Jodhpur, the second largest city of Rajasthan, is an assemblage of fine architecture, bright colors and an interesting history. However, the most predominant thing about that city is the color blue which covers a major portion of the city. Hence, giving it its name ‘The Blue City’. Set in the landscape of the Thar desert, Jodhpur was once the seat of a princely state and now it is home to magnificent palaces, enormous forts and beautiful.
Located in the center of the state, Jodhpur is a convenient travel destination for visitors who are on a Rajasthan-tour. Decorated by blue houses, which look like interlocked pieces of a jigsaw puzzle, the old Jodhpur city has a charm that is guaranteed to leave a lasting impression its visitors. The old Jodhpur city is also home to the mighty Mehrangarh Fort. Looking at the fort from a distance always gives a breathtaking illusion of the fort’s top merging with the skyline.
Known as the land of ‘Maroo’ or death due to its extreme hostile living conditions, Jodhpur was founded by Rao Jodha, the Rajput leader of the Rathore kingdom. The first capital of the Kanuj family was established in Mandore. However, soon after the completion of the Mehrangarh fort towards the end of the 15th century, Jodhpur was given the honor of serving as the capital.
The princely state of Jodhpur was always facing hostility resulting in wars by its Rajput and Mughal neighbors. This feud between the states made the Mehrangarh fort play a crucial role in the defense strategy of the Rathore kingdom. It was built keeping a foolproof defense mechanism in mind. Its twisty and steep slopes very efficiently protected it from the enemies.
Eventually, the Rathore clan managed to keep their kingdom to themselves and made Jodhpur one of the strongest kingdoms of Rajasthan. The prosperity rose to such levels that at the time of independence, Jodhpur was in the race of becoming the capital of the new state Rajputana in the Union of India.
Location & How To Reach:
Being the second largest city of Rajasthan, Jodhpur is well-connected by rail, road, and air. While from Delhi it’s at a distance of 604 km, from Jaipur Jodhpur is only 335 km.
Nearest Railway Station: Jodhpur Junction railway station, Jodhpur
Nearest Airport: Jodhpur Airport, Jodhpur (310 km away)
Just like most parts of the state, Jodhpur also experiences hot and dry climatic conditions throughout the year with a brief rainy season. During the summer months, April, May and June, the mercury usually exceeds 40 degrees making it extremely hot and dry. Jodhpur experiences a brief winter season which lasts from November to January. July to September, the city receives average rainfall which brings down the temperature by several degrees.
Things to See & Do In Jodhpur
Two or a maximum of 3 days should suffice to go around and cover every visit-worthy part of the historic city of Jodhpur. Sightseeing and visiting heritage sites will consume a major part of your trip.
Umaid Bhawan Palace
Its spectacular Indo-Saracenic architecture makes Umaid Bhawan Palace a must-visit place in Jodhpur. What’s more interesting about this architectural marvel is that it has been built using sandstone which has been put together without using mortar. Located adjacent to the cantonment, the entry to Umaid Bhawan costs the tourists a nominal amount and the timings of the visit are between 9 am and 5 pm.
Image Source – Ellsasha (Flickr)
The biggest fort in Rajasthan, Mehrangarh fort is the shining example of the glory of Rathore kingdom. Mighty structure of the fort stood strong against many battles and the remains of those clashes can still be seen etched in the walls of the fort. Mehrangarh provides a breathtaking view of the Jodhpur city and is home to many exquisite and ancient artifacts. Tourists can get an entry to the fort by paying Rs. 20 and the timings for visit are between 9 am and 5 pm.
Image Source – Grzegorz Buczylowski (Flickr)
About 11 km from Jodhpur city, towards the western outskirts are two lakes: the Kaylana lake and Takhat Sagar lake. Interestingly, the two lakes lie adjacent to each other and are separated by a narrow strip of land where the Jodhpur-Jaisalmer highway is built.
Image Source – Epidaetia (Flickr)
Best Time to Visit
The months between October and March is the best time to visit Jodhpur. The climate turns reasonably pleasant giving the tourists an opportunity to explore the historic city thoroughly.