Jodhpur Off The Beaten Path

  • Bishnoi Potter
    Bishnoi Potter
    by lynnehamman
  • Dhurrie weavers
    Dhurrie weavers
    by lynnehamman
  • Cenotaps
    Cenotaps
    by RAJASTHANBYCAR

Best Rated Off The Beaten Path in Jodhpur

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    Bishnoi Beliefs

    by lynnehamman Updated Nov 3, 2011

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    A village dog had killed a chinkara fawn's mother. So the Bishnoi family had adopted him before he became prey to other predators in wild and a mother nursed him as if it was her own child...
    The Bishnoi people hold all forms of life very sacred, and deers are held in highest esteem.
    The Chinkara is of the Deer family.
    The Bishnoi do not cremate their dead like Hindus. The reason being that they believe it is wrong to chop down a tree for the wood needed for a cremation.

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    The Bishnoi -crafts,culture and beliefs

    by lynnehamman Updated Apr 8, 2009

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    A fascinating day trip out of Jodhpur is a visit to the Bishnoi villages, in the countryside south of Jodhpur.
    The villages scattered around have houses built from mud and thatch, all with veg gardens, and wild animals roaming around (particuarly black-buck).
    The Bishnoi are craftspeople, and their skill at pottery and weaving can be observed first hand. They also observe strict principles regarding everyday life.
    The Bishnoi are followers of a 15th century sage called Jambeshwar, whose 29 principles (bis noi) are based upon total protection of all forms of life, and the enviroment.They are strict in their beliefs, and believe that their re-birth will be in the form of a Deer. So strong is their belief in preservation that unlike most Hindu communities, Bishnois bury their dead instead of cremating them. This is because of the strict prohibition on the felling of trees, the wood of which is required for cremation.
    They have herds of goats, and camels, and tend them with great care.The weavers use camel hair in the weaving process, and beautiful dhurries (rugs) are woven after the materials are dyed with vegatable colouring.
    Men wear predominantly white, but Bishnoi women dress in vivid colours, and much ornamental silver jewellery. The nose rings are striking.
    Villages we stopped at were:

    Gudda Bishnoi
    Mogra
    Salawas (famous for weaving)
    Kakuni (for pottery)
    Rohet ( good lunch stop at hotel)

    Kakuni is the southernmost village, and is 26km south of Jodhpur.
    Travel agencies in Jodhpur can arrange a 4wheel drive taxi, and 6-8 hours allowed for the trip.

    There are numerous refreshment stops (dhabas) along the way, and at Rohet there is a good hotel for lunch.

    Bishnoi Potter Dhurrie weavers
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    Opium Ceremony

    by atufft Written Apr 9, 2007

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    During our visit to outside Rohet, I participated in an opium ceremony. Belinda was afraid to do so for fear the drug might harm her, but it hadn't been since the early 1970's since I had tried the substance, a fact I don't usually share with my friends. The procedure was fully explained by the school teacher, while children sat around and watched. Apparently, the men consume low grade opium as a matter of tradition to make the burden of farm work more bearable I suppose. One of the men was in his late seventies and had been taking opium since he was a young man. I didn't feel any effects of the drug if I was given any at all, which was something of a disappointment, but the ritualized ceremony was fascinating.

    School Teacher Explains Opium Ceremony Belinda and Children Watch Opium Ceremony
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    Rohet Henna Tattoo

    by atufft Updated Apr 9, 2007

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    Rohet consists of a majarah's palace, known as Rohetgarh, a small surrounding village, and surrounding countryside of various family farms and open landscape. In the morning after breakfast, we walked outside Rohetgarh's walls and mingled with the villagers. Soon a young woman offered to paint a henna pattern on my wife's hand, which she accepted, and soon many from the street stopped to watch. Henna is a woman's craft, something done on important occasions, such as before marriage, and so I watched for awhile and then walked down the street to find craftspersons at work.

    Henna Tatoo Ceremony Close-up of Henna Painting in Progress
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    Farm Life Outside Rohet

    by atufft Written Apr 9, 2007

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    The villagers in this region live pretty much as they have for perhaps thousands of years. We visited homes, and when Belinda began to enter the kitchen, she was admonished to take off her shoes. The strange thing was that the kitchen floor was simply cleanly swept earth. We watched new construction of brick, and examined the store of grain used by the family. After I saw workers using wooden pitchforks, I was determined to buy one before the end of our trip. Today, the simple farmer's tool reminds me of the traditional village farming of Rohet.

    Farmer's Home Outside Rohet Old Man and Pitchfork Outside Rohet
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    Wildlife Outside Rohet

    by atufft Written Apr 9, 2007

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    The desert scrub is a mixture of domesticated animals foraging for whatever they can find, and a variety of deer doing the same. Hindu practices do not allow herdsman to eliminate the deer in favor of their farm crops or ranging goats and cattle. We had the opportunity to visit the countryside with a school teacher who had offered his services. On the way to a village, we were amused by jousting bucks in a field.

