Showing posts with label Rajasthan. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Rajasthan. Show all posts

Sunday, February 10, 2013


Bharatpur Bird sanctuary
Bharatpur Bird sanctuary

Bharatpur- The 'Eastern Gateway to Rajasthan', was founded by Maharaja Suraj Mal in 1733 AD, it was once an impregnable well fortified city, carved out of the region formerly known as Mewat. The trio of Bharatpur, Deeg and Dholpur has played an important part in the history of Rajasthan. The place was named as Bharatpur after the name of Bharat, the brother of Lord Rama, whose other brother Laxman was worshipped as the family deity of the Bharatpur. The legends say the rulers Laxman's name is engraved on the state arms and the seals. Bharatpur is also known as 'LOHAGARH'. It is bound on the north by 'Gurgaon' district of Haryana, on the east by Mathura and Agra districts of Uttar Pradesh, on the south by Dholpur and Karauli, on the southern west by Jaipur and on the west by Alwar, all in Rajasthan. There is a forest called 'GHANA' means dense forest within a distance of about 5 Km. from District Head Quarter which remains green during the rainy season. Bharatpur Ghana's plan was prepared in 1896 by the State Engineer for driving and confining the wild cattle in the dense forest with 250 species of migratory birds during the monsoon season and 'winter' season, which is famous all over India and world for being a great sanctuary of birds.

History of Bharatpur :
Bharatpur along with Deeg and Dholpur holds an important place in the history of Rajasthan. The history of Bharatpur traces the rise and fall of Jat power in eastern Rajasthan. These jats were active during the late 17th century and the rulers like Churaman, Badan Singh and Suraj Mal dominated this region. Bharatpur was founded by Maharaja Suraj Mal in 1733 AD. Maharaja Suraj Mal took over from Khemkaran, the son of Rustam and established the empire. He fortified the city by building a massive wall around the city. He also built the Lohagarh Fort or the Iron Fort in the year 1732. This fort took about 60 years to be completed and is still the focal point of the town. This fort shaped the history of Bharatpur

The place was named as Bharatpur after the name of Bharat, the brother of Lord Rama, whose other brother Laxman was worshipped  as the family deity of the Bharatpur.

Bhartapur Sights:

Keoladeo Ghana National Park:
The best time to visit the sanctuary is from October to late February when many migratory birds can be seen, including the highly endangered Siberian crane. According to recent reports, of birds have been identified at the beautiful Keoladeo sanctuary. The sanctuary was formerly a vast semi-arid region, filling with water during the monsoon season only to rapidly dry up afterwards. To prevent this, the maharaja of Bharatpur diverted water from a nearby irrigation canal and, within a few years, birds began to sattle in vast numbers. The maharaja was compelled not by conservationist motives, but by the desire to have a ready supply of waterfowl, affording fine shooting (and dining) possibilities. Indeed, Keoladeo continued to supply the maharajas’ tables until as late. An inscription on a pilllar near the small temple in the park bears testimony to the maharajas’ penchant for hunting. It reveals that on one day alone ducks were shot!

The park is open daily. For Indian/foreigners, which entitles you to enter the park as many times as you wish in one day. A still camera is free but there’s whopping video charge. There’s also an entry fee for bicycles and cycle-rickshaws. A horse- drawn tonga per hour (maximum six people). Motorised vehicles are prohibited beyond the checkpoint, so the only way of the getting around is by foot, bicycle or cycle-rickshaw.

An excellent way to see the park is to hire a bicycle. There are bikes for the hire at the bicycle on the park entrance. Some hotels rent bicycles as well. This allows you to easily avoid the bottlenecks which inevitably occur at the nesting sites of the larger birds. It’s just about the only way you’ll be able to watch the numerous kingfishers at close quarters – noise or human activity frightens then away. A bicycle also enables you to avoid clocking up a large bill with a rickshaw driver. If you plan to visit the sanctuary at dawn (one of the best times to see the birds ), you should hire your bicycle the day before. The southern reaches of the park are virtually devoid the humanus touristcus, and so are much better than the northern part for serious bird-watching. They are a very good way of getting close to the wildlife.

A small display of photos, stuffed birds, nests and aquaticspecies found in the park’s lakes is at the main entrance to the park, next to the Keoladeo temple.

Lohagarh :
Lohagarh, or Iron fort, was built in the early and took its name from supposedly impregnable defences. Maharaja Suraj Mahl, the fort’s constructor and founder of Bharatpur, built two towers within the ramparts, the Jawahar Burj and Fateh Burj, to commemorate his victories over the Mughals and the British.

The fort occupies the entire small artificial island in the center of the town, and the three palaces within its pre precincts are in an advanced state of decay. One of the palaces houses a museum exhibiting sculptures, paintings, weapons and dusty animal trophies. The museum is open daily.

How to reach Bharatpur:

By Air : The nearest airport is Agra which is about 55 km.

By Train : Regular rail services connect Bharatpur with several cities on Delhi-Mumbai trunk route. Rail services also connects Bharatpur with Jaipur and Agra.

By Road : A network of bus services links Bharatpur with several cities within and outside Rajasthan.


Barmer is a city that is located in the Barmer district of the state of Rajasthan. The city was first founded in the 13th century. The original name of the village was Bahadmer which means the hill fort of Bahada. The town has many historical sites and it is a popular tourist destination. The Juna Barmer is a popular place that is located near the city of Barmer. For those who are spiritually inclined, the ruins of three Jain temples can be seen towards the South of the city. There are many temples that are located in Juna and one can find inscriptions dating back to the 13th century in the pillars of the main temple. The city is well known for its excellent wood carvings and one can purchase these from many shops that are located around the place. If you are visiting during the summer season it might be worthwhile to visit the cattle fare that takes place in March and April. Another festival that takes place in the town is the Barmer Thar Festival. This was initially started to promote tourism in the city and takes place in the month of March and many tourists can be seen during this period.

The district is surrounded by Jaisalmer district in the north, Jalore district in the south, Pali district and Jodhpur district in the east and Pakistan in the west. Balotra, Guda Malani, Baytoo, Siwana, Jasol and Chohatan are other major towns.

Barmer district is part of the Great Indian Desert or Thar Desert. Like all other districts in the desert region, Barmer is known for its folk music and dance. The Bhopas (priest singers) are found in Barmer, who compose music in honour of the deities of the region and its war heroes. The other folk musicians come from a community called the Muslim Dholis (drummers) for most of whom this is the only means of livelihood.


