Rajasthan, the ‘Land of Kings’ is a popular tourist destination and must-visit places in India. The Indian state draws tourists and travelers for its rich cultural heritage and history. If you are planning a trip to Rajasthan then you would easily need at least 10 days to explore the best of what the state has to offer. Every city offers something unique and fascinating. Here is a basic Rajasthan Itinerary with a possibility to extend your trip adding in more places to visit in Rajasthan.
We are based out of Mumbai in India and nearest city to us is Udaipur hence we start our Rajasthan Itinerary from Udaipur City. If you are traveling from Ahmedabad in Gujarat still Udaipur will be the nearest city. But if you starting from the north say Delhi then Jaipur would be the nearest city, you can start your itinerary from Jaipur and then move up to Jodhpur or down to Udaipur and continue the itinerary.
Getting Around in Rajasthan
There is a very good connectivity of trains and buses between the cities of Rajasthan. For city sightseeing, you will need to hire autos to get from one place to other. The autos don’t run on meter and hence you will need to bargain on the rates before to hire one. We have visited Rajasthan many times and every time we visit we hire a taxi in the first city who takes on a tour through all the other cities as per our itinerary. Road Trip is one of the best ways to explore Rajasthan. There is so much to see on the way you can always stop by, spend some time and take pictures. We have the flexibility of starting our sightseeing for the day at our convenience. A great option if you are traveling in a group or as a family.
Udaipur – The City of Lakes (Day 1-2)
Udaipur popularly known as the ‘City of Lakes’ and very often as the ‘Venice of the East’ is home to some of the lavish Havelis, museums and the grandeur Udaipur City Palace.
Visit the Udaipur City Palace, take a boat ride on the Pichola Lake and explore its islands to marvel at the Lake Palace and Jag Mandir Palace. Go shopping for the local handicrafts and textiles. Shilpagram is a huge fair with shops selling unique and fascinating handicrafts from different parts of the city.
The Dharohar Dance Program at Bagore Ki Haveli will leave you enthralled with its rich cultural performances and folk dances. Also, do not miss a visit to the Saheliyon Ki Bari a beautiful garden and the Ahar Cenotaphs which contains over 350 cenotaphs of the Mewar Kings.
Udaipur to Jodhpur (Day 3)
Udaipur to Jodhpur is a long journey close to 5 hours. You can take a few breaks and visit places on the way.
Eklingji is a Hindu temple complex and a popular pilgrimage destination dedicated to Lord Eklingji (Lord Shiva). The double-storied temples feature pyramidal style roof with intricate carvings on the tower and the huge pillars inside the temple.
Nathdwara Temple is another important pilgrimage destination in Rajasthan. The 17th-century temple is dedicated to Shrinathji (Lord Krishna).
Ranakpur Jain temple dedicated to Tirthankara Rishabhanatha is one of the magnificent temples in Rajasthan. The temple architecture consists of domes, turrets, cupolas featuring elaborate carvings and intricate designs. The interior of the temple is supported by more than 1000 pillars no two of which have the same design.
Pali is a city in Rajasthan home to some of the important monuments and beautiful Jain Temples. One of the interesting attraction which can also be visited on the way to Jodhpur is the Bullet temple which can be easily accessed as it is located on the highway. The temple enshrines a bullet motorcycle which is worshiped by the local before they embark on any journey and are also visited by the same after a successful journey.
Jodhpur (Day 4-5)
Jodhpur the ‘Blue City’ of Rajasthan has some of the most grandeur architectural buildings. The Mehrangarh Fort one of the largest castles in the world is the most beautiful palace decorated with exquisite carvings on sandstone. A short drive from the fort is the Jaswant Thada which is an architectural marvel in marble.
Jodhpur is shopper’s paradise and foodies haven. There are numerous markets around the Ghanta Ghar (Clock Tower) in the old town center where you can buy handicrafts, decorative items and more. Around the Ghanta Ghar are also some of the oldest eateries where you can try some local delicacies like Dahi Wada, Pyaaz ki Kachori, Makhani Lassi, Mawe ki Kachori, Rabdi and more.
Read: Jodhpur Food Guide
If you have already visited the Ahar cenotaphs in Udaipur you will be spellbound with cenotaphs of Mandore garden in Jodhpur.
Some of the cenotaphs are double stories and for story high and decorated with fine carvings and detailed sculptures. Also must visit in Jodhpur is the Umaid Bhawan Palace museum which also houses a museum on vintage cars.
Read: Cenotaphs of Rajasthan
Jaisalmer to Jodhpur (Day 6)
Jaisalmer to Jodhpur Road trip was one of our favorite road trips. There is so much to see and experience all along the route which some of the best opportunities to know more about the rural part of the Rajasthan.
Osian town is a popular pilgrim destination couple of hours drive from Jodhpur. The town is home to some of the ancient Jain and Hindu temples. The 8th century Sachiya Mata Temple is the most famous of all and can be reached by steps winding through intricately carved arches.
