Lofty rocks, rolling sand dunes, of burning heat and freezing cold, of fertile plains and deep wild glens and jungles, Battle scarred forts, turreted marble palaces of breathtaking grandeur and whimsical charm, delightful folk art and culture, riotous colors —this is Rajasthan, a land full of color and contrast.
It is the largest state of India in terms of area encompassing the enormous Thar Desert. The state is diagonally divided into the hilly and rugged south eastern region and the barren north western.
The main and most spectacular geographic feature of Rajasthan is the Aravalli Range, which is one of the oldest mountain ranges of the world. The range runs for more than 850 km, nearly through the entire state from southwest to northeast, almost from one end to the other.
The northwestern portion of Rajasthan is generally sandy and dry, as most of the region is covered by the Thar Desert. The Aravalli Range and the lands to the east and southeast of the range are in general more fertile, this area of Rajasthan is home to the Kathiarbar-Gir dry deciduous forests with tropical dry broadleaf forests.
Rajasthan has a tropical desert climate. It is extremely cold from October to February while the scorching sun tortures the land from March to September. There are distinct temperature range variations diurnal and seasonally throughout the state.
Temperature reaches a high a 49°C during the summer months. Nights of summers see a considerable temperature fall with a minimum daily temperature around 20°C to 29°C. January is the coldest month in the stare of Rajasthan. The minimum temperatures sometimes fall to -2°C.
Rajasthan is the region of the proud Rajputs who the epitome of Chivalry and whose exploits and bravery in battle are legendary. Before Independence, Rajasthan was referred to as Rajputana, but the Rajput population is a minority in this state now there numbers have dwindle down with there wealth.
Many tribes are also found in different parts of Rajasthan, with their own social systems and customs, religion and dress. The Rajasthanis are well-known for their spirited dances and musical renderings, their extremely colorful attire and the royal culture. . Rajasthan is known for its handicrafts and paintings; it is associated with a rich tradition of art, culture, music and dance.
Rajasthan is famous for its grand forts, intricately carved temples and ornamented havelis, built by kings in previous ages. Jantar Mantar, Dilwara Temples ,Chittorgarh Fort, Lake Palace Hotel, City Palaces, Jaisalmer Havelis are part of the true architectural heritage of India. Jaipur, the Pink City, is noted for the ancient houses made of a type of sand stone dominated by a pink hue. At Ajmer, the white marble Bara-dari on the Anasagar Lake is wonderful.
Jain Temples are found all over Rajasthan, Dilwara Jain Temples of Mt. Abu, Ranakpur, in the fort complexes of Chittor, Jaisalmer and Kumbhalgarh, Lodarva etc. The most tourists worthy cities are:
Jaipur - Jaipur was built in 1727 by King Jai Singh, after whom it was named, it is the capial city of Rajasthan. Its most striking feature is the pink wash of the buildings, giving Jaipur it the name ‘Pink City’. Jaipur is a royal city filled with palaces, jagged fortresses; some of the palaces, once the residence of Maharajas have been converted into beautiful heritage hotels.
Jodhpur- Is the second largest city of Rajasthan; at the edge of the Thar Desert. It was once the capital of the Marwar state. It was founded in 1459 A.D. by Rao Jodha-chief of the Rathore clan of Rajputs. The city is dominated by the massive Mehrangarh fort on a rocky hill; it is awe-inspiring with its wealth of historic appeal and colorful markets.
Udaipur- is called the ‘City of Lakes’ it was founded in 1599 by Maharana Udai Singh. The city hailed as the ‘Venice of the East’ set amidst the Aravalli hills of South Rajasthan, is one of the most romantic destinations in India. It has a cornucopia of marble palaces, lakes, temples, and rugged hills.
Mount Abu- is perched on a 1,219 meters high rock plateau at the far southwestern end of the Aravalli hills. Well-known for its exquisitely carved marble Dilwara temples, Mount Abu is an appealing hill resort built around a lake and surrounded by thick woods and hills.