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Jodhpur

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Travel Guide Asia India Rajasthan Jodhpur

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Introduction

Hookah Smoker at Jodhpur Fort

Hookah Smoker at Jodhpur Fort

© All Rights Reserved jacquiedro

Jodhpur is the second largest city in the state of Rajasthan, India. It is also known as the Gateway to Thar (due to its location on the edge of the Thar desert), Sun City (due to the many sunny days), or City of Blue Houses (due to the large number of blue houses). The city is located 335 kilometres west from the state capital, Jaipur, and 200 kilometres from the city of Ajmer.

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Brief History

Jodhpur is a historic city and the origin dates to the year 1459 AD when it was founded by Rao Jodha, the Rajput chieftan of the Rathores. The Rathore kingdom was also known as the Marwar and was the largest in Rajputana.

The city was built as the new capital of the state of Marwar (now Rajasthan) to replace the ancient capital Mandore, the ruins of which can be seen near what is now the Mandore Gardens. The people of Jodhpur and surrounding areas are hence also commonly called as Marwaris. The forts and palaces, temples and havelis, culture and tradition, spices and fabrics, colour and texture, a booming handicrafts industry, all add up to make this historic city worth a visit.

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Sights and Activities

  • Mehrangarh Fort dominates the city and is the largest fort in Rajasthan.
  • Baba Ramdev Temple, Masuria Hills
  • Ganesh Temple, Ratanada
  • Santoshi Mata Temple, Lal Sagar
  • Mahamandir Temple: One can see the neighbouring tourist destinations of Osiyan temples, Ranakpur Jain temples, Nathdwara temple, Bikaner and Deshnok, Ajmer and Pushkar, the desert city of Jaisalmer, the hill station Mount Abu, the city of lakes Udaipur or the pink city Jaipur
  • Jaswant Thada, 1 kilometre downhill from Mehrangarh (easily walked). Royal cenotaphs built in marble, with a picturesque location next to a little lake. Entry Rs. 20, plus Rs. 25 for a camera.
  • Mandore, 7 kilometres outside the city. The ancient capital of Marwar, before Jodhpur was built. Myth has it that Mandore is the birthplace of Princess Mandodri, the wife of King Ravana of Lanka in the epic Ramayana.
  • Umaid Bhawan Palace: Clearly visible to the south of the city and completed only in 1944, this is the last great palace built in India. The Maharaja of Jodhpur lives here to this day, but half the building has been converted to a 5-star hotel (see Sleep) and there is also a small museum on grounds (Rs. 50, open 9:00am to 5:00pm). You'll have to take a rickshaw to get here, and it's best to ask them to wait: figure on Rs. 100 for a round-trip with an hour's waiting time.

Natural sites

  • Balsamand Lake is now converted to a resort
  • Kailana Lake is a picnic spot and a main drinking water source for the city

Further Afield

  • Bishnoi Village safari Bishnois are a community that protects wildlife and environment. In safari the guide will take you around the Bishnoi villages in a jeep and there you will see deer, blackbuck and chinkara roaming around their huts and playing with their childres and village people feeding them. It is a 70-kilometre tour.
  • Luni fort is located about 40 kilometres outside Jodhpur and has been converted into a heritage hotel
  • Khejarla fort - located 80 kilometres outside Jodhpur on Jodhpur-Jaipur Highway and has been converted into a luxury heritage hotel.
  • Osiyan is about 60 kilometres from Jodhpur and has Jain temples as well as Kali temples

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Events and Festivals

Jodhpur fairs and festivals seem to express the rich culture and traditions Rajasthan. A number of festivals are celebrated in Jodhpur. However the most famous fairs and festivals in Jodhpur, Rajasthan are mentioned below.

Marwar Festival

The most popular Jodhpur festival is the Jodhpur Marwar Festival. It is held every year in memory of the heroes of Rajasthan. Marwar Festival of Jodhpur, Rajasthan was originally known as the Maand Festival. The festival is held in the month of Ashwin. Ashwin is a Hindu month between September and October. The Marwar festival in Jodhpur, India is celebrated during the full moon of Sharad Poornima. It goes on for two days.

The main attraction of this festival is the folk music centered on the romantic lifestyle of Rajasthan's rulers. The music and dance of the Marwar region is the main theme of this festival. The folk dancers and singers assemble at the festival and provide lively entertainment. These folk artists give others a peek into the days of yore, of battles and of the heroes who still live on through their songs.

Among other attractions at the festival, is the camel tattoo show and polo. The venue of this festival includes the famous Umaid Bhawan Palace, Mandore and Mehrangarh Fort.

