Madhu Latha
Incredible India ; A diverse India ; Versatile India ; Enigmatic India ; Intoxicating India ; Spiritual India

India has been called many names by those who see it. India appears as such to each as those who see it that way. Come take a look at my India through my eyes...

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Rajastan - Land of Kings

Rajastan - Raja's sthan, the place of kings, aptly named as it is the home of the most valient Rajput clans, who claim to originate from the sun, moon, and fire. The fabulous realm of maharajas and their majestic forts and lavish palaces. The remanants of rich and romantic past, either in evocative ruins or restored to former splendour, have earned Rajastan a place on most traveller's list. It is a land of deserts and jungle, camel trains and tigers, glittering jewels, vivid art and vibrant culture. The home of spectacular and colorful festivals, amazing shopping expirience and a wide variety in the cuisine of Rajastan. Rajastan is a must see state if you are looking for a romantic royal experience.
 - Be mesmerised by the magnificence of the cliff-top fort of Mehrangarh, looking over the blue city of Jodpur.

 - A ride over the sea of the desert to the sandstone castle of Jaisalmer.

 - Visit the fairytale city of Udaipur and get lost in it's luxury and splendor and those romantic lakes and palaces.

 - The chaotic Capital, the Pink city of Jaipur offers an adventure and an amazing shopping experience.

 - The mystical small quaint town of Pushkar around the holy lake hosts India's most famous fairs.

 - Let your imagination run wild in the storybook world of frescoed havelis of Shekhawati.

 - A relaxed holiday in Bundi is exactly what you need after the cultural rollercoaster experience of Rajastan.

Other Locations You might like to visit :
  • Bharatpur
  • Deeg
  • Alwar
  • Ajmer
  • Kota
  • Chittorgarh
  • Mt Abu
  • Jodpur
  • Bikaner

Population: 56.5 million
Area: 342,239 sq km
Capital:  Jaipur
Main Languages: Hindi, Rajastani
When to go: mid October to mid March

Festivals in Rajastan

  • Jaipur Literature Festival  (jan; Jaipur; Featuring international and Indian authors and a pragram of talks, films, debares and theater.
  • Camel Festival (Jan - Feb; Bikaner) Best of breed competitions, races and decorated camels.
  • Nagaur Camel Fair (Jan/Feb; Nagaur) Camel and cattle fair that focuses on livestock trading but still colours the town with festivities.
  • Desert Festival (Feb; Jaisalmer) A chance for moustache - twirlers to compete in the 'Mr Desert' contest, and a host of other desert delights.
  • Elephant Festival (Mar; Jaipur) Parades, polo and human-versus-elephant tugs-of-war.
  • Thar Festival (Mar; Barmer) Just after the Jaisalmer Desert Festival, this features cultural shows, dancing and puppetary.
  • Gangaur (Mar/Apr; Jaipur) a statewide festival honouring Shiva and Parvati's love; it's celebrated with particular fervour in Jaipur.
  • Cattle Fair (Mar/Apr; Barmer) One of Rajastan's biggest cattle fairs.
  • Mewar Festival (Mar-Apr; Udaipur) Udaipur's version of Gangaur, with free cultural events and a cultural procession down to the lake. Local women step out in their finest.
  • Summer Festival (May; Mt Abu) The summer is dedicated to Rajastani Music.
  • Teej (Aug; Jaipur & Bundi) Celebrates the arrival of monsoon.
  • Dussehra Mela (Oct; Kota) Commemorates Rama's victory over Ravana (the demon king of Lanka). Its a spectacular time to visit Kota - huge fire-cracker filled effigies are burnt.
  • Marwar Festival (Oct; Jodhpur & Osiyan) Celebrates Rajastan heroes through music and dance; one day is held in jodhpur and one in Osiyan.
  • Bundi Ustav (Oct/Nov; Bundi) Cultural programs, fireworks and processions.
    Kashavrai Patan (Oct/Nov Bundi & Kota) Held in the month of Kartika, attended by thousands of piligrims.
  • Pushkar Mela (Nov; Pushkar) The Pushkar camel fair is the most famous festival in the state; its a massive congregation of camels, horses and cattle traders, piligrims and tourists.
  • Kolayat Mela (Nov; Kolayat) Held at the same time as Pushkar Mela, but with sadhus rather than camels.
  • Chandrabhaga Mela (Nov; Jhalrapatan) A cattle fair chance for thousands of piligrims to bathe in the holy Chandrabhaga river.
  • Winter Festival (Dec; Mt Abu) Focuses on music and folk dance.

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