Sunday, January 31, 2016

Land of Stories - Rajasthan

There was a time where ad jingles used to be so addictive that they were stuck with us for weeks. For me, that trend had died down with Idea Cellular’s number jingle. But there is a new jingle that struck a chord with me and has been playing over and over again in my head for the last couple of weeks. Travel junkies in love with history and culture – you should have already guessed it! Anyways, because it is on a loop in my brain, here it is:

Maati baandhe painjanee,
Bangdi pehne baadli,
Aedo dedo baavdo,
Ghod-mathod baavdi…



Yes! I am in awe of the new Rajasthan Tourism campaign. Rajasthan is a land of stories, a land of history, a land of colours and a land of diversity – but to a lot of people it was just about camels, deserts and a couple of very well-known forts. But now the tourism board seems determined to let you know a lot more about this beautiful state of India; and guess what, it is seeking to show you Rajasthan from the eyes of people like you! Confused?

Rajasthan tourism campaign is all about showing you your ‘Sthan’ now – the way you see Rajasthan’s wonders. Right from the logo – which by the way is one of the most creative tourism logos I have ever seen, (created by Ogilvy & Mather - the same geniuses who had come up with Hindustan Ka Dil Dekho campaign for Madhya Pradesh) – it is all about your perspective but showing you the popular and the offbeat at the same time. The logo is an imagery of two camels sitting back to back with two birds hovering on the top – camel, something people relate to with Rajasthan but birds, how many really know about the rich ecological hotspots for bird watching in Rajasthan? The logo also gives you a second perspective of a Rajasthani man with the typical moustache and raised eyebrows – maybe the new face of Rajashthan Tourism, seems like it right?




Anyways for more information about the revamped structure visit their SITE, and trust me you won’t be disappointed. For now I have some Vaisakhisthan (Okay not being a narcissist, I swear) ideas and places; some seen some yet to explore.

Even walls tell you stories

Rajasthani way of story telling
Rajasthan for me is a Land of Stories: From the brave Rajput kings, to their daring queens. Even during the campaign launch Vasundhara Raje had said that Rajasthan is not just about the desert and Palaces. It is much, much more. Every nook of Rajasthan has a story, and I totally agree with her.



The famous Hawa Mahal
Victory Tower at Chittor
Rajasthan to me is also about the excellence of Architecture: Did you know Jaisamand Lake near Udaipur is the second largest artificial lake in the Asia and was actually created in the 17th century! Kumbhalgarh fort wall is only second to the Great Wall of China in the world, in terms of length. The Keerti Stambh and the Vijay Stambh in Chittor were one of the earliest pillar wonders of the world that stand strong and beautiful till date. Dilwara Temples in Mount Abu are adorned with such intricate marble work that leave you spellbound and with praises of the old craftsmen. The much studied about ventilation system of Hawa Mahal and its sophisticated design. And admit it the brilliance of Amer and Mehrangarh Fort and the beauty of Jal Mahals (Palaces in water) in Udaipur and Jaipur appeal to tourists and travelers alike. I love Rajasthan for it is the perfect place to appreciate art skills of India of the ancient days.

Majestic Amer Fort

Rajasthan to me is about wondering at Nature: Ranthambore and Keoladeo Ghana National Park or like it was called, Bharatpur Bird Sanctuary, tell you the so called desert land has forests right? But if you thought this was it – let me tell you, you are in for a surprise at Abu, Alwar and Kumbhalgarh too because apart from the well-known architectural delight, these places are home to a large number of wild animals and birds, and goes without saying, these places are forested. Rajasthan has about 14 recognized sanctuaries but at the same time it is also the place where Thar marks the Indian map.

The max wildlife I have explored in Rajasthan yet
Rajasthan also has a way with Food – In Udaipur and didn’t eat at Natraj – Crime! Even I was afraid of committing this crime and literally hogged at this place like a glutton, and this is coming from a non-foodie so imagine (Best Rajasthani Thali Ever). Apart from that, ghewar, dal baati and Ajmeri kachori in gadha – well that is what people call it) – well get the point, when in Rajasthan go traditional atleast in case of food!

I was busy hogging so couldn't click any pictures. Thank God a friend of mine clicked this recently. (Source)

And lastly, Rajasthan to me is about people, colour and culture: I still remember listening to the ektara players and nomad singers at Pushkar, their music so clear and so prominent in the chaos of the busy market. I still remember walking amidst the colourful traditional lanes of Johrai Bazar and Bapu Bazar in Jaipur with no sense of destination. I still remember the Ghumar dancers at city palace Udaipur. Yes, Rajasthan has kept its soul its culture alive to a great extent, atleast the best part of it and like most places, people and culture is what defines a place for me.
Traditional Meenakari Earings and Mojri types Chapal from Bapu Bazzar
So, how is your Sthan? Similar to mine or you have more experiences to share. Do let me know.

P.S. - All pics are personal unless source specified and yes these are not SLR clicks, but clicks from a sony cybershot 7.5 mpixel cam (old school)

City Palace Udaipur

18 comments:

  1. Rajasthan is indeed beautiful...nice clicks too:-)

    ReplyDelete
  2. You won't believe I've read numerous posts on Rajasthan in the last one year and every time my resolve only gets stronger to visit and live its culture for a few days.

    This post is a reminder to me, again !

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Alok Ji! It's time to act on those plans...Rajasthan Calling :D

      Delete
  3. Love Rajasthan... it is so beautiful... Great post buddy... and lovely pictures and videos...

    Cheers, Archana - www.drishti.co

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thankyou so much Archie! And Rajasthan...undoubtedly..is beautiful! :D

      Delete
  4. Rajasthan is a beautiful place and this is one place I keep visiting again and again and never get bored or tired of it. It has so much to offer. Its indeed a land of some great stories!
    Great post and nice pictures!
    Cheers, Arun - mytravelpedia.net

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Been to Rajasthan thrice and still haven't explored it completely. I so agree with you...there is so much to see, so much to explore...love the land of stories.
      Glad you liked the post and the pics :)

      Delete
  5. The new series of ads seem to have taken everyone by surprise, in a wonderful way!

    Cheers,
    Rajiv

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Seriously..and the jingle is so catchy!!

      Delete
  6. Visited this amazing destination last year and am still writing about it. Loved your pics...take some time out to check my blog for my account of Rajasthan :D

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I know!! Been following your blog and loved your article on Sahelion ki Bari.
      And glad you liked the pics :)

      Delete
  7. Rajasthan indeed has a lot of stories ... and colors. Beautiful captures. I hope I get to experience this once in my life :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Rajlakshmi plan a trip to Rajasthan ASAP! :D You wont be disappointed :)

      Delete
  8. What a amazing blog in small word you just define ho Rajasthan beautiful......

    ReplyDelete