The royal Palace of Natore is one of the most prominent architectural heritage of Bangladesh. It’s also famous to the local residents as ‘Pagla Raja’s Palace’. It is situated at Natore district town which is about 48 Kilometres east of Rajshahi. It was the Zamindari (Landlord) headquarter and residential palace of Rajshahi (Natore) Raj family.
After becoming the landlord of Natore, it was Ramjivan who was also the founder of Raj family built the Natore Palace complex. The palace complex includes orchards and flower gardens, water tanks, temples and so on. Successor and daughter-in-law of Ramjivan popular queen of North Bengal Rani Bhawani used to live here and after the death of her husband she expanded both the estate and the palace. After the death of the famous queen her adopted son Ramkrishna ruled the estate. Later on his two sons Vishwanath and Shivnath become the co-sharers of the Natore Raj family and the whole zamindari was equally divided between them. The whole stake of the eldest son (Vishwanath) and youngest son (Shivnath) was known as ‘Boro Taraf’ and ‘Choto Taraf’ respectively.
There were in total of nine buildings in the palace complex. The buildings are – The palace of Boro Taraf, The palace of Choto Taraf, Kachari Bhavan and Guard House of Boro Taraf, Kachari Bhavan and Guard House of Choto Taraf, Rani Bhavan, Madhu Rani Bhavan, Guest house and so on. The main palace block of the Boro Taraf is now being used as District Commissioners office. This block is facing south with a large open lawn. There are two other blockes as well at west and south are looking over the lawn and laid in shape of ‘U’. At the back of the western single storied block there is a Nat-Mandap (dancing hall) and further west there is a Krishna Temple. Now-a-days this elegant well decorated block is using as the office of the superintendent of police. The main block of the Choto Taraf is now being used as the District Judge’s Court. The honorary queen Rani Bhawani used to live in ‘Rani Mahal’.
Due to immense popularity Rani Bhawani got the title ‘Ordha Bangeshwari (Ruler of half of the Bengal)’ and her dwelling house, the royal Natore Palace was popular throughout the undivided Bengal and now-a-days it has become an attractive tourist spot as well.