Tourist Attractions In Rajasthan India, Tourist Places in Rajasthan, Rajasthan Destinations and tourist attractions, Rajasthan India travel destinations, Places to travel in Rajastan

Tourist Attractions In Rajasthan India, Tourist Places in Rajasthan, Rajasthan Destinations and tourist attractions, Rajasthan India travel destinations, Places to travel in Rajastan

Rajasthan occupies a prominent place in the tourist map of India. The state, with its bounteous resources and diverse settings, is one of the most frequently visited place in the Northern India. From ancient forts to modern luxuries, this place has it all. Beautiful cities dotted with monuments, palaces, forts, havelis, etc., make up the charm of the place. These places are looked upon as the living records of the glorious past.

The diverse physiography of Rajasthan gives it a very distinct outlook. Arid lands, barren rocky hills and desert outbacks forms a definite boundary and helps to provide a unique identity to the place. A journey through these places is a wonderful experience. The native population reflect a very unique attitude towards life and set of traditions, almost mystical.

Add to this the enchanting music, dance, fairs, festivals and the place qualifies for a National Geographic documentary. Cities and town that once existed as independent states, bear quite a resemblance. These cities happen to be popular visiting stations and as such comprise the famous tourist destinations of Rajasthan.

Some popular Tourist Destinations in the Rajasthan as such include:

Mt Abu

Jaipur - The Pink City of India

One of the major tourist destinations of India, Jaipur India is given a world wild title, as the Pink City due to the pink wash applied to its buildings. Travel to Jaipur - the capital city of Rajasthan, it is an abode of extensive boulevard and beautiful gardens. Jaipur India was founded by Sawai Jaisingh II, in 1727 AD, still preserves its glory of rich history and culture. The past comes alive in its impressive forts, majestic palaces and in its royal building which for centuries were the abode of royal families. Rajasthani jewelry, art and fabrics maintain an ageless feature and are surely a treasure-trove for the shoppers. These exquisite items are of great demand in the international market. Jaipur Tourism with its romantic grace takes one to an era of kingship and heritage.

Travel to Jaipur, one of the most treasured destination of Rajasthan. Your Jaipur travel will enable you to explore the forts and palaces of the city. Jaipur travel will involve sightseeing tour to City Palace, Amber Fort and Hawa Mahal. The city of Jaipur is multifaceted and offers innumerable attractions to people coming from all across the world.It is a pristine jewel in the sands of Rajasthan, the city is wll known for its marvellous architecture and town planning. The city offers a perfect mix of culture which needs to experienced on your Rajasthan tour.


This picturesque town was founded by Bhatti Rajput Rawal Jaisal in 1156 and located in the western region of Rajasthan, right in the heart of the Thar Desert. The Jaisalmer fort is one of the key tourist attractions in Rajasthan owing to the color of the sandstone blocks it is made of. The Jain temples and golden sand dunes at Sam are the must-visit spots in Jaisalmer.


It is an important pilgrimage place of Rajasthan famous for the Dargah (tomb) of the famous 13th-century Sufi Saint, Hazrat Khwaja Moinuddin Hasan Chisti. The traditional handicrafts of Ajmer are remarkable and popular among tourists. The town is bordered by Ana Sagar Lake on one side and rolling hills of the Aravalli range on the other.


It is one of the most attractive towns of Rajasthan situated on the edge of the Thar Desert and is home to a number of important attractions. The most sought-after tourist attractions of Jodhpur include Umaid Bhawan Palace, Girdikot & Sardar Market, Mehrangarh Fort and Jaswant Thada.


This wonderful town flaunts a glorious past depicting tales of courage, endurance and gallantry. It was established by Rao Bikaji in the year 1488. There are many things to see in Bikaner including Junagarh Fort, the Lalgarh Palace, the Kali temple, the Ganga Golden Jubilee museum and the Camel Research Farm. You should not miss out to be a part of the camel festival which is held in the month of January and reflects the true spirit of Rajasthan.


