Rajasthan is one of the most royal states in all of India. The culture, the history and the heritage of the state is what makes it the perfect place to start your Indian trip from. You should also read up some tips before visiting Rajasthan. Here are some of the prettiest cities you don’t want to leave out while planning your upcoming royal Rajasthan trip.
Jaipur is one of the prettiest cities in the state of Rajasthan and makes the perfect addition to your Rajasthan trip itinerary. It is also an integral part of the Golden Triangle Tourist Circuit of India.
Jaipur is also known as the pink city of India. This is because the buildings in the old part of the town is painted pink. In 1876, the Prince of Wales was to visit the city as a part of his India tour. The King of Jaipur at that time, Maharaja Sawai Ram Singh, painted the whole city pink as it was considered to be the color of hospitality.
Today, this beautiful city is home to some of the prettiest forts, museums, grand palaces, stunning architecture and heritage sites. This is what attracts people from all over the world to the city. In fact, you can also stay in a beautiful heritage hotel, which is usually a converted palace or mansion of an old Indian royal family.
The city is also perfect for those who are looking to stock up on those local ethnic Indian articles. Be it to decorate your home or to take back as souvenirs for friends and family.
Another popular place to visit on your Rajasthan trip is the city of Jodhpur. This town is also known as the blue city of India. The reason for this is that most of the houses in the old city center are painted blue.
The story behind this is that the king who founded the city of Jodhpur wanted to build his empire. To do so, he invited the educated class of people also known as Brahmins, from the regions around to settle in Jodhpur. But the city got very hot in summer (which is why it got the nickname of the sun city) and the residents were very unhappy with the heat. So to make them happy and ensure that they didn’t leave the kingdom, the King invited a famous architect from Iran to design the city.
This architect was the one who built the city using limestone which helped in keeping the houses cool on the inside. But unfortunately the white color of the limestone ended up attracting various insects. So in order to stop that, he added indigo to the limestone and used that to layer the outer facade. This kept the houses cool and kept the insects at bay.
The city has various beautiful sites to visit including one of the most prettiest forts of the state and a well preserved local step well.
Udaipur is known as the city of lakes and palaces. This makes it one of the most romantic cities in the state and a perfect stop on your upcoming Rajasthan trip.
The main attraction in the city is the city palace which till date is the residence of the royal family of Udaipur. Part of the city palace has been opened up for the public as a museum. It is possible to visit the museum to browse through the many personal heirlooms, photographs and other memorabilia of the royal family.
You could also visit some of the most beautiful lakes in the state during your visit to the regal city. Lake Pichola, Fateh Sagar Lake, Udai Sagar and Swaroop Sagar are considered to be the most beautiful lakes in Udaipur and should not be missed.
Jaisalmer is the city right at the door of the great Thar desert and should definitely be a stop on your Rajasthan trip. It is also known as the Golden city of Rajasthan. This is because the houses in the city center of Jaisalmer are all built with a yellow sandstone giving the city a yellowish-gold look.
The city is home to only living fort in the state. This means that the fort is home to a lot of people even today. You could also be spend a night in one of the many hostel and hotels situated within the fort walls.
The city is also the perfect place to try the local drink called Bhang. It is a traditional drink made with cannabis, honey and spices. There is a government certified shop where you can try this traditional drink right outside the fort.
The Thar desert is also commonly known as the Great Indian Desert. It is also believed to be one of the most civilized deserts in the world. The desert is easily accessible from the city of Jaisalmer. Various local tours agents organise one or two day trips to the desert.
Adventure lovers can indulge in camel safaris and jeep safaris in the desert. For those interested in staying the night, there are luxury tent resorts to spend the night. Many of these organise cultural programs for all their guests showcasing the local dance and music of the state. At certain dark spots in the desert, it is also possible to view the milky way
Pushkar is a sleepy, holy town south of Jaipur. It is a popular pilgrimage spot in the state. The city doesn’t receive the kind of tourists the other cities in the state receive for most of the year. So it makes the perfect stop for those looking for a little downtime on their Rajasthan trip. For this reason, the city is popular with backpackers who are on the road for months.
If you’re visiting the city in the months of October-November though, you might find a completely different situation. For a couple of weeks during these months, the city organises the Pushkar Camel Fair. It is an old traditional Indian festival that is organised every year in the city. It makes the perfect addition for those looking to soak in a bit of the traditional Indian culture on their visit to the state.
The Pushkar market also is a perfect place to shop for all those traditional knick-knacks and buy those local Indian souvenirs to take back home.
Bikaner is another off the beaten track stop for your upcoming Rajasthan trip. The city is tucked away in the Great Indian Desert. Due to this, the city receives less tourists as compared to the other Rajasthani towns in the state. It is also the perfect stop for those wishing to visit the Thar Desert and avoid the mass tourist crowds that Jaisalmer receives. You can also find jeep safaris and camel safaris in the Thar Desert from the town of Bikaner.
The main attractions here are the fort and the old city center of the town. The city is also close to one of the most unique temples in the country. The Karni Mata rat temple houses over 1000 rats who are treated as pets by the devotees. The rats are fed and taken care of instead of chased away. In fact, devotees believe that feeding the rats brings good luck.
Twice a year, in March-April and then during September-October, the temple organises the Karni Mata Festival. It is one of the quirkiest festivals in the country which is organised to worship the rats there.
Mount Abu is the only hill station in the entire state of Rajasthan. It is situated at the height of 1220 meters above sea level. The town has favorable weather all year round and makes for the perfect summer getaway to escape the heat of the state. Because of this, the city is highly visited by locals from the state and the surrounding state of Gujarat.
The city was also popular with the British rulers of the state. They took a liking to this hill top town and moved the headquarters of their political Rajputana agency from the town of Ajmer to Mount Abu.
If you do decide to include this town on your Rajasthan trip itinerary, there are a few cool things to see while in the city. The Nakki lake is quite famous and is highly visited for various water sports. The city also boasts of various beautiful Jain temples with stunning architecture. The sunset point in the city is also quite popular and a must visit during your stay in the city.
Ajmer is believed to be one of the oldest cities in the state of Rajasthan. The city is located south of Jaipur, close to the town of Pushkar. It envelopes the pretty Anasagar Lake. The city is also considered to be the most important site in terms of the islamic history and heritage in the state.
Ajmer is home to the Shrine of the Sufi saint Khwaja Moinuddin Chisti. This is one of the most important Muslim pilgrimage sites in the country. The city makes for a perfect day trip from the city of Jaipur or Jodhpur.
Ranthambore National Park
Ranthambore National Park is a huge wildlife reserve in the northern part of Rajasthan. It is home to Tigers, Leopards and marsh Crocodiles and is one of the best places in the country to spot a Tiger in the wild.
The park is home to the expansive Ranthambore Fort. It is a huge fort that contains various ruins and Hindu temples. The park also houses the Padam Talao Lake which is known for the scores of water lillies that grow in the waters.
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