Bikaner, The Desert City

Image Source maharajas express/bikaner

Bikaner located in the northern part of Rajasthan, is a rustic desert town with golden sand dunes, majestic red stone forts, imposing palaces and camel safaris. Founded in 1488 by Rao Bikaji, Bikaner is surrounded by a 7 km long fortified wall with five entrance gates. A city that has till date has maintained the aura and grandeur of the days gone by in a lovely way.

Attractions of Bikaner

Image Source tripadvisor/Junagarh Fort

things to do in bikaner rajasthan

The magnificent fort and the palace here dominate the city of Bikaner. The Junagarh Fort bulit in 1594 is one among few forts of Rajasthan that is not on a hill top. There are many mahals, temples, pavilions and huge courtyards inside the fort. Built with red & yellow stone and marble this fort is an splendid example of composite Indian culture.

Image Source tripadvisor/Lallgarh Palace

The Lalghar palace built between 1902 and 1926 and displays a eclectic mix of Rajput, Mughal and European architectural styles. The palace features intricate pillars, Italian colonnades and elaborate filigree and lattice work. At present date the palace houses a museum, the fourth largest library in the world and also is residence of the Bikaner royal family. A part of the palace has been converted into a heritage hotel.

Bikaner is also camel capital of India with the best and largest Camel research and breeding farm in the world – The National Research Centre on Camel.  Some  other places of interest here are Bhandasar Jain Temple built with amazing yellow stone cravings and paintings, Gajner Palace  located on the banks of a lake and Gajner Wildlife Sanctuary with lovely with admirable scenic landscapes.

The art and craft of Bikaner is another major attraction. Meenakari jewellery,  hand crafted carpets and amazing fabrics are some of the local must buys.

Adventure in Bikaner

Bikaner is well known for its most thrilling camel safaris. There are many private operators who offer safaris with all the facilities and guides anywhere between one to seven days.  These safaris are designed to give you a glimpse of the desert life.

Stay and Food

There are many hotels and resorts in Bikaner. Choose your accommodation as per your budget and comfort in any royal heritage resort, hotel, guest houses or home stay.

Bikaner food reflects its scarcity of water and  fresh green vegetables, but there is ample use of buttermilk and butter in Bikaneri cuisine. Some of the must try local delicacies are Khata, Gatta ki sabzi, Pakodi, Mangodi , Raj Bhog, GaundPak, Ghevar and of course the famed Bikaneri Bhujia.

Reaching Bikaner

Bikaner is well connected by air, rail and road. The nearest airport is Jodhpur at 256 kilometers. Jaipur is 336 kilometers away. Bikaner is connected with Delhi, Jaipur , Mumbai and other parts of India through rail network. Bikaner is easily reachable by roads too and many buses ply on daily basis from  Jaipur, Jodhpur and Delhi.

The best time to visit is November to March as the climate is nice and pleasant during these months. There can be no better place to be than Bikaner  to experience the allure of desert on a camel and enjoy the royal Rajasthani culture.