Culture of Rajasthan
Rajasthan has a vibrant culture and a thousand-year-old heritage. The official language of the state is Hindi but the primary spoken language is Rajasthani. There are however deviations according to various regions. For instance, Malwi in South-East Rajasthan, Mowati in North East Rajasthan and Jaipuri in the eastern part of the state to name just a few.
The music and dance scene is vibrant with each region having its own brand of entertainment. Udaipur's Ghoomar dance, Gair Ghoomer dance of the Bheel tribals, the fire dance of Jasnathis to name just a few of the popular dances of Rajasthan. As far as music is concerned both devotional as well as festive music recitals are performed and instruments include both stringed and the autophonic instruments along with percussion. The Sarangi, jantar and Ektara are some of Rajasthan's most popular musical instruments.
Rajasthan is renowned for its beautiful hand embroidery. The Zari, bagaru, sanganeer along with block, tie and die prints are world famous and earns a good amount of foreign exchange for India as export items and commodities. It is also famous for its kundan and gold jewellery, patari craftwork and brasswork and stone engravings. Rajasthani Bandhini sarees and the quintessential Jodhpur shoes have both carved a niche for themselves.
Rajasthan is the richest state in India as far as art and handicrafts are concerned. It is believed that the sheer desolate and barren landscape of the state has made its people to be more creative which is amply reflected in their dress pattern. Men are dressed in full sleeved shirts with a potia on their head. During the festivals, they were churidar and pyjamas along with a colorful turban. The turban can be an indicator to ones class and social status. Women are at the dazzling best with their Ghagra, Kanchuli and Orni, surma in their eyes, mehendi in their palms, gorgeous nose ring, ear rings and necklaces all of which makes them look absolutely stunning in the backdrop of the desolate desert landscape.
As far as paintings are concerned, the Rajasthani miniature paintings can be found in palaces. In certain old and historic towns in the interiors of Rajasthan's Shekhawati region, paintings and exquisite frescoes can be seen adorning the parapets of even the huts. They exude with a rich sense of humor. The paintings found in the palaces are particularly evocative of Lord Krishna's legends.
Puppets or "Kathputtlis" as they are referred to in the local parlance are an integral part of Rajasthan's folk entertainment. The puppets are gorgeously designed and through puppet shows, historical legends and mythologies to modern day issues like education for the girl child and child labour are highlighted during festivals and village fairs.
Rajasthan has its usual Indian festivals but the ones to watch out for are the Gangaur and Teej Festivals where marital and conjugal bliss is the primary significance of the festivities. There is also the world famous Pushkar cattle fair and the Jaisalmer Desert Festival which are hugely popular with foreign tourists.
In Rajasthan, fairs and festivals are celebrated with great pomp and grandeur. For instance, the Jaisalmer Desert Festival is a riot of colors with devotional songs, dance and folk music. Colorful processions and tableaus are taken out. The pulsating bhangra and stick dance, bull fight, moustache competition and fireworks at night all make for a truly exotic sight.
Historical Rajasthan Tour
Tour Destinations : Delhi - Mandawa - Bikaner - Jaisalmer - Jodhpur - Udaipur - Ajmer - Jaipur - Delhi.
Tour Duration : 14 Nights / 15 Days
Day 01 : Delhi
Arrive Delhi meeting on arrival and transfer to hotel. Rest of the day free for independent activities.
Day 02 : Delhi
Enjoy full day sightseeing tour of: -Rajghat(Delhi)
New Delhi : designed and built by the British in the 1920’s it’s a city of wide boulevards impressive Government buildings, green parks and gardens. First you will visit two monuments from Delhi’s past Humayun’s Tomb and Qutab Minar. Then your drive takes you along the ceremonial avenue, Rajpath, past the imposing India Gate and Parliament House.
Old Delhi : an ancient walled city. Here you will see Red Fort, the most opulent Fort and Palace of the Moghul Empire; Raj Ghat, the memorial site of the Mahatma Gandhi; Jama Masjid, the largest mosque in India and Chandni Chowk, the bustling and colourful market of the old city. Overnight at the Hotel.
Day 03 : Delhi - Mandawa
Leave Delhi for Mandawa by surface. In the afternoon enjoy sightseeing tour of : -
Mandawa : A small town in the Shekawati region of Rajasthan with a unique medieval charm. The streets are lined with richly painted houses and each
town is bustling with activity. Overnight at the Hotel.
Day 04 : Mandawa - Bikaner
Leave Mandawa for Bikaner by road. In the afternoon enjoy sightseeing tour of :-
Bikaner : a desert fortified city on the ancient caravan routes that originated from Africa and West Asia. 32 Kms. from Bikaner is Deshnoke, famous for its Rat Temple (Karni Mata Temple). Overnight at the hotel.
Day 05 : Bikaner - Jaisalmer
Leave Bikaner for Jaisalmer by surface. Rest of the day free for independent activities. Overnight at the Hotel.
