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Bikaner - Chhoti Kashi OR handicrafts and leather articles OR Camel Country OR Bikaneri Bhujia

Bikaner Travel Guide

Located in the lap of dense sand dunes and deserts, Bikaner is one of the fascinating and historical tourist places in the state of Rajasthan. It would not be wrong to say that the desert city of Rajasthan (India's north-western province) is an eye-catching site of well-fed camels and citadels. Being near to Delhi, it had to withstand the worst of Mughal invasions during earlier times. The exotic camel safaris, its gorgeous forts and the worship of thousands of holy rats at Mata Kali temple are some of the most interesting aspects of Bikaner.

The camel festival held in the month of January is also an event worth witnessing if one wants to get the actual color of the place.  Just like the history of the entire state, Bikaner also has its own splendid past to talk about. It has examples of courage, motivation and happiness. It was in 1488 that a Rathore Prince, Rao Bikaji (a descendant of the founder of Jodhpur, Rao Jodhaji), established his kingdom here. It has faced many foreign intrusions and fought a number of wars with the Mughals and the British. There is a very interesting history behind the foundation of the city. Bikaner used to be the center of art and culture of medieval India that was named Bhatti Rajput Rao Jodha's fourteenth son Bika. This dynasty ruled Bikaner for three hundred years. In the 19th century a friendship treaty was signed between Bikaner's King and the British as a result of which in the 1857 war of independence, the British were provided shelter in Bikaner.

One of Bikaner's attractions is the Dhala Maru or Camel Festival which is held every year in the month of January. Camels from many countries take part in the festival to add more spice in the place’s beauty. However, the city is full of prehistoric forts, palaces, Havelis and other attractions that are explored by tourists from all parts of the world. The principal attraction of Bikaner is the Junagarh Fort built by Raj Singh in 1587-93, which is very much similar to Jaipur Fort. There are as many as 37 palaces inside the fort built at various times by a variety of rulers like Gurjars, Pratiharas, Rajputs, Chauhans, Bhalli, Rathore to name just a few.

Lalgarh Palace which is built in memory of king Lal Singh is also a major attraction of the city. The palace was designed by the renowned European architect Sir Suinton Jacob. The palace is built of sandstone and is a fine blend of Western opulence and Eastern artistry. Be it the Belgium Chandeliers, the exquisite engravings, the fine collection of paintings or the magnificent flower garden, Lalgarh Palace is indeed stunning.

Other attractions like the Jain temples of Bhandeshwar and Sandeshwar are well worth visiting, while Bhandeshwar is adorned in intricate glasswork and frescoes; Sandeshwar is renowned for its gold enameled wall paintings. There is also the Devi Kunda Sagar where the statues of the rulers of Bikaner's past are exquisitely displayed in sandstone. Among the memorial pillars, the one of Rao Kalyan Mai is the oldest.

The city is well connected to all the major cities of the country where one can easily reach through road, rail and air. The city is also known for a number of luxury accommodations right from heritage hotels to luxury hotels, lodges and resorts.

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