Kiradu temples : The Kiradu temples are a group of five temples and are grouped as ancient temples, an important site from the archaeological point of view. The largest and the most impressive amongst them is the Someshvara Temple. Built in the 11th century, the Someshvara ancient temple is said to be the best example of its kind today. Constructed in honour of Lord Shiva (the Destroyer in the holy trinity of Hindu gods), it has a rather stumpy multi-turreted tower and beautiful sculptures dedicated to the god. The inner sanctum has a resplendent image of the Lord. At its base, is a large reverse-curve lotus, which has a resemblance with the early Chola Temples of south India. This ancient temple also depicts scenes from the Hindu epic Ramayana. Other notable features are sculptures of apsaras (mythical dancing girls from the abode of the Gods) and vyalas (a griffin-like mythical beast generally associated with the Buddha) which were rarely seen after 1050AD in temple architecture. All in all, although Barmer is a bit out of the way you’ll get your money’s worth when you visit Someshvara.

Rani Bhatiani Temple: Rani Bhatiani Temple is located on the Nakoda-Balotara Road in Jasol. The area around Jasol was once ruled by the Rajput clan - Mallani for a long period of time. Jasol is some 158 km from Barmer. Rani Bhatiani Temple is constructed using the materials that belonged to a Jain temple of Khed. The temple also displays some carved sculptures that were brought from Khed. 

Barmer: Perched on a rocky hill, the town has ruins of an old fort. Of interest are a temple dedicated to Balark (the Sun) and the ancient ruins of Juna Barmer. The three Jain temples, an inscription of 1295 AD and a massive pillar in the hall of the largest temple of Maharaja Kula Sri Samanta Sinha Deva, a ruler of Bahadmera (Barmer) are also worth a visit.

Khed: Rao Siha, the founder of the Rathore clan alongwith his son (Asthanji) conquered Khed from the Guhil Rajputs and planted the standard of the Rathores. An old Vishnu temple of Ranchhrji is surrounded by a crumbling wall and an image of Garuda (the eagle) at the gate guards the complex. Other temples nearby include temples of Brahma, Bhairav, Mahadev and a Jain temple of Lard Mahaveer.

Meva Nagar: Once called Viranipur, this 12th century village lies on the slope of a hill called Nagar-ki-Bhakarian, 9 km away from Balotra. The village has three Jain temples. The biggest of these is one dedicated to Nakoda Parsvanath. A Vishnu temple is also worth visiting.

Balotra & Kanana: Close to Kanana, the venue for the Sheetal Saptmi Mela, lies the small town of Balotra. It is an important centre of printing and dying.

How to reach Barmer :
BY Train : Barmer is on the disused railway line from Jodhpur to Hyderabad in Pakistan. Daily trains travel from Barmer to Jodhpur for Rs 60/120 in 2nd/1st class.

By Air  : Nearest airport is Jodhpur and Jaisalmer

By Road : Distances From BarmerTo Important Cities By Road.

Jodhpur: 224 km 
Jodhpur: 198 km 
Jaiselmer:157 km
Jalore: 204 km
Udaipur: 462 km
Jhunjhunun: 625 km
Jaipur: 588 km

Thursday, February 7, 2013


Nahargarh Fort
Nahargarh Fort
The town of Baran is located in the Indian state of Rajasthan. This town is a very prominent tourist destination that is very popular in the region, and in fact, the whole of Rajasthan is famous for its many havelis, monuments and forts of historical value. Baran is a town whose culture is a mish-mash of the the cultures followed by the various dynasties that once ruled the entire region. For this reason, you can see monuments and temples constructed under highly different architectural styles in the town of Baran. While in the town of Baran, you can visit the Brahmani Mata temple. This temple houses a very prominent fire which has been ablaze for the last 400 years. Tourists flock to Baran in order to see the main deity in this temple, and it is very famous among pilgrims as well. You can also visit the countless Jain temples that are present in the region, as there are many ancient temples that were built during the 8th century present in Baran. The Manihara Mahadev Mandir is the yet famous temple in the region. The rock carvings at Bandh Devra Ramgarh are also very famous among tourists and locals, and these carvings date back to the 10th century.

It is believed that the district was under the reign of Solanki Rajput during 14th and 15th century. There are many beliefs  behind the name of Baran. Some believes that the name is called Baran as it was formed by merging twelve villages, some others believe that as the district is close to twelve villages therefore it is called as Baran. Whereas, some others belief that because the soil is ‘Barani’ thus it is called as Baran. During 1948 with the formation of the Joint Rajasthan, Baran was a separate district.  With the reconstitution of Joint Rajasthan on March 1949, the Baran district headquarter was changed into sub-divisional headquarter of Kota district. It is worth mentioning here that in urdu ‘Baran’ means rains and its pleasure to learn that Baran receives the second highest rainfall in the state after Banswara.

Place to visit in Baran :

Nahargarh Fort:
The Nahargarh Fort is a red sandstone structure near Baran which has been constructed in the traditional Mughal architectural style.
Shergarh Fort:
The Shergarh Fort is situated in the Atru tehsil of Baran District alongside the Parban River. The fort is a little detached from the main town and has ancient Jain and Brahmanical temples. A stone edict dating back to 790 AD, also known as Koshvardhan, can be found at this site.

Sitabari, situated a kilometre from Kelwara on the national highway connecting Kota-Shivpuri, is a famous pilgrimage spot near Baran. This place is believed to be the birthplace of Luv-Kush, sons of Rama and Sita. It is also the site where Sita used to live with her sons.
Kakoni is situated in Chhipabarod Tehsil in the Baran District of Rajasthan. It lies on the banks of the Parvan River and is famous for its ancient temples that date back to the 8th century. There are remains of few Jain, Vaishnava and Shaivite temples in the region.    

