Rajasthan is the jewel in India’s crown. From fairy-tale palaces and epic forts to colorful festivals and wildlife encounters, this is India at its vibrant best. Explore this incredible state of India where the tradition and culture is still alive in the form of Folk music & Folk dance
Rajasthan houses an amazing display of arts and architecture, courtesy of it being a princely state. Each individual kingdom of Rajasthan has a distinctive style of architecture and arts making it one of the most culturally diverse places in the world.
Here are the 7 best places in Rajasthan that are an absolute must-visit for your upcoming vacation:
Jaisalmer – The Golden City
Jaisalmer lies in the heart of the Thar Desert. It was founded by The Bhati Rajput ruler Maharawal Jaisal Singh in 1156 AD. It is a famous tourist spot due to its magnificent architecture and the various arts and crafts, which are unique to this region.
The fort of Jaisalmer is a breathtaking sight: a massive sandcastle rising from the sandy plains like a mirage from a bygone era. Ninety-nine bastions encircle the fort’s still-inhabited twisting lanes. Beneath the ramparts, particularly to the north, the narrow streets of the old city conceal magnificent havelis, all carved from the same golden-honey sandstone as the fort – hence Jaisalmer’s designation as the Golden City.
A city that has come back almost from the dead in the past half-century, Jaisalmer may be remote, but it’s certainly not forgotten – indeed it’s one of Rajasthan’s biggest tourist destinations.
Enjoy this castle city to its fullest
Famous for: Heritage, Thar Desert, Havelis.
Major Attractions: Jaisalmer Fort, Sam Sand Dunes.
Stay at : Mirvana Nature Resort, Winds Desert Camp
Jaipur – the Pink City
The capital of the state, Jaipur also known by the name of ‘Pink City of India’ because of its distinctive saffron or pink color of the buildings. It was founded in 1727, by the Kachwaha Rajput Ruler Sawai Jaisingh II, who was the ruler of Amber. The well planned streets and detailed and artistic architecture make it one of the top preferred tourist locations.
The city’s colourful, chaotic streets ebb and flow with a heady brew of old and new. Careering buses dodge dawdling camels, leisurely cycle-rickshaws frustrate swarms of motorbikes, and everywhere buzzing autorickshaws watch for easy prey. In the midst of this mayhem, the splendours of Jaipur’s majestic past are islands of relative calm evoking a different pace and another world.
At the city’s heart, the City Palace continues to house the former royal family; the Jantar Mantar, the royal observatory, maintains a heavenly aspect; and the honeycomb Hawa Mahal gazes on the bazaar below. And just out of sight, in the arid hill country surrounding the city, is the fairy-tale grandeur of Amber Fort, Jaipur’s star attraction.
Famous for: Heritage, Forts, Shopping, Cuisine.
Major Attractions: City Palace, Amer Fort, Hawa Mahal, Pink City Bazaar.
Udaipur – City of Lakes
The City of Udaipur is known by its common moniker, the city of lakes. Udaipur was founded in 1553 by the Sisodiya Rajput Ruler Maharana Udai Singh II. The Mewar Rajputs founded the city to relocate their capital from Chittor to a more secure location.
Beside shimmering Lake Pichola, with the ochre and purple ridges of the wooded Aravalli Hills stretching away in every direction, Udaipur has a romance of setting unmatched in Rajasthan and arguably in all India. Fantastical palaces, temples, havelis and countless narrow, crooked, timeless streets add the human counterpoint to the city’s natural charms.
For the visitor there’s the tranquility of boat rides on the lake, the bustle and colour of ancient bazaars, a lively arts scene, the quaint old-world feel of its better hotels, endless tempting shops and some lovely countryside to explore on wheels, feet or horseback.
Famous for: Heritage, Forts, Lakes, Weddings.
Major Attractions: City Palace, Lake Pichola, Lake Palace.
Jodhpur – The Blue City
Jodhpur is the second largest and most populated city of Rajasthan after Jaipur. The city was founded in 1459 by the Rathore Rajput Ruler, Rao Jodha Singh of Marwar.
Mehrangarh, the large fort that towers over the Blue City of Jodhpur, is a magnificent spectacle and an architectural masterpiece. Around Mehrangarh’s base, the old city, a jumble of sky-blue cubes, stretches out to the 10km-long, 16th-century city wall. The Blue City really is blue! Inside is a tangle of winding, glittering, medieval streets, which never seem to lead where you expect them to, scented by incense, roses and sewers, with shops and bazaars selling everything from trumpets and temple decorations to snuff and saris.
Famous for: Heritage, Forts, Cuisine.
Major Attractions: Mehrangarh Fort, Umaid Bhawan.
Pushkar – The Holy City
Famous for: Lord Brahma, Hinduism, Camel Safari.
Major Attractions: Pushkar Lake, Brahma Temple.
Lying in the Ajmer District of Rajasthan, the holy City of Pushkar is often described as the king of pilgrimage sites in India. The town is located at the shores of the Pushkar Lake, which was created by the tears of Lord Shiva and is one of the oldest cities of India and the date of its origin is unknown and is often associated with the Hindu mythology. It is famous for its temples and various Ghats which are frequented by hundreds of visitors during the annual bath. The water of the lake is considered sacred and thus is responsible for the town’s repute as a pilgrimage spot.
Camel races are one of the major attraction here.
Pushkar is famous for its annual camel fair. It is a five day fair held where people buy and sell livestock. But that’s not all; the fair is home to a large no. of tourist crowd that is attracted by the music, dance and various events that are held here during the camel fair.
Chittorgarh- Experience Rajput style Architecture
The ancient city of Chittorgarh also known as Chittor, was said to have been founded by the Maurya Dynasty in 734 AD. The place is known to be the birthplace of many great warriors and historical figures like the Great Maharana Pratap and the Hindu saint, Meera Bai. The city being an ancient place contains many different palaces, temples and forts which display some of the most advanced architectural designs and artistic mastery.
Experience and witness the Rajput style of architecture at its best at the Chittorgarh fort, which is the largest fort in India. The fort was founded in the 7th century by the 1st Sisodiya Rajput Ruler Bappa Rawal and spreads over an area of 2.8 sq kilometers and its highest elevation point is 1,075 meters above sea level.
Famous for: History, Heritage, Forts.
Major Attractions: Chittorgarh Fort, Rani Padmini Palace
Ajmer – The City of Dargah
Ajmer is the 5th largest city of Rajasthan.
Ajmer is a bustling, chaotic city, 130km southwest of Jaipur and just 13km from the Hindu pilgrimage town of Pushkar. It surrounds the expansive lake of Ana Sagar, and is itself ringed by rugged Aravalli Hills. Ajmer is Rajasthan’s most important site in terms of Islamic history and heritage. It contains one of India’s most important Muslim pilgrimage centres, the shrine of Khwaja Muin-ud-din Chishti, who founded the Chishtiya order, the prime Sufi order in India. As well as some superb examples of early Muslim architecture, Ajmer is also a significant centre for the Jain religion, possessing an amazing golden Jain temple. However, with Ajmer’s combination of high-voltage crowds and traffic, especially during Ramadan and the anniversary of the saint’s death, most travellers choose to use Ajmer as a stepping stone to laid-back Pushkar.
Famous for: Sufism, Dargah.
Major Attraction: Ajmer Sharif Dargah.
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