is the capital of Rajasthan, is known as ‘the Pink City’ for its beautiful blush tinted sandstone. There are four must-sees in this exotic city, the City Palace, Jantar Mantar, the Amber Fort and Hawa Mahal, each one in itself fascinating and worthy of your attention.
* The City Palace right in the centre of the Old City, is an impressive complex of courtyards, gardens and buildings.
* The Jantar Mantar observatory received UNESCO World Heritage status in 2010. Constructed by the scholar Maharajah Jai Singh II, this celestial device is still accurate almost three hundred years on.
* Hawa Mahal, or Palace of the Wind, was built in 1799 to enable the ladies of the royal household to watch the life of the city. With its 953 honeycomb-like windows they were sure to have every conceivable view of the City Palace and the bazaar below!
* Just outside the city, in the arid countryside, the magnificent Amber Fort sits majestically on top of a steep hill. Getting there is best by elephant! Now, isn’t that the best excuse ever for not walking up a hill? When you arrive at the Fort you’ll find a number of impressive public rooms decorated with marble, mirror work and mosaics.
is an enchantingly small town famed for its mystic pull. It’s a prominent Hindu pilgrimage town and devout Hindus should visit at least once in their lifetime. The town curls around a holy lake, said to have appeared when Brahma dropped a lotus flower. With 52 bathing ghats and 400 milky-blue temples, the town often hums with the sound of prayers, chanting, drums, gongs, and devotional songs.
From Pushkar don’t miss out on the opportunity to go on a desert adventure with a Camel Safari. Camel racing and trekking through the dunes will be memorable enough, but combined with dinner around an open fire and night sleeping out under a million stars, will ensure you can always trump anyone else’s camping experience!
nestles around Pichola Lake at the foothills of the Aravalli hills. Its’ top attractions are The City Palace and the Jagdish temple. However it’s The Lake Palace Hotel, marooned in the centre of the lake, which is the city’s most iconic feature. Stay there, or be boated across for a meal at its rooftop restaurant, and you will remember it for its starring role in the James Bond film, Octopussy.
is another of Rajasthan’s colourful cities is tinged with indigo and so named ‘The Blue City’. There is only one main sight here, the majestic Meherangarh Fort, which sits high on a cliff top with spectacular views down over the city.
Also on the Rajasthan trail is the small town of , home to the unmissable Taj Mahal. With its majestic domes and beautifully-carved columns, it is magnificent at any time of the day, however it is at its most breathtaking first thing in the morning as the sun rises and casts a magical soft pink light across its elegant façade.