Jodhpur International Desert Kite Festival

The International kite festival of Jodhpur, Rajasthan began only a few years. However, even in such a short span of time, it has become quite popular. In the Jodhpur International Desert Kite festival, the best kite flyers from India as well as rest of the world take part. The aim is to show of your kite flying skills. A lot of excitement surrounds this festival.

Generally, the date of this Kite Festival in India is 14th of January (Makar Sankranti). It is a three-day festival, held at the Polo Ground in Jodhpur. Air Force helicopters also release a large number of kites from above. Hundreds of schoolchildren also release balloons. During the kite festival, the sky gets filled up with kites of various designs and colors. There is a lot of enthusiasm among the people also regarding this festival. It reaches the highest point when a kite gets cut.

Nagaur Fair

The Jodhpur Nagaur Fair is the second biggest fair in India. The fair goes on for eight days. Nagaur Fair of Jodhpur, Rajasthan is held every year during the month of Jan-Feb.

It is popularly known as the Cattle fair of Nagaur. This is because the Nagaur Fair is mainly all about trading of animals. Approximately 70,000 bullocks, camels and horses are traded every year in this fair. The animals lavishly decorated and even their owners dress up wearing colorful turbans and long moustaches. Other trading in the Nagaur Fair in Jodhpur, India consists of sheep to Marwari horses to spices. Some other attractions include the Mirchi bazaar (largest red-chilly market of India), wooden items, iron-crafts and camel leather accessories.

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Weather

Jodhpur experiences typical desert type climatic conditions with hot and dry summers and cool winters. The temperatures during the summer months(April-June) average around 40 °C while during the winters (November-February) the daytime temperatures average around 27 °C. Rainfall is scanty with most of the precipitation being received during the July-September period. The city is bright and sunny throughout the year. October to March is the best period to visit the city.

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Getting There

Jodhpur is well connected by road, rail and air to many major cities and towns.

By Plane

Domestic flights are available from the Jodhpur airport (JDH) which is located around 5 kilometres from the city. Regular service carriers like Indian Airlines, Jet Airways, and Kingfisher Airlines operate flights from the airport to cities like Delhi, Mumbai, Udaipur and Jaipur.

By Train

Jodhpur is an important railway station of the North Western zone of the Indian Railways . It is well connected by direct trains from all metros and major cities in India, including Delhi, Mumbai, Ahmedabad, Jaipur, Jaisalmer, Bikaner, Lucknow, Kalka, Jammu, Kolkata, Chennai, Bangalore and Hyderabad. For example, the popular Mandor Express leaves Delhi at 8:45pm and arrives in Udaipur at 8:00am the next morning (Rs.1,000 in AC2). The taxi and auto-rickshaw stand are located near the exit of the railway station.

The advance reservation office is on Station Road, between the railway station and Sojati Gate. The office is open from Monday to Saturday from 8:00am to 8:00pm and on Sunday until 1:45pm IST. Foreign tourists can also buy Indrail passes in US$ and reserve tickets at the International Tourist Bureau, which is located at the advance reservation office. Tickets can also be booked online at IRCTC, the official railway booking site, from 5:00am to 11:30pm IST on all days.

Since February 2006, a train travels between Jodhpur and Karachi in Pakistan. It is the first international train travelling directly between the two countries since 1965. The Thar Express leaves Karachi at 11:00pm on Fridays, taking almost 24 hours before arriving in Jodhpur on Saturday evening. In the opposite direction, trains leave and arrive on approximately the same time on the same days taking 24 hours as well.

By Car

Approximate road distances to Jodhpur from various destinations are:

  • Agra - 580 kilometres
  • Ajmer - 200 kilometres
  • Barmer - 220 kilometres
  • Bikaner - 240 kilometres
  • Jaipur - 345 kilometres
  • Jaisalmer - 290 kilometres
  • Mount Abu - 265 kilometres
  • Mumbai - 1075 kilometres
  • New Delhi - 590 kilometres
  • Osiyan - 60 kilometres
  • Ranakpur - 175 kilometres
  • Udaipur - 275 kilometres

Various tour operators and travel agencies offer chauferred car-taxi services; these are charged on a per kilometre, per day basis. You can plan to take one to arrive into the city or take one for sightseeing in and around the city.

By Bus

Jodhpur can be reached by Rajasthan State Road Transport Corporation buses which connect the city to other cities of Rajasthan. Private luxury buses are also available, which operate from all major towns and cities in Rajasthan as well as the cities of Ahmedabad and Delhi.

