Jodhpur – The second largest city after Jaipur in Rajasthan (India). This city is known as “The Blue City(Nili Nagri)” or “The Sun City(Surya Nagri)”. Jodhpur is also considered as The Gateway to nearby Thar Desert. The city was founded by Rao Jodha in 1459, a Rajput chief of a Rathore clan. Present Jodhpur and adjoining districts with Pali, Jalore, Barmer, Nagaur, Jodhpur and some part of Sikar was initially known as Marwar. Marwar means “A LAND OF DEATH”. It is called so because of its climatic conditions. It was the largest kingdom in Rajputana and third largest of the Indian Kingdoms after Kashmir and Hyderabad..
Jodhpur lies about 300 kms. (approx…) From Pakistan Border. This is might be the reason, it is a key base for Indian Army and Air Force. Jodhpur has Asia’s largest air base of Indian Air force.
You can explore its rich culture, food, hospitality. Basically there is richness in everything. If you really want to experience the culture of this city, then you must see the vintage collection of art and handicrafts. The rich culture also can be judged by the dress up of the local people. You will see mostly local women with colourful costumes and heavy jewellery and men wearing bright and colourful turbans.
The Marwar festival and Rajasthan International Folk Festival (RIFF) are the most popular festivals of Jodhpur. Other than these, there are lots of many other festivals which are globally famous for their rich culture. Few of them are Gangaur, Teej, and Baba Ramdev mela.
Main reason Why it is known as The Blue City & The Sun City?
Jodhpur is also known as The Blue City as all (mostly houses in old city) the houses are painted with a sky blue colour, and yes the city looks just incredible. Reason may be that blue colour has the property to absorb the heat and keep the houses cool.
Well there is another name for Jodhpur (name already strikes your mind) yes that’s right The Sun City (Surya Nagri). As Sunny weather is around the city throughout the year (even in winters you will find bright sun in Jodhpur).
Majestic Sight of Mehrangarh Fort:
The huge fort looks over the blue city of Jodhpur. Maharaja Rao Jodha decided to move from Mandore (Prior capital of the region) to this fort.To enter this fort you have to pass through seven gates. There is a story behind every gate.
Jaypol (Victory gate) – The Entrance to the Fort:
The gate was built by Maharaja Man Singh Ji to mark his victories over Bikaner, Jaipur & Udaipur armies. Near this gate, there is the chhatri (Memorial) for a soldier Kirat Singh Sodha who lost his life while defending the fort against Jaipur army.
Fatehpol (again Victory Gate) – The second gate to the Fort:
The gate was built by Maharaja Ajit singh to celebrate his victory against The Mughal attack.
Dedh Kambra Pol:
After passing through another three more (I guess) smaller gates I reached another interesting gate called Dedh Kambra gate. The significance lies on its wall only. The marks of cannon balls bombardment by the enemies attack.
Lohapol (Iron Gate) – The Last gate to the Fort:
This is the final gate to enter the main part of the Fort. The gate has sharp Iron Spikes on the gate that is why it is called Lohapol. The intention might be to slow down the army to enter the fort.
Immediately to the left of this gate there are the handprints. Now the point is, these handprints are very special and known as Sati Marks. These are the last memories of ranis (queens) who in 1843 sacrifices themselves on the funeral pyre of their husband Maharaja Man Singh Ji.
Now here is most majestic Mehrangarh Fort. Inside the Fort there are many palaces known for beautiful carvings and expensive courtyards. Museum with full of armours, paintings, turban gallery and lot more. By visiting there you can feel the life style of the Maharajas.
One more thing I have heard that Mehrangarh fort is the only fort which is maintained by the generation of Maharajas. Credit goes to our very own His Highness Maharaja Gaj Singh Ji for this beautiful fort. Still there is same charm of this fort.
Cheers!!!! Hope you all enjoyed the virtual tour to the Fort Mehrangarh.
Jaswant Thada – Taj Mahal of Marwar:
After the Mehrangarh visit you can head towards Jaswant Thada. It is a stone’s throw from Mehrangarh Fort. It is adjacent to the fort. It is also known as the Taj Mahal of Marwar. Actually this place is a cenotaph with white marble built by Maharaja Sardar Singh in the year 1899 in the memory of his father Jaswant Singh II. It is made up of such extreme thin marble sheets that when sun rays kissed this thada it glow golden. Jaswant Thada also has an artificial lake which is use to reserve water for summer months. Also there is a huge garden from where you can see the Mehrangarh Fort and Umaid Bhawan Palace.
There is a belief that if you makes a wish in front of the monument, it will comes true.
Well this is all about The Mehrangarh Fort & Jaswant Thada. In my next blog I will take you to more places to visit in Jodhpur.