Desert Tour India
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Jodhpur - Barmer - Jaisalmer - Bikaner
Rajasthan has long been synonymous with camels, sand dunes and women dressed in bright colorful hues. Many are pleasantly surprised however, when they come here setting their eyes on expanding stretches of greenery. Lush green hills and deep valleys, the lake palaces and gardens. If you are wondering just where the deserts lies, welcome to Marwar. This is your desert land. Come and explore sand dunes, taste the thrill of riding on camel backs. Drink in the dazzle of colors in ethnic art and costumes of the folks from Marwar.SIGHTSEEING Jodhpur can be your ideal starting point. Popularly called the Sun City, Jodhpur gives the impression of being a rugged, no-nonsense city that has little time for decorations and artistic details. But take a look at Mehrangarh Fort, one of the most impressive and formidable structures that looks down from a height of 125 m.>Once you've entered, it's another world altogether - magnificent palaces with marvelously carved panels and latticed windows like the Moti Mahal, Phool Mahal, Sheesh Mahal and the Daulat Khana, Spend a lot of time in the museum, one of the best in Rajasthan, and see the fabulous collection of Jodhpur royalty - palanquin, howdahs, furniture, miniature paintings, musical instruments, and costumes. There are other interesting areas in and around Jodhpur like the Jaswant Thada, Girdikot and Sardar Market, and the 20th century Umaid Bhavan Palace. A little further away from the city is the Balsamand lake and gardens, Mandore with its unusual Hall of Heroes, Mahamandir temple, and Kailana lake, it's more than a handful for sore eyes. The observant visitor will notice soon that most of the houses here use the red stone typical of Jodhpur, tainting it as a city wearing the red uniform look. Today, craftsmen, use the stone to produce a wide range of gift items that the visitor can take away as souvenirs. There is a great demand for this stone from other cities for making carved pillars and balconies shaped to give a unique look to houses.Barmer is another thriving desert city, not yet polluted by the tourist population. A city that traces its origins to the 12th century. Once you're mounted on the ancient camel route; adventurous barren land and rough terrain surrounding the town wait to the explored. Barmer is famous for its intricately carved wooden furniture and the hand block printing industry. The ideal timeto visit Barmer is during its grand festival time, the Tilwara Cattle Fair. Kiradu, near Barmer is famed as an archaeologist's dream; with ruins of beautiful 12th century temples well preserved for the beholder's pleasure.
Jaisalmer the golden city, nothing can quite prepare you for the magic and artistic brilliance of this city. Do not wrongly assume that visiting one desert city means having seen them all. A visit to Jaisalmer will prove this. Worth a visit is the fort which seems to emerge out of the desert haze, its yellow sandstone walls and bastions taking on a golden hue in the afternoon sun. The fort dominates the small city that spreads around it. In the past, getting to Jaisalmer was a task. Its remote location kept it safe from external influences, very few invading armies had the courage to cross the harsh desert to attack Jaisalmer. Even during the British 'Raj', Jaisalmer was the last to sign the Instrument of Agreement with the British. This remote citadel is today famous for its carved havelis, its narrow cobbled streets and its well preserved Jain temples. The small market located outside the fort is the main hub of activity, you can pick up a large variety of local crafts here and explore the streets on foot. The other places that you would like to see are Gadsisar lake, Ludrava, Aakal and the royal cenotaphs at Bada Bagh. For a closer look at the sand dunes, get somebody to take you to Sam! Ride a camel on the desert dunes and gear yourself for an unforgettable experience of watching a sunset over the desert horizon.
some more desert life awaits you here. This city lies on the northern tip of the triangle among the desert cities. A city that goes back over 500 years when it was founded by one of the princes of the Jodhpur clan. An interesting bit of history about these desert cities is that although they were located on the major trade routes that connected Central Asia and North India with the Gujarat ports, outside influences were minimal. This is true of Bikaner as well. Like most of the other cities of the desert region, Bikaner has been able to maintain its medieval flavor.
The wealth of its architectural heritage lies in its forts, palaces and temples. Two outstanding palaces of Bikaner are the Lalgarh Palace and Gajner Palace. Other important sights are Junagarh Fort and the Camel Breeding farm. For those inclined to archaeology, it would b interesting to know that the Rajasthan State Archives is located here. The vast collection of rare exhibits covering almost every period of Indian history. When in Bikaner don't miss the famous temple of Karni Mata at Deshnok, Gajner, for lovers of wildlife, and Kolayat, an ancient pilgrim center.
Visitors will love the camel wool products of this region. Carpets, durries, carved wooden furniture, stone carving and block printing are popular items to pick up from here. Other desert crafts like leather work, basket weaving and pottery are as interesting.
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