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Eat

  • Omelette Man - Near the clocktower gate in the old city. An extremely affordable option, the Omelette Man is Lonely Planet recognized and caters to tourists and locals alike. Try the masala omelette and make sure to read and sign his book of travelers' reviews.

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Sleep

PropertyAddressTypePhonePopularity
Amar Niwas Guesthouse507,singh pole marg NavchowkiyaGuesthouse66
Bishnoi Village Camp and ResortVillage-Guda Bishnoiyan,District-Jodhpur 1-kh-10, Bhagat ki kothi extentionHotel-
Cosy Guest Housenavechokiya road, bhram puri,chuna ki chokiGuesthouse85
Durag Niwas Guest House1st Old Public Park Raika BaghGuesthouse92
Durag Villas Guest HouseHouse no 1 Near K N College Rai Ka BaghGuesthouse-
Fort KhejarlaVillage Khejarla Via Bilara,District JodhpurHotel-
Hare Krishna GuesthouseMehron ka chowk naya bas killikhana,Jodhpur,RajGuesthouse-
Hotel HaveliMakrana Mohalla Opp. Tuvar Ji Ka JhalaraHotel86
Haveli Inn PalOpposite gulab sagar Near clock towerHotel92
Heaven Guest HouseBehind Mehta Market Manak Chowk RoadGuesthouse88
Hotel Suncity InternationalHotel Suncity International Panchbatti Circle, Airport RoadHotel-
Kalinga HotelNear Railway StationHotel-
Krishna Prakash Heritage HaveliNayabas, KillikhanaHotel86
Mandore GuesthouseNear Mandore Garden Dadavari Lane,MandoreGuesthouse89
Saji Sanwri (Guest - House)Gandhi Street, Near City Police Station,Guesthouse-
The Blue House Guest HouseSumer-Bhawan Moti ChowkGuesthouse75
Veggi Guesthouse293, Singhvion ka Mohalla Ramdeo Chowk NavchowkiaGuesthouse82
Yogi Guest HouseRaj Purohitji ki Haveli Naya Bas Manak ChowkGuesthouse84
Heritage Kuchaman HaveliInside Merti GateHotel0091 291 2547787-
Jee Ri HaveliNear Rajmahal Sr. Hr. Sec. SchoolHOTEL95
Shahi Guest HouseCity Police Gandhi StreetGUESTHOUSE-
Govind HotelOPP. MAIN G.P.O STATION ROADHotel-
Megh Niwas Hotel30, Umed Club RoadGuesthouse-
Madho NiwasNew Airport Road RatanadaHostel-
AJIT MANSIONNear Panch Batti Circle Residency RoadGuesthouse-
Maru GarhChopasni Village Pal Link Road Jaisalmer by-passHotel-
Hotel Rajputana PalacePanch Batti Circle Airport Road RajasthanHotel-
Shiva Guest House4, Kuchaman House, Near Panch Batti CircleGuesthouse-
Chhotaram Prajapat's HomestayKumharon ki dhani , Near Gosala v/p-SalawasHOTEL-
Hotel Megh Niwas30 Umed Club Road, NH-65Hotel-
Ganpati G.H.Makrana MohallaGUESTHOUSE82
Hotel Apex International689, 9th 'C' RoadHotel-
The Kothi HeritageBachraj Ji Ka Bagh 9th Chopasni Road SardarpuraGUESTHOUSE-
Ganesham Guest HouseSector-4, Defence lab road, ratanada Near Ratanada Petrol Pump CircleGUESTHOUSE-
Shivam Paying Guest HouseMakrana MohallaGUESTHOUSE81
Hotel Megh Niwas30 Umed Club Near Circut HouseHotel-
Anil Sunrise Guest HouseNear The Clock Tower Manak Chowk RoadGUESTHOUSE-
Hem Guest HouseNear Jain Temple, Daftariyon Ka Mohalla, Moti ChowkGUESTHOUSE84
Royal Rai's Guest House190,Umaid Heritage, ath the foot hills of Umaid BhGUESTHOUSE-
Sarvar Guest Housemanak chowk clock tower RoadGUESTHOUSE81
Baba Haveli Guest HouseA Heritage Home of Jaipur 66 A, Sanjay Colony RPA Road Nerhu NagarApartment87
Haveli Guest HouseMakrana Mohalla RajasthanGuesthouse-
Vedas HeritageKhaas Bagh Opp. Police Line RatanadaHOTEL-
The Kothi HeritagePal RoadGuesthouse-
Juna Mahal Boutique Home StayAda Bazar, Daga StreetHOTEL89
Kalbeliya Gypsy HomeChoopasni VillageGUESTHOUSE-
Kiran Vilas5, Veer Durga Das Nagar, Paota 'C' Road,HOTEL-
Colonels CottageNew Nagaur Road, MandoreGuesthouse-
Chandelao GarhChandelao Garh Village & PostHotel-
Blooming HouseHouse No. 51,suray colony , residency road,GUESTHOUSE-
Fun World Park Club & Resortchopasani RoadHotel-
Jagdamba Guest HouseKatla Bazar Kansara Street, Near Kunj Bihari MandGUESTHOUSE-
Ambrosia Megh Niwas30 Umed Club road Jodhpur RajasthanHotel-
Nirali Dhani Ethnic Hotel and ResortOpposite Siddhnath Circle,Chopasni Housing Board Chopasni Road, JadhourHOTEL-
Hotel Madho VilasBhenswara House New Airport Road, RatanadaHOTEL-
Kesar Heritage Guest Housemehron ka chowk naya bas JodhpurGUESTHOUSE84

