Monthly Archives: December 2011

Special Train from Chandigarh to Kanyakumari


A special Bharat Darshan train from Chandigarh to Kanyakumari will be started by the Indian Railway Catering and Tourism Corporation (IRCTC) on January 7. During its 12-day journey, the train will cover a number of destinations. A special coach to Goa will leave on January 4.

Commuters will be taken to Shirdi, Tirupati, Rameshwaram, Madurai and Kanyakumari. The train will start from Chandigarh Railway Station on January 7 at 10 am and return on January 18. The cost of the journey will be Rs 6,156. Apart from Chandigarh, the passengers can board the train from Ambala, Kurukshetra, Panipat and Jaipur. Around 480 passengers will be accommodated.

IRCTC will be arranging for the boarding and lodging of the passengers. The places where road transport is required will also be provided by the corporation. The passengers are also given insurance cover.

IRCTC has also planned a tour of Goa. A special non-AC coach, comprising 72, seats will be attached to Kerala Sampark Kranti Express leaving from Chandigarh on January 4 at 9.20 am. The train will reach Madgaon on January 5. On January 6 and 7, the passengers would be taken on a tour of Goa. The passengers will return to Chandigarh on January 9. The package cost for single occupancy is Rs 7,015.

Now Hollywood’s Favorite City: Jaipur


Jaipur has something significant that fascinate foreigners by the swarm. And now, Hollywood celebs are also captivated by the city.

Rich in customs and traditions, Jaipur has always meant a royal experience forHollywood. And in 2011, particularly, this connect has become very apparent – from shooting scenes of Batman to coming here for leisurely trips, Hollywood stars have been here and done that. What makes Jaipur don’t miss city on the must see in India lists of these stars? As the year nears its end, here’s a quick flashback…

The Heritage Delights
Many times, many people have said that Jaipur is an exceptionally romantic destination. That is why when Hollywood star Hugh Jackman prepared an itinerary for his maiden visit to India, Jaipur topped the list. On a pleasure trip to Jaipur in March, the Australian “X-Men” actor flew down with his wife Deborra Lee Furness and visited Amber Fort, and made a few stopovers at city shops. And for British actress Naomi Watts, it was an exciting day out in Jaipur when she left her husband Liev Schreiber to shoot in Delhi, and came to Jaipur with her kids. Watts spent more than two days here, visiting architectural marvels like the Jal Mahal, along with her mother Miv Watts.

And when the whole country was gearing up for Diwali this year, Rowan Atkinson, the “Mr. Bean” star, and his friends saw the city in all its lit-up glory.

Shopping Spree
Shopping which is one of the most favored activities in Jaipur, is a tempting proposition even for Hollywood personalities. Jaipur’s jewellery, colorful textiles, handcrafted bags, leather juttis are all bought by them. One of the city’s major attractions is its lively market, especially the old markets in the walled city that acquaint travelers with the city’s real hullabaloo. When Leslee Udwin, British film producer, came to Jaipur, she shopped for jewellery at the local shops.

A yearning desire to visit the state also inspires them in giving their creative best to the world of cinema.  Alice Englert who was shooting for director Rolland Joffe’s “Singularity” in Madhya Pradesh, specially flew into the city. She made the best of her two days’ stay in Pink city, exploring various markets, picking and selecting various handloom and handicrafts products. She bought block print textile stuff, silver and studded jewellery.

There are also celebs that come here looking for peace and harmony. Yoga expert Atul Vyas says, “Hollywood’s search for solace often ends at Jaipur. That is why the state’s yoga tourism is picking up.Hollywoodcelebs keep coming to attain physical, mental and emotional balance. People like Kate Winslet, Jane Campion, Cate Blanchett and Nicole Kidman make sure to take Yoga lessons whenever they come to the Pink City.

Jaipur is definitely a place not to give a miss on your trip to India. Plan to visit Jaipur and explore the  royal city of stories and much more. 

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Geared Up for New Year’s Eve??? So Are We!!!


With New Year eve just round the corner, the Pink city is gearing up for the festivity with hotels and resorts hopeful of making good business this time unlike last year.

Those in the event business are excited with the response and bookings this year as tourist inflow is normal as compared to last year which was marked by cancellation of trains, elevated fare of flights and Gujjar agitation.

Tourists’ footfall this time is good and groups of visitors from different parts of the country are coming to celebrate New Year in Jaipur, Udaipur, Jaisalmer, MountAbu. The hotels and resorts in Rajasthan are offering amazing packages ranging from Rs 3,000 to 30,000 for one and two days. Here’s a list of few outstanding luxury and heritage hotels offering best cherished experiences for New Year’s Eve.

Alsisar Hotels:

New Year Packages Read More

Desert Trails :

New Year Packages Read More…

Laxmi Vilas Palace:

New Year Packages Read More…

Devraj Niwas Resort:

For sumptuous cuisines and a contemporary style living in the town of forts and palaces Read More…

Meanwhile, security arrangements have been made to prevent any untoward incident and road mishaps. Several teams will keep watch on drunk drivers and miscreants, and action will be taken against them. So, be careful and play safe to make your New Year’s Eve a Happy New Yew Year’s Eve.

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Bharat Darshan Special Tourist Train: New Year’s Gift from IRCTC


Indian Railway Catering and Tourism Corporation (IRCTC) has announced the Bharat Darshan Special Tourist train from Chandigarh on December 25, 2011. The train on its 11-day journey will go via Delhi Cantonment, Jaipur, Ajmer, Dwarka, Somnath to Ahmedabad.

The IRCTC would charge Rs. 5643 from each passenger. This will cover expenses for travel,  food and transport facility to the tourist sites.

Booking of Bharat Darshan Special Tourist Trains is available online on the IRCTC website.