Bhand Devra Temple:
Bhand Devra Temple, also known as the Khajuraho of Rajasthan, was constructed between the 11th and 12th centuries. This temple lies on Ramgarh hill and is under the Government for its restoration work. It is a Lord Shiva Temple that was constructed in the traditional Khajuraho
Kapildhara is a major picnic spot near Baran that is famous for the Gaumukh, from which water gushes down continuously.
Brahmani Mataji Temple:
The Brahmani Mataji Temple is situated within the old fort near Sorsan Village. The idol of the main deity, Brahmani Mata is set-up under a huge natural rock inside the cave. This temple is famous for an uninterrupted oil lamp, Akhand Jyoti and a huge fair during which animals
Tapasviyo ki Bagechi:
Tapasviyo ki Bagechi is a popular picnic spot in the Baran District which is located about a kilometre from Shahabad. This place is surrounded by mountains and has huge statues of Nadiya and a Shivalinga. It was also used as a place for betel farming, as the remains are easily
Manihara Mahadev Mandir:
The Manihara Mahadev Mandir is situated around 3 km from the main town of Baran. This 600 year old temple has idols of Mahadevji and Hanumanji. It is surrounded by various ponds and green trees and is famous for an annual Shivaratri celebration.

Remains of Garhgachh:
The remains of Garhgachh are located near Atru in the Baran District. The remains at this site include ancient temples that were built between the 9th and 13th centuries.
Shergarh Wildlife Sanctuary:
The Shergarh Wildlife Sanctuary in Baran District is spread across 98 sq km near the Shergarh town. The sanctuary is a natural habitat of animals, such as tigers, sloth bears, hyenas, wild boars, endemic deer, leopards, sambar, chinkara and chitals.

How to reach

Air: The nearest airport to Baran is Kota (72 kms.).

Rail: Baran Station is one of the important railway stations on Kota-Baran route. The district has 95 kms railway line on Kota-Baran route.
Road: The district is connected to all towns and cities of the State with a well maintained network of roads. The nearest city is Kota (72 kms.).

Wednesday, February 6, 2013


Banswara anand sagar lake

Banswara is situated in south Rajasthan in India. Banswara princely state was founded by Maharawal Jagmal Singh. Banswara princely state was founded by Maharawal Jagmal Singh. It is named for the "bans" or bamboo forests in the area. It is also known as 'City of Hundred Islands', due to presence of numerous islands in the Mahi River, which flows through Banswara.Banswara (literally " the forest country" ), was a Rajput feudatory state in Rajputana during British India. It borders on Gujarat and is bounded on the north by the native states of Dungarpur and Udaipur or Mewar; on the north-east and east by Partabgarh; on the south by the dominions of Holkar and the state of Jabua; and on the west by the state of Rewa Kantha.

District Banswara is situated in the southern - most part of Rajasthan. It has an area of 5037 square Kilometer and lies between 23.11° N to 23.56° N latitudes and 73.58° E to 74.49° E. longitudes.

It is bounded on the north by Dhariawad Tehsil of Udaipur District and Pratapgarh District, on the east by Ratlam District of Madhya Pradesh, on the west by Sagwara and Aspur Tehsils of Dungarpur District, and on the south by Jhabua District of Madhya Pradesh. It also touches the boundary of Panchmahal District of Gujrat on the south-west.

The region represents a rugged terrain undulated by short ridges west of Banswara. The eastern part of it is occupied by flat-topped hills of the Deccan trap. It has the southern end of the Aravali mountains. 

Famous Tourist Places in Banswara:

Abdullah Pir Dargah 
The Dargah of Abdulla Pir is also called as Dargah of Abdul Rasul. Many Muslim devotees from various parts of the world visit this shrine. Abdullah Pir is located amidst beautiful gardens; it is a shrine with a domed roof and a solid white marbled structure with four entrances.

Brahma Temple 
Brahma Temple located at Cheench. Lord Brahma is the main deity at this popular temple. The main deity statue is of black stone and is of an average height of a man.

Madareshwar Temple 
The temple of Madareshwar is located in a natural cave on a hill on the eastern part of Banswara city.  It offers a breathtaking and native view. A visit to this temple gives a feel of the famous Amarnath Pilgrimage to the devotees due to the identical location in a cave.

Paraheada is a famous Shiva temple and has many inscriptions providing the evidence of Paramar Emperors at this place.

Raj Mandir 
Shri Raj Mandir is also popularly known as the City Palace. It is a perfect example of ancient architectural style of the Rajputs. This place is a beautiful structure and is still owned by the Royal family descendants.

Ram Kund 
Ram Kund is a place amidst hills. Popularly known as Phati Khan this is a deep cave under a hill.  It has a pool of very cold water flowing throughout the year. 

Sai Baba Mandir 
The Sai Baba temple is very famous in Banswara. It is dedicated to Shri Sai Baba believed to be an incarnation of Lord Shiva. This temple is built on the top of a hill situated at a distance. The temple has the marble idol of Shri Sai baba as a main deity and the statues of Nandi, Tortoise and Ganesha made in black stone. 

Tripura Sundari 
Tripura Sundari is located about 19 Km from Banswara and 5 Km from Talwara. The place gets its name from a temple here dedicated to goddess Tripura Sundari also called Turtia Mata in the local dialect. The exact date of its construction is not yet known but it is believed that the temple was constructed approximately before the reign of the Kushana emperor Kanishka who ruled here in the first century AD. Magnificently carved out of black stone, the main idol is shown riding a tiger. The goddess has 18 hands each carrying a symbol. The temple is said to be one of the Shakti Peeths of the Hindus. A Shakti Peeth is a revered place of worship of the Hindus. According to the Hindu mythology, when Lord Shiva lost his wife Sati he was overwhelmed with grief. He carried the dead body of his beloved and went for a tour of Mrityulok (abode of the Dead). The other gods were troubled to see him carrying the body wherever he went. As a result they decided to cut the body into pieces. The body was fragmented into 52 parts with the help of the Lord Vishnu’s sudarshan chakra (discus), and each place where a part fell on earth became a Shakti Peeth.

Anand Sagar Lake 
Anand Sagar is an artificial lake on the eastern side of the town also known as Bai Talaab. The chhatris or cenotaphs of former rulers of the Princely state are located close by. The holy trees known as "Kalpa Vriksha" are located in the vicinity as well. These two trees are considered divine and are believed to fulfill the wishes of the devotees. Peaceful and charming surroundings add to the ambience of the place.

Diablab Lake 
Diablab Lake is close by to the city of Banswara. The numerous lotus flowers occupying a major portion of the lake are the main attraction here. Boat riding and the beautiful gardens around the lake attract tourists to this place.

