We all know Jaipur, Udaipur or Jodhpur for their royal hospitality and exotic beauty. Do you know there are some cities in the Thar Desert which are second to none?
Bikaner – The most underrated city of Rajasthan.
Chromatic History of Bikaner
The city of Bikaner was established by Rao Bika, a ruler from the Rathore clan in the fifteenth century. Rao Bika was the son of Rao Jodha, King of Jodhpur. He wanted to build his own kingdom, so he established Bikaner. Before the 15th century, Bikaner was known as Jangladesh. Being in the middle of the Thar Desert, Bikaner was popular as an oasis for traders. It lied on the trade route between the Gujarat coast and Central Asia. Rao Bika built Junagarh Fort in Bikaner in 1478 AD. Another ruler who developed Bikaner further was Raja Rai Singh. He rebuilt the Junagarh Fort. Later few other forts and palaces were also constructed such as Rampuria Haveli and Bhanwar Niwas Palace.
How to travel to Bikaner?
To feel the royal vibrance of Rajasthan one has to visit Bikaner for sure. Well, reaching Bikaner is an easy task. This city is well-connected to several other cities of Rajasthan. There are some direct flights to Bikaner. If you are in Rajasthan, you can easily get access to public transport and travel to Bikaner easily.
Reach Bikaner by Air – There is a domestic airport in Bikaner. If you are in India, you can take a direct flight to Bikaner. Bikaner Airport is around 15 Kilometres from the Bikaner city. The nearest International Airport to Bikaner is in Jaipur. It is around 350 Kilometres from Bikaner. Jodhpur airport is another domestic airport closer to Bikaner. It is around 250 Kilometres from Bikaner.
Reach Bikaner by Train – Bikaner has two popular railway stations – Bikaner Junction and Lalgarh Railway Station. You will find several different trains according to wherever you are. Bikaner Junction is just 2 Kilometres from the city and the Lalgarh Railway Station is around 10 Kilometres from Bikaner city. Travelling by train is one of the easiest ways to reach Bikaner.
Reach Bikaner by Road – Bikaner is connected to all other major cities of Rajasthan through National Highways. A road trip in Rajasthan is just astonishing and that too to Bikaner, a perfect itinerary. The RSRTC operates a number of AC and Non-AC buses for travellers. You will also find some sleeper buses to Bikaner.
So, how to reach Bikaner is not a problem at all. You will find yourself in a dilemma for leaving this beautiful place after you have fallen in love with this amazing city.
Tourist Attractions in Bikaner
Bikaner has a long list of beautiful tourist attractions and you will find something unique in each one of these. Bikaner is undoubtedly one of the best cultural heritage of Rajasthan. From the beautiful temples to the fortified forts, here are some popular tourist places in Bikaner.
Junagarh Fort – Originally built by Rao Bika and rebuilt by Raja Rai Singh, Junagarh Fort is the most popular among tourists. It is known for its unique architecture and the golden history. Junagarh Fort is a perfect blend of Mughal, Rajput and Gujarati styles of architecture. You will get a chance to visit Ganga Mahal, Diwan-e-khas, Chandra Mahal, Hawa Mahal, Anup Mahal and Dungar Mahal inside the Junagarh Fort.
Ganga Singh Museum – Ganga Singh Museum is situated inside the Lalgarh Palace, another beauty in the middle of Desert. This museum has some cool and interesting artefacts from Harappan Civilization. There is a collection of manuscripts, ancient artworks, paintings, weapons and coins.
Karni Mata Temple – A temple of rats. Yes, you read it right !Karni Mata Temple is an amazing place to visit in Bikaner. You will find more than 20,000 rats living in the temple and there is a mysterious legend behind this.
Lalgarh Palace – Lalgarh Palace was built by the famous ruler Maharaja Ganga Singh. It is known for the architectural designs which are the fusion of Mughal, Rajput and European styles. There is a beautiful garden in which you will get the rare opportunity to see the dancing peacocks. Lalgarh Palace also hosts a lovely museum and hotels for tourists.
Other places –
- National Research Centre
- Bhandsar Jain Temple
- Royal Cenotaph
- Sadul Singh Museum
- Gajner Palace
- Gajner Wildlife Sanctuary
- Koti Gate
Things to do in Bikaner
If you are visiting Bikaner then there is a long list of things to indulge yourself in this cultural heritage. Here are some amazing things to do in Bikaner.
If you are in Bikaner, it literally means you are in the middle of Thar Desert. And camels will be everywhere around you. You can take a camel safari to desert and experience the essence of deserts. You can also hire a Jeep Safari to the desert.
Enjoy colourful festivals
Bikaner is a beauty in the desert. There are several joyful festivals celebrated in Bikaner such as the Camel Festival in January.
Bikaner has many museums such as Sadur Singh Museum, Ganga Singh Museum, etc. There is a collection of ancient artefacts and weapons in these museums.
Find Albino Rats
At Karni Mata Temple in Bikaner, it is believed that spotting an albino rat is very lucky. You may get what you desire if you find an albino rat in this temple.
- Wildlife Safari
- Desert adventure activities
- Visit Camel breeding farms
- Taste delicious cuisines
- Have a stay at Heritage Hotel
Shopping in Bikaner
What could be more fun than roaming around the vibrant bazaars of Bikaner and soothing your eyes ?
Shopping in Bikaner will be worth your time. Bikaner markets are filled with articles made of camel products, beautiful artworks, miniature paintings, handicraft items and many more beauties. The market reflects the cultural richness of Bikaner. Here is the list of things to buy in Bikaner.
Things to buy in Bikaner –
- Kundan Jewellery
- Bikaneri Bhujia
- Lac Bangles
- Rajasthani miniature paintings
- Painted Pottery
- Handicraft items
Popular Markets in Bikaner –
- Lallgarh Palace Road
- Junagarh Fort Road
- Bara Bazaar
- Kote Gate Road
- Bhujia Bazaar
What is the best time to visit Bikaner?
As we know that Bikaner is situated in the middle of Thar Desert, this place has extreme climatic conditions.
- If you want to visit Bikaner in Summer, then you should know that Bikaner is extremely hot and humid in summers. Average temperature in summer is between 28°C to 46°C. Be prepared for sunstrokes and dust storms if you are planning to visit Bikaner in summer. But visiting Bikaner will be worth the effort.
- If you are visiting Bikaner in winter, then you will find the temperature very pleasant. Tourists prefer the winter season to visit Bikaner. Average temperature in winter is between 4°C to 23°C.
Best time to visit Bikaner – October to March.
Now that you know everything about Bikaner, just create a classic vacation out of the royal and exotic beauty of Bikaner.