9 Best Places to Visit in Jodhpur: The Blue City of India

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There are some incredible places to visit in Jodhpur during a visit. One of the most enduring tourist spots in Rajasthan, this colorful city has a beautiful blend of history, architecture, and culture that will leave you mesmerized.

Jodphur, the Blue City, is one of the most fascinating destinations to visit in India.

Surrounded by dry, dusty desert, this Blue City has long been a beacon in the endless Indian sands and Jodhpur can trace its origins back hundreds of years to the 15th century.

Since then, it’s grown, developed and been taken over by the larger empires around it.

But it’s always retained a sense of independence as a Princely domain, which is today reflected not only in the unique color of its buildings but in the unique people and culture waiting to greet you through the gates.

To help you to plan your trip to Rajasthan, here’s our travel guide to Jodphur, Blue City of India.

Don’t leave home without: Lonely Planet India (Travel Guide)

9 Best Places to Visit in Jodphur

The Blue City and Mehrangarh Fort in Jodhpur. Rajasthan, India

Jodphur, with hundreds of years of history to its name, has plenty of fantastic things to offer travelers within its walls.

From ancient forts to desert safaris, here are our favorite places to visit in Jodphur, the Blue City of India.

1. Mandore Gardens

Ancient rock curved temples of Hindu Gods and goddess at Mandor garden, Jodhpur, Rajasthan, India

A few kilometers away from Jodphur can be found in the Mandore Gardens. This beautiful area is well worth the short trip outside of the city because the gardens are home to the extensive ancient ruins of Marwar.

Marwar is a kingdom that ruled the region for centuries before the city of Jodphur was established in the 15th century, just down the road.

Marwar was mostly abandoned and the fort and much of the city left to be covered in the dust of the desert, but many of the temples were kept in use.

Over time, the beautiful Mandore Gardens were rejuvenated around the temples, monuments, and ruins. This is one of the best places to visit in Jodhpur.

2. Ghanta Ghar Clock Tower

Umaid Bhawan Palace, Jodhpur, India

Ghanta Ghar is an impressive clock tower located in the center of Jodhpur. The tall clock tower forms a wonderful centerpiece for the surrounding markets and busy streets and can date its construction back to the late 19th century when it was built by the royal family of Jodphur.

Our top recommended tours of Ghanta Ghar Clock Tower:

3. Mehrangarh Fort

Mehrangarh Fort- best places to visit in Jodhpur

The single most famous attraction and one of the best places to visit in Jodphur will always be the iconic Mehrangarh Fort. This dramatic fort rises abruptly from a huge plateau of rock, and much of the city sprawls around the base.

It’s not blue, but it’s still unmissable and it will inevitably be one of the first sights you notice when you arrive in Jodphur.

The fort was built in the 15th century when the city itself was founded, and over the years it’s seen its share of attacks and invasions, and many of the scars of previous wars can be seen on the walls even today.

Mehrangarh Fort is a maze of towers, gates, walls, and palaces and you can easily spend the day exploring far into its depth.

For incredible views over the city, head first to the high walls, which rise over 100 meters above the Jodphur Blue City below.

Explore the lavish artifacts and jewels left behind by previous rulers of Jodphur within the vibrant interiors of the palace, and visit the halls and museums found within.

Our top recommended tours of Mehrangarh Fort:

4. Rao Jodha Desert Rock Park

Rao Jodha Desert Rock Park - Mehrangarh fort view from the Rao Jodha Desert park at blue sky in Jodhpur, Rajasthan, India

Right next to the Mehrangarh Fort you can find the Rao Jodha Desert Rock Park. This is where the seemingly endless Thar Desert begins, right on the edge of the Jodphur Blue City.

This protected area opened just a few years ago to try and save the fragile ecosystem on the edge of the city that was under threat due to rapid expansion.

You can wander along several kilometers of walking trails that take you past rock formations and through scrub and desert landscapes, always in the constant shadow if the imposing fort above.

5. Umaid Bhawan Palace

Umaid bhawan palace jodhpur

The elegant and extensive sandstone walls of the Umaid Bhawan Palace are an impressive sight within Jodphur.

This enormous residence is the home of Jodphur’s former royal family, who ruled the city under British protection before Indian independence.

The palace dates back to the 1920s when construction began on a prominent hilltop on the city’s boundaries.