IRCTC has also offered special trains for visiting religious and leisure destinations in south India including Hyderabad, Madurai, Vishakhapatnam, Salem and Dindigul among others as part of the Bharat Darshan package in the new year.

‘Rajasthan Calling’ Campaign in India to Boost Tourism in Rajasthan


A two-month campaign that will tour 22 Indian cities showcasing Rajasthan’s food and culture to further boost the states’ tourism is launched in India.

‘Rajasthan Calling’ kick started on Dec 16 from Gurgaon, Haryana and will stopover for three days in each city as part of promoting the campaign.

The campaign would facilitate better understanding about the state and provide complete information and showcase our traditional culture including handicraft and food. The major highlight of the festival will be live dances, shopping and a food court. This is not all, the famous Rajasthani delicacies like dal baati choorma, kachori, mirchi pakora and traditional sweets will definitely titillate the taste buds of the visitors.

Meanwhile, handicrafts and other local attractions like wooden toys, terracotta, stone artifacts, gota and Zardozi work, and leather products will surely be crowd-pullers. 

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With 13.78 lakh foreign tourists and 255 lakh domestic tourist arrivals last year, Rajasthan is easily one of the most sought-after tourist destinations in India.

Tour to the City Palace of Jaipur


Situated in the capital of Rajasthan, the City Palace of Jaipur or the chief palace is a titillating fusion of conventional Rajasthan and Mughal architecture. The gigantic palace complex engages one seventh of the walled city of Jaipur. The complex is divided into a series of courtyards, sprawling gardens and buildings. The beautifully caved marble interiors, magnificent pillars, jali or lattice work and inlaid ornamentations make the palace a cherished tourist attraction. Jaleb Chowk and Tripolia Gate are the two main entrances to the City Palace Jaipur. The complex houses a number of palatial structures, most notable ones being the Chandra Mahal, Mubarak Mahal, Badal Mahal, Shri Govind Dev ji Temple and the City Palace Museum.

Mubarak Mahal

In the first courtyard is the ‘Mubarak Mahal’, built by Maharaja Madho Singh II in the late 19th century. The Mubarak Mahal, contains the textile section of the Maharaja Sawai Man Singh II Museum. There is a magnificent gateway with a grand door in brass opening to a stately courtyard. There lies the Diwan-I-Khas or ‘Hall of Private Audience’- an open hall with a double row of columns with scalloped arches.

Diwan-e-Khas and Diwan-e-Aam

The magnificent brass gateway of the Mubarak Mahal leads to a courtyard where one can find the Diwan-I-Khas or ‘Hall of Private Audience’. Here two enormous silver vessels catch the eye. These are the largest vessels known in the world. They are also recorded in the Guinness Book of World Records Next comes the ‘Diwan-E-Aam’ or the ‘Hall of Public Audience’. Done up in a rich red and gold, this chamber holds on display a variety of embroidered rugs and carpets, miniature paintings and ancient texts. The Ridhi Sidhi Pol is the name given to the four small gates adorned with themes representing the four seasons.


Chandra Niwas

The Chandra Niwas, standing to the west is an imposing palace and various parts of this seven-storied building are called Sukh-Niwas, Ranga-Mandir, Pitam-Niwas, Chabi-Niwas, Shri-Niwas and Mukut-Mandir.

Govind Devji Temple

Opposite the Chandra Niwas stands the Badal Niwas and in between lies the Jai Niwas Garden. The Govind Devji temple stands in this garden. Govind Dev ji is one of the prominent temples of Rajasthan and situated in Jaipur, it is visited by many people annually. Dedicated to Lord Krishna and has been well preserved by the earlier royal family. The idol was brought from Vrindavan, installed here by Sawai Jai Singh.  Govind Dev ji is an incarnation of Lord Krishna.

Another integral part of the palace complex is the Hawa Mahal of unusual architecture, standing away from the main complex.

To explore the magnificent City Palace and the beautiful city, just plan your  vacations to Jaipur and rediscover the Royalty and grandeur hidden in the depth of its heritage.

The Frescoed Town of Mandawa


Rajasthan is undoubtedly one of the most incredible and impressive tourist destinations of India. The moment you start exploring it, you come across amazing and fascinating attractions. The royalty and beauty of this land take the tourists to the times of raja-maharaja. Mandawa is one such destination of Rajasthan where there is so much to see and experience as a tourist. One must visit this place at least once and come back completely mesmerized by its architectural beauty and pleasant aura.

Located in the Shekhawati region (well known for its awe-inspiring architectural work) of Rajasthan, Mandawa is a beautiful fort town. Tourists from across the globe come here to see its famous havelis (mansions), temples, chhatris (cenotaphs) and frescoes. The glorious history of this town dates back to 1755. To give a royal taste to tourists the havelis here have been converted into heritage hotels. The fortress, Castle Mandawa dominates the land of this town. It has been converted into a heritage hotel known for its architectural brilliance. You would left completely spell bound by the architectural beauty and royal ambiance of the Castle Mandawa.

The walls of suites and rooms in the Castle are adorned with mesmerizing frescoes and paintings. The carvings and mirror work deserve special mention. One of the rooms named Durbar Hall is the most fascinating with its wonderful paintings, carvings and antiques. The Castle Mandawa offers breathtaking views of the town. Here one also gets a chance to see the royal costumes of the kings and their war weapons.

Mandawa Town is also famous for its fresco trails and painted havelis. From royal architecture to lavishly painted suites, beautiful paintings touching various themes and exquisite carvings, all can be seen in these havelis. Some of the must visit havelis are jhunjhunwala Haveli, Murmuria Haveli and Gulab Rai Ladia Haveli. Each haveli has its own unique charm and beauty.

The Map Showing Route of Various Fresco Trails in and around the Mandawa Town