It is nested in the North Western part of Rajasthan and is bounded by hills and mountains. It is also famous for the stunning palaces that get mirrored in the serene blue water of Lake Pichola. You will find some of the most outstanding tourist attractions in Rajasthan located here such as City Palaces, Suraj Gokhada, Pratap Memorial and Jagdish Temple.

Albert Hall Museum Jaipur:

This museum is supposed to be the oldest museum of the state. Colonel Sir Swinton Jacob designed it in 1876 to greet King Edward VII as Prince of Wales on his visit to India. It was opened to public ten years later. Positioned amidst the gardens of Ram Niwas Bagh in Jaipur, this museum has an assortment of rare articles on its display including textiles, carpets, paintings, metal and wood crafts, pottery, arms and weapons, flora and fauna of the state, toys, dolls and even an Egyptian mummy that belongs to the Ptolemaic Epoch. It is also known for housing the famous carpet, which portrays the scene of a Persian garden carpet with running water streams that was bought at a dear price from Shah Abbas of Persia, by Mirza Raja Jai Singh I. It also puts on show the miniature paintings of a number of sub-schools of Rajasthan.

The galleries on the ground floor of the museum have been completely remodeled and restructured since 1959 in an attempt to depict the uniqueness of the dresses and jewellery of all the classes and tribes of Rajasthani people including the privileged class that mainly consists of Rajputs and the merchant class. It includes the lifestyle of the tribals such as Meenas, Bhopas, Bhils, Gadoliya Lohars and many more. One gallery has also been committed to the henna body art of Rajasthan, popularly called as 'Mehndi Mandana', which makes an exhibition of the typical Rajasthani motifs and designs that are so well recognized as ethnic all over the world. Puppets and Phad paintings (the painted scrolls depicting the life of Pabuji Rathore, who was a great folk-hero from Marwar) occupies yet another gallery of the museum. The highlights of the museum, however, are displayed in its central gallery, which is completely devoted to the Rajasthani music and dance forms.

Amber Fort Jaipur:

Raja Man Singh built Amer Palace in 16th century. It is a mesmerizing blend of Hindu and Mughal architecture. Rajputs made use of the Amber Fort from the 16th century up to the foundation of Jaipur in 1727 both for defense purpose as well as the residential purposes. Thus within its mighty walls, one finds charming gardens and magnificent palaces made from marble and precious stones, richly decorated with intricate stonemason works and paintings, which represented royal splendor and luxury.

Situated at Jaipur, the reflection of Amber Fort in the lake below looks almost divine. It is not at all surprising to know that this majestic and stately fort was once the Capital of Minas. Amer Fort houses Jai Mandir, a famous temple which has Sheesh Mahal, a beautiful hall of mirrors that are so artistically set that even a tiny ray of light gets reflected in the mirrors and illumines the hall dazzlingly. Sheesh Mahal is famous all over the world as one of the most desirable tourist attraction. Other places of interest in this fort are Sukh Niwas and Ganesh Pole.

City Palace Jaipur:

Situated in the capital of Rajasthan, the City Palace of Jaipur or the chief palace is a titillating fusion of conventional Rajasthan and Mughal architecture. The gigantic palace complex engages one seventh of the walled city of Jaipur. Originally constructed by Maharaja Jai Singh II of the Kachhwaha clan of Rajputs, embellishments have been made to the palace complex from time to time by many of his successors. The complex is divided into a series of beautiful courtyards, extensive gardens and magnificent buildings. It houses a number of palatial structures, most notable ones being the Chandra Mahal, Mubarak Mahal, Badal Mahal, Shri Govind Dev Temple and the City Palace Museum.

