With the nip in the air, travel snowbirds start looking for warmer places to wrap their mittens around. A whiff of royalty, folk dance, breathtaking sand dunes, and most importantly a bright yellow sun makes Rajasthan in India a sort after winter Destination.
We asked some of the most popular travel bloggers what their favorite Rajasthan destinations are, and here are the top 10 choices. So cozy up in a blanket, sip hot chocolate and read on.
1. Ranthambore National Park
Recommended by Jyoti of http://www.yummytrip.in/
Located in the Sawai Madhopur district of Rajasthan, Ranthambore National Park is the wildlife capital of Rajasthan. If you are visiting Rajasthan, you can’t miss out on this famous wildlife sanctuary. Spread-out in an area of 1,334 sq km it is home to 40 different species of mammals and over 300 species of birds.
A visit to the UNESCO World Heritage site of Ranthambore Fort and the Trinetra Ganesh temple is recommended. Also worth visiting is the Rajiv Gandhi Museum of Natural History.
90 minutes from Ranthambore is the Chambal river which offers boat safari. This river is known for sighting the endangered species of Gharial crocodile.
Travel Tip by Jyoti: If spotting tiger is on your mind, take as many safaris as you can. I had booked all morning and noon safaris for the next three days well in advance.
2. Amargarh Fort
Recommended by Richa of Https://Lighttravelaction.com
Almost 80 km from Sawai Madhopur and 180 km from Jaipur is the 150 years old Amargarh Fort.
The fort was named Amargarh after Raja Amar Mal ji who was a minister in the royal court of Karauli, a state of Jadon Rajputs. The Original fort was 280 years old but was destroyed by fire. The ruins of the old fort can still be seen.
Furnished with traditional excellence blended with modern amenities, Amargarh Fort has now been converted into a Homestay. We were fortunate to have discovered this gem of a place. The kids had fun running on the ramparts and chasing squirrels and parakeets.
Also worth visiting are the organic farms, Kaleesal dam, Jeep safari in the forest area and visiting the village nearby where you feel as if the time has come to a standstill.
Travel Tip by Richa: I would recommend the Yoga and Meditation session by the river!
3. Churu – The Fresco land
Recommended by Ayandrali of http://www.wanderlustcraving.com/
This fresco-rich area of Shekhawati was founded by Thakur Maldeo who was the Grandson of Rawat Kandhal. This place is known for its Havelis, Chatris and temples that sees some of the most impressive artworks of its time.
Places worth visiting are Kanhaiya Lal Bagla ki Haveli, Mantri Haveli and Surana Haveli which spell grandeur. Ratangarh Fort, Aath Kambh Chhatri, Sethani Ka Johara and the Sri Shantinath Bhagwan Mandir have stunning interiors.
Travel Tip by Ayandrali – Consider staying in the 1920’s Malji ka Kamra, a heritage haveli which is a standing reminder of the glorious days gone by. Tickle your taste buds with Rajasthani specialties like Laal Maas, Bajre ki Roti, Papad ki Subzi and Gatte ki Subzi before ending with Lapsi and succulent jalebis.
4. Jodhpur – The Blue City
Recommended by Mayuri Patel of http://fernwehrahee.com
Jodhpur – the “Blue City” is synonymous with imposing forts, paintings, and Royal Palanquins. The 15th century spectacular Mehrangarh Fort with burnished red sandstone stands four hundred feet above the skyline of Jodhpur. The Chamunda Devi temple offers a panoramic view of the walled city, where many buildings are painted in the city’s iconic shade of blue.
Also worth visiting are the Jaswant Thada (cenotaph of King Jaswant Singh) and Umaid Bhawan Palace which is now partially a heritage hotel.
Also recommended is Osian, an ancient town known as the “Khajuraho of Rajasthan” for its temples.
Travel Tip by Mayuri: Try Rajasthani Thali at the gypsy restaurant in Sardar Pura, Drink Makhaniya Lassi at Mishrilal in clock tower area and if you have a sweet tooth head for Janta Sweet Home.
Recommended by Richa of Https://Lighttravelaction.com
Chittorgarh is home to the Chittor Fort, the largest fort in India and Asia. Chittaurgarh is synonymous with valiant kings, illustrious queens, spirited warriors and mesmerizing structures.
Don’t’ forget to catch the Light and sound show of this historically rich fort. It’s enchanting to hear the story of the 6th century King Chitrangada who found Chittaur, about the beauty of Rani Padmini, about the devotion of Meera Bai and sacrifice of the loyal and courageous Panna Dhai.
Other attractions include Kirti Stambh, Vijay Stambh, Padmini Palace, Rana Kumbha’s palace, Meera Temple.
Travel Tip by Richa: Consider staying inside the fort. We stayed in Padmini Haveli – a Homestay inside the fort and found it a very good Long weekend getaway from Delhi.
