Welcome to Royal Rajasthan- The Land of Forts, Palaces, and Havelis
Rajasthan- A land of forts, palaces, and havelis is also referred to as the quintessential land of Maharajas. The place is a remnant of rich and romantic past, either manifested in evocative ruins or restored to its erstwhile splendour. Rajasthan Tourism is on the wish list of many passionate travellers.
It is prudent to note here that this land is also known for vivid art and vibrant culture, a kaleidoscope of colours, jungles, camels and sprawling deserts. There is so much to see, experience and explore in Rajasthan. The colourful costumes and spectacular festivals are enough to fill an artists’ palette. The awe-inspiring Shekhawati havelis and the sprawling national parks and sanctuaries, foot-tapping folk dances and melodious folk music, the place is indeed replete with incredible attractions.
When talking about Rajasthan, one cannot ignore the amazing bravery, courage, and valour of the Rajput Kings and their queens who fought hard to keep their motherland safe against invasions. Rajasthanis are genuinely proud of their rich and turbulent past and how they emerged victorious against many odds. Our extensive Rajasthan Travel Guide introduces you to the glittering jewels of this majestic place.
Splendours of Awe-Inspiring Cities of Rajasthan
Rajasthanis are blessed with an undaunting spirit and resilience that they show time and again. The cities are colour-charged and pulsate with the chaos which is so typical of an evolving and emerging India. The magnificent Mehrangarh overlooking the city in Blue, Jodhpur, the colourful havelis of Shekhawati region, the lovely palaces of Udaipur, the golden castle of Sonar Qila Jaisalmer, the carnival charm of Pushkar and a lot more beckons tourists with its amazing appeal.
Best Time to Travel
Visitors can plan their soujourn to the royal Rajasthan at any time of the year. Although, April to September is quite hot in Rajasthan, tourists are able to make the most of the off-season and can get excellent deals. From October onwards till March, it is the best time to travel to Rajasthan as a variety of fairs and festivals are organised during this time.
Accommodation in Rajasthan
Aura Voyages offers you an opportunity to stay in old palaces and havelis that have been beautifully restored and converted into heritage hotels. Staying in these hotels make you feel as a part of royalty. Enjoy the warm welcome and hospitality extended by the staff.
Kota…An Eclectic Blend of Old and Modern Culture
A beautiful city that shows a perfect amalgamation of old and modern culture. It renders lifetime experience to its visitors with the glimpses of erstwhile era interspersed with modernity. Situated near the banks of the serene Chambal River, harbouring the formidable Ghariyals (crocodiles), this Hadoti region was once one of the most popular industrial cities in Rajasthan.
One of the major attractions worth exploring and visiting in Kota is the Jag Mandir. Made up of red stone, it lies in the middle of the Kishore Sagar Lake. It was built in 1740 by one of the Kota queens to serve as a pleasure place for the kings. Other attractions are Chambal Garden, Umed Bhawan Palace, Brijraj Bhawan Palace, City Palace and more.
Kota’s broad avenues and exalted status of divisional headquarters for the Indian army is no less than a beautiful establishment and charm. The gentle prosperity of this city best depicts its development and progress in terms of architecture, heritage, and other important establishments.
Aura Voyages takes you to the best Rajasthan Tourist Places and gives you a chance to know more about this Land of Maharajas.
Chittorgarh- The Land of Brave Rajput Kings!
Chittorgarh is a land known for brave Rajputi kings. The city lies close to the Berach River which is a tributary of Banas. The history of the city is rich and replete with tales of valour and bravery. It was the former capital of Sisodia Rajput Dynasty of Mewar. The city is very popular for marbles and granites. The city also experienced Muslim Invasion in between 13th – 15th century but the Hindu rulers fought bravely to bring the dawn of independence. They gave their lives and the women folk committed suicide by Jauhar (mass self-immolation). It is also popularly known as the land of Meera, the worshipper of Lord Krishna.
It was built by Chitranga, a king of the Mori Dynasty. It was originally called Chitrakuta. The Fort gained popularity during the reign of Rana Kumbha and Rana Sanga. The honey-coloured Fort is one of the major tourist attractions in the towns. The Palace has a Government Museum which displays the ancient coins, arts and stone figures along with terracotta stuff. There are 6 Jain temples inside the Fort and the largest among these is the Bhagwan Adinatha. The massive structure covers an area of 700 acres.