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Keep Connected

Internet

There's good coverage over most of India for Internet cafes. However, following the recent terror attacks in Mumbai and some other cities, all internet cafes have been instructed by the authorities to maintain a register and note down the identification details of all persons using internet. Sify iWay is a reliable and cheap cafe with over 1,600 cafes over India. iWay also allows you to open a pre-paid account that you can use all over India. Whenever you have Internet access probably the best and cheapest way to call family and friends at home is software that allows users to make voice calls over the Internet such as Skype.

Wifi hotspots in India are, for most part, limited. The major airports and stations do offer paid wifi at around RS.60-100 an hour. Delhi, Bangalore, Pune and Mumbai are the only cities with decent wifi coverage. At Mumbai airport, you get to use WiFi internet free, for an hour or so.

Phone

See also International Telephone Calls

The country code for India is 91. To dial outside the country from India, prefix the country code with 00.

The general emergency number is 100 (emergency response police & fire), while for ambulance you should dial 102 or 112, though some regions have 108 for this emergency. 108 is used in in the Indian states of Bihar, Andhra Pradesh, Punjab, Gujarat, Uttarakhand, Goa, Rajasthan, Tamil Nadu, Chhattisgarh, Karnataka, Kerala, Odisha,Assam, Meghalaya, Himachal Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh and Uttar Pradesh. 108 can be called for medical, crime, fire, or any other emergency from any phone.

Local phone numbers can be anywhere from 5-8 digits long. But when the area code is included, all landline phone numbers in India are 10 digits long. Cellphone numbers usually start with '9', '8', or '7'. Toll-free numbers start with 1-800.

If staying longterm it is probably wise to think about investing in a mobile phone. You'll possibly need to provide a photocopy of your passport and itinerary, so come prepared. Make sure you arrange it upon arrival in a big city, as it can sometimes be difficult to organise with language barriers and such in more regional areas. You can buy a cheap nokia for about RS.1,200 with a pre-paid plan. Airtel is a good carrier to think about as they have great coverage, and constant offers for cheaper calling. To recharge, most shop vendors with phone carrier signs can do it via their own phone. You give them your mobile number, they put it in their phone and you'll both get messages as to whether or not the recharge has been successful. Also, if possible, buy the phone in the state where you do the most travelling as the charges are higher in the states where you did not originally buy the phone.

Over the entire country there are plenty of public phones, even in the middle of the countryside. Although most of the time these phones are not very well maintained and have horrible connections. Therefore remember when using one of these public phones one must be extremely patient.
For international calls from payphones, you'll have to visit a reputable internet cafe with a phone-booth. Mobile phones are usually a better and cheaper option.

Post

India Post is the national postal service of India, and on their website you find details about prices to send postcards, letters and parcels, both domestically and internationally. For most postcards to send internationally, it is better to visit the post office before writing on the card as you may need quite a few stamps. Parcels must be taken to a tailor, he will then sew it up in white linen. Make sure he seals it with red wax, otherwise the post office may refuse to send it or try to get you to pay them to do it. Sewing up a parcel should only cost RS.50 to 200. In general, post offices are open from 10:00am to 1:00pm and 1:30pm to 4:30pm in most bigger towns and cities, though there are regional variations and some might keep longer hours or be open during (part of) the weekend as well. Ask around.

If you want to send bigger packages/parcels, it might be better, faster and sometimes even cheaper, to contact a private company like DHL, TNT or UPS.

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Quick Facts

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Coordinates
  • Latitude: 26.28161
  • Longitude: 73.023163

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This is version 36. Last edited at 6:18 on Jun 12, 14 by KellieBarnes. 12 articles link to this page.

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