    Close-up of Bucks Jousting Deer in Field During Countryside Tour
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    Marriage Ceremony in Rohet

    by atufft Written Apr 9, 2007

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    When we were in Rohet, we were invited to a wedding that took place as night. First, we walked over to meet the bride and see how she was dressed. She and her sisters and girlfriends were busy eating and preparing for the ceremony. After that, we walked over to the groom's home, where the men were celebrating in wild ways that would be familiar to anyone from the USA and Europe. Finally, the bride and groom were brought together for the marriage vows. We met the bride and groom and by the help of a child who knew some English, we were able to have a few questions answered. Music and festivities continued for so many hours that we eventually chose to go back to our room and sleep.

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    Musical Serenade

    by atufft Updated May 8, 2007

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    After dinner, Belinda and I were the sole audience for a group of outstanding musicians. They sung and played there rather unique variety of Rajasthani music, which I had yet to find recorded anywhere but by our video, until I tracked down the You Tube link below. The Rohet Garh website shows the musicians and their instruments, but basically the trio consisted of organ/accordian type instrument called a harmonium, a drum, and som slap sticks. The music is very percussive, and the singing very soulful and a wonderful accounlike any other Indian music that I had heard. The performance was dedicated to us and we were the solo members of the audience. This stands out as among of the best musical performances I've ever experience--really! Sorry no still pictures. This was a night performance with hardly any light.

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    Monkeys!

    by Vija_v Written Jun 22, 2005

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    And again monkeys! Monkeys everywhere! :)

    Do u know that on streets of India you can meet cows, dogs and monkeys, but no cats. I havent seen a single cat in India. Locals told me that they have cats, just they are staying in and never make any walks outside.

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    Nimaj

    by keeweechic Written May 14, 2006

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    Nimaj is a small place in the Marwar Region of Rajasthan. There are temples in the area one which goes back to the 9th century. Chhatra Sagar and Jagram Durg Fort are also places to see in Nimaj.

    Nimaj was a lunch stop for us traveling between Jaipur and Jodhpur. We had been traveling most of the day through rural Rajasthan a small villages along the way. Suddenly we pulled along outside a large wall with an archway gateway.

    Location : Nimaj is around 110 kms (2 hrs) from Jodhpur

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    Farmer's Water Supply

    by atufft Written Apr 9, 2007

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    The water supply for drinking, cooking, and washing came from a lake, which I believe was a reservoir of sorts that could also provide some irrigation. Women came to the water's edge with jars on their heads.

    Rohet Water Supply
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    Don't Miss A Rest Stop

    by keeweechic Written May 14, 2006

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    This self sufficient little village was a treat to stop at. Other than the request for pens from the children who really did get a bit much towards the end, no body hassled us, nobody asked for money and while I doubt we were a rare sight to this little village, it had yet to become spoiled by tourism. The other nice thing was that this little hamlet was clean, there was none of the rubbish or even poverty as seen in other such villages.

    One of the guys I was with saw an ice cream vendor outide the gates selling ice creams for 1 rupee each. A few children had gathered nearby so he gave the vender 5 rupee to buy them ice creams.

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    Panchkund Queens' Cenotaphs

    by RAJASTHANBYCAR Updated Apr 13, 2006

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    Panchkund Chattris or cenotaphs of the Queens is 3 Kms from Mandore. Not by far as large and grand as the cenotaphs of the rulers they are profoundly moving. Indeed in their simple and quite dignity the seem to say, "Here in sprit lie Marwar's queens.Let not anyone forget they were the strenght of the Rathores." The chattris lie in near ruin but it is believed they must not be disturbed. They too must follow the natural cycle.

    Panchkund Chattris View of Panch kund Chattris Panchkund Chattris Panchkund Chattris
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    Jaswan Thanda

    by Yso Written Feb 25, 2003

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    Visit the Jaswant Thanda - an impressive white marble mausoleum dedicated to Jaswant Singh II. The views over Jodhpur are great, the gardens are nice to walk around, and there are not too many people.
    Usually you can visit the Jaswant Thanda on the way to the Fort, which is an absolute must see

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    The Village Children

    by keeweechic Written May 14, 2006

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    All of a sudden little children came out of the woodwork, smiling and giggling and obviously pleased to be seeing new faces. They followed us along the narrow pathways through the village, with more joining as we went along. I felt a little like the pied piper. All the wanted and probably knew how to say was ‘pens’. They wanted pens as most rural children seemed to do. Then a group of them wanted their photo taken.

    Location Nimja - 110kms east of Jodhpur

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