Monthly Archives: May 2016

Craft Trails in Rajasthan

Craft Trails in Rajasthan

India’s largest state Rajasthan has an exceptionally rich heritage. The grand monuments are the testimony to that. The ancient art-forms have also been kept alive and thriving here. The state offers everything from little mementos to precious jewellery. We are taking you on a craft-trail through the lanes of Rajasthan today-

1.Blue Pottery

Blue pottery - RTB

The fragile Blue Pottery from Jaipur is popular world over. This art form is of Turkish origin and Mughals brought it to India. It has been kept alive in Rajasthan so the state has to take the credit. As the name suggests, the Blue Pottery items come in various shades of blue. You will also see brown and yellow colors in it.
Alwar and Bikaner also have their unique styles of pottery.


2.Leather Products


The leather Jootis belong to all of Rajasthan but the ones from Jaipur and Jodhpur are more prominent. In Rajasthan the Jootis are made mostly with camel leather. The designs have changed as per the fashion trends so you get both traditional and modern styles.
Besides Jootis, bags, pouches, saddles and other leather products are also available in the state.


3.Block Printing/Tie and Dye


There are so many distinct prints from different areas of the state. The classy block-printing is done in Jaipur, Bagru, Barmer and Pali. All the cities have their own unique way of making block prints.Tie and dye is also a very beautiful print seen on Rajasthani fabrics. Dots like print are called ‘chunri’ and leheriya is the print that has long waves printed on fabrics.
Mirror work, gota-patti, appliqué work and heavy embroideries are other popular styles from Rajasthan.




The main centre for terracotta is Molela village near Udaipur. Terracotta products are made using the local clay in Molela and other regions. Terracotta plaques depicting ceremonial occasions are popular among art-aficionados. You can find sculptures, decorative items, tiles and even jewellery made of terracotta.



wood work

Sculptures, furniture and other wooden items from the state are sure to give a royal touch to any setting. The wood of Acacia plant is used in making these most of the times. There are two reasons for this- Acacia tree is found in plenty in Rajasthan and the finish of products made of this wood is much better and appealing. The intricately carved furniture from Kishangarh and Shekhawati-style of Jodhpur are especially famous.




Rajasthan is one of the main centres for precious and semi-precious stones in India. Garnet, Ruby, Lapis, Emerald, Topaz, Agate, Amethyst and Carnelian are some of the stones that are found mainly in the state. The stones are used to make unmatched jewellery here and are exported too.




The state is rich in so many art forms and jewellery is no exception. Thewa jewellery, kundan, Meenakari (enamel work) and silver jewellery from Rajasthan have made the state the hub of jewellery shopping.
Rajasthan is also well-known for its Lac bangles that come in every color you can imagine.


8.Stone Art

marble work

Rajasthan is the land of pristine white marbles so it’s no wonder that the marble artwork of the state is quite famous. Perfectly carved marble statues from Jaipur need no introduction. Besides marble other stones are also used to make sculptures and other artifacts.



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When you are in Rajasthan, you will frequently come across street-vendors selling beautiful puppets. These are made with cloth-stuffing. The head is made of wood usually. Faces are made with just paint. This makes these puppets cheap and must buy souvenirs.




Jaipur, Jodhpur, Nathdwara and Kishangarh are the most well-known for paintings. Murals, miniature paintings, portraits are some of the styles popular in the state. The paintings are made using precious stones, conch shells, precious metals, minerals and vegetable dyes. The paintings mostly depict scenes from Indian mythology.


11.Crafts of Metals

metal work

Jodhpur, Jaipur and Alwar are the prominent centres for brass and silver work. Decorative pieces like vases and figures of animals &humans are mostly made using these metals.

Image source- 4

A Sweet & Salty Tale of Sambhar Lake


Jaipur Beat

For a moment, close your eyes and imagine a vast stretch of land with gleaming moonlight falling on its body and making it look like a white night right out of a mystical fantasy tale that could just exist in your vivid imagination.

