Deserts | Heritage
Ideal duration: 4 - 15 days
Best time: October to March (Read More)
Major Airports: Jaipur, Udaipur, Jodhpur
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Formerly known as the Land of the Kings, Rajasthan is a beautiful example of India’s age-old opulence and grandeur, traces of which still linger in the air of this state. One of the most colourful and vibrant states in the country, with a heady blend of culture, history, music, cuisine and people welcoming you with smiling faces, falling in love with Rajasthan doesn’t take much time. Rajasthan has more history than the entire country put together – it is the realm of erstwhile Maharajas and their lavish palaces and majestic forts. Rajasthan is steeped in a past filled to the brim with honour, chivalry and heroism. Golden-sand deserts, traditional handicrafts, an authentic cuisine and awe-inspiring palaces all contribute to making Rajasthan an ideal vacation spot.
Rajasthan abounds in forts which offer sweeping views of the panoramic landscape, and the two most important forts in Rajasthan are the Amber Fort in Jaipur and the Mehrangarh Fort in Jodhpur. The Amber Fort, also commonly known as the Amer Fort is a picture-perfect amalgamation of Hindu and Mughal architecture. The ancient stronghold of the Kacchawa Clan, the Amber Fort is a spectacular creation built out of white marble and red sandstone. The Maota Lake surrounding the fort offers crystal clear reflections of the entire fort and adds to the charm of this age-old monument. Jodhpur’s Mehrangarh Fort is one of the largest forts in India, and towers above the entire city. Situated atop a steep cliff, the fort is still in pretty good shape and houses a museum which displays various artefacts and objects belonging to the ancient royal family. Another famous Rajasthani fort is the Jaisalmer Fort, commonly known as Sonar Quila. Entirely made out of sandstone, the fort literally gleams from a distance, lending it its name of Sonar Quila (meaning Golden Fort).
Rajasthan also has a significant number of palaces that are of historical significance, the famous ones being the Umaid Bhawan Palace and the Jaipur City Palace. Both of these palaces dating back to the royal times, and you can actually see the furniture and other objects used by the royal families on view in these palaces.
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Wide variety of tourists places. Efficient transport facilities. Hospitable and kind-hearted people.
Extreme temperatures. Some districts are under-developed.
Perfect place for history buffs and adventure enthusiasts. Nature admirers and peace seekers will fall in love with Rajasthan.
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Rajasthan is the Land of Fairs and Festivals because every year various exciting and rapturous events are held. Pushkar Fair, which takes place in October-November, is a weeklong camel and livestock festival. It takes place in Pushkar and is known to be the world's largest camel fairs. Competitions like 'matka-phod' and 'longest moustache' allures tourists from around the world. Udaipur World Music Festival brings together global artists and is held in February. If you are a music lover, then you should not miss this experience. For literature buffs, Jaipur Literature Festival held annually in January is a perfect event. Celebrated writers interact and share their ideas with common people. In January-February, you can witness the rich Rajasthani folk culture in the famous Desert Festival held in Jaisalmer every year. Camel races, folk dances, traditional processions form an important part of this festival. Winter Festival in Mount Abu, the only hill station of Rajasthan, celebrates the state's culture and tradition. Stunning handicrafts and delectable delicacies are a part of this festival. Other stirring fairs and festivals observed in Rajasthan are Teej Festival, Lake Festival, Nagaur fair and Bundi festival.
From hot air balloon rides to wildlife safaris, Rajasthan never gets tired to offer you invigorating adventures. Hot air balloon rides are available in Jaipur and Pushkar. You can soar above in the sky and enjoy the mesmerising views of the forts, palaces and architecture. Camping in Jaisalmer or Pushkar can turn out to be a lifetime experience. They are a perfect blend of comfort and adventure. While camping, you can absorb the beauty of widespread deserts. Desert and Camel Safaris in Bikaner, Jaisalmer or Jodhpur will leave you bewitched. Along with camping, you can witness cheerful men and women performing folk dances. Though water sports are not much developed in the state, still, some lakes in Udaipur and Dholpur may offer boating rides. Sanctuaries of Rajasthan in Bharatpur, Ranthambore, Alwar, Kota and Bundi have a variety of flora and fauna. You can head out for an exotic safari and explore the national parks.
Rajasthan, a state known for its diverse cultures, majestic forts and palaces and vibrant colours can be discovered in royal trains in the best way. Two royal trains take a tour around Rajasthan- Palace On Wheels and Royal Rajasthan On Wheels. The former starts its week-long journey from Safdarjung Railway Station, Delhi and run through the state every Wednesday night. A visit to Taj Mahal is also arranged during this tour. You will also enjoy cultural shows at some places. The train is equipped with all modern facilities like comfortable beds, inbuilt wardrobes and bathrooms, bar-cum-lounge where you can have your favourite drinks and also a royal spa. Royal Rajasthan On Wheels is newly-built and gives you an entirely magical experience. While you savour the sumptuous meals and enjoy the magnificent interiors, the train which begins its journey from New Delhi and takes you around the enticing state of India. Covering the major cities of Rajasthan, once you step into the train, all your necessary needs are taken care of.
Amongst the splendid forts and palaces or exciting fairs and festivals, the people of Rajasthan are an attraction for every tourist. Not only their hospitality wins several hearts, but the way they dress is quite intriguing. In Rajasthan, men wear dhotis, kurta and a safa which is a kind of a turban. Women wear ghagra, a long skirt and kanchli or a top. However, the way in which these are worn differs from place to place. Besides, Rajasthani jewellery is also famous. Local people wear jewellery of various metals. Women generally wear gem-studded gold and silver ornaments. Mostly people wear mojaris or jootis which are footwears crafted with stunning embroidery.
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You will be astound by the zeal with which Rajasthani people live their life and that is reflected in the year round fairs and festivals and exotic cuisines. People of Rajasthan are as colorful as the state itself, they are very fun-loving, talkative, devoutly religious and friendly. Their humble and generous nature will make you feel homely and special as they take pride in entertaining tourists. Though you will find trained English and French guides in tourist places like Jaipur and Jodhpur, most of the people speak in Rajasthani dialect. Hindi is universally understood whereas English is spoken among the educated. While everyday in Rajasthan is as colorful as a festival, the zeal and enthusiasm of Rajasthan and its people are reflected through the fairs and festivals celebrated all round the year.
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The geographic features of Rajasthan mainly comprise of the Thar Desert and Aravalli Range which runs from south-west to northeast region of the state. The north-west portion is dry and sandy. It does not have any fertile land. The major districts which have the Thar Desert are Jodhpur, Bikaner, Jaisalmer, Barmer and Nagaur. The Aravalli Range and the south-east part of the range are more fertile. The major districts which lie in the fertile region of Rajasthan are Banswara, Udaipur and Chittaurgarh. Chambal River also passes through Rajasthan.
The cuisine of Rajasthan is primarily vegetarian and offers a fabulous variety of mouthwatering dishes. The food here is such that it is suitable for the weather, availability of water, and other environmental factors of the area.
Rajasthan is much of what its culture is and the culture here derives a lot of its colour, festivity, significance and of course, spice, often literally from the diverse and exquisite cuisine here. The delicacies of the state are truly some of the richest, unique and most loved preparations of India. Names such as Dal Bati Churma, Moong Dal ka Halwa, Ghevar, Rabdi and numerous more are popular all across, especially in North India, with their popularity spreading beyond the confines of the state, while your visit to Rajasthan is only complete with a splendid and authentic Rajasthani thali.
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