Mubarak Mahal or the Auspicious Palace is in the first courtyard. Maharaja Madho Singh II built it in the late 19th century. It holds the textile section of the Maharaja Sawai Man Singh II Museum. A magnificent gateway leads to a stately courtyard known as Diwan-I-Khas or Hall of Private Audience, which is indeed an open hall ornamented with a double row of columns sporting scalloped arches. There are the two largest silver vessels in the world that won their place in the Guinness Book of World Records that were used for carrying water from the holy Ganges for the personal use of the Raja Madho Singh II, when he went on his journey to England. Now, a part of the museum, Diwan-E-Aam or the Hall of Public Audience has intricate decorations in deep red and gold. Ridhi Sidhi Pol is a gateway with four small doorways that are decorated with motifs that depict the four seasons.

The poised seven-storeyed Chandra Mahal or the Moon Palace has been retained by the royal family in part and still serves as their present-day residence. It offers classic views of the gardens and the city. Traditionally ornamented, paintings, floral decorations, mirror walls and ceilings adorn the palace. Each storey has a distinguishing name and its ground and first floor is occupied by the Maharaja Sawai Man Singh II Museum.

Chittorgarh Fort:

The Chittorgarh Fort has witnessed three bloody sieges and 'jauhars' (a Rajput tradition in which royal maidens and ladies immolate themselves in the fire to save their honor from the cruel hands of the enemy, when there is no chance of defeating the enemy). The walls and the atmosphere is still haunted with the gloom of despair, valiant pride of the Rajput queens and ladies and sheer zeal and bravery of their men who refused to cow down before the enemy. The Rajput style of architecture is clearly visible in the fort, which is said to be the Gahlot and Sisodia ruler of Mewar from the 8th to the 16th century. Named after Chittrangad Mauraya, the magnificent fort rises 150 m above the surrounding region and runs to an approximate length of 3 km covering an area of 60 acres and peripheral length of 13 km.

The legend says that when the talks of Rani Padmini's beauty reched the years of Sultan Alauddin Khilji, the powerful ruler of Delhi, he requested her husband, Rana Rattan Singh, for a glimpse of the queen. Though, it went against the honor code of Rajputs, yet he was allowed to get a glimpse of the queen through the reflection of the queen in a water tank that overlooked the palace. Alauddin, then, had the audacity to attack Chittor to gain her possession. He won the war but lost Rani Padmini who committed 'jauhar' to save her honor.

The entrance of the Chittorgarh has seven massive gates, the two towers known as the 'Kirti Stambh' (Tower of Fame) and the 'Vijay Stambh' (Tower of Victory) along with several temples, reservoirs, and palaces dating between the 9th and 17th centuries.

Dargah Sharif Ajmer:

Dargah Sharif' or 'Holy Dargah' is one of the most sacred Muslim shrines in the country. Venerated by both Hindus and Muslims, it is the tomb of Khwaja Moin-ud-din Chisti, a Sufi saint who came from Persia and devoted his life to the service and upliftment of the poor and downtrodden. The Dargah has a massive gate with silver doors built in several stages. Revered by the Mughal rulers, it has touches of Humayun to Shah Jahan in its structural architecture. A silver railing and a marble screen surround the actual tomb of the saint, made of marble with a gold plated dome.

Every year Urs is held here for six days in his remembrance. It is said that when he was 114 years old, the saint locked himself in a room for six days to pray and left his mortal body in solitude. Several thousand devotees throng to this place during this time of the year and food is cooked in huge cauldrons and served to the devotees. The surprising part is that the people serve the food while standing inside the scalding hot food in the cauldrons. These cauldrons are said to be offered by Emperor Akbar when the saint blessed him with an heir for the throne.

The pilgrims make rich offerings called 'nazrana' at the sacred spot where the saint has been entombed that include rose and jasmine flowers, sandalwood paste, perfumes and incense that put in to the fragrance that floats in the air inside the shrine. Cash offerings are also made. Also offered by devotees are the 'chaadar', 'ghilaph' and 'neema', which are votive offerings for the tomb. Outside the holy place of the Dargah, professional singers called 'qawwals' sit in groups and sing hymns in the praises of the saint in a characteristic high-pitched voice. One can also see 'fakirs' on the main gate begging for alms in the name of the Khwaja. Qawwalis at the shrine and fragrance of the incense sticks together create a divine effect.

