Forts & Palaces
Mehrangarh Fort - JodhpurMehrangarh
The unconquerable Rao Jodha built this impenetrable fort, which is certainly one of the best in India, on a vertical hill with a breathtaking view of the surroundings. The fort has elaborate latticed windows, intricately carved panels and gracefully curved porches.
Every part of the fort has a distinctive appeal, the Moti Mahal, Phool Mahal, Sheesh Mahal, Sileh Khana and Daulat Khana all add to the distinct ambience of the fort. High on the wall, is the second largest cannon in Asia, whose recoil itself requires as large an area as a football field!
As you keep wondering over the magnificence of the fort, don't forget to explore the museum shop that displays some of the best handicrafts, books and literature including some unique products like 'Pea Pulao Poster'. Fort
Umaid Bhawan Palace
This flamboyant palace was built in the 20th century as a famine relief project, with a purpose to give employment to the people for a long period of 16 years. A remarkable art-deco construction, Umaid Bhawan is resplendently maintained and one of the most impressive sights in Jodhpur. The museum within is a genuine treasure showcase of mementos displaying the royal history of Jodhpur from clocks and tea sets to paintings and royal costumes. The palace has now been converted into a heritage hotel, though it is still a royal residence in part. The museum is open to visitors for a chosen entry fee and is closed on Mondays.
The white marble marvel, this 19th century cenotaph was built close to the fort complex, in memorial of Maharaja Jaswant Singh II. Exceptional portraits of Jodhpur's precedent rulers are also exhibited here. Particularly captivating are the intricate latticework and the elaborate carving on the doors. The garden and water tank in front of the cenotaph are superb and heighten the tranquillity of the monument.
Osian - JodhpurThis pleasing gateway is 65 km away from Jodhpur, formerly known as 'Ukeshpur'. Osian is a large centre of Brahmanical and Jain temples, which dates back at a span of five centuries. The Sun Temple is the most venerated and the oldest temple amongst them. To our surprise, most of these temples face in the west direction. Moreover, there are the Mahavira Temple and the three Vishnu temples that are worth visiting.
Situated 8 km from the city, Mandore was the former capital of Marwar before Jodhpur. The old cenotaphs of the Rathore rulers are the main attractions here along with the rocky caves, which once were a roof to homeless ascetics. Sixteen deities are carved out of the rock face that are slightly dazzlingly presented in a place adjacent to a temple within the complex. The deftly landscaped gardens are crowded with an array of birds and small animals. The luxuriant foliage set to music against the rippling fountains truly presents a picturesque sight.
10 km from Jodhpur lays the imperial retreat of Jhalamand. The 18th century palace is set amidst serene surroundings and is a perfect getaway. One can take a walk of the village or choose for the safaris here.
Mahamandir and Balsamand Lake
Mahamandir is 4 km northeast of the city. An old town surrounded by walls, it was built in 1812, which features the hundred-pillared Shiva temple. Just 3 km away is Balsamand, an artificial lake with a summer palace on its banks, a public park and bird sanctuary that makes it a perfect model for a peaceful reprieve. The palace has now been converted into a hotel.
66 km of postcard-perfect beauty and passing sights of Bishnoi villages (the Bishnois are the oldest conservationists in India) brings one to the hunting chalet of the regal family, which has now been converted into a hotel. The rooms though not lavish are open and have unpretentious interiors. Their old-worldly dwellings and the sight of the lovely Black Buck acts as an overture to the revelation of the calm waters of Sardar Samand Lake.