It is located within the Chittor Fort. It was constructed by the Mewar King, Rana Sangha. It was built to commemorate the victory over Mahmud Khilji. It is a none-storey building which has cravings of Hindu Deities.
Kalika Mata Temple
Another tourist attraction to visit in Chittorgarh is Kalika Mata Temple. It is an 8th century Temple. The upper parts of the temple were constructed recently.
This Hindu temple dedicated to Meera Bai, the ardent devotee of Lord Krishna was built in 16th century. The temple showcases the Indo Aryan architectural style which is a very magnificent part of our cultural heritage.
Ranakpur-A Beautiful Land of Jain Temple
Ranakpur is a village is located between Jodhpur and Udaipur. It is on the western side of the Aravalli Hills. The place is most famous for the marble Jain Temples and is one of the best amongst Jain Temples in India.
The Jain Temple in Ranakpur is a brilliant example of architectural masterpiece. Sprawled in a vast expanse of 40000 sq. ft, the temple is adorned with impressive and intricate carvings showing celestial bodies and nymphs. Two huge bells, 108-kg each in the temple premises attracts the attention of the visitors. The major attraction of this temple is its 1444 pillars artistically carved from marble.
The temple is dedicated to Tirthankara Adinatha. It was built by a local businessman by the name Dharma Shah. It was constructed in the 15th century and is dedicated to Adinath. The temple and the village of Ranakpur are named after the ruler, Rana Kumbha because he supported the construction of the temple. The temple is a treat to the eyes.
Ranakpur Jungle Safari
It is popular amongst the people who love to watch wildlife and indulge in the excitement of jungle safari. The safari becomes highly adventurous and enjoyable in the open Jeep.
Kumbhalgarh-Known for its Rugged Appeal
Kumbhalgarh Fort is located on the westerly range of Aravalli Hills. It is very close to Udaipur. The Fort was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2013. It was built by Rana Kumbha in the 15th century. After Chittorgarh Fort, it is the most important Fort in Asia.
Located at an altitude of 6,223 ft, the majestic and magnificent Kumbhalgarh Fort overlooks the verdant forests below. It catches the tail end of the Aravalli Range in Mewar. The major attraction of the fort is the 20-foor thick wall embracing the outer wall which meanders over the hills for 36 km, interspersed with seven gates. It is a fine example of exclusory masonry and is just behind the Great Wall of China in its length.
It is located inside the Fort Kumbhalgarh. The Mahal has two sections for the men and the women folk known as Mardana and Janana Halls respectively. The Mahal offers a panoramic view from the top.
Neelkanth Mahadeo Temple
It is located within the vicinity of the temple. The Temple is dedicated to Lord Shiva and has a Lingam which is 6 feet in height.
Kumbhalgarh Wildlife Sanctuary
It is located in Rajsamand district of Rajasthan. The wildlife sanctuary is spread across 578 sq.km. It provides a spectacular experience to the tourists as they can see wildlife, flora and fauna. Beautiful birds are also seen in the area.
Bharatpur-The Impregnable City of Rajasthan
Bharatpur is a city in Rajasthan which is located 180 km south of New Delhi. It is at about 178 km from Jaipur, the capital of Rajasthan. It was founded in 1733 by Maharaja Suraj Mal.
Bharatpur Bird Sanctuary
Bharatpur or Keoladeo Ghana National Park is spread in a vast expanse of 29 sq. km. The park is dotted with water marshes, shallow lakes and bogs. In 1985, the place was declared UNESCO world heritage city. The park was created in 20th Century by Prince Bhamji of Morvi. Till 1964, it was a popular duck hunting site for Bharatpur Maharaja Suraj Mal. Later, hunting was banned.
The park houses more than 300 species of birds. Migratory birds from China, Turkmenistan, Afghanistan, and Siberia and spotted here. The place is high on beauty and views. The Sanctuary attracts tourism and is highly frequented as a weekend gateway from the nearby cities and towns. 50 species of fish and 10 species of snakes are also found here.
