Literally meaning “land of kings,” Rajasthan is a land of rugged forts, lavishly frescoed palaces and colourful, hardy people; set against a stark backdrop of desert dunes, as far as the eyes can see. Till Independence, it comprised 20 princely states, ruled by rival Rajput clans. A place where tales of valour and sacrifice are still recounted and the clash of swords can still be heard over the shifting sands; Rajasthan has retained the royal flavour and attracted foreign tourists like none other.
Have the time of your life in the ‘Pink City,’ Jaipur or the ‘golden, desert city, Jaisalmer. Traipse through time as you visit the painted havelis (old homes of noblemen) of Shekhawati or the lakes and palaces of Jaipur and Udaipur; live like a Maharajah at one of the heritage hotels now run by the royals; or take an unforgettable, night safari on camelback and camp in the desert.
Among its masterpiece of memories, Rajasthan also has some of the world’s best tiger reserves and is a shopper’s paradise with its varied handicrafts, gemstones, lacquer bangles and chunky silver jewellery. Last but not least, it has one of the world’s top eight luxury trains, the Palace on Wheels, with its vintage deluxe saloon cars, taking you on a journey into the past.
Of tourist interest: Hawa Mahal (Palace of Winds), Jantar Mantar (ancient astronomical observatory), Jaipur Heritage Festival, Ranthambore & Sariska sanctuaries, Pushkar fair etc.
Official Website : tourism.rajasthan.gov.in