But what if that came to life ? Watch the stars shining down on a land as white as snow, a place that’s a muse for the Hindi cinema and a getaway for flamingos; In the royal state of Rajasthan, lies India’s Largest Saline Water Lake – Sambhar. And yes, this place goes beyond your imagination and comes with a vista that looks like a picture postcard sans the greens and the hills 😉

sambhar flamingo

Photo Credit –

Elliptical in shape, with a length of 35.5 km and breadth varying between 3 km and 11 km, Sambhar extends in three districts of Jaipur, Nagaur and Ajmer. Sambhar…

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Movies Shot In Rajasthan- The State Woos Filmmakers

Movies Shot In Rajasthan- The State Woos Filmmakers

Indians’ love for their films is well known. Bollywood ranks highest in popularity and the shooting locations of the movies enjoy some extra love by tourists. Rajasthan is the hotspot for movie shootings owing to its amazing beauty. Many movies have been filmed in the desert state and quite a lot of them became super hits. Here are some movies that were shot in Rajasthan so that you can include them in your itinerary on your next trip to the state-



A great classic, Mughal-E-Azam owes some of its beauty to Sheesh Mahal in Amber Fort. Jaipur’s Amber Fort houses a grand Palace of Mirrors and you must have seen Madhubala in each of the mirrors while dancing to the song- Pyar Kiya To Darna Kya. The movie was black and white but the song was shot in color! Some other shots of the movie were also taken at the forts of Jaipur.


2.Bajrangi Bhaijaan

bajrangi bhaijan rajasthan shooting

The film made good use of the rustic Mandawa. The village in Shekhawati region was chosen to look like Pakistan. One of the haveli in the village was turned into a Pakistani jail. Indo Pak border area was filmed in an open field here.


3.Shuddh Desi Romance

films shot in jaipur

Jaipur was shown in all its glory in Shudh Desi Romance. This film was based on characters belonging to the city so the film showed every popular spot of the Pink City including Hawa Mahal, Jal Mahal and old city markets.



paheli shooting in rajasthan

Set in Rajasthan, Paheli showed the colors of the state beautifully. The ghost scene at Chand Baori in Abhaneri made India’s largest step-well even more popular. Jaipur’s Hotel Narain Niwas Palace was a part of the movie. Some parts of the Shahrukh Khan movie were shot in Jaisalmer as well.


5.Rang De Basanti

films shot in rajasthan

The peppy song ‘Khalbali’ was shot at Nahargarh fort in Jaipur. The fort was also the shooting location for the famous ‘beer-scene’ where Sharman Joshi jumps in water.


6.Yeh Jawani Hai Deewani

movi shooting in rajasthan

The splendid Oberoi Udaivilas Hotel was where the wedding of Kalki Koechlin’s character was shot. The grand palace made the perfect choice and has become even more popular after the movie. The film also showed many other locations of the Lake City as well as Chittorgarh Fort.


7. Jodha Akbar

jodha akbar shooting in amber fort

This movie was about the gorgeous princess of Amer and a large part of it was shot in Rajasthan. Many scenes were shot at Amber Fort in Jaipur.



pk shooting in sambhar

The poster of a naked Aamir Khan with a radio was shot on a non-functional railway track in Sambhar area of Rajasthan. The church scene was shot at All Saints Church in Jaipur. Mandawa was another location that was part of the blockbuster.


9.Bajirao Mastani

bajirao mastani shooting location

Amber Fort was again the place of choice to shoot many scenes of the movie. Some scenes were also shot at City Palace and Rambagh Palace. Quite a few battle scenes were canned in the outskirts of the state.


10.Prem Ratan Dhan Payo

prdp shooting kumbhalgarh

The awe-inspiring Kumbhalgarh Fort made the backdrop for a few shots in the family drama. Some shots were also taken at Udaipur.


11. Khoobsurat (2014)

khoobsurat lallgarh

Lallgarh Palace was shown as the royal residence in this light comedy. Khoobsurat was also shot in the majestic Junagarh Fort. The palace that Fawad Khan’s character buys was Amber Palace.



octopussy shooting udaipur

Hollywood also couldn’t stay away from the grandeur of Rajasthan. Udaipur’s lakes and palaces came alive in this 1983 James Bond movie. Lake Palace, Jag Mandir, The Monsoon Palace and Shiv Niwas Palace were part of the movie.

16 Film Festivals from Sunday- JIFF

16 Film Festivals from Sunday- JIFF

Yet another Film festival is opening in Jaipur from Sunday. Named “16 International Film Festivals” is being organized by the internationally acclaimed Jaipur International Film Festival (JIFF) from May 15 to 22 at the Nile screen of the prestigious Golcha Cinema. Festival films would be screened daily in the evening from 5.00 Pm to 9.15 Pm.


Film personalities from India and abroad have started arriving at the Pink City to participate in the simultaneous 16 film festivals.

Bilal Taheri from Iran, Stela Pelin from Romania and Hasan Nazar from Afghanistan are among the prominent personalities reaching Jaipur who would be taking part in the inaugural session of the festival.