Khichan is a small village Phalodi tehsil of Jodhpur district. The village draws tourists to view the spectacle of a large flock of demoiselle cranes that visit every winter. You will find them in an open ground near the village school or near the small lake in the village. Also, find some time to wander around the village and explore the wonderful Havelis some of which are age old.
Tanot Mata Temple
Tanot Mata Temple is a unique temple enshrining Tanot Mata. The temple is maintained by the BSF soldiers. The temple has an interesting history accordingly which out of 3000 bombs dropped on the temple during the 1965 Indo-Pakistani War none exploded some of which are also displayed in the temple premises.
Another important landmark close to Tanot Mata Temple is Longewala the battle site of 1971 Indo-Pakistani War. The site has numerous massive tanks which belong to Pakistan and were captured by Indian army during the war. There are numerous monuments to fallen soldiers and a video providing insight into the war.
Jaisalmer (Day 7-8)
Jaisalmer the golden city of India is located in the arid region of Rajasthan in the heart of Thar desert. The city is home to some of the magnificent architectural buildings like the famous Patwon ki Haveli which are a group of 5 grandeur Havelis (traditional houses) with intricate carvings and latticework. Another most important Jaisalmer attraction is the Jaisalmer Fort which is a fortified city home to around 4000 people. The fort premises has numerous palaces, museums, the beautiful Jain temple, restaurants and handicraft shops.
Jain Temple in Fort
Bada Bagh and Vyas Chattri are amongst the most remarkable cenotaphs in Rajasthan which are something not to miss.
And finally, a trip to Jaisalmer is incomplete without a visit to the Sam Sand Dunes. You can visit the dunes for a spectacular sunset over the arid golden deserts which is one of the most beautiful sunsets spots in India. You can also plan to stay a night in the desert camps which hosts a range of cultural and folk programs after sunset accompanied by a delicious Rajasthani cuisine.
Jaisalmer to Bikaner (Day 9)
Jaisalmer to Bikaner is again a long journey close to 5 hours. Pokhran is a small city popular for the nuclear tests carried out by the Indian army. If you want to take a break you can visit the 14th-century fort turned heritage hotel, visitors can visit a small museum in the fort on the history of the royal family.
Bikaner (Day 10-11)
The city of Bikaner popularly known as the Red City in Rajasthan is home to some of the magnificent forts and palaces. The 16th-century Junagarh Fort is one of the top attractions. The fort complex consists of buildings, halls with ornate interiors and the Prachina Museum on traditional textiles.
The second major draw for the tourists is the Karni Mata Temple which is a popular pilgrim destination and home to thousands of rats which are also worshipped and fed by the pilgrims. Wildlife enthusiasts and animal lovers should visit the Camel Farm which is part of the National Research Centre on Camel.
The old town of Bikaner has some of the magnificent Havelis built from red sandstone and decorated exquisite carvings. The 15th century Rampuria Haveli and the Bhandasar Jain Temple are the two major landmark of the old town.
Bikaner to Jaipur (Day 12)
Bikaner to Jaipur is the longest road journey until now which is close to 6 hours. You will just need to reach the hotel, relax and prepare for the Jaipur City sightseeing the next day.
Jaipur (Day 13-14)
Jaipur the capital city of Rajasthan popularly known as the Pink City of India is amongst the top tourist destinations in India also part of the famous Golden Triangle Tour in India. The city is home to grand palaces, Havelis, temples and magnificent forts. Nahargarh Fort and Jaigarh Fort are two major forts must visit if you want to learn more about the history of the city of Jaipur.
The Jaipur City Palace is one of the top Jaipur attraction. The palace complex features beautifully painted gates, courtyards, museums, temples, and several other small palaces. The interior of the palaces is richly decorated with paintings and artworks. The museum on royal costumes in Mubarak Mahal and history of the royal family in Chandra Mahal are two important museums.
Close to the City Palace is Jantar Mantar a monument and an observatory site and the iconic Hawa Mahal. Hawa Mahal or the Palace of the Winds is a striking pink sandstone structure with around 953 small latticed windows an exemplary blend of Rajput and Mughal architecture.
Amer Fort (Day 15)
When in Jaipur taking a tour of the magnificent Amer Fort is definitely a must. The 16th-century Amer Fort is one of the magnificent forts of Rajasthan and a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Amer Fort is located around 11 km from the city of Jaipur. The fort complex has numerous gardens, richly decorated gates, and other smaller palaces.
‘Sheesh Mahal’ or the ‘Palace of Mirror’ is one of the top attraction in Amer Fort where the entire hall and the walls of the palace are embellished with thousands of small pieces of mirror tiles. The ‘Light and Sound’ show after dusk is an amazing show on the history of the Amer fort.
Best Time to Visit Rajasthan
Winter months from November to March are the best months to visit Rajasthan. The climate is pleasant and warm. The summer months April and May are months to avoid as it gets very hot and humid. The nights can get really cold at night especially if you are staying in the desert camps do carry warm clothes. The months from June until August or September are rainy months but Rajasthan receives fewer rains so you can also plan to visit during these months.