Ratlam known historically as Ratnapuri is a city in the northwestern part of the Malwa region in Madhya Pradesh state of central India. The city of Ratlam lies 480 metres (1,575 feet) above sea level. It is the administrative headquarters of Ratlam district, which was created in 1947 after the independence of India. Ratlam is also very well known for Gold, Ratlami Sev, Ratlami Saree and its people.The famous Kalika Mata Temple,Kedareshwar Temple(Sailana),Jain Tirth(Bibrod) and Hussain Tekri(Jaora) is situated here.

Ratlam was given to Ratan Singh Rathore as a gift by Shah Jahan. Shah Jahan loved watching elephant fights and therefore held an event, choosing his favourite war elephants and inviting all the clans of Rajputana (present-day Rajasthan) to watch. From the Rathore clan, Ratan Singh was chosen. At the beginning of the festival, one of the elephants (Keharkope) went berserk and headed towards Shah Jahan. No one in the crowd was brave enough to move to protect him. Everyone feared for their own lives and fled except Ratan Singh, who swiftly mounted the elephant. With his katar, Singh stabbed the elephant in its head and killed it. Shah Jahan saw this and was so impressed by his bravery that he gave him the entire state of Ratlam, proclaiming him as the king.

Founded by Captain Borthwick in 1829, Ratlam was one of the first commercial cities established in Central India. The city quickly became known for trading in opium, tobacco, and salt, as well as for its bargains called “Sattas”. Before the opening of the Rajputana State Railway to Khandwa in 1872, there was no better place to trade than in Ratlam.

The city is known for its love of food, its taste particularly the world popular salty snack ‘Ratlami Sev’. Purity of Gold Jewellery and Saree Market of Ratlam outshines in India.

Ratlam is located at coordinates: 23°19′0″N 75°04′0″E (23.316667, 75.066667). The city has an area of 15.13 square miles (39.19 km²). It is very close to the borders of Rajasthan and Gujarat.

Ratlam, like most of Madhya Pradesh, has humid subtropical climate (Cfa) zone. Three distinct seasons are observed: summer, monsoon and winter. Summers start in mid-March and can be extremely hot from April through June. Highs can reach 112 °F (44 °C), although the humidity is extremely low. The monsoon season starts in late June, with temperatures averaging around 100 °F (38 °C), with sustained, torrential rainfall and high humidity. The average rain fall is 37 inches (937 mm). Winters start in mid-November and are dry, cool and sunny. Temperatures average about 39–46 °F (4–8 °C), but can fall close to freezing on some nights. Ratlam gets moderate rainfall of 35 to 38 inches (890 to 970 mm) from July through September, due to the southwest monsoon.

According to the 2011 Census, the city of Ratlam has a population of 2,64,810, of which 1,35,007 are male and 1,29,803 are female. The population density was 107 people per square mile (277/km²).

Ratlam has fair school level education with numerous English and Hindi medium schools. The city has three government schools and a Jawahar Navodaya Vidyalaya located near Kalukheda village, which is 35 kilometres from Ratlam, for decent English and Hindi medium education, and many private schools with quality English medium education.