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The Camel Country, Bikaner is one of the beautiful cities in Rajasthan. Bikaner is famous for its culture, dunes, and two models of the biplane, which were used by the British in World War 1. They gave it as a gift to Maharaja Ganga Singh, the ruler of Bikaner. Bikaner is also famous for dunes which are scattered in the whole district. However, it has a beautiful orientation from the North-East down to the southern area. Tourists love to go for a desert safari in Bikaner.
Bikaner is one of the earliest established cities in northern Rajasthan. The Bikaner fort, golden dunes, and incredible heritages are the legacies of Bikaner. It is a perfect holiday spot for tourists. You can find many forts, palaces of red stone, ancient buildings, ornate architectures, local markets, and various cultural sites. Ancient temples from the Harappan era make it a pilgrimage site as well. Here, you can find the world’s largest camel research and breeding farms and the Karni Mata temple in Deshnok, which is also known as 'rat temple'.
The Royal history of Bikaner is that it was established in the year 1488 AD, by a Rajput Prince, Rao Bika Ji. He was a great warrior who founded the camel country. They converted it into an impressive city. You must go for an adventurous trip to Bikaner and enjoy the beauty of golden dunes.
Nearest Airport: Bikaner
How to reach:by air/road/train
Famous for: Forts & palaces
Best time to visit: October to March
Junagarh Fort, Karni Mata Temple,Gajner Palace, Laxmi Niwas Palace
Lallgarh Palace, Jain Temple Bhandasar
National Research Centre On Camel, Royal Cenotaphs, Devikund Sagar
Gajner Wildlife Sanctuary, Rampuria Haveli, Ganga Government Museum
Before the 15th century, Bikaner was known as Jangladesh. The present districts of Bikaner, Churu, Ganganagar, and Hanumangarh were involved in Jangladesh. It was under the rule of Rajputs. Later on, a Rajput Prince, Rao Bika developed this place. This place was Nehra Jat, who got ready to give the land to Rao Bika, on the condition that the place would be linked to his name. The king agreed, and that is why this place got the name Bikaner.
Among all Rao Jodha, Rao Bika was the first one who had a desire to construct this place. Hence, he built the present-day Bikaner. The king also built a fort that was named as Junagarh fort. After Rao Bika, the major development of Bikaner occurs in the rule of Raja Rai Singh. He rebuilt the Junagarh fort, on 760 feet of height. Maharaja Karan Singh built Karan Mahal. Maharaja Anup Singh added a ‘Zanana' quarter to this place. Further rulers came and added more buildings.
Bikaner has a vibrant and rich culture. Here you can find admirable art, crafts, festivals, dance, and traditional and royal cuisine. The Camel Festival is one of the most famous festivals in Bikaner. It is popular not only in India but on the international level also. Other than the Camel Festival, there are some other festivals also. Festivals such as Gangaur Festival, Karni Mata Fair, Kapil Muni Fair, and the Kolyat Fair are the pride of Bikaner. The melody of traditional music and art is also a part of the culture of Bikaner. The desert safari in Bikaner will make you fall in love with the place.
Utsa art is a unique style of painting in Bikaner. Paintings and golden meenakari are some common types of Utsa art. The Bikaner Fort depicts the culture in the region of Bikaner.
Places of Interest
Junagarh Fort: - The Fort has a blend of Mughal, Rajput, and Gujrati architecture. Junagarh Fort has beautiful lawns and intricately designed galleries. Red sandstone and marble were used to construct the palaces. It is said that crocodiles were present in the canal which surrounds the fort. You can reach this place by road.
Karni Mata Temple: - The Karni Mata Temple stands out from the tourist points in Bikaner. An image of Karni Mata lies within the temple made of marble and stones. This place is famous for the huge population of rats that roam around freely in the temple premises. Karni Mata is believed to be an incarnation of Goddess Durga. It is one of the notable seats of religion in India.
Jain Temple Bhandasar: -The Jain Temple in Bhandasar is the best Jain Temple in Bikaner and a must-visit spot. It is one of the oldest monuments and has intricate paintings and beautiful stone carvings on the walls and pillars of the temple. The top floor allows visitors to get a beautiful panoramic view of the city. This temple is dedicated to the 5th Tirthankar and attracts devotees from all over the country.
National Research Centre on Camel: - The camel research center is around 8 kilometers from the city. It is the only such research and breeding center in Asia. You will get the chance to look around the whole facility and the various activities that are done there. You will find 3 species of camel in the research center. Camel rides are also organized for the visitors.
Royal Cenotaphs, Devikund Sagar: -The Devikund Sagar cements its place in the list of tourist attractions in Bikaner. It is a crematorium for the members of the royal family. It has a reservoir where you will be able to view several royal cenotaphs (chhatris). Each cenotaph is a dedication to a ruler from the Bikaji Dynasty. You will also find cenotaphs built with white marble on the ceiling. There are many elegant paintings here.
Gajner Wildlife Sanctuary: - It is approximately 32 kilometers from Bikaner. Any wildlife and nature enthusiast is bound to love this place. The Gajner Wildlife Sanctuary is home to the blackbuck, chinkara, nilgai, and wild boar. You will also be able to spot several migratory species of birds in the winter. Tourists prefer a wildlife safari within the sanctuary.
The Jorbeer Conservation Reserve is a destination that is on the must-visit list of all tourists who visit the Bikaner Fort. Any nature lover or a bird-enthusiast will fall in love with the place. This dumping ground for cattle carcasses proves to be a feeding ground for different species of vultures. Not only can you find thousands of vultures but also ravens and various species of eagles. If you look carefully, you might happen to spot Himalayan and Eurasian Griffins.
The desert safari in Bikaner is a grand experience. You will get an opportunity to view golden dunes stretching across the horizon. A camel safari across the vast desert is going to be a memorable experience for any tourist. A bumpy camel ride in the Thar Desert will prove to be a fun experience for all those who try it. You will get a chance to taste various traditional flavors and food items after the camel ride. You can select the desert safari in Bikanerat your convenience.
Where to stay in Bikaner
You will find several luxury hotels for accommodation in Bikaner. These hotels will provide all the amenities to make your stay memorable. Few of the most popular hotels in Bikaner are:-
Laxmi Niwas Palace:- It is a luxury hotel and is set in a residential palace. It will provide you with amenities like an on-site restaurant. It is 2 km from the Junagarh fort. Tourists visiting Bikaner Fort prefer this accommodation.
Narendra Bhawan:- Narendra Bhawan Bikaner is a perfect amalgamation of modernity with grandeur. It is a boutique hotel and popular among tourists.
Lalgarh Palace: - It is a heritage hotel and has a lounge for the comfort of the tourists staying here. The Junagarh Fort is 2.5 km from this hotel.
Gajner Palace: - It is located on the lakeside and provides the residents with a luxury stay. A lush green garden adds to the artistic beauty of this hotel.