Fateh Sagar Lake Udaipur:

To be found to the north of Lake Pichola, Maharana Jai Singh as a medium-sized perennial storage reservoir originally built the pretty Fateh Sagar Lake of Udaipur in 1678. Hills on three sides and Pratap Memorial on the fourth surround it and thus it presents captivating scenery. Since it had been destroyed due to heavy rains, Maharana Fateh Singh took it upon himself to bear the pains and expenditure of reconstructing the dam and it was in honor of his contributions to the place that the lake was named after him.

Today, in its present capacity, this lake serves as a second major source of drinking water of the city of Udaipur. One may opt to drive along the east bank while enjoying the scenic beauty of the lakeside or go in for a boat ride to any of the three islands of the lake that is a sure to be a pleasure with their distinct fervor and panoramic location. The largest of the three islands is indeed a lovely garden known as Nehru Park, which has been named after the esteemed first Prime Minister of India, Jawahar Lal Nehru. Its focal point is the boat shaped café, which is a hot favorite amongst the visitors who love to sip coffee as they take in the reigning tranquility and serenity of the place. The second island is for more scientific-minded people, especially those who love astronomy, as this is the place where a high-resolution solar observatory is strategically installed. It is considered a prime site for obtaining good solar images because of its secluded location with clear skies above and clear waters below it. The smallest island to the west has proved itself useful by providing a site to support a jet fountain. Lake Fateh Sagar is connected to Lake Pichhola through a canal that has gates. The lake has shape of a pear but has scant vegetation surrounding it.

Havelis of Jaisalmer:

The beautiful sandstone mansions of Jaisalmer's wealthy merchants are known as 'havelis'. Their elaborate homes are a poem etched out in sandstone with infinite details and pains, carved and pieced together in different patterns, and though they are lavish and loud in nature, there is a perfect harmony that characterizes them and they are a treat for the eyes of the beholder.

Nathmal ki Haveli of the late 19th century was also a prime minister's house and two brothers carved its left and right wings, which are similar in their looks. Its highlights are yellow sandstone elephants that stand majestically at its entrance and the intricately carved front door. It seems that the jewelers instead of the stone-carvers did the so-minute carvings of the building.

Patwon ki Haveli is the most convoluted and outstanding of all the Jaisalmer havelis. It stands in a narrow lane in the centre of the city and one of its apartments is painted with stunning murals. Built by the well-renowned dealers in brocade, gold and silver embroidery of their time from Afghanistan to China, Guman Chand Patwa and his five sons, there are five suites in the building dating between 1800 and 1860 and was so designed as to showcase their beauty of work in the stone carving of their mansion.

Salim Singh ki Haveli was built about 300 years ago and a part of this is still being used as residence. It was owned by Salim Singh, a former prime minister of the state of Jaisalmer and has an arched roof with superb carved brackets inn the form of peacocks. It is worth a lengthy look and admiration of the tourists who revel to see this pride of Jaisalmer architecture, which is now a part of the national heritage. Situated at the eastern end of the city, it seems to have sprung out of Arabian Nights, with its top blossoming like a wild flower.

Hawa Mahal Jaipur:

Maharaja Sawai Pratap Singh erected Hawa Mahal or the Palace of the Wind in 1799, which eventually became one of the major landmarks of Jaipur. An integral part of the City Palace, it is actually an extension of its women's chambers, and is secluded from the main complex. Lal Chand Usta designed this exemplary five storeyed building in red and pink sand stone. It is beautifully outlined with white borders and its motifs are painted with quick lime. The monument provides a spectacular view of Jaipur city overlooking the road avenues, intersections and colorful crowds in the market. It was originally conceived in the era when ladies lived behind veils and screens so that the ladies of the royal household can see glimpses of the everyday life and the royal processions in the city without being seen by others.