Mahi Dam 
The Mahi River originates from Sardarpura village in Madhya Pradesh and flows through M.P. Rajasthan, Gujarat and merges into bay of Khambat in Gujarat. In terms of water potential the Mahi river basin is the third largest among the river basins of Rajasthan state. Mahi Dam is a man made dam on Mahi River, and is a part of the massive Mahi Bajaj Sagar Project. The Mahi Dam reservoir is the water storage facility behind the 43 m high dam. The reservoir has huge storage capacity.

Bhim Kund 
Bhim Kund is a beautiful and scenic locale 7 km further down from Bhim Kund.  A tunnel present here is believed to be leading to a very distant place known as Ghotiya Amab.

Kagdi Pick Up Weir 
This is an attractive and beautiful garden on the banks of the Kagdi Lake and it is a part of the Mahi Bajaj Sagar project. This is a tourist attraction located 3 kms away from the main city on the Ratlam Road. Kagdi pick up weir is a beautiful fountain garden overlooking the Kagdi Lake. A visit to this garden is worthy due to the fountains, gardens and water spread across beautifully. This fountain garden mesmerizes the tourists with its ambience. 

It is famous for the ancient temple of the Sun God, Lord Amaliya Ganesh, Laxmi Narayan Temple, Dwarka Dhish temple and Jain temple of Sambharnath. A number of Sompura sculpture artists can be seen carving stones on the roadside in Talwara.

Fairs & Festivals in Banswara:

Bhill Community Is A Rivalry And Very Laborers Community, So They Could Managed To Get The Entertainment On Particular Festival Occasions Only. Bhills Are Commonly Tradition Followers And They Follow Kharo, Moto And Bhalo Dharms.

Holi Is The Main Festival For The Tribals. Tribes Wear Their Traditional Dresses Carrying Swords & Sticks And Performs The "Gair Dance" Which Is A Typical Tribal Dance Of This Region.

Divo Is A Festival And It Is Being Celebrated On The Last Day Of First Fortnight Of Shravanmas. On That Day Special Bath Will Peform To Bullocks And Animals, And Prays Them As They Are God's Different Posture. Special Food Items Will Prepare On That Day And Enjoys With Full Of Joy.

It Is Celebrated On The 11th Day Of The Bright Half Of Phalgun And Unmarried Boys And Girls Observe Fast On This Day. They Go To A Pond In The Afternoon, Wash Themselves And Bring Small Branches Of Tamarind Trees. The Bhils Attend The Fair Armed With Bows, Arrows And Swords. This Festival Is Held At Ghodi Ranchod & Sangmeshwar. 

Baneshwar Fair 
The Biggest Tribal Fair Is Held At Baneshwar At The Confluence Of Mahi, Som And Jhakham, Which Are Believed To Be Holy Rivers Of The Region. A Number Of Tribals From Madhya Pradesh, Gujarat And Rajasthan Gather To Immerse The Mortal Remains Of The Dead. They Worship, Sing And Dance On Magh Purnima, Sometime In The Month Of February, Which Is Considered To Be A Holy Period In This Region.

Ghotia Amba Fair 
This Is A Colourful And Traditional Fair Held Every Year From Chaitra Amavas To Duje. The Bhils Gather To Take A Holy Dip In The Tank Near The Temple With Idols Of Pandavas. They Demonstrate Their Faith In The Holy Mango Trees And Kaila Pani.

This Is An Important Fair Of The Tribals And Is Held On Margshisha Purnima. At This Fair The Tribals O Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh & Gujarat Participate And They Pay Tribute To Govind Guru, Founder Of The Samp Sabha.

How To Reach Banswara:

By Air
Nearest Airport Is Udaipur (160 Kms) And Airport In Indore (212 Kms)

By Bus
No Route In The District Has So Far Been Nationalised. Rajasthan, Gujarat And M.P. Roadways And The Private Travel Agencies Operate Frequent Buses To Major Cities Like Ahmadabad, Baroda, Ujjain, Bhopa, Udaipur, Jaipur , Jodhpur, Mount Abu, Bombay, Delhi Etc.

By Train
Rail Nearest Railway Station Is In Ratlam (Madhya Pradesh) (80 Kms) Connected With All The Major Cities Of The Country. 

Friday, November 23, 2012


Udaipur is a beautiful city, set amidst the Aravalli Ranges of Rajasthan, India. Known for its picturesque lakes, Udaipur also called 'the city of lakes'. The elevated hills and the beautiful lakes make a picture-perfect backdrop to the Udaipur city. Udaipur is regarded as one of the most romantic cities of the World and subsequently, also known as the 'Venice of East'. In context of Rajasthan, Udaipur is the second most-sought after tourist destination of the state, the first being Jaipur. Udaipur had been the capital of Mewar for centuries.

Though termed as the city of lakes, Udaipur has many more attractions that catch the attention of the tourists with their charm. The city boasts of various museums, palaces, gardens, monuments and colourful festivals that allure tourists to visit the city for once. The mighty palaces with their exquisite locations transport you directly into the royal Rajputana era; Lake Palace, for one, has been accredited for being one of the most romantic places all across the globe. The massive forts of Udaipur grab the interest of people with their sheer structure and architecture. The beautiful temples create a sense of aestheticism with their spiritual ecstasy.

The lakes acting as oasis under the scorching sun propels a sense of calm along with reminding you at once of the city of Venice. The festivals, altogether colourful and lively, with their frenzies and huge scope cast a spell worthy enough to keep you too in spirit for days to come whereas the serene gardens, which lend the city its second adoptive name- The Garden City of Rajasthan, are an epitome of how the natural order manages to make its way to flourish even in the desert, uninhibited. Last but not the least, anyone even a little interested in digging in the past too is fed by through artefacts and what not that still survives in the heart of the city through museums.

Undoubtedly, Udaipur is undoubtedly a dream destination for a romantic holiday. Every year, thousands of tourists come from all over the globe to visit this romantic city. Udaipur is easily accessible from all the major cities of India including Delhi, Mumbai and Jaipur. So, if you are tired of your hectic schedules and daily routine, then plan a trip to the city of lakes to lighten up your worries and tensions. A tour to the romantic city of Udaipur would certainly become an unforgettable part of your memories and you will cherish these memories throughout your life.

Sunday, November 4, 2012


Kota Rajasthan
City Fort Palace

The history of the city dates back to the 12th century A.D. when the Hada Chieftain, Rao Deva, conquered the territory and founded Bundi and Hadoti. Later, in the early 17th century AD during the reign of the Mughal Emperor Jahangir, the ruler of Bundi -Rao Ratan Singh, gave the smaller principality of Kota to his son, Madho Singh. Since then Kota became a hallmark of the Rajput gallantry and culture.

