temple is important for religious pilgrims. Visitors can learn about its history, watch daily religious ceremonies, and enjoy the peaceful atmosphere by walking along the banks of the sacred Narmada River.

Location: GF4V+382, Rampura, Khemla Block, Madhya Pradesh 458118
Timings: 5:00 am to 9:30 pm

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3. Dholawad Dam

Witness the majestic expanse of Dholawad Dam located near Cactus Garden Sailana

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Dholawad Dam, also known as Saroj Sarowar Bandh, is located 25 kilometres west of Ratlam in Madhya Pradesh, India. It’s a peaceful and quiet spot. Visitors can participate in a variety of activities here. You may go boating on the reservoir, picnic, walk or camp in the nearby surroundings. There’s also the Dholawad Eco Tourism Park nearby to visit. If you visit Dholawad Dam, make sure to stay until sunset to see the beautiful view of the sun going down below the horizon.

Location: Raoti, 25 km towards the west of Ratlam
Timings: Open 24 hours

Cactus Garden Sailana Timings And Entrance Fees

See the various types of cactus at this garden

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The Cactus Garden in Sailana is open daily from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. This particular garden is famous for its large collection of cacti and succulent plants, which gives fans of nature and plants a great look at desert plants. The entry fee is INR 20 per person, so it’s an affordable and educational place to visit.

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Best Time To Visit

Finding peace among the prickles at this serene place.

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The best time to visit the Cactus Garden in Sailana is during the cooler months of spring (March to May) and fall (October to November). Sailana has a hot semi-arid climate, so summer temperatures can be very high, making outdoor visits less comfortable. During spring, which is typically from March to May, the weather in Sailana is mild and pleasant, with temperatures ranging from comfortable to warm, making it ideal for exploring the Garden without the discomfort of extreme heat. The garden’s diverse collection of cacti and succulents can be enjoyed amidst agreeable weather conditions during this period. The fall season, which is from October to November, is also a good time to visit the garden. The weather is usually nice during these months, and it doesn’t rain as much, so you can have a good time outside. Both spring and fall are ideal times to see the beauty of the Garden. Mild temperatures during these seasons make exploring the garden’s extensive collection of desert plants easy. Visitors can enjoy leisurely walks and appreciate the variety of plants on display in comfortable weather conditions.

How To Reach

Best Way to reach the Cactus Garden Sailana is by train

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The Cactus Garden Sailana is a fascinating place to explore. Below is how you can reach it:

By Road: The Cactus Garden in Sailana is easy to find, located within Sailana Palace along the Ratlam-Banswara Highway (NH 927A), about 21 km from Ratlam city. If you’re driving, take the Ratlam-Banswara road to Sailana Palace. Turn left at the Shree Sai petrol pump to avoid narrow lanes. The garden is about 24.2 km away from Ratlam Railway Station, making it a simple drive to this botanical attraction.

By Air: If you’re flying to Sailana, the closest airport is in Indore, Devi Ahilya Bai Holkar Airport. From there, you can take a taxi or bus to the Garden in Sailana. The airport has flights to and from many cities in India, so it’s easy for people to visit this special garden.

By Train: The closest train station to Sailana is Ratlam Railway Junction. When you get to Ratlam, a major train hub, think about taking a road trip to the Cactus Garden. Ratlam station connects to major cities across India, which makes it easy to travel to Sailana. Once there, you can explore the famous Garden located within the Sailana Palace.

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As the sun sets over the Cactus Garden Sailana, casting long shadows among the spiny sentinels, you’re left with a sense of wonder at nature’s resilience and beauty. This hidden gem in Madhya Pradesh offers a unique experience that combines a botanical fascination with serene surroundings. Whether you’re a plant enthusiast, a nature lover, or simply seeking an off-the-beaten-path adventure, it is a must-visit destination. Ready to explore this prickly paradise and discover more of Madhya Pradesh’s natural wonders? Book your trip to Madhya Pradesh today and immerse yourself in the heart of India’s diverse landscapes and rich cultural heritage.

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Cover Image Credit: Arpit Pathak for Wikimedia Commons

Frequently Asked Questions About Cactus Garden Sailana

What is the entry fee for the Cactus Garden Sailana?

The entry fee for the Cactus Garden Sailana is quite affordable. You can expect to pay around 20 rupees per person.

How many cactus species does the Cactus Garden Sailana have?

The Cactus Garden Sailana is home to an impressive collection of over 1,200 species of cacti and succulents. This wide variety makes it one of the largest and most diverse cactus gardens in India.

What should I bring for a visit to the Cactus Garden Sailana?

Since the garden is outdoors, comfortable shoes are a must. Bringing bottled water is also a good idea, especially during hotter months. Be advised that large bags may not be allowed inside the park, so plan to leave them in your vehicle. Reviews also mention that professional photography equipment might be restricted, with cellphone pictures being preferred.

How far is Sailana Cactus Garden from Ratlam?

The distance from Ratlam to the Sailana Cactus Garden is approximately 20-21 kilometres. This makes it a convenient day trip or stopover if you're travelling on the Ratlam-Banswara highway (NH 927A).

What is Sailana famous for?

Sailana is famous for its historic fort and the remarkable Cactus Garden. The Sailana Fort, with its rich history and architectural significance, attracts history buffs and tourists alike. However, the Cactus Garden stands out as a unique botanical attraction, renowned for its vast collection of cacti and succulents. The garden, established by the erstwhile rulers of Sailana, showcases the region's dedication to horticulture and conservation, making it a notable point of interest in Madhya Pradesh.

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