Junagarh Fort Bikaner- Rajasthan
Eight kilometres form Bikaner, this is the place which contains chatris (cenotaphs) of the Bika rulers.
Don`t miss the exhibits at this interesting museum. You can enjoy terracotta ware, traditional Rajasthani musical instruments, a miniature of the Royal Bikaner train, antique carpets and royal vestments. You can also see the royal decree of Prince Jehangir advising Rai Singh to immediately proceed to Delhi as Emperor Akbar is dying.
The late sixteenth century fort was constructed by Raja
Rai Singh, a general in the army of Akbar, the Mughal emperor,
subsequent Maharajas added luxurious suites. Diwan-i-khas (private
audience hall), Anup Mahal, Badal Mahal (cloud palace), Gaj Mandir
(Elephant temple) and Hawa Mahal (wind palace) are some of the places
worth checking out. The fort is marked by some exquisite stone
carvings. A major feature of the fort and palaces is the superb
quality of stone carvings.
Several rooms at the fort house an interesting collection of royal vestments, armoury (enormous bore guns used from the back of camels), Maharaja Ganga Singhs 56 kilogram suit of armour, sword with ivory and crystal handles and a biplane presented to Ganga Singhji by the British during World War I. There are supposed to be only two models of this plane in the world.
Millions throng the Karni Mata Temple at the village of Deshnok, 30 km south of Bikaner. At this place, holy rodents flourish all over and are fed milk by the devotees. The rats are known as kabas and it is considered extremely auspicious if they oblige by running over your feet.
Lakshminath was the patron god of the Bikaner rulers. The temple was built in the 16th century and regularly attracted royal processions during major religious festivals.
Constructed in the early 19th century, the Bhanwar Niwas Palace today serves as a renowned heritage hotel. Tourists to this palace are impressed by the lavishness that manifests at thevery outset.
Constructed in memory of the father of Maharaja Ganga Singhji, the Lalgarh Palace, as per its name displays a reddish charm. The palaces today houses one of the most fascinating collection of artifacts from Bikaner's royal past. Also a great part of it has been converted into a heritage hotel which means that the royalty is open for more common people to experience and enjoy.
Organized in January to promote tourism in the city, the Camel festival gives a spirited start to the new year. People, having recently welcomed the new year are still not out of their festive moods, and the camel festival does not allow them to do so for the next few days. The festival brings out the vibrancy of the people of Bikaner in the best possible way thereby making it a time to remember and cherish.