The south eastern region of Rajasthan known as Hadoti comprises of Bundi, Baran, Jhalawar and Kota is a treasure of history dating back to several centuries. Prehistoriccaves,paintings,formidable forts and the mighty chambal river hurtling from the Vindhyas are dotted in the region. When Jait Singh of Bundi defeated the Bhil Chieftain Koteya in a battle, he raised the first battlement or the 'Garh'(fort) over his severead head. The Independant state of kota became a reality in 1631 when Rao Madho Singh, the second son of Rao Ratan of Bundi was made the ruler, by the Mughal Emperor Shah Jahan. Soon Kota outgrew its parent state to become bigger in area, richer in revenue and more powerful. Maharao Bhim Singh played a pivotal role in Kota's history, having held a 'Mansab' of five thousand and being the first in his dynasty to have the title of Maharao. Kota is situated on the banks of chambal river and is fastly emerging as an important industrial centre. It boasts of Asia's largest fertilizer plant, precision instrument unit and atomic power station nearby. Surprisingly unexplored, the Kota region of Rajasthan has some splendid treasures for the tourist to take home memories of. Its impregnable fortresses, sprawling palaces, exquisitely wrought palaces and lovely waterways act as a magnificient foil to its exotic wildlife and delicate fresco Paintings. .

Situtated on the banks of the Chambal River,at an important juncture of the trade route between Delhi and Gujrat, Kota is Rjasthan's Fifth Largest City. This Bustling,sprawling city is also called the industrial capital of the state. The tentacles of the modern world have the city in its grip with the Chambal Valley Project giving it a major position on the state's industrial map. Chemicals,fertilizers, synthetic fibres, tyrecord and sophisticated instruments, industry's mainstay, have helped in pushing this ancient city into the forefront of modernisation. Yet memories of its ancient links linger strongly. Present Day Kota owes its foundations to a Kotya Bhil warrior who 800 years ago built a small fortification at akelgarh and put up a protective mud-wall around it all the way to Retwali. In 1580, Rao Madho Singh strenghtened both the fortification and the wall. In time to come, Kota acquired the Hallmark of rajput power as well as culture.

Tourist places to visit in Kota:

City Fort Palace: Located on the eastern banks of the Chambal River, the 17th century City Fort and Palace is the prime tourist attraction of Kota. One of the largest fort complexes in Rajasthan, it houses the rugged bastion, ramparts, with delicate domes and balustrades. The Hathi Pol (Elephant Gate) built in the 17th century AD is the beautiful entrance to the fort.

Rao Madho Singh Museum: One of the finest museums in Rajasthan, it exhibits a good collection of artifacts including miniature paintings, magnificent sculptures, and ancient murals and arms.

Jagmandir Palace: Built by one of the queens of Kota in 1740, the Jagmandir Palace was once the pleasure palace of kings in the middle of the beautiful Kishor Sagar Lake. Its reflection in crystal waters of the lake offers a breathtaking view to visitors.

Haveli of Deaji: One of the beautiful mansions in Rajasthan, the Haveli of Deaji in Kota is famous for its amazing frescoes and paintings.

Chambal Gardens: It's an enchanting picnic spot with a crocodile's pond.

Other not to be missed tourist attractions in Kota include the Brij Vilas Palace Museum, Kota Barrage and Rana Pratap Sagar Dam.

How To Reach

Air : There is a small aerodrome, which is not operational. Nearest main airport is Jaipur (240 km). 

Rail: Kota is well connected by Train with all major cities in the state & outside the state.

Road : Kota is located on the N.H. No. 12 (Jaipur - Jabalpur) & well connected with all major ciites.

LOCAL TRANSPORT : Un-metered taxis, auto rickshaws, tongas, cycle rickshaws are available for moving around. 

Tuesday, October 30, 2012


Jaipur Hawamahal
Jaipur, the largest city of Rajasthan is an epitome of magnificence and vibrancy. This city was established in 1727 by Jai Singh II, and is India's first planned city. Jaipur was the capital of former Kachwaha rulers and it so presents itself as a versatile tourist destination. This royal place is rich in heritage, culture and architecture. With splendid fortresses, majestic palaces, tranquil temples and beautiful havelis; Jaipur turns out to be an ideal tourist destination. It is not just the royal buildings and palaces that this city offers. Other than these captivating attractions, Jaipur displays exquisite handicrafts and spectacular jewellery. These intricate works of art add life and colour to this Pink City's uniqueness. Also, the serenity of lush gardens and floral array acts as the cherry on the cake of fabulous landscapes. All this make a picturesque view that tends to enthral any visitor.
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The best time to visit this place is between October and March. Since the weather is pleasant during these months, that allows one to explore more of this place without getting scorched in the seething heat. This city of Rajputs is well known for its fairs and fests that are held on a grand level. The festivals include kite festival, camel festival, teej, gangaur, elephant festival, to name a few. The city witnesses maximum tourists during these days. To add on to its liveliness, this place has brilliant bazaars filled with bright turbans and ethnic attire, hand-dyed and embroidered textiles, pretty jewellery and delicious food. All these things can draw anyone towards them. Dressed in pink, this royal city of Rajasthan, Jaipur is the apt blend of heritage, palaces, culture and art and the flamboyance of this place can be experienced only by visiting it.

History of jaipur:
Forts, palaces, architectural marvels and tales of valour, all in their own way, bear testimony to the glory that Jaipur is and was just after it was conceived by Sawai Jai Singh in 1727. Located 262 kilometers from Delhi, jaipur was the first planned city in northern India. Jaipur's history dates back to the 12th century when the Kachchwaha clan o Rajputs arrived at the old fort palace of Amber in the Aravalli Hills. The Kachchwaha belonged to the Kshatriya, or the warrior caste of Hindus, but they traced their origins back to the sun, via Kusa who the twin son of the god Rama.

The people the Kachchwahas ousted were the Susawat Minas, who became the hereditary loyal guards of what became one of the largest and most valuable treasuries in India. From this base, the Kachchwaha Rajputs, with their brilliant soldiering, and a knack for lucrative alliances (even if that meant swallowingg Rajput pride), amassed a fortune. It was the special relationship the Amber rulers developed with the Mughals that brought them real power, influence and wealth.

