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Rediff.com  » Getahead » 10 fantabulous things to do in Jodhpur

10 fantabulous things to do in Jodhpur

Last updated on: December 16, 2016 12:24 IST

India's Blue City is calling out to you.

Jodhpur, the Blue City, is among the Top 10 preferred destinations in the world for 2017 according to a TripAdvisor survey.

Have you been to Jodhpur? Or are you planning a trip?

Then this list is meant for you!

BTW, winter is the best season to pack your bags and head for enchanting Jodhpur.

1. A desert safari in the Thar

IMAGE: Experience camels, sand dunes, music and local food on a desert safari.
Photograph: Krishnendu Halder/Reuters

Along with your train/air ticket, book yourself on a safari into the Thar desert.

Pick between a day safari and a night one.

Day safaris might include a jolting desert camel ride. Or you can opt for a thrilling sand adventure in a four wheeler.

These edge-of-the-seat adventures are packed with thrills (Esselworld or Imagica to the power of 50) and you will come back with enough superlatives, with which to describe the expedition, that will last for lifetime.

If you choose a night safari, opt to stay in a tent/at a campsite in the middle of the desert. There will be dinner and fun around the bonfire.

Remember temperatures dip to as low as 10 degrees at night or less; travel well armed.

2. A tour of the Mehrangarh Fort

IMAGE: Mehrangarh Fort
Photograph: Rajesh Karkera/Rediff.com

Remember the iconic scene in Dark Knight Rises when Batman scurries out of the hellish well.

If you watch closely, the majestic Mehrangarh Fort looms in the background. What a view!

Built in 1460 by Rao Jodha of Mandore, who built Jodhpur, the fort sprawls across a cliff, 400 feet above the city.

Rudyard Kipling, who visited this fortress in 1899, said it was the 'work of giants'.

Hire a guide if you want to know more about Mehrangarh's history and how the rulers benefitted from its strategic location.

Admire its history and absorb its magnificent displays of paintings and royal artefacts.

The entry fee for domestic tourists is Rs 70 per head; international tourists Rs 600.

3. A break at Jaswant Thada

IMAGE: The gardens surrounding the cenotaph offer a moment of calm and a break after visiting the massive Mehrangarh fort nearby.
Photograph: Kind courtesy Rajendra Prabhune/Wikimedia Commons

This elegant white marble structure is actually a cenotaph built in memory of late Maharaja Jaswant Singh of Jodhpur by his son.

It boasts intricate marble work and is surrounded by peaceful gardens.

4. Visit Umaid Bhawan

IMAGE: Umaid Bhawan Palace is spell-bindingly beautiful.
Photograph: Rajesh Karkera/Rediff.com

Like most palaces in Rajasthan, this too functions in part as a royal residence for the Maharaja of Jodhpur, and in part as a hotel managed by the Taj group.

Built in the 1940s, the palace has more than 300 rooms. There are lavish durbar halls, enormous dining and meeting rooms, swimming pools, gardens and sporting grounds that will make your jaws drop.

IMAGE: A day's stay at Umaid Bhawan will set you back by a few lakhs.
Photograph: Vaihayasi Pande Daniel/Rediff.com

If splurging on a stay here is not in your budget, visit the palace museum and have a look at the stuffed leopards, murals, royal armour and porcelain ware.

5. Feel blue

IMAGE: The old city of Jodhpur retains its beautiful blue hue.
Photograph: Rajesh Karkera/Rediff.com

Don't miss finding the best vantage point from Mehrangarh Fort, to take a panoramic shot of the old city.

Among the many theories endorsed by city guides, the most believable is that the houses were painted blue, since 1460, protect them from termites. Indigo was mixed into the whitewash which gave the city this effect.

6. The Osian experience

IMAGE: Explore the inscriptions and carvings on the walls of the Jain temples in Osian.
Photograph: Kind courtesy Lakhindr/Wikimedia Commons

If you have a day spare, organise a trip to Osian village.

This ancient desert village, located about 70 kilometres from Jodhpur, offer an op to tour a group of ancient Hindu and Jain temples.

Take a closer look at the wall carvings here and you'll know why it's called the Khajuraho of Rajasthan.

At Osian, you can also view the sand dunes, marvel at the carvings and experience an awesome desert sunset.

7. Foodie fun

IMAGE: Kachoris, vadas, samosas -- take your pick!
Photograph: Kind courtesy Axel Drainville/Flickr/Creative Commons

Gorge on the traditional Dal Baati Choorma.

Feast on the different varieties of kachoris -- Pyaaz Ki Kachori, Mava Kachori, to name a few.

Then there is also the Jodhpuri Mirchi Vada and Mawa Samosa, spicy, crunchy and yum.

8. Slurp down a glass of camel milk. Or Makhani Lassi

IMAGE: A glass of Makhani Lassi will quickly calm your hunger pangs.
Photograph: Kind courtesy Benjamin Vander Steen/Flickr/Creative Commons

If you love starting the day with a glass of milk, stay in the middle of the desert!

Sip wonderful camel milk and tell everyone how it protects you from Type 1 diabetes.

If you don't like milk, you must sample a glassful of rich Makhani Lassi. Down two glasses and you won't feel hungry for two hours. A glass may not cost you more than Rs 50.

Don't forget to take a lassi moustache selfie.

9. Shop till you are broke

IMAGE: Colourful bangles, dupattas, saris, lehriyas, mojris -- 24 hours won't be enough to shop in Jodhpur.
Photograph: Kind courtesy Pranab Chatterjee/Flickr/Creative Commons (left) and mooncottage/Flickr/Creative Commons

A few kilometres from the Mehrangarh Fort is the street market near Ghanta Ghar (Clock Tower) where you can immerse yourself in limitless retail therapy.

From colourful, handmade lac bangles to embroidered bags and accessories with mirror-work detailing, there are plenty of options to splurge.

Hunt for the best silver jhumkis, kadhas, elaborate neck pieces and anklets.

IMAGE: Pick between colourful rugs made from wool or cotton, handwoven by village-based artists and get them delivered to wherever you live in the world.
Photograph: Vaihayasi Pande Daniel/Rediff.com

Don't miss shopping at the Mochi Bazaar where you'll end up buying more than one pair of mojris. Once you start wearing them, you'll realise how comfortable they are.

If you want to surprise your mom or aunt, get her a colourful bandhani (tie-dyed) sari from the Kapra Bazaar.

10. Invest in memorabilia

IMAGE: Make your puppets dance to folk music.
Photograph: Kind courtesy Bombman/Flickr/Creative Commons

You probably know that Jodhpur is famous for its sandstone curios.

How about acquiring a sandstone chess board or gift box? Maybe a chapati board and rolling pin, which are available at the Khadi outlets there.

Better still, bargain for a cute pair of puppets dressed in bandhani finery.

Every time you look at them, you'll be reminded of your vacation in the Blue City.