Rajasthan is not referred to as the “Land of Kings” without good reason.
An important stop on the Silk Road, the famous ancient trade route connecting the Far East with the West. Caravans of colourful camels and peoples crossing the Thar Desert.
Havelis and caravanserais populated the roads many of these have been preserved by converting them into beautiful hotels packed full of history.
Forts such as Khimsar or Chanwa in, castles like Bijapur have been restored in order to ensure their survival in a world of uncertainty for these old princely states and families. Filled with oddities these landmarks are memories of a bygone era.
Of course Rajasthan being a very popular destination has simply hundreds of these heritage properties scattered around the state some half in ruins and others given a facelift ready for a new generation of travellers.
The majestic city of Udaipur dominated by the City Palace and its lake has some of India’s most famous and iconic buildings like the luxury Lake Palace Hotel. On the edge of the Aravali Hills it is one of India’s most beautiful cities and referred to by some as the “Venice of the East”.
The Aravali Hills offer some of the best riding in Rajasthan as you are swept off the desert floor into it meandering roads visiting Kumbulgarh Fort one of the most impressive yet surprisingly empty forts surrounded by 35km of walls and staggering views from the top of its buildings.
Jaisalmer a veritable sand castle in the Thar Desert, a living breathing fort like no other is surely one of the most epic sights. A mirage as if from “The Arabian Nights”. An oasis while crossing the Thar Desert the alternative route to the Pamir Mountains of Central Asia.
There are havelis and ruins still on the route, out in the dunes, that tell the tales of these hardened travellers. Taking the bike through the desert gives opportunities to tackle some sand not everyone’s favourite you got to have the feeling for riding sand.
Not all hotels fit into this luxury category and there are many that still retain all the features and are indeed old havelis without the 5 star facelift and the price tag. So really whatever your budget there is something for everyone.
Rajasthan is a vast state with so many things to do and containing so much of the India of legend. The motorbike or more specifically the Royal Enfield is the ideal way to explore, whether renting and going it alone or joining groups such as Extreme Bike Tours you can pick and choose what you want to see.
Treat yourself to luxury at any level or ride and find hidden places as you go the choice of yours Rajasthan will never disappoint….