Gwalior Fort was constructed in two parts—the main fort, the Gurjari Mahal and the Man Mandir Palace. The first part was built during the early Tomar rule, while the second part, the Gurjari Mahal and the palace, were constructed by Raja Man Singh Tomar in the 15th century. The Hathi Pol Gate (or Hathiya Paur) is the main gate in the fort leading to the Man Mandir Palace. It is the last gate at the end of a series of seven gates. Hathi Pol Gate is named after a life-sized statue of an elephant (hathi) that once adorned the entrance to the gate. The gate is built from stone and has cylindrical towers crowned with cupola domes. Carved parapets link the domes.
The Man Mandir is a remarkable Hindu palace built by Man Singh. The palace dominates the east flank of the fort with its impressive façade. It is called a Chit Mandir (painted palace) since the walls of the southern facade are covered at four levels. The painted effect is provided by the styled tiles in turquoise, green and yellow, which have been laid in friezes of geometric patterns of geese and crocodiles with entwined tails. The wall of the fort depicts elephants, peacocks and trees. Two inner courts inside the palace are enclosed by a series of apartments all around, which have perforated screens or jalis. The inner courts have an ornately carved facade. They are decorated with carved brackets in the form of lotus petals, friezes on the walls of colorful tiles and with projecting upper balconies. The southern façade, however, depicts figures of elephants, tigers and ducks..
Gujari Mahal, a palace that was built by Raja Man Singh for his wife Mrignayani, is well maintained and has been converted into an archeological museum. The rare artifacts on display at the museum are Hindu and Jain sculptures dating back to the 1st and 2nd centuries BC, a miniature statue of Salabhanjika (shown only by special permission), terracotta vessels and replicas of frescoes seen in Bagh Caves. .
There are several other monuments built inside the fort area. These are: the Chhatri of Maharajas Bhim Singh and Bhimtal; the Scindia School, a renowned institution founded by the late Maratha Maharaja Madho Rao Scindia of Gwalior in 1897; the Gurudwara Data Bandi constructed in memory of the sixth Sikh Guru Har Gobind; the Sas-Bahu temples dating back to the 10th century; and the Teli-ka-Mandir, or “Oilman’s Temple”, dating back to the 8th century. .
Gopachal Parvat is situated on the mountainous terrain at the slopes of Gwalior Fort. It is most famous for its unique statues of Jain Tirthankaras. The idol of Lord Parshvanath seated on a lotus (carved out of a single stone) is the largest in the world, towering at 47 feet tall and 30 feet wide. There is also a series of 26 Jain statues placed in a single line. Built between 1398 and 1536 by Tomar kings, these Jain Tirthankar statues are one of a kind in architecture, and a treasure trove of old Indian heritage and culture.