A little drop of fantasy exists in this vast land of Rajasthan. Little is known, not talked much, there lies a tiny town Bundi, which is set 35 km NW of Kota on NH 12.
With a majority of blue houses this charming settlement is surrounded by the Aravali Hills. Lazy and narrow lanes, Lakes and numerous step wells ‘Baories’, temples and mosque dominate the town.
Not many knew this fact that Jodhpur- the blue city and Bundi have a strong affinity to the color blue. Either you are atop Mehrangarh Fort at Jodhpur or at Bundi Fort you get a glimpse of the Blue City.
Whilst walking on the streets you are all at your own exhaling the splendor of this scenic town without any noise and pollution. Just like a hidden gem Bundi is not yet highly placed on the tourist itineraries and thus the place is still able to preserve its charismatic charm.
A picturesque Nawal Sagar man made lake in the heart of the town, add more beauty to the place, especially during Sunset when it soaks the reflection of the two-storied fortified complex ‘Garh Palace’.
Gar Palace, built in Rajput style architecture is the face of Bundi. There is no way you can ignore this magnanimous palace, which is also a host to ‘Chitrashala’ where the walls and ceilings are embellished with miniature paintings.
The Bundi miniature paintings depict the history and most prominently the lives of kings & queens that wouldn’t be possible to have come out in public if the king had not encouraged painters and artists. Predominantly in blue and green color Bundi paintings reflect the mix of how the Muslim & Hindu culture.
Unbelievable but true that this little town of Rajasthan hoards around 60 Baories or Step well and almost all have supreme craftsmanship and architecture. The finest example being the Rani Ji Ki Baori.
Rudyard Kipling’s Bundi connection is the tale told by almost everyone with an honored smile. ‘Billu’ our guide mentioned firmly, “It was the Mowgli man who stayed here.” Kipling got inspired for writing Kim in Bundi while he was staying at Sukh Mahal situated at Jait Sagar Lake. The lotus flowers when in full bloom enhance the beauty of the Jait Lake.
There is also an old hunting cottage ‘Shikar Bhurj’ which is the private property of the rulers. While peeping through the narrow lanes we discovered handcrafted Kota Dorias; a special craftsmanship that creates a unique lightweight cloth that helps to beat the heat.It is interesting to know that Bundi Town is named after Bunda Meena, the chieftain of the Meena tribe that once inhabited the town and not after Bundi Ke Ladoo J what we actually thought.
Though rice is not the staple food of Rajasthan as the production of rice demands more of water, which is a scarce resource in Rajasthan but surprisingly Bundi is renowned for its Basmati rice.