Aura Voyages takes you to the majestic land of Bharatpur through luxury cars and cars making your journey smooth, interesting and exciting.
Located at 40 kilometres to the north of Jaipur, this 16th century fort was transformed into a properly designed palace by blending Rajput architecture and Muslim styles in the early 19th century. The credit for this transformation goes to Rawal Berisal who served as a nobleman in the court of the Maharaja of Jaipur at the time.
Today, the Samode Palace has been converted to a super-premium boutique hotel where modern-day opulence and warm Rajasthani hospitality combines perfectly with the majestic past of the fort. Built of sandstone and nestled safely in the Aravalli hill; the marbled floors, the ornamented pillars and delicately designed walls are visual treat to the eyes.
A luxurious 5-star hotel today operated by India’ premier Hospitality Company – the Taj Hotels, Rambagh Palace stands tall in the pink city of Jaipur. Having been the regal address of the Maharaja Sawai Man Singh II, the palace has also served as a guesthouse hosting noble guests to celebrities to political leaders. It was originally built to house the wet nurse of Prince Ram Singh II in 1835. Later Maharaja Sawai Madho Singhji made the palace his base for royal hunting expeditions.
The reminiscent past of the place has been kept intact for guests to revel – the French-styled ballroom, the Mughal Gardens, the cupolas and the chattris, sandstone and marble work with hand-made decorations and so much more.
Jai Mahal Palace
The beauty of this heritage building is its lndo-Saracenic architecture – the undaunted building is a unique showpiece that reflects Rajasthani architecture in grandeur. Built in 1745 by Hargovind Natani, this traditionally built palatial structure has been the official residence of three consecutive Prime Ministers of the erstwhile Jaipur state.
The doors of this majestic palace were open to few selected guests in 1955. Later the Indian Hotels Company Limited took over the palace and converted it into a Grand Heritage Hotel. The chain undertook major renovation works to ensure that guests experience the royal feeling thoroughly while adding contemporary amenities and luxuries to make it an avant-garde experience for visitors.
A place where one gets to witness a quintessential harmony of modernized comforts with the golden traditional times of the Rajas and Maharajas of Rajasthan is the Castle Mandawa. The royal family of Mandawa has converted the palatial heritage site to a grand hotel and have opened the doors for the common man to experience the royal lifestyle.
The hotel has been done up with antique chandeliers, cannons, armour and furniture; portraits of the royal family and is resplendent with medieval Rajasthani structures, art and architecture. It is one of the best boutique hotels in modern times to catch a glimpse of our rich past.
Laxmi Niwas Palace
This is royalty at its best – the Laxmi Niwas Palace offers its visitors not only a lifetime experience of the lifestyle of yesteryear Rajas of Bikaner, the erstwhile palace converted into a heritage hotel now offers its guests’ first hand glimpse of peacocks moving nonchalantly in the royal garden and marvellous views from the rooms and the terrace. The silence of the place occasionally broken by the flapping of the wings of pigeons and the rustling of the leaves in the garden!
The ideal place to sit down for a royal feast of conventional Rajasthani dishes like Lal Maas and Kair Sangri made and served the traditional way.
Umaid Bhawan Palace
Umaid Bhawan Palace spread over an area of 26 acres was completed in 1943 and named after Maharaja Umaid Singh. The palace has three parts to it – one which is run by the Taj Hotels as a full-scale premium luxury hotel, the other that houses the Jodhpur royal family and the last that has been converted into a full-fledged museum.
Located in the outskirts of Jodhpur, the imperial looking palace made from golden coloured sandstone on the exterior and marble and teak wood in the interiors is the epitome of heritage. The palace represents an ideal example of the Indo-Deco style of architecture.
Called the Jag Niwas, the exquisite location Lake palace is one its main attractions. Built in the mid-1700s by the royal family of Udaipur as a summer palace, today the Indian Hotels Company Ltd. operates it as a very high-end luxury palace hotel. The majestic building is situated right in the middle of the Pichola Lake. Guests are picked up by speed boats run by the hotel company from the City Palace.
Black and white marbles in exterior facade of the palace, huge courtyards lined with ornamented high pillars and terraces, and gardens with fountains await the guests here. Every room in the palace offers breath-taking view while the exotic cuisine has its own charm.
