Jodhpur is the second largest city of the state of Rajasthan. It has been drawing the attention of tourists from all over the world. Standing as the sentinel of the country's western border, Jodhpur is famous for its magnificent forts and palaces.
Jodhpur is situated at the edge of the Thar Desert with Jaisalmer on its west, Barmar, Jalor and Pali on its south, Bikaner on its north, and Nagaur on the eastern side. It has a typical desert climate, dry and hot. The ideal time to visit this place is the period between November and March. The city is like an oasis in the vast desert, with a variety of thorny shrubs all over the area. It also has some of the animal species that can survive in an arid and dry environment.
The Rajput chief Rao Jodha founded the city of Jodhpur in 1459. Earlier, it was the capital of the Marwar state of Rajasthan. A 10-km-long wall made of stone surrounds the city. Eight doors stand all through the wall leading to different places of Jodhpur. The city has about 100 towers most of which are surrounded by defensive battlements. The guards' chambers, constructed high up above the ground and fitted with iron spikes on top, could be seen alongside these walls.
Fairs & Festivals
Jodhpur celebrates the Marwar festival with great fun and joy. It is a two-day program of fun, folk music, folk dance and folklore. Nagpanchami, the worship of the king of the serpents, is also celebrated with enthusiasm.
Best Time to Visit
One of the most popular destinations of Rajasthan, Jodhpur is best visited between the months of October and March. This is the peak tourist season when the temperatures are pleasant, ranging between7 degrees Celsius and 25 degrees Celsius. These months are conducive for sightseeing and other outdoor activities such as desert safaris and camping. Several important festivals such as Marwar Festival and Desert Kite festival are celebrated during this time. The summer months of April to mid-July leave Jodhpur extremely hot and dry. Temperature can go up to 43-44 degrees Celsius. Low to moderate rains hit Jodhpur between mid-July till August, bringing the temperatures down but causing humidity. If you like rains, this is also a good time for your tour to Jodhpur.
How to Reach
BY AIR -Jodhpur airport is located at a distance of just 5 km from the main city. Regular flights connect the airport with important cities of India including Jaipur, Udaipur, Delhi and Mumbai. Once outside the airport, you can rent a cab to go to your destination. Hiring an auto is another option. The nearest international airport is in Delhi.
BY RAIL -Jodhpur railway station lies in the North-Western Zone of Indian railway. This station is well-connected by regular trains to major cities of India including Delhi, Kolkata, Mumbai, Chennai, Jaisalmer, Jaipur and Bangalore. India’s luxury train, Palace on Wheels also takes you to Jodhpur.
BY ROAD -A good network of roads connect Jodhpur city to important cities of the state and the country. Regular state-run and private buses connect the city with places like Jaipur, Jaisalmer, Bikaner Ajmer, Udaipur, Delhi, Agra and Ahmedabad. Private vehicle and a rented cab are other feasible alternatives.
- Situated in the middle of the city, the Mehrangarh Fort is a living testimony of the military might of the Rajputs. With the strategically located cannons on the walls, the fort is spread over an area of 5 km at an altitude of about 125 meters. Thousands of tourists visit this fort every year to have a glimpse of the artillery system of the Rajput warriors. A bird's eye view of the city from above the fort is fascinating.
- Umaid Bhawan, the only 20th-century-built palace, was constructed to give employment to the famine-struck population of Jodhpur. Made of sandstone, it took 16 years to complete. This majestic building is presently the residence of the former rulers with a part of it running as hotel and remaining part as a museum.
- Another example of Rajput glory is the Jaswant Thade, which is a shrine built in memory of Maharaja Jaswant II in 1899. A story goes that Maharaja Jaswant succumbed to injuries in this place while fighting the Mughal king Jahangir.
- Mandar Garden was the ashram of Rishi Mandu. This garden has a gate known as the Ajit pole. It is decorated with paintings of the gods and goddesses of Indian mythology.
- Giridkot and Sardar Market, located in the heart of the city, are popular for a wide range of handicrafts.
- About 4 miles away from the Jodhpur lay the Balsamand Lake and Garden. It is an artificial lake built in AD 1159. It is an ideal place for picnics and excursions.
- The Mahamandir Temple (9 km) is another site to visit. The architecture and the cutwork on the stone are amazing. Built in 1812, it has 84 carved pillars.
- Kailana Lake, 11 km from Jodhpur, is an idyllic picnic spot.
- Situated on the Jodhpur-Bikaner highway diversion, Osian (58 km) is an oasis in the desert area of Rajasthan. The Osian sunset point is famous for its panoramic view of the setting sun over the golden sands.
- There is also a wildlife sanctuary at Dhawa (45 km). It has the largest number of cheetal and sambhar.
- The Nagaur Fort is situated 135 km from Jodhpur. The Badal Mahal, Sheesh Mahal, and Hadi Rani Mahal are beautiful specimens of Rajput architecture.
- Luni Fort and its environs (20 km) are also worth visiting. The fort has now been converted into a heritage hotel