Day 06 : Jaisalmer
In the morning enjoy sightseeing tour of : -
Jaisalmer : the citadel city built in the 12th century is an architectural dream in yellow sandstone lying in the lonely silence of the Thar Desert. The Forts and palaces and several superbly carved Jain Temples in and around Jaisalmer are all reminiscent of a glorious history.
In the afternoon visit : -
Sam : 40 Kms from Jaisalmer are the silver gold sand duncs of Sam. A camel ride at sunset, as the sky is set on fire, and Rajasthani musicians paly haunting tunes, can be and unforgettable experience. Overnight at the Hotel.
Day 07 : Jaisalmer - Jodhpur
In the morning leave Jaisalmer for Jodhpur by road. Afternoon free for your independent activities. Overnight at the Hoel.
Day 08 : Jodhpur
In the morning enjoy sightseeing tour of : -
Jodhpur : The home of the Rathore rulers - the princely State of Rajasthan. A high 10 Kms. long stone wall protects the well-fortified city. Within, stands an imposing Fort on a low range of sandstone hills, about 125 mtrs. above the surrounding plains.
Visit Mchrangarh Fort - founded in 1459 AD by Rao Jodha (after whom the city is named) the Fort is intricately adorned with long carved panels and latticed windows of exquisite designs in red sandstone. Also visit Jaswant
Thada - an imposing white marble cenotaph built to commemorate the acts of bravery and generosity of the rulers in 19th century. Afternoon free for your independent activities. Overnight at the Hotel.
Day 09 : Jodhpur - Udaipur
Leave Jodhpur in the morning for Udaipur by road and enroute visit : -
Ranakpur : famous for the quadruple Jain temple dedicated, like the temples at Mount Abu to Adinath. The whole structure has 80 domes and of 400 pillars. Continue your drive for Udaipur. Rest of the day free for independent activities. Overnight at the Hotel.
Day 10 : UdaipurUdaipur
In the morning enjoy sightseeing tour of : -
Udaipur City : Visit the City Palace Museum - grandeur and intricacy stroked all over in granite, marble and mosaic displayed in the sparkling white filigreed balconies and windows, ornate arches and cupolas atop magnificent octagonal towers, Jagdish Temple - built in 1651 AD. Also visit Sahelion Ki Bari- the spectacular garden displaying the unique life style of the royal ladies who once lived in the palaces. Afternoon at leisure. In the evening enjoy a most memorable boat ride with the reflections of the majestic Lake Palace Hotel at its best against the setting sun. Overnight at the Hotel.
Day 11 : Udaipur - Ajmer
Leave Udaipur in the morning for Ajmer by road and enroute visit :
Chittorgarh : home of the brave, 115 Kms east of Udaipur. The road to the citadel of Chittor Zig Zag steeply for a couple of Kms and passes through seven huge gates, each with watch towers and great iron spiked doors. The tower of victory is over 35 metres high and has nine storeys served by a winding staircase. It is covered from top to bottom with carvings, depicting the social life of the time. Continue your drive for Ajmer. Overnight at the Hotel.
Day 12 : Ajmer - Jaipur
In the morning enjoy sightseeing tour of: -
Ajmer City : Founded in the 11th century is the holy city of the Muslims. The Taragarh fort, Anna Sagar - an artificial lake, Akbar’s palace and the Durgah - Mausoleum of Khwaja Moinuddin-Chisti a Muslim holy man all combine to give the city its historical and religious importance. Continue your drive for Jaipur. Rest of the evening free for independent activities. Continue your drive for Ajmer. Overnight at the hotel.
Day 13 : Jaipur
Enjoy morning sightseeing tour of : -
Amber Fort : 11 Kms. from Jaipur - a marvellous example of Rajput architecture with its terraces and ramparts reflected in the Mata Lake below. The ascent to the Fort is on gaily caparisoned elephants. The Fort interior has various royal halls decorated with intricate ivory work, exquisite wall paintings and tiny mirror chips, which create a tantalising reflection effect.
In the afternoon sightseeing tour of: -
Jaipur City : City Palace Museum - an imposing blend of traditional Rajasthani and Mughal Art. The museum is resplendent with its collection of robes of royal princes, carpets, and armoury of old weapons, miniature paintings portraying court scenes, battle scenes and processions, Jantar - Mantar (Observatory)- an accurate observatory built in 1726 AD; Hawa Mahal (Palace of Winds)- a five storeyed wonder with a spectacular pyramidal facade and overhanging windows with latticed screens, domes and spires. Overnight at the hotel.
Day 14 : Jaipur - Delhi
In the morning leave Jaipur for Delhi by road and upon arrival check in at hotel. Rest of the day free for independent activities. Overnight at the hotel.
Day 15 : Leave Delhi
Transfer from hotel to international airport in time to connect your flight and back home.