Hotel Raj Vilas
Jaipur-Bikaner highway, Bikaner, Rajasthan, India
More about Bikaner
Tofi- our friend
Travel Tips for Bikaner
USEFUL INFO ON BIKANER
I have placed this tip in"general" because I am not too sure where else to place it!
Internet is available at Cyber City (220-9229), Himtasar House, 52 Sadul Ganj in the east side of the city, New Horizons (220-78706) Biscuit Gali)
Net Yuppies (220-9048), on Kern Rd behind Natraj. New Horizon on Station Raod behind the Amber Restaurant has good facilities. Most places charge Rs 20 or Rs 25 per hour.
You can change money at the State Bank of Bikaner and Jaipur (254-4361), opposite the fort’s entrance. Bank of Baroda (254-54530, changes cash and currency (Mon-Fri 10 am-3pm, Sat 10 am-12noon).
The Rajasthan Tourist Office (254-4125), at the Hotel Dhola Maru, near Pooran Singh Circle, is helpful (daily except Sun 10 am to 5 pm) and can arranges car rentals and camel safaris. They have a list of recommended local doctors. They can arrange a tour of Deshnok to go to the Karni Mata Temple or to the Gajner Wildlife Sanctuary for Rs 400 per person. There is a Tourist Office at Suraj Pol, the main entrance of Junagarh Fort (9 am to 6 pm).
PHOOL MAHAL- JANAGARH FORT
The Phool Mahal (Flower Palace) shows the small, low bed that Rao Bika slept on-the bed was designed so that Rao could sleep with his feet touching the ground, enabling him to rise quickly at any sign of danger. Pholl Mahal has magnificent wall paintings depicting flowers, birds and royal emblems.The flower paintings are a beautiful example of Rajput art. The red colours are still vibrant-although I suspect that these are updated and maintained to keep their brilliance. The wall artwork at the entrance doors is quite exquisite, highlighted with gold-leaf. Also inside are carved marble panels.
Deshnok Temple/Rats Temple
Deshnok is a small village situated 31 km south from Bikaner city along the Jodhpur Road. It is connected by national highway N.H. 89 and Rail. It is a pilgrim centre of Karni Mata. Karni Mata, considered as an incarnation of Goddess Durga lived here in the fourteenth century and performed many miracles. Originally the village was called 'dus- nok' meaning ten corners as it was formed by taking ten corners of ten villages.
Before the temple is a beautiful marble facade, which has solid silver doors built by Maharaja Ganga Singh. Across the doorway are more silver doors with panels depicting the various legends of the Goddess. The image of the Goddess is enshrined in the inner sanctum.
Entrance Free Camera Fee Rs 20 and for Video Camera Fee Rs 50.
Romance Among The Rodents
A wedding procession arrived headed by the most miserable and worried looking groom I have ever seen. Despite having been wed the previous day at 5.30am, the bride’s face was still veiled, so they had not yet 'consummated' their relationship. But worse, it was unlikely that he had ever seen her face before and would be held in suspense until their 'honeymoon night' as is typical with arranged marriages here. The ceremony was to last a total of three days.
We became their unofficial photographers. Addresses were exchanged. I hope they have plenty of patience.
The buses back were hopelessly over crowded so we picked one and climbed onto the roof for the journey back. Typically, I was fleeced an extra rupee charge for ‘air conditioning’!
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