‘Special Talks’ would be held daily at 5 PM which would be followed by film screenings from 6 PM.

jaipur international film festival

Different subjects like women issues, human rights, democracy, politics and corruption, and development issues, art and culture would be discussed and films based on these themes would be screened besides Children and animation films. Cine goers in Jaipur would have a chance to watch world’s top selected films in the festival.

films in 16 iff

A total of 975 films were submitted for the festivals from 60 countries of which top 65 films have been elected for the screening. Among them are seven feature films, five documentary feature films, nine documentary short films, 28 short fiction films, two animation feature films, seven short animation films and seven Advertising films.

film festival in jaipur

The event will be opening with Political and Democracy Film Festival. The schedule of JIFF will be as follows-

On 15th May senior journalist Tribhuvan would talk on democracy.

On 16th May Chairperson of FICCIFLO Preeti Saboo and film maker Gajendra Shrotriya will discuss the subject “Women in Current Era with special reference to Science and Environment” with Ritu Verma and Pragya Rathor.

On 17th May Hariram Meena and Dr. D.P. Agrawal would discuss the subject “Tribals”.

On 18th May there would be open dialogue on “Rajasthani Cinema : Film Makers, Audiences and Government.

On 19th May Dr. Dushyant and Ish Madhu talwar will discuss “Love and Romentic Cinema”, while Gagan Mishra will discuss Children films, Dr. Vibhuti Pandey and Devesh Sharma would discuss with Ritu Verma and Pragya Rathor the subject of increasing scope in Animation films.

On 20th May Dr. M.K. Devrajan, Kavita Shrivastava and M. Hasan would discuss Human Rights.

On 21st May Ranveer Singh, Dharmendra Kanwar, and Sarvesh Bhatt will discuss with Vinod Bharadwaj on Art and Culture.

16 iff

People from all age group can attend the festival. The only film for adult only is ‘Project Marathwada’, based on suicides of farmers. Om Puri plays the lead role in the yet unreleased film.

Founder of the JIFF and 16IFF Hanu Roj said the main objective of the simultaneous film festivals is to create awareness about the issues raised in the selected films. Discussions during the festivals have been designed taking into account intellectual needs of film-goers of all age groups.

16 iff jaipur

The experiment of holding 16 film festivals simultaneously would be redesigned in future using the experiences gained in the first effort.

Get Mesmerized by the Scenic Beauty of the Lakes of Rajasthan

Get Mesmerized by the Scenic Beauty of the Lakes of Rajasthan

Rajasthan has multiple colors to offer. On one hand, it has the vast Thar Desert and on other it has lush greenery. The state boasts of many lakes. Most of the lakes in the state are artificial but still very beautiful. The lakes were primarily built to serve the need of water in the old times. Udaipur is called the city of lakes and surely has the most marvelous lakes. It doesn’t mean that other lakes in the state are any less enchanting. Here we are introducing you to the twelve most popular lakes in Rajasthan-

Sambhar Lake

Let’s get started with the largest lake in India! Sambhar Lake is situated in Jaipur and is surrounded by Aravali Hills. This is a salt lake but Sambhar Lake is also a popular tourist spot. When you are in the area, you see white everywhere you see. The serenity and beauty of this lake is unmatched.
When you are here, also make sure to pay a visit to Sambhar Wildlife Sanctuary which is especially known for a variety of bird-species.

Lake Pichola

Lake Pichola
Another highly popular lake is this artificial lake in Udaipur. Lake Pichola has beautiful structures like heritage hotels and City Palace surrounding it. There are islands in the lake as well that have palaces and luxury hotels. A trip to Udaipur is incomplete without a boat ride on Pichola.

Maan Sagar Lake

Jal Mahal
This lake is one of those places where time stands still. The rippling waves are really charming. To add to the beauty of this lake, there is Jal Mahal in the middle. At Maan Sagar Lake you can enjoy various moods of sun while feeding bread to fish. The Jal Mahal is lit up at night to add to the pleasure.

Nakki Lake

Nakki Lake
This picturesque lake in Mount Abu is not only beautiful but it is also considered sacred. The Summer Festival in Mount Abu is held by the side of this lake. A serene boat ride on Nakki Lake is a lovely experience.

Pushkar Lake

Pushkar Lake
This is another sacred lake in the desert state. Indian pilgrims and even foreign tourists come to take a dip in this Holy Lake. The lake is especially thronged on Kartik Purnima which is the time of Pushkar Festival. The lake has 52 bathing ghats.