Famously termed as the Jewel of the Thar, this imposing grand-looking structure stands on the shores of Gajner Lake, some 30 minutes from Bikaner. Spread over 6000 acres, the palace is now run as a palatial hotel by the royal family. A stay at this tranquil luxury hotel brings its guests near nature. There is calmness all around.
It is an ideal destination for people who love to spend their days out on nature walks and enjoy boat rides and desert safaris and spend the night in the lap of the majestic ambience of the good old days of the royalty.
Surrounded by the Aravalli range this palace is in one of the most picturesque locations in Rajasmand district. The princely Mahal served as a royal residence and was built by Rawat Dwarka Dasji in 1670. The place was converted into a boutique heritage hotel and opened for guests and visitor by the royal family.
Today guests from all over the world come here to be awed by the majestic appeal of the place. The armour, guns, cannons, the huge elevated gates, jharokas and battlements leave guests asking for more. Guests are treated to Mewari cuisine made from home-grown vegetables and oils and served with milk products from their own diary.
This is a fort, in the truest sense of the word. This gigantic fort was used for waging battles in Rajasmand district of Rajasthan and is surrounded by hills and forests. The true essence of the fort has been retained while converting it into an all-suite heritage hotel. Refurbished to include modern-day luxurious and amenities, guests here can peek into the bygone era when they walk through the spread-out area to see the mirror halls, the granaries and the stores, the corridors and the rooms from the medieval period. Rooms and terraces offer overwhelming views of the Lake, the Lawah village and the Aravalli hill range.
Rulers of Samode used the Haveli as their city residence for ages. Today, the descendants of the noble family have converted the place into a heritage boutique hotel. The Haveli is a series of conventional Indian style apartments with small-sized personal courtyards and chowks and is a classic example of yet another Indo-Saracenic style of architecture.
A part of the Haveli still houses the royal blood. The flawless Rajasthani hospitality, the historically rich art and architecture, well-appointed rooms and amenities makes the place an ideal holiday destination for visitors from the world over. From traditional Indian cuisine to international dishes, guests here experience royal treatment first-hand.
This Mahal is the family home of the ancestors of Rao Digvijay Singh Patan. The place is much smaller compared to other heritage palaces and forts that have now been altered to boutique and luxury hotels. The owners however decided to just add modern comforts to the Mahal and leave the rest bearing the original grand look.
The Mahal boosts of its own farm from where home-grown vegetables and grains are served to guests. The place offers awesome view of a fort that dates to the 13th century and the Badalgarh Mahal on the hills that was the official residence of the Patan rulers before Patan Mahal.
A palace located in the arid village of Alsisar in the Shekawati district of Rajasthan, the place echoes the traditional Rajputana style of turrets and stands tall representing a glorious past. Converted into a heritage luxury hotel by the royal family, the place has huge and imposing archways, spacious and flattering rooms, majestic dining spaces and equally impressive courtyards and gardens.
Being managed by the owners themselves, great emphasis is laid on ensuring that guests enjoy the true Rajasthani hospitality and services, meals and cuisine. Trips to the village enable guests to experience the nomadic lifestyle of the villagers and visit ruins from the medieval period.
In 1892 this Haveli was built in the pink city of Jaipur as a town house for the Kachhawa royal family. In 1994, the surviving descendants of the clan went in for major refurbishments and restructuring to open the place as a heritage hotel for the public. While it was ensured that the originality of the place is left intact, it was redesigned in parts to maintain the aesthetic ambience of the Haveli.
The Sheesh Mahal, the pool, the grand rooms, the antique furniture and beds, the motifs on fabrics from historic period all are meant to charm the visitor and give him the royal treatment akin to the Maharajas of Alsisar.
This place offers a unique peep to guests of the historic times and blends it perfectly with modern hospitality and traditional Indian values. Surrounded by the Vindyanchal range of hills and the Jacaranda forests and located at a height of 600 metres above sea level, the castle is nestled peacefully inside fortified walls. It dates to the 16th century and houses the 13th generation of the ruling family.
The place was converted into a heritage hotel in 1991, the operations being looked after by the owners themselves. The aim is to let visitors feel at home while they catch glimpses of the rich culture, art and artifacts of Rajasthan.