Its delicate façade looks more like a screen from the roadside than a palace. It looks like a honeycomb with its pyramid-shaped structure that has tier after tier of 953 small casements. Each casement has tiny lattice worked pink windows, along with small balconies and arched roofs with hanging cornices that were deftly modeled and carved. These small windows also serve to circulate cool air in the palace, an ingenious device to keep the place cool without the use of electricity, even in hot months. The pyramidal outline is smooth throughout by shoving and multiplying casements to fill up the spaces as requires and uses repetition of motifs to augment its beauty.

One can enter the Hawa Mahal from the City Palace side, through a pompous door, which opens into a large courtyard surrounded by a double storeyed building on three sides that houses a small archeological museum here. However, the eastern wing is five storeys high, the above three storeys being only a single room thick. The building stands on a raised platform and is actually a fifty-foot high thin shield, not more than a foot thick and has the small intimate chambers, giving the palace its distinguishing façade. No regular stairs have been built to reach the upper floors except the ramps. Hawa Mahal is currently under the supervision of the State archeological department and the best time to see it is at sunrise when sunlight through the latticed windows renders it a divine glow.

Jantar Mantar Jaipur:

In Sanskrit, 'Jantar Mantar' is used for 'Magical Devices' and it is undoubtedly so with the huge masonry instruments, which were placed here to measure 'the harmony of the heavens'. Conceived by Sawai Raja Jai Singh II, it was completed in seven years from 1728 to 1734. Each instrument that forms a part of this observatory is assigned and used for a particular function and is known to give an accurate reading.

The Samrat Yantra is a large sundial that looks like a triangular structure and is marked with hours and minutes. The arc at the left shows the time from sunrise to midday while the arc at the right side shows the time from midday to sunset. The time is read by observing where the shadow is sharpest at the time. The sundials have been constructed on latitude 27o north and to adjust the reading to the Indian standard Time (IST), one has to add anything between 1 minute 15 seconds to 32 minutes according to the time of year and solar position.

The Dhruva Yantra is used to locate the position of 12 Zodiac signs and also the Pole Star at night. The traditional unit of measurement started with the smallest unit being 'human breath' that has been calculated to be of 6 seconds duration. According to this scale, 4 breaths or 24 seconds equals 1 pal, 60 pals or 24 minutes equals 1 ghadi and 60 ghadis or 24 hours equals 1 day. The Narivalya Yantra is a distinctive sundial with two dials - the first dial facing south reads time when the sun is in the southern hemisphere, i.e., from 21 September to 21 March and the other one facing north reads time for the rest of the year when the sun is in the northern hemisphere, i.e., from 21 March to 21 September. The various other instruments include Jai Singh's seat (the seat of the Observer), Kranti Yantra used for direct measurement of the longitude and latitude of the extraterrestrial bodies, Raj Yantra or the King of Instruments used only once a year to calculate the Hindu calendar, Unnsyhsmsa yantra used for finding the altitudes of the heavenly bodies, the Chakra yantra that gives the angle of an object from the equator and Disha yantra or the compass that always points to the north.

Other instruments include Dakshina yantra used for observing the position and movement of heavenly bodies when passing over the meridian and the Large Samrat Yantra, is ten times larger than the Samrat Yanta and ten times more accurate too. It is accurate down to 2 seconds and is also used to predict the length and heaviness of the monsoon for the local area. The Rashivalayas Yantra has 12 sundials for the signs of the zodiac while Jai Prakash Yantra act as a double check on all the other instruments.

Lake Pichola Udaipur:

The boat ride in the pristine blue waters of the Lake Pichola, especially, in the backdrop of setting sun is enough to seduce anybody to come to it. Maharaja Udai Singh certainly did not miscalculate the panoramic beauty of the lake, which is surrounded by beautiful hills, when he chose to expand it. Later two beautiful island palaces in the middle of the lake were added by Maharaja Jagjit Singh, now, known as Jag Niwas (popularly known as the Lake Palace) and Jag Mandir that adds to the gleaming beauty of the lake. One of the most amorous holiday spots of the world, the one-time summer residence of the royalty of Udaipur, Lake Palace is made up of white marble. It has now been converted into a magnificent heritage hotel with beautiful pavilions, planned out gardens and legends that always move hand-in-hand with any Rajasthani marvel.

