Located in northwest India, Rajasthan borders Punjab in the north, Haryana and Uttar Pradesh in the northeast, Madhya Pradesh in the east andGujarat in the south. On the western side it shares a long stretch of border with the neighboring country Pakistan. Situated on the Thar Desert, Rajasthan protects the western border of the country standing as the sentinel who never tires. The art of Rajasthan ensures that people visit the desert.
Rajasthan is diagonally divided into the hilly and rugged southeastern region and the barren Thar Desert, which extends across the border into Pakistan. Within these divisions however, it is a storehouse of varied physical feature or topographical diversity. The arid Thar also boasts of Mount Abu the only hill station in the state famous for its flora and fauna. While the Aravali hills provide the much-needed relief to this arid land, the wide spread sand dunes of the desert and arid region make it one of the toughest terrains in the world. Jodhpur (the second biggest city of the state) is the edge of the dry and shifting desert land from where on the not so arid but cultivable land starts. It is a store house of the art of Rajasthan. Moreover, the rocky range of Amber, hilly range of Mewar, river basin of Bharatpur and fertile Aravali range gives the topography of the state a unique look.
Popular Tourist Attractions in Jodhpur
Mehrangarh Fort : Mehrangarh Fort tops the list of ‘must visit’ places in Jodhpur. It is one among the largest Indian forts. This invincible fort stands magnificently 400 feet above the city. Rao Jodha constructed the fort in 1459 AD. Though the attempt to construct the fort was started in 1459, the fort had seen many centuries before it was completed. Hence, you could find that the style of architecture represents various periods. The grandeur in architecture is awe-inspiring. It offers stunning views of the city. The fort stands as a symbol of power.
Jaswant Thada : Jaswant Thada was built in memory of Maharaja Jaswant Singh, the Second in the year 1899. This is close to Mehrangarh Fort. The tranquility of the marble construction is enchanting. The carvings are intricate. Inside Jaswant Thada, you will find the portraits of the Rathore rulers. The grounds of Jaswant Thada consist of a stunning multilevel garden, intricately carved gazebos and a pond.
Balsamand Lake :
Balsamand Lake is an artificial lake that was constructed by Balak Rao Parihar in 1159 AD. The lush greenery around the lake has mango groves, papaya groves and groves of guava, plum and pomegranate. Balsamand Lake Palace was intended to serve as summer resort for the royal family of Jodhpur. The lawns and gardens with birds and peacocks finding their homes here, the place is exquisite. The palace reflects Rajputana style of architecture. The palace turned heritage hotel was built of red sandstone.
Kailana Lake :
Kailana Lake is located on west of the city. This is yet another artificial lake, which was constructed in the year 1872 by Pratap Singh. This is one amongst the most frequented lakes in Rajasthan. It is a birdwatchers’ paradise. You could sail on a boat if you aim to add some breathtaking photographs to your collection. The view of sunset would be stunning.
Rao Jodha Desert Rock Park :
The aim behind the formation of Rao Jodha Desert Rock Park in the year 2006 was to restore the rocky area near the fort. Once preliminary steps were taken to restore the land, more than 80 native plant species from the famous Thar Desert were grown. The 200 acres of park is located at the foot of the impregnable Mehrangarh Fort. The place reflects the hard work and dedication of the ecologists who spared no efforts to make the place green.
Umaid Bhawan Palace Museum :
The construction of Umaid Bhawan Palace Museum was started in the year 1929 and it was completed in 1943. The palace is situated on the highest point in the city. The 347-roomed massive palace is named one of the largest private residences in the world. The palace boasts of a combination of Indian and European style of architecture. A part of the palace still serves as a residence to the former royal family, while other two parts of the palace are converted into Taj Palace Hotel and museum.
Mandore Gardens :
Mandore, belonging to the 6th century, was Marwar’s capital before Jodhpur was established. Mandore Gardens here attract tourists in great numbers. The Mandore Gardens also house a government museum, a ‘Hall of Heroes’ and a temple to 33 crore Gods. Various artifacts and statues found in the area are housed at the museum. The architectural splendor of the bygone era is clearly evident here.
Clock Tower :
Clock Tower is a famous landmark in the Old City. It was constructed by Maharaja Sardar Singh during his tenure between 1880 and 1911. The clock tower offers a good view of the fort. Sardar Market is adjacent to Clock Tower where a wide range of products is sold. You can find handicrafts, saris, spices, vegetables and a lot more. There are over 7000 shops and you can have a great shopping experience here.
Fairs and Festivals in Jodhpur
Jodhpur is an exposition of splendid architecture and a vibrant culture. During the fairs and festivals of Jodhpur, its ethnicity turns even more magnetic. As soon as Jodhpur International Desert Kite Festival kick starts, the sky gets painted with colorful kites and you can witness sheer bliss in the aura. Myriad of tourists visit Jodhpur in order to attend this popular festival.
