Incredible India and Rajasthan tourism advertisements were so lucrative to hold back. A long research of the must visit tourist and offbeat places in Rajasthan helped me finalizing my trip to Rajasthan. The tour covered the blue city Jodhpur, heritage city Jaipur, Golden City Jaisalmer and Indo-Pak border in Tanot and Longewala.
This is the first travel blog post from the 7 days tour of Rajasthan. I was accompanied by my friend Vishwanath. We used public transport for a major portion of our travel except in Jaisalmer. In Jaisalmer, we rented a Hero Impulse motorcycle for three days to tour in and around Jaisalmer.
Here is the plan we chalked out:
Day 1: Mumbai to Jodhpur [Overnight journey by train]
Day 2: Jodhpur to Jaisalmer [Overnight journey by train]
Day 3: Kuldhara, Sam Sand dunes and stay somewhere en-route Tanot [Touring on motorcycle]
Day 4: Tanot, Longewala and back to Jaisalmer [Touring on motorcycle]
Day 5: Explore Jaisalmer Fort and city [Touring on motorcycle]
Day 6: Jaipur in a Day [Rented a cheap combo of hotel room and car with driver]
Day 7: Back to Mumbai [Jaipur to Mumbai by train]
Short excerpt from the tour
The tour provided us with a firsthand experience of cultural and spiritual insights of people living in the remote expanse of Thar. It made us feel the high spirit they have to tackle the challenges arising from the tough surrounding. Their simplicity, never complaining nature and feel of Indian aesthetics in their daily life will stay alive forever in our minds.
The tour put our negotiation skills at test. And we are happy we managed it well. We will remember the trip for the experiences which the soldiers at border shared with us, the never-ending roads rolling on the desert hills and the high-speed winds which make the bike weightless.
We will also remember the tour for the time we spent sitting on the Jaisalmer Fort road lost. At last, we will also remember sipping Coffee in Joshi German Bakery and our eyes fixed on Jaisalmer Fort visible from the small iron caged window.
Mumbai to Ahmedabad by Train
‘Aunty chalo jaldi, train sirf 2 minute hi rukti hai’ with a bit of tension I encouraged the fat lady struggling to cross the small door of Indian Railway. Heavy bag on my back and camping Tent in my hand I managed to enter the crowded sleeper class coach at Borivali.
I could not hold my wide smile longer. Our Waiting List 239 ticket booked no less than a week got confirmed yesterday. Even the gods wish for such fortunes J Met Vishwanath who took the train from Bandra and shared high five looking at our confirmed berths. It was 9 PM when the train left Borivali station, took off for the day tired from day work.
We reached Ahmedabad around 5 AM in the morning. Our train to Jodhpur was in 2 hours. I remember a strange army man sitting next to us who was travelling from Bangalore to Jodhpur. I was stunned by his competence to eat Namkeen. Just as we eat rice and dal he decorated his big thali with Namkeen and finished it in one go. It is always interesting to talk to army men, they have lots of interesting stories to share.
Ahmedabad to Jodhpur by train takes around 7-8 hours. Same afternoon of 15th August, we were at Bhagat ki Kothi railway station. It is another terminal for Jodhpur bound trains. Bhagat Ki Kothi railway station is 5 km behind Jodhpur. Auto-rickshaw asked Rs 100. We made it cheaper, walked for 50 rupees and hired an auto for 50 rupees. We believe in saving 😉
We were at Jodhpur station around 4 PM. Our train to Jaisalmer was at 11:45 PM, so we had close to 7 hours in Jodhpur.
Janta Sweets Pvt. Ltd – Must check for every foodie visiting Jodhpur
If you are in Jodhpur you cannot afford to miss Janta Sweets. They have become so huge that they have converted their shop into a Limited enterprise.
Janta sweets home is famous in Jodhpur for Indian snacks and particularly Rajasthani flavours. We ordered Maakhanyia Lassi. And yes the spoon stood upright in the glass; this is how we test Lassi.
Left the place and moved ahead towards Jodhpur bazaar. It’s an old market with narrow lanes and is usually crowded. We were late for Mehrangarh Fort as it closes by 5 PM.
Jodhpur Ghanta Ghar or Clock Tower
From the market, a right turn from Chauraha/junction takes us to Ghanta Ghar. The only information we could gather is there was a king who ordered a British company for this clock and paid 1 Lakh for its construction, 1 Lakh for transportation and 1 Lakh for the copyright of the design.
Walking straight from Ghanta Ghar lead to a castle styled hotel, which we entered unknowingly thinking of some historic place. Came out and walked the straight road which took us to a nice lake surrounded by old architectures and temples.
Searching for budget accommodation in Jodhpur brought us to a Dharamshala
Returned to Jodhpur main circle and started hunting for cheapest Dharamshala. We required it for 3-4 hours to charge our mobile/cameras and getting fresh. Not far from the main circle we got one for Rs 75/person for 24 hours. It had everything we needed.
If you are in Jodhpur and looking for a place to stay do not worry, you will get a wide range of options. Dharamshala’s are the cheapest.
They start from 50 rupees per cot but do not expect attached washroom. Lodges and budget hotels in Jodhpur are in plenty. Whenever you are looking for rooms, come out from the Jodhpur railway station and walk towards the main circle in the right-hand side.
Ajab gajab train kahani (Fiasco at Jodhpur station)
All set, we left the Dharamshala and reached Jodhpur railway station. Train to Jaisalmer was at 11:45 PM. We were there at 10:30 PM. The station was heavily crowded with Ramdev Bhagwan devotees.
It was the time when people from all over the country come to Ramdevra station which lies between Jodhpur and Jaisalmer route. With a quick look at the indicator, we came to know the train was at platform no 2.
Train to Jaisalmer was already standing at platform 2. But I could not find Sleeper S1 coach all were general. ‘Abe saare ke saare chalu dabbe hain re!’ I said to Vishwanath.
It was the third time we were running end to end of the platform. Yes, all coaches were general and heavily packed with devotees. We crosschecked the train, it was same. We crosscheck our ticket it was correct too. Hardly 1 minute was left for the train to depart but where was this S1?
We asked police standing there he explained something like this. The train will be divided into two parts. Half of the train will leave the station. Half will remain here. The half which left the station will go where the S1 and B1 coach are parked.
Those coaches will be linked to the train which went there and again the train will come back to Jodhpur station and connect the other half. Once all this is done you are ready to go, simple. Simple indeed J
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Read other posts from Rajasthan travel