"Faces & Places of Rajasthan" Top 5 Page for this destination State of Rajasthan by lynnehamman

State of Rajasthan Travel Guide: 3,162 reviews and 9,650 photos

Shy smiles and Tinkling Bells

I suggest that before visiting Rajasthan, that you read my page on INDIA which will give you a glimpse of this amazing country, its culture, diversity and history.
Rajasthan is often the most visited area- but there is so much more to see.


The history of Rajasthan is too vast and complex for me even to attempt explaining it. I will leave that to the experts who write about these matters.
It is vast, diverse, colorful and filled with fantastical Palaces, Forts and old Havelis. From the green hills of Udaipur, west to the Thar desert. From the crisp air of Mount Abu in the south up to Bikaner, with its arid semi-desert - there are wondrous things to see. Although the monsoon, when it arrives after the blistering heat of summer, brings welcome relief to the parched land, it does fail every few years, and the drought that ensues is devastating for everyone. The poor rural folk, who live off the land, suffer most - they only eat what they can grow themsleves.
One can drive around between towns and villages, and see real village life. Colour is everywhere - in the colours of the clothing - (men wear different colored turbans signifying caste) - to the bright yellow fields of mustard and sunflowers, which seem to grow in abundance.
What struck me immediately on my first visit , was the shy friendliness of the Rajasthani people.But when one looks at their faces, it is easy to see the strength and courage that the brave Rajput warriors are remembered for in the history of their land. With their huge moustaches and bright turbans, these men display their ancestory with pride.
The women are modest, covering their faces with bright coloured head scarves. Most wear traditional clothing, consisting of a bright, long skirt with a "choli" or short blouse. The jewellery is heavy silver, and adorns the nose, ears neck, arms and ankles. Their ankle bells tinkle as they walk.

On being"Palaced Out"

Because there are so many palaces, forts and havelis in Rajasthan it is quite easy to become, in a word - "Palaced Out" The temptation to look and absorb is so great, though, and most travellers don't always have enough time. The forts need at least a couple of hours to explore (and strong legs!) - there are many stairs in these places. They have all been built on hilltops for the purpose, one would suppose, of seeing the enemy approaching. So if a traveller is on a tight schedule, choose your palaces and forts, read about them, and decide which to see.- there are many.
The Palaces at Udaipur, Jaipur and Bikaner were my favourites, while the Meherangah Fort, Chittorgarh Fort, Kumbalgarh and the fabulous golden fort of Jaisalmer were awesome
Amber Fort near Jaipur is a must visit.
Kumbalgarh Fort has the second longest wall in the world-after the Great Wall of China.- Read about it in my "Off the Beaten Track" tip

I have placed information and pictures of Forts in tip section of Rajasthan page

Hasten Slowly

I have to mention- that in my opinion- UDAIPUR is the most beautiful city in India. The JEWEL IN THE CROWN.It should NOT be missed at any cost.

Fortunately, most of the cities and towns in Rajasthan are not far apart. Most can be reached within hours, by any number of means of transport. Its a good idea to stop in each city for a night or two.And the travelling itself is interesting. The scenery changes all the time, and surprises around each turn of the winding, twisty roads.The Mustard fields were ablaze with yellow flowers - a wondeful sight. Traffic on the roads is somewhat interesting, especially the four-legged kind.Road rules are "no rules" but "horn please" is observed with much gusto.
Birds and wildlife can be seen along the way. We saw beautiful pink cranes, and eagles.

Read about my hilarious first Camel Ride in "things to do" tip
I am still recovering!

SEE MY PAGES ON CITIES OF RAJASTHAN:

Udaipur

Jodhpur

Jaisalmer

ChittorgarhFort

Bundi

Barmer

Ranthambore National Park

Pros and Cons
  • Pros:Safe Interesting Friendly & Diverse
  • Cons:No obvious road rules on long trips
  • In a nutshell:Once seen - Never forgotten
  • Last visit to State of Rajasthan: Dec 2006
  • Intro Updated Nov 1, 2012
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Reviews (14)

Comments (44)

  • Joeplaboem's Profile Photo
    Feb 28, 2013 at 9:54 AM

    Travelling by car in India (Rajasthan) is a thrill on itself, just horn but we had a few times two trucks coming in our direction and they continued untill the last few meters. We ended up next to the road. If you see the wrecks on the side of the road and you think it could be your car...scary. But it afterall it is a great experience !! I loved it .....Nice pages on India Erwin

  • anilpradhanshillong's Profile Photo
    Feb 17, 2012 at 2:41 AM

    Kumbalgarh Fort - 36 kms long - second longest wall in the world - WOW! Never knew about this.
    Thank u , Lynne!

  • omidamini's Profile Photo
    Oct 19, 2010 at 10:48 AM

    Thanks alot, your Rajasthan page is very nice.

  • Nemorino's Profile Photo
    Sep 1, 2010 at 12:21 PM

    Another one of your very informative and enthusiastic pages on India! I think if I ever go to India I will travel by train whenever possible.

  • BruceDunning's Profile Photo
    Aug 30, 2010 at 3:40 PM

    This city has so much culture and influence by the foreigners over the centuries. You certainly found another wonderful place in the land of enchantment.

  • tiabunna's Profile Photo
    Feb 4, 2010 at 3:11 AM

    I enjoyed revisiting this page for the update since my previous visit - can't get over the great hotels for $20-40. I suspect this page is unique in VT for having a tip about a building infested with friendly rats! :)

  • Court94403's Profile Photo
    Jan 22, 2010 at 9:54 PM

    I have heard about those sunsets in Rajasthan. One of the many places I would love to take photos of. You have captured a beautiful one.

  • kokoryko's Profile Photo
    Dec 2, 2009 at 3:29 PM

    A beautiful introduction to Rajasthan, Lynne! And beautiful memories for me! I missed the rats temple near Bikaner, but I’m retrospectively happy not having been asked to join a fire dance!:) From the few I know of India, Rajasthan impressed me the most.

  • mircaskirca's Profile Photo
    Nov 18, 2009 at 2:18 AM

    Excellent overview of Rajasthan and very useful info! I've always been amazed by the beauty of Rajasthani dresses. Would love to visit one of those colourful festivals to learn more about their culture. I had to laugh about your camel riding experience :)

  • xaver's Profile Photo
    Oct 26, 2009 at 2:28 PM

    This is a great page on Rajastan, definitly detailed and original tips.Rats would scare me I guess, thanks for explaining why they are important for locals.

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