6. Mount Abu
Recommended by Ketki of https://www.explorewithecokats.com/
Historically known as ‘Arbudaanchal’, Mount Abu shares its boundaries with Gujarat and fascinates tourists from all across India. Set on a high rocky plateau in the Aravalli Range and surrounded by forest, Mt Abu caters to nature enthusiast, wildlife seekers, trekkers, families on picnics and honeymooners alike.
Right in the center of the town is Nakki lake where you can go boating. Around 2 and a half kilometers from the city are the 11th Century ornately carved Dilwara temples. Also worth visiting are the Mt Abu wildlife sanctuary and Brahmakumaris Spiritual University.
Travel Tip by Ketki: Kiss the clouds and embrace the lovely weather on a 2-wheeler (available on rent) or go on a trek on nearby hills. Remember not to wander by yourself while trekking, as there have been incidents of wildlife attack (sloth bear and leopards). Of course being a responsible tourist I am sure you will not feed the monkeys and will leave the mountains and the valley cleaner than you found them!
7. Jaipur – the Pink City
Recommended by Yukti of https://www.instagram.com/weaving.words/
Jaipur charms you with its appealing architectures, handicraft centers, and dreamy views.
The majestic Amer Fort and Nahargarh Fort are a must visit when in Jaipur. Don’t miss the light and sound show at Amer Fort for an enriching historical summary in the baritone of Mr. Amitabh Bachan.
The 255 yr old architectural beauty Jal Mahal shines like a star at night in the middle of Man Singh Lake.
If you have a fetish for all things traditional then the gleaming silver jewelry, bandhanis, lehriyas, bangles and juttis of Bapu Bazar, Johari Bazar and Tripolia Bazar will leave you charmed for life.
Travel tip by Yukti: Rawat Kachori for Pyaz ki kachori, Khole ke Dal Bati Churma at Hanumanji Temple and Ghewar from Lakshmi Mishtan Bhandar.
8. Udaipur, Venice of the East
Recommended by Suman Doogar of http://nomadicshoes.com/
Udaipur also known as `City of Lakes` is an idyllic destination for anyone having a thirst for romance. Lavish Rajput era palaces, awe-inspiring Havellis, magnificent temples and narrow lanes telling the stories of the era gone by will lure you to this magical city.
If you are a history buff, then a drive to Haldi Ghati is highly recommended. There is a memorial dedicated to Maharana Pratap’s famed steed Chetak who died of battle wounds after helping the Rana escape from the Battle of Haldighati.
Karni Mata Temple ropeway located at Machla Marga Hills near Doodh Talai Lake is another attraction that you should not miss because the view from the top is splendid. It gets crowded usually so going there early morning or around sunset can be a good option.
Spread over 100 acres of land, Gulab Bagh (Sajjan Niwas Garden) is the largest garden in Udaipur and boasts of many varieties of roses.
Travel Tips by Suman: For Delicious Mexican food head for Amber by Amet Haveli, Millets of Mewar specializes in dishes made of millets, Hello Boho serves the healthier version of Indian delicacies, Jagdish Mishthan Bhandar for Onion Kachori.
Recommended by Preethika of www.passingports.com
The city of Ajmer gets its name from ‘Ajay Meru’ which when roughly translated means ‘invincible hills’. Beautifully nestled within the Aravalli range of mountains, this city is about 130 km from Jaipur, Rajasthan. This place also acts as a transit destination for people who wish to visit Pushkar.
There is only one road, a small one, which leads to the Dargah of Moinuddin Chishti. You will first encounter the Nizam Gate, then another gate built by Shah Jahan called the Shahjahani Gate and lastly the Buland Darwaza. You will pass numerous small shops before you reach the shrine.
Built in 1135-1150 AD, Ana Sagar Lake is an artificial lake built by Arnoraja, the grandfather of Prithviraj Chauhan.
Ajmer is connected via road to Pushkar. Ajmer hosts a lot of backpackers from across the world. You may visit the ghats, oldest Brahma Temple, Savitri Mata Temple, Old Rangji Temple and Pushkar Camel Fair (end October to early November).
Travel Tip by Preethika: Pushkar and Ajmer both have religious importance and so you may consider dressing up accordingly. Photography is not allowed at Pushkar lake as people bathe here. Pushkar and Ajmer are very crowded so keep your belongings safe.
Recommended by Swati of Https://lostinmaps.com
The town of Bundi is nestled in the Aravali hills and is one of the smaller and lesser visited cities in Rajasthan. At 500 feet, Taragarh Fort is the most prominent structure in Bundi. If you love Rajput architecture head to Bundi Palace at the foot of the fort.
Other places worth visiting are Sukh Mahal located on the periphery of the lake Jait Sagar, Kshar Baag, and Rani Ji ki Bawadi. Rani-Ji-ki Bawari is a 165 feet deep step well.
Travel Tip by Swati: Even though it’s not a desert town, the days are usually hot in Bundi because the sun is harsh. Pack accordingly, with a scarf, full sleeves t-shirts, sunscreen and don’t forget to carry water when you step out.
If you haven’t been on a trip to any of these cities, it’s high time you plan one! Which ones would you add to the list?