Rajasthan is the largest state of the Republic of India by area. It encompasses most of the area of the large, inhospitable Great Indian Desert Thar Desert, which has an edge paralleling the Sutlej Indus river valley along its border with Pakistan.
Jaipur is the capital and the largest city of the state. Geographical features include the Thar Desert along north-western Rajasthan and the termination of the Ghaggar River near the archaeological ruins at Kalibanga of the Indus Valley Civilization, which are the oldest in the Indian subcontinent discovered so far. One of the world’s oldest mountaion ranges, the Aravalli Range, cradles the only hill station of Rajasthan.
Rajasthan is culturally rich and has artistic and cultural traditions which reflect the ancient Indian way of life. There is rich and varied folk culture from villages which is often depicted and is symbolic of the state. Highly cultivated classical music and dance with its own distinct style is part of the cultural tradition of Rajasthan. The music is uncomplicated and songs depict day-to-day relationships and chores, more often focused around fetching water from wells or ponds.
The Ghoomar dance from Udaipur and Kalbeliya dance of Jaisalmer have gained international recognition. Folk music is a vital part of Rajasthani culture. Kathputli Bhopa, Chang, Teratali, Ghindr, Kachchhighori, Tejaji etc. are the examples of the traditional Rajasthani culture. Folk songs are commonly ballads which relate heroic deeds and love stories; and religious or devotional songs known as bhajans and banis (often accompanied by musical instruments like dholak, sitar, sarangi etc.) are also sung.
Fort and palace in Rajasthan
|Amber Fort||Junagarh Fort||Maharangarh fort|
|Hawa Mahal||Jaisalmer Fort||Chitorgarh Fort|
|Nahargarh Fort||Kumbhalgarh Fort|
Amber Fort, (11 km from central Jaipur).This massive fort-palace complex built in hybrid Hindu-Muslim style dates back to Raja Man Singh and was the royal palace of the Kachwahas from c. 1600 to 1727. The name has nothing to do with the rather pretty pastel yellow colour; instead, the fort is named after the town of Amber, in turn named after the goddess Amba. The main sights within the fort include the Sheesh Mahal, adorned with thousands on thousands of mirror tiles on the walls and ceiling.
Hawa Mahal (or Palace of breeze) was built in 1799 by Maharaja Sawai Singh as part of City Palace. It was an extension of the Zenana (women) chamber. It’s purpose was to allow royal ladies to observe everyday life in the street below without being seen. It is a five storey high red sandstone structure complete with over 950 windows. The breeze (or hawa in Hindi) circulates through these windows giving the palace its name. 50 Rs the entrance camera include
The Nahargarh Fort was built by Sawai Raja Jai Singh in 1734. Since Jaipur was his capital, the Nahargarh Fort was strategically important and was built as a means of bolstering the defense of Amer. It was also known as the Tiger Fort. New additions were made to the fort in the 19th century by Sawai Ram Singh II and Sawai Madho Singh II.
The fort is on a 280-hectare site on the top of a 180-metre-high hill, which rises abruptly from the surrounding plain. There are many palaces within the fort like Rana Kumbha Palace, Fateh Prakash Palace, Tower of Victory and Padmini’s Palace, which are a must see for the tourists. This hilltop fortress of Chittorgarh epitomizes.
Standing almost 30 m above the city of Jaisalmer is the Jaisalmer fort. The fort is also known as the Sonar Quila. This is because standing against the backdrop of the desert with its golden sand, the fort looks straight out of a fairy tale. Sonar Quila of Jaisalmer is a massive complex comprising of a palace, various security sources, the havelis of rich merchants, several temples and the residential complexes of the armies and traders. During the reign of the Bhatti Rajputs, the Merchant community acquired great deal of power.
Kumbhalgarh is a Mewar fortress in the Rajsamand district of Rajasthan state in western India. Built during the course of the 15th century by Rana Kumbha, and enlarged through the 19th century, Kumbhalgarh is also a birthplace of Maharana Pratap, the great king and warrior of Mewar. Occupied until the late 19th century, the fort is now open to the general public as a museum and is spectacularly lit for a few minutes each evening. Kumbalgarh is situated 82 km from Udaipur towards its northwest and is easily accessible by road. It is the most important fort in Mewar after Chittaurgarh.
Junagarh Fort in Bikaner is an impressive fort built by a Rajput ruler. Raja Rai Singh in 1587. A fort that has never been conquered, though it has been attacked many times, Junagarh Fort is an impressive monument, with huge towers and battlements for defence. Raja Rai Singh who lived in the times of the Mughal Emperors.