 Arriving from Jaipur through the narrow pass in the hills, you are presented with a view of the honey coloured Amber fort-palace that conforms to every expectation of how a romantic Rajupt forts should appear. It rambles over a rugged hill, reflected in Maota Lake below. The odd elephant plods up the ramparts road. In Amber village, which clusters around the hill, gem-cutters smoothen and cut stones, the faithful go to mosques and temples, and children run around the royal chhatris (mausoleums) and decaying houses. A circle of protective hills surrounds all this, and snaking up these hills are crenulated walls punctuated by look-our posts. On the highest ridge and overlooking the valley is Jaigarh Fort, a spectacular display of defence. Inside Amber Fort, the contrast is sharp, the grand painted gateway, the hall o public audience that made even the Mughal emperor jealous, pools and cascades to cool the air in summer heat, and the hall o mirrors inlaid with tiny pieces of glass so that a single flame creates a room o a thousand bejeweled stars.

 The power to create such a strong fort enclosing such beauty was built up over several generations. Raja Bihar Mal made the first move. Recognizing Mughal power, he paid homage to the emperor Humayun and led a 5,000-strong army for him. Then he made sure he was the first Rajput presented at Akbar's court. His big chance came when Akbar made his first annual pilgrimage to Ajemr, the burial place of a Muslim saint, which lay in Kachchwaha territory. On a visit to Akbar's tent, Bihar Mal gave his daughter to be the emperor's wife and his adopted grandson, Man Sing, into royal service. The daughter finally gave Akbar his first son, who became emperor Jahangir. The next ruler, Bhawan Das, cemented the alliance and gave a daughter to be Jahangir's wife. Then came the two rulers who built Amber. Man Singh, a leading general under both Akbar and Jahanir, and Jai Sing I, a military and diplomatic genius who brought the house of Amber to its apogee at the Muhal court, On the throne aged 11, Jai Singh I was soon commanding a Mughal force for Jahangir, then fought all over the Mughal empire for Shah Jahan and finally backed the right side in the war for succession and became emperor Aurangezeb's most prized Rajput commander. All this time, the Kachchwaha coffers were filling with prizes, rewards and booty. Three rulers later, Jai Singh II, another child prodigy, came to the throne. The young lad quickly impressed the 71-year-old Aurangzeb who awarded him the title 'Sawai', meaning one-and-a-quarter. Even today, the flag flying above the City Palace in Jaipur has an extra, quarter sized one  next to it. Jai Singh II, having proved his soldiering ability further enriched his coffers and fulfilled his other passions - the arts and sciences. The impressive giant stone instruments which he devised for the open-air observatories at Jaipur, Delhi, Ujjain and Varanasi stand testimony to his scientific prowess. After ascending the throne, he shifted the capital from Amer. He studied the architecture of several European cities and drew up plans for constructing a larger and well-planned city. He consulted his best mathematicians, astronomers and the Silpa Sastra Sastra, a traditional Hindu architectural treatise before making the the blueprint for the new city.

After building close bonds with the Mughas and sure that there could be no danger to his throne, Sawai Jai Singh, envisioned his dream project, the building of Jaipur. the foundation stone was laid by him in 1727 and an eminent architect, Vidyadhar Bhattacharaya, was asked to desing the 'Pink City. ' It was a two-in-one compliment as 'Jai' means victory and was also the ruler's first name. That it was later chosen as the capital of Rajasthan formed from the amalgamation of various kingdoms, was a tribute to both Jai Singh and Bhattaccharya.

 The city was planned in a grid system of seven blocks of buildings with wide straight avenues lined with trees, with the place set on the north side.Surrounding it are high walls pieced with ten gates. The site of the shops were chosen after careful planning and they are arranged in nine rectangular city sectors (chokris). Jaipur was the first sizable city in north India to be built from scratch, though the famous pink colour symbolizing welcome', came later when Ram Singh II received the Prince of Wales in 1876. The colour was chosen after several experiments to cut down the intense glare from the reflection of the blazing rays of the sun. To this day, the buildings are uniformly rose pink. After Jai Singh died in 1773, a battle for succession followed and the Marathas and jats who were making advances in various parts of the country also decided to try their luck and Jaipur lost large chunks of territory with the ruler playing second fiddle the the fast growing East India Company. In 1818, several maharajas of the north-west princely states and Maharaja Jagat Singh of Jaipur, signed a treaty with the British under which they could continue to have control of their states, but would be collectively supervised by the British under a new name, Rajputana. After Independence, Jaipur, Jodhpur, Jaisalmer, Bikaner and other Rajpur states merged to form the state of Rajasthan with Jaipur as the capital. And even after 273 years after it was founded, jaipur has retained its unique flavour and old world charm. It is a bustling trading centre with colorfully set bazars, people sporting blood-red turbans, puppet sellers, and festivals and fairs.

Tourist Attraction of Jaipur :

1. City Palace:
Jaipur City Palace
Upon visiting the magnificant City Palace, it's easy to see that the royal family of Jaipur was one of the richest in India. The huge complex of courtyards, gardens, and buildings blend both Rajasthani and Mughal architecture. The Peacock Gate is exquisite, and contains an alluring display of detailed workmanship featuring bright peacocks. Today, the royal family lives in the graceful Chandra Mahal (Moon Palace) bordering the courtyard. Also inside the City Palace complex is a museum, art gallery, and interesting displays of royal costumes and old Indian weapons.
Location: Chokri Shahad, Old City, Jaipur.
Entry Cost: 300 rupees for foreigners (includes camera fee and entry to Jaigarh Fort). 75 rupees for Indians, plus 75 rupees for a still camera.
Opening Hours: 9.30 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily.

2. "Hawa Mahal" Palace of the Winds:
Jaipur Hawa Mahal
The intricate and fascinating facade of the Palace of the Winds is probably Jaipur's most recognized building. Constructed in 1799, it has five floors that contain rows of small windows and screens. Wind used to flow through the openings, giving the palace its name. However, the wind has now gone from the Wind Palace. Legend has it that the palace, which overlooks the main street of Jaipur's lively Old City, was built so that the women of the royal household could watch the streets below without being observed. A panoramic view can be had from the top of the building. Take a peek behind the facade of the Hawa Mahal.