Mawar Festival or Maand Festival : Is one of most-talked-about festival of the city. This two-day dedicated to Rajasthan’s heroes, and is celebrated by performing Marwar dance and music. Camel tattoo and camel polo are other attractions of Marwar Festival.
The second-biggest fair of India, Nagaur Festival takes place in Jodhpur and spans for eight days. However, main activity of the festival is trading of animals, but storytellers, jugglers, puppeteers, camels’ races et cetera will surely keep you engaged. The fairs and festivals of Jodhpur are an expression of the royal traditions and rich culture of the Rajasthan state.
Jodhpur has an airport which is 5 kms away from the city center and one can get direct flights from here to all major destinations regularly. One can easily get the tickets for the flights to Delhi, Jaipur, Udaipur, Mumbai and a few more destinations.
Jodhpur is connected to several cities through the railway lines and people interested in enjoying the lavish journey can choose the Palace on Wheels to reach the princely state.
Traveling by road to this historic destination will surely be a thrilling experience and one can easily get buses from all the cities in the state Rajasthan. Along with this one can even travel in private and government buses from all major cities like Agra, Delhi, and Ahmedabad to Jodhpur.
Best Time to Visit Jodhpur
Jodhpur, located on the border of the Thar Desert experiences extremely hot climate and the best time to visit Jodhpur is in between October till March. One can enjoy sightseeing and explore the land completely during the pleasant season between October to March. The climate during these months is perfect to have day tours as the temperatures are not extreme and allow one to even enjoy the desert activities along with the fairs.
In rainy season the colorful city receives a bit less rainfall and the days will turn much humid. Exploring the city is a better plan, but one may get disappointed if it rains much. So visiting the city between the months of July and September will affect the outdoor activities, but the city turns to be a very special place with its unique natural beauty.
Summers are extremely hot and the truth is that it is not very easy to enjoy the beauty of the city and the attractions as the city experiences extremely high temperatures. The exhaustive temperatures will offer an unpleasant experience as stepping out in the hot sun is not very advisable. People planning a trip in Jodhpur during hot summers must carry all the essentials that save them from a sun stroke.
Tips For Visiting Rajasthan
For travel to any destination, there are certain precautions that one needs to take before starting the exciting journey. There are certain tips that the travelers should follow while traveling to Rajasthan which include:
Check the itinerary: Every trip has an itinerary which the tourists follow during the travel. By checking the itinerary, you will get an idea about the duration of stay. This will help to pack enough clothes for the stay. Rajasthan is hot during the day and temperatures drop down in the night. So, take the suitable types of clothes.
Weather updates: Before packing for the trip it is better to check the weather forecast for the stipulated time duration. This will help during the travel and for selecting the types of clothes. If the climate is hot during the stay, then visitors should select the light-colored clothes. Also, if the trip is during the winter season carry winter wears.
Make a checklist: Make a list of all the things that you need during the trip. It helps to check it while packing the luggage and this way you do not miss out any of the necessary things. Strike off the item from the list once included in the luggage. Do not forget to pack important documents like identity proof, hotel and travel reservation documents, etc. in the checklist.
Pack only necessary things: It is important to take only the things that are really needed during the trip. Carry an extra set of clothes but avoid overpacking with unnecessary things.
Save some packing space: A trip to Rajasthan is incomplete without shopping. Every person who visits this beautiful land does some shopping. There’s a lot to shop from the Rajasthani markets which include clothes, artifacts or souvenirs. Anything that you purchase will be a part of the luggage. If you are traveling by air route, the luggage limit can be a problem. Hence, it is better to save some space while packing for accommodating the shopping items on the return journey.
Cash: As Rajasthan is a part of the golden triangle, many shops here accept the card for the payment purpose. But it is also necessary to carry some cash during the travel. Some small shops or exhibitions may not have the facility for card payment. At such places, the cash may become useful. Take precaution while handling cash. Do not keep all the money at single place. This will help to ensure that some money is safe even in case of theft or robbery.
Accommodation: Rajasthan is a major tourist center, it has many hotels and lodges to accommodate many crowds. But it will be better to do the prior booking. This will help to select the hotel as well as the type of room as per your needs and wish. The advance booking also helps to get the rooms at an economic rate as the last-minute bookings become more expensive.
Separate packing: Keep the toiletries and makeup material separately. If you are on medication, then pack of medicines and keep them handy so that the medication box is easily accessible in case of emergency. If you are on specific medication, carry those in sufficient amount. Being a tourist place, you will find a chemist shop but not necessarily all the medicines are available. Thus, it is necessary to carry all the important medicines along with the proper prescription.
First-Aid box: The first-aid comes handy if anyone gets hurt during the trip. Due to the change in the climate, you may suffer from cold or dehydration. The box should contain the disinfectant, bandages and common medicines for a cough, cold, etc.
Safety and Precautions: Rajasthan has hot and dry climate and thus, it is necessary that the visitors should carry proper protective gears like a cap, goggles, scarf, jacket, etc. Wear sunscreen lotion to protect them from the scorching heat.