Ana Sagar Lake

Ana Sagar
Ana Sagar is spread over 13 kilometers in Ajmer city. Ana Sagar is an artificial lake with an island. The island houses a garden surrounded by marble fence. There is a lush green garden near lake- Daulat Bagh. You can go to the island in the lake with boat or water scooter.

Doodh talai Lake

doodh talai udaipur
This is technically a pond situated near Lake Pichola in Udaipur. The main attraction near lake is a ropeway that goes up to the height of 500 meters. There is a Karni Mata temple once you reach on top. From top you can also soothe your eyes with the magnificent view of Udaipur.

Balsamand Lake

balsamand lake
Balsamand Lake is a popular picnic spot and is situated near Jodhpur. You can enjoy the view of lake while sitting under the shades of trees surrounding it. There is a heritage hotel on the shore of the lake if you want to spend a few days near the scenic water body.

Fateh Sagar Lake

Fateh Sagar
Udaipur’s very popular Lake has an island garden and a boat-shaped café. You can reach the island on a boating while admiring the hills surrounding the lake. Even if you are not up for going to the café, Fateh Sagar Lake is a must visit.

Maota Lake

maota lake
You will come across this lake on your way to Amber Fort. This lake used to be the main source of water for the fort. It looks resplendent when viewed from the fort. Maota Lake also has an island garden known as Kesar Kyari Bagh.

Nawal Sagar Lake

reflection copy
Nawal Sagar is the beauty of small town of Bundi. This man-made lake is situated in the heart of the town. The beauty of the lake is enhanced at sunset when the reflection of Garh Palace falls in it.

Chandlai Lake

You will find this small lake in the outskirts of Jaipur. The lake is very popular among birdwatchers. You can spot Pied Avochet, Little Ringed Plover, Spot Billed Duck and Flamingos among many other migratory birds.

Image source- Nakki Lake, Doodh Talai

The Holy City of Pushkar Gets a Rope Way

The Holy City of Pushkar Gets a Rope Way

A rope-way is an easy and affordable way to travel to hilly locations. Keeping this in mind, a new rope-way has been started in Pushkar. The rope-way has been constructed at Savitri Mata Temple. With the help of this rope-way, now you will be able to reach the 720 metres high temple in just 6 minutes.

pushkar ropeway

This is the third rope-way in Rajasthan. Six cable cars are being plied, 3 each for onwards and downwards journey. Every cable car is able to carry 6 passengers in one go. The fare is 80 rupees.

new ropeway in pushkar

The service started from 3rd May after CM of Rajasthan Vasundhara Raje inaugurated it. The construction of a road surrounding the Savitri Hill has also been started. This road will be used for Parikrama around the temple and will be useful for pilgrims who do not want to go up to the temple.

Image source- 1, 2

A Unique Film Festival in Jaipur- JIFF

A Unique Film Festival in Jaipur- JIFF

Pink City of Jaipur will be hosting a mega cinema event of 16 International Film Festivals simultaneously later this month.

The gala event, the first experiment of its kind in the world, is being organized jointly by the Jaipur International Film Festival Trust and the Jaipur International Film Festival (JIFF) at the prestigious Golcha Cinema daily from May 15 to 22 (5pm to 9pm).


A total of 975 films were submitted from 60 countries for the festivals, out of which 65 movies have been selected for screening in the festivals. The elected films include seven Feature films, five Documentary feature films, nine Documentary short films, 28 Short fiction films, two Animation feature films, seven Short animation films and seven Advertisement films. (Total – 22 films from India and 43 films from abroad)


The mega event will cover 16 different subjects. Each of the 16 festivals will be dedicated to a specific subject like Development, Democracy, Human Rights, Women Issues, Art and Culture, Children, Politics and Corruption besides Animation and Horror Films etc.


Screening of each film will preceded by a discussion on issues related to films and the film’s screening will be followed by a discussion of film appreciation.


Founder of the JIFF and 16IFF HanuRoj said the main objective of the simultaneous film festivals is to create awareness about the issues raised in the selected films. Discussions during the festivals have been designed taking into account intellectual needs of film-goers in all age groups.


Some of the films that will be screened during the festival are- Babai (Kosovo, Bridge (India), Jews Step Forward (USA), Waiting For The Train (France), The Beach Boy (Germany), The Coltrane Code (Italy), Jhelum (Rajasthan) and Help The Farmer (India).