Jodhpur

Jodhpur is also known as blue or sun city, It is the second-largest city in the Indian state of Rajasthan.

Named after King Rao Jodha it was historically capital of the Marwar kingdom.

Jodhpur is geographically located in the center of Rajasthan and can be easily reached in a couple of hours from Udaipur, Jaisalmer, Bikaner, Ajmer, Shekhawati & Jaipur.

Here is the list of places we visited in Jodhpur during our two days stay in Oct-19.

Day 1

Mehrangarh Fort

Mehrangarh Fort is one of the largest forts in the world and is visited by tourists all across the globe.

Built-in 15th century by Maharaja Rao Jodha this fortress has thick walls and large courtyards. It has a total of seven gates built by Maharaja Man Singh to celebrate his victories over Jaipur, Udaipur, and Bikaner.

Built on a hilltop known as Bhakurcheeria (mountain of birds), you can see hundreds of eagles flocking it.

Fort houses museums, craft markets, cannons, armor collection, temples, gardens, and restaurants.

You will need a minimum of 3 hours to explore this fort. It has also featured in the 2012 movie The Dark Knight Rises.

Jaswant Thada

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Jaswant Thada is one km from Mehrangarh Fort. It is a cenotaph built-in memory of Raja Jaswant Singh and serves as the cremation ground for the Royal Family of Mawar.

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It is built of pure white marble and has intricate designs all over the walls and ceiling. It even has a well-maintained garden where you can sit and relax for some time. 

Rao Jodha Desert Rock Park

Rao Jodha Desert Rock Park is within walking distance from Fort. It was created in 2006 to restore the natural ecology of rocky wasteland around Mehrangarh Fort.

We visited it around sunset, post climbing a hillock in the park you can click magnificent shots of Mehrangarh fort.

It isn’t a normal park as you have to walk through rocky patches and climb really steep parts and even tickets are a bit expensive. If you have some time then try visiting it around sunrise or just before sunset.

Mandore Garden

Post 20 min drive from Rao Jodha park we reached Mandore gardens. Mandore is an ancient town and was the capital of Marwar before it was abandoned in the 15th-century.

These gardens are huge and have many centuries-old temples that tell you stories of the glorious past of Marwar. Sadly by the time, we reached it was a bit dark. This place needs to be explored around 5 pm or early morning to enjoy the best views. If you are visiting Jodhpur please don’t miss it.

Janta Sweets Foodcourt

After a long and tiring day, we decided to have our dinner in Janta Sweets Foodcourt.

We had Onion Kachodi, Rainbow Kulfi, Cheese Sandwich, and polish it down with loads of Chaas (buttermilk).


And then packed some Gevar packed to take back home.

Day 2

It was our last day in Jodhpur as we had to catch a train to Mumbai at around 7 pm. We decided to start a bit late, packed our bags had breakfast at homestay. Post requesting them to keep our luggage at their reception we booked Uber till Clock Market. 

Clock Market

Toorji Ka Jalra

A well-kept step-well in the heart of the city. Every corner of this step-well is Insta worthy and you should definitely spend some time here.

Shahi Samosa & Mirchi Vada

This place serves the best samosas in India, You should definitely try their Samosa and Mirchi Vada

Umaid Bhavan Palace 

Umaid Bhavan Palace is one of the world’s largest private residences. This palace has 347 rooms and a major part of it is converted into a Hotel. A small section of the palace is converted into a museum which is open to tourists. The royal family still lives in a section of this palace. It was even awarded the world’s best hotel at the Traveller’s Choice Award organized by TripAdvisor. International celebrities Priyanka Chopra and Nick Jonas’s tied knot here.

Why Jodhpur is called Blue City?

  • Since the weather here remains hot all year and blue reflects heat so people have painted their house to keep them cool.
  • When the fort was built most of the Bhramins painted their houses blue to identify themselves as Blue color is associated with Lord Shiva.
  • Limestone and Copper are available in abundance near Jodhpur, so these must have been the cheapest and easily available options to paint houses blue.