Lake Pichola has a masonry dam popularly known as the Badipol, which is 4 km long and 3 km wide. However, it is not very deep and it is not unusual that one can walk up to the island palaces from the shore during severe droughts. The City Palace titivates the east bank of the lake while an overabundance of marble temples, mansions and palaces and a number of bathing ghats envelope it from all around. Originally started by Udai Singh, additions have been done from time to tome to this building but in such an ingenious manner that it is inconceivable that the building was not planned as one whole structure. Standing on the shores of Lake Pichola, one can arrive at the palace through 'Hathi Pol' (translated as 'the Elephant Gate'), the 'Bara Pol' (translated as 'the Great Gate') and the Tripolia (translated as 'the Triple Gate'). Complete with magnificent pavilions, terraces, corridors and hanging gardens, the focal points of the place are Sheesh Mahal (The Mirror Palace), Krishna Vilas (The Abode of Lord Krishna), Chini Chitrashala (Chinese Art Gallery), Mor Chowk (Peacock Court) and the Amar Vilas (The Eernal Abode). Only a few lakes in the world can boast of so many beautiful structures all at one place and thus, Lake Pichola is certainly not worth a miss.

Pushkar Rajasthan:

Pushkar is one of the most famous Hindu pilgrimage sites and it is said that a dip in the sacred lake of Pushkar is akin to the visits to the four main Hindu shrines known as 'Chaar Dhaam'. The charming lake of Pushkar is surrounded by hills on three sides and sand dunes on the fourth and presents an ideal site for the religious and cattle fair, which is held every year in the month of October or November. Pushkar alone has more than 400 temples and is said to be the only place with a temple dedicated to Lord Brahma, one of the most important member of the Holy Trinity of Hindus who is known as 'The Creator').

Historically, Pushkar is not far behind. It has it share of being one of the cities of great strategic importance and was bagged by Mehmood of Ghanzi on one of his periodic forays from Afghanistan. Later Mughals acquired it and it is said that it was here that the British established contact with the Moghuls for the first time. In 1616, Pushkar witnessed the meeting of Sir Thomas Roe with Emperor Jehangir. Pushkar eventually fell into the lap of Scindias until it reached the hands of British in 1818, who preferred to keep it directly under their control rather than letting it remain as a part of a princely state.

Pushkar owes much of its beauty to the beautiful hills surrounding it and 'Nag pahar' (translated as 'The Snake Mountain') that forms a natural boundary between Ajmer and Pushkar. According to Hindu mythology, all the gods visit Pushkar for five days in a year to bless the devout and absolve them of their sins. There are many legends associated to the origin of Pushkar and Pushkar Fair but they have one thing in common. They are all associated with Lord Brahma. A visit to Pushkar Fair is an experience of a lifetime and is certainly not worth a miss.

Sahelion Ki Bari Udaipur:

Saheliyon-ki-Bari or the 'Garden of the Maids of Honor' of Udaipur was once reserved for the royal ladies who came here for a stroll. A well planned garden, with extensive lawns and shady walks situated on the banks of the dainty Fateh Sagar Lake was constructed in 18th century by Maharana Sangram Singh for forty-eight young ladies-in-waiting sent to the royal house, as part of the dowry as a cool summer retreat for them. Located in the northern precincts of the city, the suburb of Polo Ground, it has now been opened for the public. Its numerous fountains located strategically in the four scenic pools of the garden attract as much tourists as the chiseled and sculpted kiosks and marble elephants. However, they had been added later. A rose garden with over 100 varieties greets the visitors.

