Rajasthan With a vibrant culture and rich heritage galore, Rajasthan is one of the few Indian states to leave an indelible mark on the world. Rajasthan is synonymous with regal history, delectable cuisine and magnificent forts, that weave a fairy tale mirage for every visitor. The grandeur of the palaces standing tall, bear testimony to the glorious eras of the yore. If you’ve ever wanted to sample the taste of royalty, Rajasthan should be at the top of your bucket list!
Read on to find out about the must-have experiences when you visit this state steeped in history and heritage. Before you jump into the crux, note that the best time to experience Rajasthani hospitality and culture is the festival period. Owing to the surge in travel and accommodation prices during the festival it is advised to booking tickets months in advance or use flight offers & coupons.
Rajasthan, the melting pot of culture and culinary heritage
Words would fail to describe the grandeur of Rajasthan’s culture and cuisine. A soulful medley of folk music and dance, hospitality, and everything royal, the state totally lives by “Atithi Devo Bhavah” (God resides in Guests), Rajasthan has never failed to surprise the guests with the way they celebrate life. The state carries the history of chivalry, royalty, and romance. You cannot help but look at those forts and stare in awe of the splendid architecture and royalty that Rajasthan once witnessed.
A plate full of Royalty
The real taste of Rajasthan can only be savored when you sit down and feast on the massive spread comprising of more than 20 dishes. Some of the most delectable dishes from the royal state are listed below. It’s mandatory to try them if you haven’t already, they are life changing! For an amazing dining experience in Jaipur, visit Chokhi Dhani.
A heavenly blend of flour, milk, and ghee are used to prepare Ghewar, the king of all desserts. If you enjoy sweets, Ghewar is likely to top the list of your favorite sweets. Soaked in ghee and topped with malai and chopped dry fruits, Ghewar is a delicacy made in Rajasthan and famous across the globe.
Though Rajasthan is known for its vegetarian population and cuisines, Laal Maas is a total show stealer for meat lovers. The dish is essentially a preparation of meat with fiery gravy. The ingredients used to give the dish the ‘red’ color is red chilly. You definitely cannot miss Laal Maas when you’re in Udaipur.
Dal Baati Choorma
Who hasn’t heard about this iconic dish from Rajasthan? This signature dish is a full meal in itself, containing dal (pulses), baati (a hard ball made with flour and dipped in ghee) and choorma (a mixture of crushed wheat bread, ghee, and jaggery). This dish is as much filling as it is rich. Equally enjoyed by the erstwhile royalty and the everyday joe, this dish perfectly encapsulates the all-encompassing royal cuisine of Rajasthan.
Tap your feet to the beats of Ghoomar
Ghoomar is one of the most celebrated dance forms of Rajasthan. Originated in Udaipur, the City of Lakes, Ghoomar is a folk dance of Rajasthan performed on festivities and special occasions. The beats of Ghoomar are popular not only across India but has also traveled across the world. Visit Rajasthan during the festivals to witness this beautiful dance form.
Apart from Ghoomar, there are various other dance forms performed by the different Rajasthani tribes including Bhopa, Tejali, Kathputli, and Chang. You can experience these graceful dance forms at Chokhi Dhani, Jaipur.
Lose yourself in Rajasthan’s rhythms and ragas
Rajasthani music is famous worldwide. The different music groups like Manganiyars, Langas, Banjaras and Jogis narrate the culture and history through their songs. The Langas are exclusive to Muslims while Manganiyars follow a more liberal approach. These music performances essentially sing ballads of the heroic deeds of the Rajasthani rulers, their romances, and also about the daily life of the women folk.
Legend has it that the Gandharv women would dance in the court of Lord Indra while the musicians played for them. The women vowed that they would perform every time the Mirasir musicians would play. But when the Mughals invaded Delhi and married the Gandharv women, the musicians were moved to the Mughal courts and they started singing for the Mughal rulers. As a result, the musicians converted into Islam. Ever since then, the Mirasirs play at the royal functions, temple festivities, and on all special occasions.
Visit Jaisalmer to witness the world-renowned Rajasthani folk musician, Dapu Khan who had previously been invited to play at the White House by the then US President Bill Clinton.
Feel the Festivities in Rajasthan
Whether it’s the Pushkar Mela, the Jaisalmer Desert Festival, or the streak of Dusshera celebrations in Kota, festivals in Rajasthan are always larger than life. The mighty Thar looks as dazzling as a beautiful bride when the entire country assembles to celebrate the Jaisalmer Festival in January. Evenings full of dance, music, camel race, beautiful sunsets, and delectable food welcome guests across the globe to witness the festivities in Jaisalmer.
It’s the month of November and December that witnesses Pushkar in its best form when the Pushkar Mela is organized. Pushkar has the only Brahma temple in the entire world and taking a dip in the holy water of Pushkar Sarovar is considered to be very auspicious. People across the world come to Ajmer Shareef and Pushkar and enjoy the vibrant colors the city paints itself in.