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Rajasthan Tours Travel  »  Fascinating Cities of Rajasthan  »  Shekhawati

Shekhawati Rajasthan

Haveli, ShekhawatiA land of stout warriors and tall tales, Shekhawati is not just a fort or a town it is a region which encompasses similar towns each of which tells a classic story. This semi desert region in the north of Rajasthan is situated entirely in the triangular circuit of Delhi-Bikaner-Jaipur. Named after its ruler Rao Shekha, Shekhawati literally means the 'Garden of Shekha.'

The towns of Shekhawati are famous for their amazing painted havelis. The walls of these towns tell timeless tales of valour, passion, betrayal, celebration and chivalry. An ode to history encapsulated and made forever immortal. Such is the appeal of these murals, mosaics and frescoes that this region is dubbed as "The Open Art Gallery of Rajasthan".

Most of the buildings are dated from 18th century to early 20th century. There are also forts, minor castles, mosques, wells called baoris and chattris to discover. The murals mostly depict mythological themes, huge animals, the arrival of the British and the steam locomotives. The Rajputs were more inclined towards themes of historical events, personages' folk-heroes and the prominent war scenes, while the Marwaris concentrated more on religious themes but with the passage of time the themes too began to divert towards more modern views.

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The Story of Shekhawati
In the olden times Shekhawati was an important link in the Southern Silk route and its towns were prosperous. When the port towns of Bombay and Calcutta were set up, the merchant families - Goenkas, Poddars, Singhania's, Ruias, Birlas and many more migrated towards these more lucrative centres of trade and industry and slowly established a stranglehold over commerce between India and Britain. Here they earned unparalleled wealth and sent huge sums home, which were used for building havelis, social welfare, wells, reservoirs, schools etc.

The Towns of Shekhawati
Lies at the heart of Shekhawati and with its cluster of hotels, is the most suitable base for exploring the region, the best of the painted towns are within a 50-km radius from here. Some of the important Havelis in Mandawa itself are Chokani, Ladia, Binsidhar, Gulab Rai Ladia Haveli, Binsidhar Newatia haveli and the Gulab Rai Ladi Haveli .
Entrance of Haveli, Mandawa
Is a charming little oasis to the noth-west of Mandawa. Here time stands still and the atmosphere is laden with the post-colonial stupor. Its Keshargarh Fort is over 250 years old and definitely worth a dekko.

Located around 30 km south east of Mandawa, is a quaint little town. The Dera Dundlod Quila or fort made in 1750 showcases the traditional blend of Rajput and Mughal architecture. Another of its attractions is the Satyanarayan temple that has a 100 ft deep well.

Is one of the biggest and busiest towns in Shekhawati. Home to many of the very rich Marwari merchants, this is also the place to find some of the finest frescoes in the entire region. Check out the well restored Poddar Haveli and the little Birla Quila that it contains within, its mirrors and murals, lustrous and colourful are sure to delight. Its other attractions include the Aath haveli, Morarka Haveli, Saraogi Haveli, Sheksarai haveli and the Chaucharia Haveli.

Once the wealthiest of all of Shekhawati's towns Ramgarh is still called Sethon ka Ramgarh ( Ramgarh of the Merchants ). Here again you will encounter some beautiful frescoes of gods, royals and even Europeans.

The biggest town in the Shekhawati region, Jhunjhnu is the district administrative head quarters. It is located at a distance of 180 km from Jaipur and 245 km from Delhi. The town is well connected by train and road from Jaipur and Delhi. The town has decent accommodation facilities for a comfortable stay and can be an ideal base while exploring the Shekhawati region.

Shopping in Shekhawati
To the shopper Shekhawati offers the greatest gift that any town can give, a piece of itself. Today the tourist can take home a piece of Shekhawati's famous art and decorate their walls at home, for these traditional murals are being recreated on paper and also on cloth.

To turn a corner of your home into a haveli you could take back some of the beautiful furniture sold here, carved and decorated chests, chairs, cradles and low tables and stools. Each object is elaborately designed and decorated. The embilleshments range from inlays of brass sheet work or paintings of dancing figures and with hunting scenes. Ramgarh is renowned for its carved wooden doors and chairs.

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Weather Watch
Shekhawati like the rest of Rajasthan has a desert type of climate. Hot summers and cooler winters. The temperature in summer goes upto 41.2 C (Max) - 29 C (Min) and winter sees the temperature at 30 C (Max) - 10.5 C (Min). The monsoon hits between July and Mid September making the cliamte very humid. The best time to visit are the winter months from end of September uptill March.

Getting There
Air : Sangner Airport at Jaipur. The area could be easily accessed through Jaipur airport.

Rail : Well connected to cities in Rajasthan. Shekhawati Express connects Delhi to Shekhawati.

Road : The Shikar and Jhunjhunu are connected to Rajasthan. The distance between Sikar and Jaipur is 114 kms.

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