The garden's lotus pools and fountains have been so placed that they are at a lower level than the waters of Fateh Sagar Lake and are thus are gravity-fed. The main fountain sports a white marble pavilion in the centre and the contrasting black marble for the four corners of the pond. The 'Savan-Bhado' fountain is on the left of the central square and there is yet another one on the right. The pond on the west features daintily sculptured chhatris (pavilions) of soft black stone, which are surrounded on all sides by more fountains. It is one of the finest examples of Hindu landscape gardening and is a favorite picnic spot of the city. The gardens had been damaged once when the water of the lake flooded them but Maharana Fateh Singh reconstructed in the late nineteenth centuries to lend them their present forms.

Shrinathji Temple Nathdwara

48 km from Udaipur, Shrinathji of Nathdwara is actually a temple of Lord Krishna with his image carved out of a single block of black marble. Set amidst idyllic hills, it is said to be the second richest temple in the world. The royalty of Udaipur pray at the temple and as the head of his clan, the Maharana is also called as Shriji among his people. As the legend goes, Goswami Dev fled from Mathura to escape from Aurangzeb and carried this particular idol in a chariot with an intention to take it to Udaipur. However, his chariot got stuck in Sinhad and finally, he took it as a token of the divine will and decided to consecrated it on the spot. This place is now known as Nathdwara. Glimpses of the idol situated in the inner sanctum of the temple are permitted only for short intervals eight times a day in different moods. Besides those intervals, the temple precincts is relatively free from crowds and people who are here to capture the beauty of art and architecture of the place, may move around at their leisure and enjoy the still-preserved royal splendor of the bygone era.

The temple is referred to as 'Haveli', commonly used in Rajasthan for the mansions of the wealthy merchants. Temple servants wear the clothes and costumes of the bygone era of kings and queens and serve the deity as the beloved prince and darling of Nandaraj and Yashoda maiya, the adoptive parents of Lord Krishna. At regular intervals, there is a live performance of classical music in its many fragrant marble halls and courtyards, to entertain Him. There are 'pankhwalas' who still pull on the large fans manually to cool the interiors. There are drums and trumpets to announce the 'Royal Darshan' in the noon just as the announcements that the kings entering their courts were once made. The temple is built around several split-level courtyards to keep it airy with a solid-white façade at its exteriors. There are paintings of elephants, horses, beautiful maidens and doorkeepers on all the doorways. It is said that famous pichwai paintings originated from the custom of painted curtain cloths behind the idol.

Umaid Bhawan Palace Jodhpur:

The famine had struck the arid and barren land of Jodhpur and farmers were dying of hunger as their lands yielded nothing and they had no money to buy food. It was then, when like a judicious king, Maharaja Umaid Singh of Jodhpur undertook the construction of this magnificent building as a famine relief project to provide employment and a regular source of income to his subjects.

However, he didn't start the building in a slip-shod hurried manner. He took a voyage to England in 1925, in search of an architect and commissioned the London firm Lanchester and Lodge. It took 16 years and hard work of over 3000 artisans to complete this spectacular sandstone palace, named after its maker as the Umaid Bhawan Palace. The royal residence of Jodhpur, this splendid palace has the distinction of being the largest private residence in the world and one million square feet of the finest marble was consumed in its construction. The palace stretches across 26 acres of land out of which 15 acres have been occupied by the gardens. The palace has aristocratic European interiors and latest facilities.

Designed by Henry Vaughan Lanchester, it was completed in 1943. The upheaval in the political systems pushed royalty to take the back seat and the reign came into the hands of Government of India. By 1971, the privileges, titles and privy purses from the former rulers of the states were withdrawn and it became difficult for the princely families to maintain their residential palaces. However, the young and bright Maharaja Gaj Singh came up with a new idea and converted a part of his palace into the finest luxury hotel in India and even the world in 1977. The extravagant art deco interiors have been carefully restored for public viewing. This sand stone façade building now boasts of housing the erstwhile ruler of Jodhpur, a Five Star Deluxe Hotel and a Museum.

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