Location: Next to the City Palace. Enter from the rear of the building.
Entry Cost: 50 rupees for foreigners. 10 rupees for Indians.
Opening Hours: 9 a.m. to 4.30 p.m. daily.

3. Galta Monkey Temple
Galta Monkey Temple Jaipur
Getting to this rather ruinous but holy Hindi temple, nestled in peaceful surroundings between two granite cliffs, is quite an adventure but it's completely worth the effort. The temple is part of a larger temple complex, which also has three sacred pools of water. One of the pools has been taken over by thousands of monkeys that congregate there to swim and bathe. They're generally friendly and love to be fed.
Location: At the far eastern side of the city, outside Gulta Pol, near Agra Road, Jaipur. To get there, take a rickshaw, walk up the hill to the white Sun Temple, then follow the steps downhill into the gorge.
Entry Cost: Free
Opening Hours: Visit late afternoon, near sunset, when the monkeys flock to the temple.

4. Amber Fort and Palace
Amber Fort and Palace
Around half an hour's drive from the city center, like something out of a fairy tale, Amber Fort is set on a hill top overlooking the Maota Lake. It was the original home of Rajput royalty until Jaipur city was constructed, and contains a number of breathtaking palaces, halls, gardens, and temples. Inside, the elaborate mirror work adds to the grandeur. The fort entrance is reached by walking up the hill, going in a jeep, or taking a lurching elephant ride.
Location: North of Jaipur. Frequent buses depart from the Palace of the Winds to Amber Fort. Taxis are also available.
Entry Cost: 50 rupees for foreigners. Elephant rides are 550 rupees ($13).
Opening Hours: 9 a.m. to 4.30 p.m. daily.
Sound & Light Show: Takes place every evening.

5. Nahargarh Fort
Nahagarh fort jaipur
Nahargarh Fort, also known as Tiger Fort, is perched high on the rugged Aravali Hills overlooking Jaipur city. The fort was built 1734 to help defend the city. It found fame in 2006, after many scenes from the movie Rang De Basanti were filmed there. Nahargarh Fort offers spectacular views, which are best seen at sunset. It also makes a great place for a picnic as there's a cafe on the premises, which serves beer and snacks until 10 p.m. The fort looks particularly attractive at night when it's lit up.
Location: North west of Jaipur city center. Get there by local bus, taxi, or a steep half hour trek directly up the hill.
Entry Cost: Foreigners 30 rupees.
Opening Hours: Sunrise to sunset, daily. Palace open from 10 a.m. to 5.30 p.m. daily.

6. Jaigarh Fort
Jaigarh Fort Jaipur
Jaigarh Fort
The massive Jaigarh Fort was built in 1726 and holds great appeal for military lovers. Flanked by towering gateways and watchtowers, it contains the world's largest cannon on wheels. The cannon has never been fired though, and neither has the fort been captured. As a result the fort has remained intact over its long life, and is very well preserved. Infact, it's one of the best-preserved military structures of medieval India. Jaigarh doesn't have the delicate interiors of Amber Fort, and therefore appears as a real fortress. Climb the Diwa Burj watchtower to get an excellent view over the plains.
Location: North of Jaipur, within walking distance of Amber Fort.
Entry Cost: 50 rupees ($1).
Opening Hours: 9 am to 4.30 p.m. daily.

7. Markets and Shopping
Shopping in Jaipur
Jaipur is an excellent place to shop and you'll find an enticing variety of goods available there. Some of the most popular items are precious gemstones, silver jewelry, bangles, clothes, blue pottery, and textiles. Don't miss these top 5 places to go shopping in Jaipur.

Location: The main shopping area is M I Road.
Opening Hours: Many shops are closed on Sundays.

8. Jantar Mantar Observatory
jantar mantar jaipur-india
Jantar Mantar Observatory
Jantar Mantar, built by King Jai Singh II between 1727 and 1734, literally means "calculation instrument". More than just a curious collection of sculptures, each structure at the intriguing Jantar Mantar observatory has a specialized astronomical function. There are 14 structures in total, which measure time, predict eclipses, and track stars. The most impressive one is the huge Samrat Yantra sundial. At a height of 90 feet (27 meters), it has a shadow that moves roughly the width of a person's hand every minute. It's a profound display of how quickly time does in fact go!
Location: Next to the City Palace, Jaipur.
Entry Cost: 10 rupees (20 cents) plus 50 rupees ($1) for a camera.
Opening Hours: 9 a.m. to 4.30 p.m. daily.

9. Government Central (Albert Hall) Museum
Jaipur Albert Hall Museum
Albert Hall Museum
This old and famous museum was modeled on the Victoria and Albert Museum in London. Its collection includes portraits of local kings, costumes, woodcarvings, paintings, and arts and crafts. Unfortunately photography isn't allowed.
Location: Ram Nivas Bagh, south of the Old City, Jaipur.
Entry Cost: 30 rupees (60 cents) for foreigners.
Opening Hours: 10 a.m. to 4.30 p.m. daily.

10. Dera Amer Elephant Safari
Dera Amer Elephant Safari Jaipur
Dera Amer Elephant Safari
Jaipur is well known for its elephant rides, and this elephant safari is a thrilling way to explore the countryside around the city. Situated on a private estate in the green foothills behind Amber Fort, it enables visitors to get right away from the hustle and bustle. The safari ventures though villages, agricultural fields, hills, and ancient monuments. Many people take a safari before or after visiting Amber Fort, but night safaris are popular as well. If you wish, it's even possible to stay at the camp.
Location: 20 minutes from Amber Fort, Jaipur.
Cost: Around $130 per person for a morning safari, buffet lunch, beer and soft drinks. Inquire with the company for exact pricing.
Opening Hours: Safaris run from morning to night.

Jaipur Culture:
Located in the eastern Rajasthan, this city of Jaipur is popular of the amazing forts and stupendous palaces. This royal town has magnificent architecture and is the first planned city of India. The buildings here are made with pink-painted sandstone which brings it the name of Pink City. With fantastic attractions all around the city, it invites tourists from all over the world. Jaipur's rich cultural heritage is displayed in the traditions, customs, lifestyle, art and architecture of this place. In fact the best understanding of Jaipur's culture can be attained through its art, music and architecture. The splendid monuments of Jaipur deserve a visit. Those huge fortresses of Mughal and Rajput reigns, the Hawa Mahal, Amber Fort, Jal Mahal aptly describe the culture of the city. Jantar Mantar of Jaipur, the largest of all five similar monuments is an observatory basically, which is indeed an architectural spectacle.

