Rajasthan, or perhaps Land of Kings, is undoubtedly the most colorful state in India. It’s rugged, half-desert landscapes, half arid hills, offer a fascinating contrast with the sparkling hues of local clothing.
Rajasthan's most famous cities include Jaipur (state capital), Jaisalmer, Jodhpur, Udaipur, and Pushkar. In the small villages, you will find groups of men in vibrant turbans sitting under a tree, women in traditional costumes and saris drying on the edge of a river.
You will also admire the temples and fortresses located on the hilltops of the rugged Aravalli. The Aravalli range marks a separation between the north-western state of the Thar Desert and the more populated southeast where the fertile Chambal valley is located.
Rajasthan remains on the margins of great nationalist impulses. The Maharajas, unconcerned with the welfare of their population, fear above all to lose their privileges and power. Lord Mountbatten, the great negotiator of independence, has all the trouble in the world to convince them to join the Indian Union.
Some Privileges (abolished since) are Finally Conceded to them to Swallow this Bitter Pill.
In 1947, all the kingdoms were united to form the state of Rajasthan, attached to the Indian Union. Per capita income is one among the lowest in the country.
Rajasthan is known for its forts and palaces. These were built at the top of the hills. These architectural marvels stretch across the region and are full of surprises.
During a trip to the eternal lands of Rajasthan, you must be sure to stay in one of these forts and palaces "Heritages Hotels" which possess a glorious past. The best known are the Amber Palace, the City Palace-Jaipur, the lovely City Palace -Udaipur, also the Hawa Mahal, and even the Jantar Mantar, the well known Mehrangarh Fort, Kotah Fort, Chittaurgarh Fort, Junagarh as well as the Kumbhalgarh Fort.
Rajasthani culture is very much appreciated because it's so colorful & vibrant. Several civilizations such as the former inhabitants of the Indus Valley and the Indo-Aryans influenced the culture of this region. The culture of Rajasthani's are inspired by various features like its folk music & dance, different languages, the majestic forts, palaces and divinely holy places of religious worship, its cuisine, its multi hued fairs and festivals.
Each city of Rajasthan has its specialties, traditions, and craftsmen with the skills and know-how of their own. Carpets, pottery, marble handicraft, wooden handicraft, jewelry and many other products of the state are renowned for a long time and very sought after. Some of famous crafts from Rajasthan are:
The artistic and creative skill with which the craftspeople in this state make their handicraft is legendary.
The arts and crafts trade in Rajasthan has flourished for centuries and today is a thriving trade that yields truly delightful treasures.
Designs created using the block printing technique are among the highest quality textile products in Rajasthan. Generally made of cotton, the printing with blocks of wood is made with natural pigments. A garment can combine up to 8 superimposed colors, and the print is done by hand. Well-known brands of women's clothing and home textiles are based in the Pink City Jaipur.
Undoubtedly, among the most exclusive pieces of the Rajasthan craft are Indian jewelry. Silver work is excellent throughout the state. Most pieces worn by women in rural areas are sterling silver with a manual filigree work that varies greatly in each region. Also, in Jaipur stands the carving of precious and semi-precious stones that are assembled with the most exuberant forms.
From the Kundan style with gemstone necklaces and gold leafs to Thewa, where 23-carat gold overlays colored crystals to form a kind of floral latticework. Rajasthani jewelry has unique high-value pieces, almost impossible to get outside India.
The furniture also has a special place in Rajasthan craftsmanship. In Jodhpur, you will find some of the finest colonial furniture factories inspired by royal antiques. To the work of the wood carved inlaid mother-of-pearl and camel bone, or decorations with miniatures that tell battles and stories of princely love.
The miniature art that once decorated walls and palace books still has schools in Udaipur, Bikaner, Kota and the Shekawati region. It is practiced on different materials such as silk, camel bone or paper and can be incorporated into all kinds of objects, from amulets to coffee tables or wedding trunks.
Another luxury object is the Makrana marble with which the Taj Mahal was built and today a multitude of Rajasthan handicrafts from sculptures of the most popular gods like Lakshmi, Ganesha or Radha, and Krishna to intricate fantasies such as the elephant formed by Rajasthani artisans.
Objects for the house are also made with the technique of hard stone, which consists of the inlaying of semi-precious stones on the marble in the manner of the decoration of the Taj Mahal.
The people of Rajasthan like celebrations and colorful and joyful festivals. In addition to the religious festivals celebrated by the Hindus, Muslims, and others, there are also traditional fairs such as camel fairs, or those organized to celebrate a change of season.
Present throughout the year, these celebrations are a splendid opportunity for visitors to experience the lifestyle and traditions of Rajasthan.
There are also festivals organized especially for tourists like some elephant festivals, camel races, music, and dances. Among the best-known fairs are the Nagaur Fair (annual livestock fair), the Desert Festival, Gangaur (a festival dedicated to the goddess Parvati), the Summer Festival and many other tradition stuff.
The festive spirit of the inhabitants is one of the reasons why the color is as much present in the region. Indeed, the deserts of Thar and Rajasthan are known as the most colorful deserts in the world. Rajasthan's vibrant, vigorous and graceful fairs and festivals, dazzling clothes, music, and dances transform this arid land into a rich pool of color and creativity.