If you can afford the luxury price tag, then part of the residence is today a fabulous hotel, and if not, then the intriguing museum is always worthy of a look through.

Our top recommended tours of Umaid Bhawan Palace:

6. Jaswant Thada

Jaswant Thada in Jodhpur, Rajasthan

Jaswant Thada is a beautiful relic built to immortalize the memory of Jaswant Singh II in the late 19th century, one of Jodphur’s royal rulers.

The marble facades are elegant and beautiful, while the grounds around the building contain many more memorials to past members of the royal family.

Our top recommended tours of Jaswant Thada:

7. Sadar Market

Sardar Market and Ghanta ghar Clock tower, Jodhpur

The Ghanta Ghar Clock Tower is found amongst the busy stalls of the Sadar Market in the heart of the old city of Jodhpur.

This vibrant marketplace is always busy and bustling and it’s the best place in the city to immerse yourself in local life.

Try the street food, the delicious Jodphur sweets and haggle for bargains and souvenirs with the businesses.

Our top recommended tours of Sadar Market:

8. Walk The Blue Streets

Blue Streets - best places to visit in Jodhpur India

Jodphur isn’t known as the Blue City for any old reason. In fact, as soon as you arrive in the city, you’ll understand quite quickly just how it gained the name.

The buildings are quite literally blue. It’s an impressive sight, as you will see arrayed before you blue house after blue house and one of the best places to visit in Jodhpur when you first arrive is to simply walk through the ramshackle streets of the old city and of the Brahmpuri area.

The Brahmpuri area was traditionally home to the local religious Brahmins, who began painting their houses blue to distinguish them and allow others to find them.

They also found that the blue paint helped to keep the intense heat of the houses – at least to some extent – and before long the blue had spread from Brahmpuri to the rest of the city, and hundreds of years later has even come to define Jodphur.

Our top recommended tours of Jodphur Streets:

9. Try the Local Cuisine

A tea vendor from Jodphur, India

As well as its reputation for being very blue, Jodphur has also become renowned as a foodie location in recent decades, particularly if you love a good dessert.

Delve into the street food stalls to try the best local fare (only if your stomach is adjusted to the trials and tribulations of Indian food, of course) and sample the local favorites which have spread across the rest of Rajasthan.

The best sweet desserts to be found in Jodphur Blue City include Kulfi, a delicious ice cream found almost everywhere in the sweltering sunshine.

Also, don’t forget to pick up a Ghewar Cake. In the evenings, head to the old city to find a rooftop restaurant and enjoy a great curry with a supreme view over the sea of blue around you.

Our top recommended tours including local cuisine tasting:

Jodhpur Travel Tips

How to Travel to Jodphur, India

Lina Stock in Jodhpur, India

Jodphur is located on the western edge of the vast Thar Desert, which stretches across much of the Princely State of Rajasthan in northern India and forms a dusty expansive border with Pakistan.

Jodphur is one of Rajasthan’s most important cities, in terms of history, culture, and tourism. For this reason, it’s very well connected to the rest of the state and further afield.

While the local airport doesn’t cater to international flights, there are regular connections to both Delhi and Mumbai, and at these two cities, you can arrive from almost any other major city in the world, before transiting onto Jodphur.

Jodhpur - Blue City of India

The Indian rail network is well connected to Jodphur and you will find there are frequent and comfortable trains to most major Indian cities, with Delhi being a 12 hour overnight ride away on the fastest express route.

There are frequent trains to regional destinations within the state, such as Jaipur or Bikaner, while there are regular intercity buses too providing reliable transport.

Search for Flights: Priceline and Skyscanner offer great deals to India.

Best Time of Year to Visit Jodphur

Blue houses - best places to visit in Jodhpur

Being located in the middle of one of the world’s largest deserts, Jodphur experiences a dry climate for much of the year. In fact, Jodphur is one of the driest places in India, with almost no rainfall throughout much of the year.

There’s a brief wet season, usually between June and September and you can always expect the city to be hot.

With that in mind, you can visit Jodphur most of the year, but to escape the worst of the heat, you’re the best bet is to visit in winter, from November through to March, when the weather is coolest.

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About Lina Stock

Lina is an award-winning photographer and writer that has been exploring the world since 2001. She has traveled to 100 countries on all 7 continents. Member: SATW, NATJA, ATTA, ITWA

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