The final part of our tour of Rajasthan and indeed Northern India was Jodhpur. Home to the largest Fort in the Rajasthan it was somewhere we weren’t particularly excited about getting to. But some where I had penned to be a place we could sit and plan the next part of the trip.
We spent pretty much the majority of our time in Jodhpur sorting things out. We had a lovely room and so the kids watched movies whilst I sat glued to the laptop trying to fit things together logistically. We did venture out to the Mehrangarh fort and it certainly was an impressive sight. Though inside it was a bit lame and certainly much better looking from the outside. That said, perhaps it was just so stunning to look at that it had a lot to live up to – It failed any way. Or maybe we have just had fort over load. Which is likely, I am exhausted and craving some relaxing time, the kids are faring extremely well and are so just resilient they simply adapt and adjust to whatever situation we find ourselves in.
That is pretty much the extent of what we did – I know it’s not much but when travelling it makes sense to account for days to get things sorted. If like us you are travelling ad hoc then it’s imperative you factor in these days so you can further plan things. Trains get booked up weeks in advance and flights can get expensive; Though I have just booked a flight in three days for the three of us for £133 for the two hour hop.
So, we catch the 1845 train tonight (Monday) and head South toward Mumbai, we should be there tomorrow around lunch time. We had planned to have two nights in Mumbai but due to logistics and various other reasons we have just the one, which is no big deal since in Mumbai last year we did everything I had wanted to, and right now it is the wettest city on earth anyway. We then fly to the Southernmost state in India – Kerala. It’s a favourite place of the kids and mine and home to some of India’s best beaches, lined with palm trees and nature reserves, it’s essentially India on weed with a few coconuts thrown in for good measure. We linger there for around a week before heading up to Chennai (Madras) on the East Coast and then flying out of India and into Sri Lanka for the penultimate chapter in the journey.
We have loved Rajasthan, it was everything we had imagined and more. Huge forts, palaces, sand dunes, arid deserts, camels, it’s been a world apart from the India we had previously known. In many ways it epitomises the India of old, traditional ways and natural beauty all combined with the mystique of a medieval land.
If you are planning to go to India and only have two weeks or not much money then Rajasthan is the place to go. It is cheap, easy to travel and in terms of the rest of India, fairly compact. There are some beautiful hotels and world class sights. We found the food to be of a poor standard outside of Jaipur but prices were amongst the cheapest we had found in the North.
And so, as we look to leave the amber landscape and head toward pastures green and tropical we do so with a satisfaction that we have seen the best this part of India has to offer and we have loved it. It has been tiring at times and the heat has been stifling. But we have had an amazing time and shared some lifelong memories. Rajasthan has reaffirmed the closeness between us and has given us probably some of the best laughs of the trip.
Thanks for everyone who is still with us, and apologies for this particularly lame entry, we just didn’t do a lot and rather than completely omit Jodhpur I figured this little entry would suffice.