Seven places in Rajasthan that show you the real beauty of India

There where the sun kisses the sand of the mighty Thar desert, you’ll find a part of India that’s exquisite in many aspects.

Rajasthan, the land of the Maharajas in India, has a lot to offer. More than just forts, a desert, and bazaars. Here are a few places in Rajasthan that will blow your mind.

Bikaner

Bikaner is a dusty desert city where everything feels at ease, especially in the old part of town.

It’s a good place to visit in Rajasthan. And I’m pretty sure that many tourists underestimate the city. Because you don’t see a lot of travelers there and that makes it an off-the-beaten-path travel destination in India.

You’ll need at least a day or two in Bikaner or more if you want to do a camel safari in the Rajasthan desert. Here are five cool things you can do in Bikaner, India.

Bikaner in Rajasthan, India
ABOVE: A street in Bikaner, close to the Garden Café restaurant.

Jaisalmer

Traveling in the Rajasthan desert can be tough as scorching heat and dryness are inevitable in this area. But don’t get misguided by the idea that the desert might not seem like a good place to travel at all.

But, in the middle of the Thar desert in Rajasthan there is a city that is a wonderful travel destination. It’s called Jaisalmer and often also named as the Golden City.

Here is my list with six recommended things to do in Jaisalmer.

Gadsisar lake Jaisalmer, India
ABOVE: Gadsisar lake in Jaisalmer is actually not a lake but rather a water basin that lost its use over the years as nowadays Jaisalmer is connected to water pipelines in India. Still, it’s one of the most beautiful spots to visit in the city.

Jodhpur

Waking up early with the sounds of city traffic made me realize that Jodphur is not so much different than Delhi.

The Jodhpur fort and the old part of the city are pretty worthwhile to visit though. There are a couple of interesting parts that you shouldn’t miss out when you visit Jodhpur in Rajasthan.

Here is my list with recommended places to visit in the city of blue in India, Jodhpur.

Jodhpur fort: man smoking pipe
ABOVE: Jodhpur is often called the city of blue in Rajasthan and it has a wonderful fort you should consider visiting. Inside of the fort you’ll find a lot of interesting sights, just like the sight of the man in this picture.

Kumbalgarh Fort

Dating back to the 15th century, the Kumbhalgarh Fort in Rajasthan still stands strong as an architectural warfare wonder in between the eleven peaks of the Aravalli ranges.

The fortified walls are impenetrable and stretch out over an impressive length of 35 km. And the strategic position of the Kumbhalgarh Fort on top of a high ridge camouflaged by the surrounding peaks has given it a bonus in defense. It was never taken by battle.

The Kumbhalgarh Kort is located high up in the Rajasthan hills, just north from Udaipur and South of Jodhpur. It will take you a couple of hours in the car to get there.

Here’s my complete guide to the Kumbhalgarh Fort in Rajasthan.

Kumbhalgarh Fort, India
ABOVE: The Kumbhalgarh Fort is a UNESCO World Heritage Site that you should not miss out when you are visiting Udaipur or Jodhpur in Rajasthan, India.

The Ranakpur Temples

The Ranakpur temple complex in Rajasthan is an ancient Jain religion site that will offer you some exquisite sights. The location of these temples is south of Jodhpur, North of Udaipur and close to the Kumbhalgarh Fort.

What’s most unique about these Jain temples of Ranakpur is that they are completely made of marble blocks that were transported to the Ranakpur site in the 15th century and since then the temple complex has stood strong until the day of today.

Here are a few reasons why you should go to the Ranakpur temples in Rajasthan.

Ranakpur temples, India
ABOVE: Huge blocks of marble once were transported to the Ranakpur site in Rajasthan and there they were carved and placed on top of each other. As a result, the temple complex still stands strong as a wonderful work of art.

Udaipur

Udaipur is a romantic city in Rajasthan with narrow streets dotted with lovely shops and restaurants. And unlike other cities in Rajasthan, it bends around the banks of a grand lake in between natural green hills.

How many days you will need in Udaipur all depends on the activities you want to do. And because most of them are located quite far from Udaipur (you will need a day-trip for most of them), you’ll probably need 2-5 days depending on what you want to do in the area.

The city of Udaipur itself isn’t huge and if you are only planning to stay in the city itself then 1-2 days will be plenty enough.

Here are some good reasons why should consider adding Udaipur to your list of travel destinations in Rajasthan, India.

Udaipur Pichola lake, India
ABOVE: the shores of Lake Pichola in Udaipur are worthwhile to explore. Every corner of the lake offers an exquisite view upon the hills in the background or the city of Udaipur itself.

Bundi

As tourists commonly visit the larger cities in India, it comes as a little surprise that most of them rather skip a city like Bundi. It is, however, the laid-back atmosphere and authentic vibe in this off-the-beaten-path city that is perfect for a short or longer visit.

Now and then, time seems to stop in Bundi. As life here goes from day to day, the outer world doesn’t seem to have a lot of impact on the change in this Indian city.  Unlike most vibrant cities in Rajasthan and India, Bundi has a pleasant and calm vibe that feels very welcoming.


Here’s a short guide about Bundi in Rajasthan, India.

Bundi lake view, India
ABOVE: Birds landing on one of the Hindu temples around the shores of the Nawal Sagar lake in Bundi, Rajasthan.

Pushkar

A round trip in Rajasthan, India is never complete without a visit to Pushkar.

Pushkar is a lake town 11km away from Ajmer with about 500 Hindu temples. It is one of India ‘s most famous religious sites and since recently it’s also a town loved by backpackers. It’s a mix of religious and tourist features. Yet, despite the popularity, the town remains spiritually uplifting and relaxed.

Here’s a short guide about Pushkar in India and why you should go there.

Pushkar central lake
ABOVE: The central lake in Pushkar is a holy pilgrimage in Rajasthan that dates back to ancient times. Pilgrims from all over Rajasthan travel to Pushkar for the lake. And as many locals love this little holy town, also backpackers have gotten interested in traveling to Pushkar for a lovely stay.

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