The people of this lively town are friendly and warm. Their colourful outfits and unique jewellery are the part of their culture displayed in a flamboyant way. They love to dance to the tunes of Rajasthani folk songs. Famous dances of Jaipur include Ghoomar, Chari where the dancers got to dance on a pot with a lit diya on their head. Traditional instruments like Sarangi, Ektara, and Jhalar are also played while singing folk songs. Food or the local delicacies of Jaipur also reveal the culture of the city. Jaipur's utterly delicious mangodi, papad, khichdi, buttermilk, sohan halwa have no match. Also famous for its handicrafts, Jaipur has markets flooded with handicraft items. Carved silver jewellery, kundan as well as meenakari jewellery, ivory carved sculptures, wood work and leather goods, are all so finely made that they would undoubtedly catch your eye. Known for blue pottery, miniature paintings and traditional clothes with work of bandhni, zari and zardosi, are certainly the best examples that depict rich culture of Jaipur.

Art And Crafts:
The Mughal and Rajput rulers used to invite skilled artists and craftsmen from India and abroad to display and share their abilities with the people of Jaipur. Many of them settled here leading to development of Jaipur as the haven of rich art and culture. Some of the artful talents of artisans include: Bandhani; Block printing; Stone carving and Sculpture; Tarkashi; Zari, Gota, Kinari and Zardozi; Silver Jewellery; Gems, Kundan, Meenakari and Jewellery; Miniature paintings; Blue Pottery; Ivory carving; Shellac work; Leather ware, etc.

Performing Arts:
This land of Jaipur has its own performing arts. The Jaipur Gharana for Kathak is widely popular and apparently an example of rich cultural heritage of Jaipur as far as performing arts is concerned. Tamasha is another such example.

The pink city Jaipur presents to you scrumptious cuisines that are known throughout India; dishes like Dal Bati Churma, Missi Roti, and sweets like Ghevar, Feeni, Gajak, Chauguni ke laddu, Moong Thal, to name a few. Rajasthani cuisine is full of nutrition since it's made in ghee and butter; and is generally vegetarian.

Fairs And Festivals:
This city witnesses various fairs and festivals at different time of the year. Some of the festivals are Gangaur festival, Jaipur Literature festival, Kite festival, Teej festival, Shitla Mata Fair, Chaksu Fair, Elephant Fair, Chhat ka Mela in Amber during Navratri. The colourful city becomes even more lively and lovely.

People and Languages:
The people of Jaipur are friendly and warm. The colourful outfits and ethnic jewellery they sport are the part of our culture exhibited in a beautiful way. They love to perform folk dances to the tunes of Rajasthani folk songs. The main language of Jaipur is Rajasthani. However, Marwari, Hindi and English are also spoken in the city.

How To Reach :
People from all parts of the world come to observe the beauty and to know about cultural legacy of Jaipur. Being the major city of the country, Jaipur is well connected to almost every corner of India via different means of public transport including air, rail and road. Every day the public transport is used by over millions of travellers travelling to and around Jaipur with various purposes and destinations. Jaipur International Airport is located about 7-10 km from the main city and can easily be reached with ease by taxi or bus. The Indian Railways on the other hand provides the best service to the passengers and as for the bus service, the roads and the highways are very well constructed and smooth with less chances of getting any dump in between the way. Read to know more about how to reach Jaipur.

By Air:
The Jaipur Airport is situated at Sanganer, 7 km (domestic terminal) and 10 km (international terminal) from the main city. It connects the city to all the major parts of India as well as some of the major overseas countries. It has the facility of daily domestic flights to Delhi, Jodhpur, Udaipur, Aurangabad, Hyderabad, Goa, Kolkata, Chennai, Ahmedabad, Mumbai, Bangalore, Indore and Pune. Also, it has the facility of international flights through which it connects directly to Sharjah, Muscat and Dubai. Flights to Singapore and Bangkok are also available via Delhi. Furthermore, it offers the chartered service to London and Dublin. Once you get down at the airport, hire a taxi or take a bus to reach the main city.

By Train:
Jaipur is well connected to almost every part of India through the means of Indian Railways. There are several trains which connect this city to Delhi, Mumbai, Ahmedabad, Agra, Kota, Alwar, Jodhpur, Alwar, Ajmer, Kota, Chittorgarh, Bikaner, Udaipur, Barmer, Jammu, Bikaner, Jaisalmer, Kolkata, Ludhiana, Pathankot, Haridwar, Indore, Gwalior, Bhopal, Jabalpur, Roorkee, and Kanpur. In addition to this, long-distance trains arrives from several other cities including Patna, Ranchi, Lucknow, Allahabad, Vadodara, Banaras, Surat, Bilaspur, Nagpur, Raipur, Puri, Bhubaneswar, Bangalore, Chennai, Hyderabad, Mysore, Mangalore, Goa, Kochi, and Kozhikode. There are three main railway junctions including Jaipur, the main station; Gandhinagar and Durgapara. Every train stops at Jaipur junction and a few of the trains stop at Gandhinagar and Durgapara. After getting down at the railway station, take an auto-rickshaw, bus or hire a taxi to reach the destination within the city. There is a special, luxurious and renowned train called as Palace on Wheels which departs from Delhi and connects all the well known destinations of Rajasthan including Jaipur, Jhalawar, Jodhpur, Alwar, Udaipur, etc.

By Road:
Jaipur, the pink city is linked with the all the major cities of India through the network of National Highways 8, 11 and 12 to name a few. There's also a very good bus service between Jaipur and Delhi provided by Rajasthan State Road Transport Corporation (RSRTC) with the buses at about every half an hour to and from both sides. There are non-AC and AC Volvo buses in which the fare of the AC bus is more. From Jaipur you can board the bus from Narayan Singh Circle or the main Sindhi Camp bus stand whereas in Delhi you can take the bus from Bikaner House on Pandara Road which is next to India Gate. Also, there are some private buses which are available from Dhaula Kuan in Delhi. There are some express buses which connect various cities and towns of Rajasthan such as Bundi, Kota, etc. to Jaipur. This city is also connected to Mumbai via Ajmer, Ahmedabad, Udaipur and Vadodara and is also well linked to Agra via bus.