Rajasthan

Capital
Jaipur
Population
44 million
Area
342 239 km²
Languages
Rajasthani, Hindi

Best time to visit
October - March
Climate (°C)
Apr - June: 45 - 32
July-Sept: 40 - 35 Monsoon
Oct - Dec: 38 - 32
Jan - Mar: 35 - 30, but can drop to 0 degrees.

About

Rajasthan is located in Northwestern India and has boundaries with the States of Punjab, Haryana, Uttar Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh, and Gujarat as well as a long international boundary with Pakistan.

Rajasthan, a land of Maharajas (kings), palaces and preening peacocks is renowned for its monuments, art and culture that go back to several centuries. There is romance in Rajasthan's forts and palaces and the shimmering Thar desert.

Rajasthanis are a handsome people with colorful costumes. They express themselves in color and sound not easily seen or heard anywhere else in the country. Rajasthan overwhelms with color found in bustling bazaars; in wide ranging costumes of its people; in streets where elephants and camels vie with buses and cars.

How to get here

Air
Indian Airlines connect most of the cities

Rail & bus
Good connections too all places with both train and bus.

Places to visit

Jaipur - Pushkar - Mount Abu - Jodhpur - Udaipur - Bikaner - Jaisalmer - Deeg - Ranthambore National Park

.: Jaipur
The capital city of Rajasthan is one of the most vibrant and colourful cities of India. Famous for its colourful culture, forts, palaces, and lakes the city basks in the glory of a rich and eventful past. Jaipur is a planned city which is made all the more attractive by the pink wash that most buildings are periodically given. Besides, it remains the only city in the world that symbolises the 9 divisions of the universe, through 9 rectangular sectors. It is for these reasons that Jaipur has been included on the popular tourist "Golden Triangle" of Delhi-Jaipur-Agra.

The capital city of Rajasthan is one of the most vibrant and colourful cities of India.

.: Pushkar
The idyllic town with the sacred lake of Pushkar, lies 11 km from Ajmer. Pushkar is separated from Ajmer, by the Nag Pahar (Snake Mountain). This beautiful lake surrounded by bathing ghats, has its religious significance, rooted in a myth. A lovely and gigantic fair is held every year, on Kartik Poornima (full moon in Pushkar Fair October-November). About 1,00,000 pilgrims gather here, to take a dip in the holy lake. The fair is also the biggest camel market. Besides camels, horses and bullocks are sold here. The colourfully dressed people enhance the exuberant mood of the fair. Pushkar abounds in temples, the special attraction being, the temple of Lord Brahma, the only temple in India, dedicated to Brahma.

.: Mount Abu
Mount Abu, is both a hill resort and a pilgrimage site. This mountain lies at the southern extremity of the Aravalli Range. Surrounded by forests, rich in flora and fauna, the town appears as an oasis. The drive uphill along Abu Road, overlooks an arid region, strewn by huge rocks with smooth surfaces, and weird shapes, fashioned by high velocity winds. The altitude of this plateau (1220 m), and the abundant vegetation have blessed Abu with a pleasant climate. Abu, according to legend, stands for the son of Himalaya. Many sages and seers had their retreats on Mt. Abu, the most famous of them being, sage Vashistha. Mt Abu was dedicated to Lord Shiva, before it became a Jain pilgrim centre.

.: Jodhpur
Nestling in the depths of the Thar Desert, is the stronghold of the Rathore clan - Jodhpur, once the capital of the former princely state of Marwar, the second largest city of Rajasthan, after Jaipur. The town was once known as Marwar, which means 'Land of Death', probably, referring to the harsh desert climate. It is an island of marble palaces, cordoned off from the desert by an immense wall, with eight gates facing different directions.

.: Udaipur
The famous "white" city of Rajasthan state, Udaipur stands on the banks of the lake Pichola, its many white marble palaces reflecting in the lake's calm waters. Udaipur is voted one of the most romantic cities of India.Apart from the citypalace, there are a number of other beautiful palaces around town. Indeed, one palace is built on an island in the lake and is now turned into the world famous "Lake Palace Hotel". The palace is built in such a way so that seems to float effortlessly on the blue waters of the lake. A number of ex-palaces and mansions are converted into hotels to cater for the luxury traveller.

.: Bikaner
Bikaner is yet another walled city in Rajasthan, with a majestic fort, which till date remains unconquered. Being on the ancient silk route, Bikaner was a major centre of trade in the 16th century and still retains its medieval aura of mysticism and intrigue. Unlike most other cities of Rajasthan, outside influences are minimal. Hence the traditional life style endures

.: Jaisalmer
Right in the heart of the Thar desert, is an intricately molded city made of burnished sandstone. In ancient times, the surrounding sand-dunes rendered the sand-coloured fort impregnable. Today, Jaisalmer is an inhabited city whose chief attractions are the exquisite carvings and filigreed work on the facades of havelis (private homes) dating from the 12th to 15th century, and a series of ornately carved Jain temples. Close by is The Desert National Park - a vast stretch of protected Bio-sphere Reserve covering an area of over 3000 square kms. This is the Great Indian Bustard's breeding site. Inside the park are the awe inspiring Sam Sand Dunes.

.: Deeg
32 kms from Bharatpur, Deeg is an 18th century stronghold, whose massive fortifications are surrounded by luxuriant gardens, woods and pools. It is known for its palaces which have richly carved columns, cornices and eaves.

.: Ranthambore National Park
Rajasthan's first Project Tiger reserve is named after a 1000 year old fort which stands in the park. Its' habitat is home to the stately sambar, the largest of all Asiatic deer. Tigers, cital, and wild boar are also found here. Woodland, ground and water-birds, including the uncommon red jungle fowl and varieties of eagles, abound.



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