Some interesting Graffiti on the walls

Toorji ka jalra, clock tower & Fort

Tips:

  • Stick to easy peasy cotton wear and comfortable shoes as you have to walk a lot and climb to Mehrangarh Fort is steep.
  • Plan your visit during winter months ( Nov-Feb) and avoid peak summers.
  • Wear a cap and sunglasses as it gets very hot during peak hours.
  • We visited Mehrangarh fort during the first half of the day, I think if you want better photos you should visit post-lunch and stay till sunset to capture some amazing shots.
  • Don’t forget to hire a guide or opt for the audio guide with headphones while purchasing your tickets to Mehrangarh Fort
  • Monuments hold deeper meaning when you know about their past too.
  • I am not a fan of shopping while I am traveling but you can definitely buy some bangles, Colorful dupattas, silver jewelry, and famous jodhpuris.
  • Carry a water bottle, you can get it re-filled at many places
  • All the tourist places in Jodhpur have very good facilities, definitely the best I have seen in India.
  • I preferred uber for traveling within Jodhpur, it worked perfectly for us family of 4.
    • Uber is definitely a cheaper option, you don’t have to bargain with cab and auto drivers – trust me saves a lot of time and patience.
    • You can spend as much time as you want at any place rather than dealing with drivers who start rushing things.

Kumbhalgarh – The Great Wall Of India

This Mewar Fort is a World Heritage Site built in the 15th century by Rana Kumbha. It is one of the largest forts in the world.

Kumbhalgarh separates Mewar and Marwar from each other and has served many Mewar rulers as a refuge in times of conflict. Due to its strategic position and Fort remained invincible.

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Historic Significance

  • The present fort was built by the great Rana Kumbha in 1443.
  • King Udai Singh in his early childhood took refuge in this fort when his uncle tried to kill him.
  • Birthplace of legendary king Maharana Pratap.
  • Though Invincible it was captured only once by the Mughal army and Rajput Kings by deceit when they poisoned the water supply of the fort.

Mighty walls of Kumbhalgarh

These mighty walls are 15 feet wide extended up to 36kms and passing through 13 hills making it the second-largest walls in the world.

Temples of Khumbhalgad

Fort compound houses many beautiful temples most of which are Jain temples and rest all Hindu temples.

Neelkanth Mahadev Temple, dedicated to Lord Shiva is famous for 5-feet high lingam. Maharana Kumbha would begin his day by offering prayers to Lord Shiva. He was so tall that when he sat to worship, his eyes were at the same level as the deity.

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Main Fort

Kumbhalgarh Fort is built on an elevation of 1100 meters on the Aravalli range.

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Day view of the fort and temples.

Night view of the fort and temples, when the fort is beautifully lit for an hour every night.

Steep climb uphill to the highest part of the fort called Badal mahal.

Badal Mahal built on a hilltop and offers a superb bird’s eye view of the surroundings.

Birth Place of Maharana Pratap born in 1540.

Every year they host a 3-day Kumbhalgarh Festival in winter months. We were lucky to visit Kumbhalgad during that time.

On a chilly night sitting on the mighty walls of 500 old fortresses, and witnessing a classical music program was an experience of a lifetime.

How to reach

  • ~ 2:30 hours from Udaipur
  • ~ 1 hour from Ranakpur
  • ~ 4 hours from Jodhpur

Stay

We stayed in Jungle camp Kumbhalgarh which is around 15 min drive from the fort. Property is good with clean huge rooms with old-style Rajputana Furniture. I liked the vibe of the place.

Tips

  • You can cover it on a day trip from Udaipur, but I would suggest staying here overnight as the fort is lit in the evening and it is an amazing sight to witness.
  • Since the climb to the fort is steep, it gets hot during the day. Please wear comfortable shoes and clothes.
  • Start early from Udaipur cover Eklingji & Ranakpur temples on the way, and reach fort around 4 pm.
  • It takes 2-3 hours to cover all the main places, then stays for the light and sound show.
  • If possible plan your visit during a 3-day Kumbhalgad festival during winter months.
  • It gets a bit chilly post-sunset in winter months, I would suggest carrying a thin jacket.
  • Best time to visit October – February.
  • You can even cover it on the way from Udaipur to Jodhpur.