My Ultimate Solo Travel Guide to Jodhpur, India
Rajasthan is among my favourites states to travel to in India. While Rajasthan has a lot to offer to its visitors, Jodhpur is one city you cannot afford to miss on your trip to the land of Maharajas! A solo female traveller’s paradise, Jodhpur, needs no introduction! Guarded by the majestic Mehrangarh Fort, the city of Jodhpur is full of sapphire-blue painted houses. Popularly known as the blue city, it welcomes thousands of tourists from all across the world every year. You can transverse through its vibrant markets, explore its architectural beauty, and relish its delicious traditional food.
Located at the edge of the gigantic Thar Desert, Jodhpur is also known as the Gateway to Thar. An amalgamation of culture and royalty, the city roars of profound beauty and historical enlightenment.
During my recent trip to Jodhpur aka sun city, I came across some unexpected experiences that I will cherish for the rest of my life. As I visited the notable landmarks, I got a taste of its royal legacy and unique architecture. Without further ado, read through my ultimate solo travel guide to Jodhpur city. This one is for all fellow solo female travellers out there. So read on to know what to expect on your trip alone to Jodhpur.
How to reach the blue city
Jodhpur is well-connected to major cities across Rajasthan and other states in India. The distance between Delhi and Jodhpur is around 620kms. You can either take a bus from ISBT Kashmiri Gate in Delhi to Jodhpur or choose to book a direct cab, depending on your budget.
Within Rajasthan, you can travel through the local state buses. The highway has good road connectivity from Jaipur, Jaisalmer, and Pushkar to Jodhpur. While I was in Rajasthan, I travelled from Jaipur to Jodhpur on a local bus, and it took approximately 5 hours for me to reach the city at the cost of Rs 150. It is the most affordable public transport to travel across the state. If you are not sure about using the public transport in India, read my blog on 25 tips for using the public transport in India as a solo female traveller. Thank me later!
Like the roads, Jodhpur is well-connected to all cities across India by railway lines. Jodhpur railway station is right in the middle of the city, providing transportation service to various cities in the state and across other parts of India. However, you need to book train tickets in advance.
Being a major tourist spot, the city has its domestic airport, just 5 km away from the main city centre. There are regular direct flights from Delhi and Mumbai to Jodhpur, among other states in the country.
Where to stay in Jodhpur
Noting that Jodhpur is one of the highly visited destinations in Rajasthan, there is no shortage of hotels in the city. From luxury to budget-friendly, the city has all sorts of accommodations to offer to its visitors. I had to see various hotels before finalising the Jaswant Niwas in Ratanada during my solo trip. However, I assure you that you will not find any difficulty finding the hotel best suited according to your budget.
You can choose to stay in RAAS or Pal Haveli to experience a luxurious stay. For backpackers, you can book a stay at Zostel, Hotel Raahi, or HosteLaVie. On the other hand, several boutique hotels provide a taste of the local life with modern luxuries. You can stay at the Jaswant Niwas, Blue House, or Jewel Palace Haweli, offering various rooms ranging from Rs 2,500 to Rs 5,000.
Best Time To Visit Jodhpur
Rajasthan is also referred to as desert state with tropical weather conditions. While the days can be hot and humid, nights get chilly around September to March. Jodhpur sees its peak season in October as the weather turns pleasant. Therefore, the winter season is appropriate for travelling to Jodhpur as it is neither too hot nor too cold.
It can get extremely hot during the summer season from April to July – making them the least preferred months to travel to the city. I visited the city in mid-November and it was the best time ever! The pleasant weather helped me in stepping out and exploring the city.
What and where to eat
From curious street food to extravagant Rajasthani thali, Jodhpur is a true paradise for food lovers! When in Jodhpur, street foods like kachoris and non-vegetarian delights such as laal maas (red meat) can blow your mind away!
The city boasts of some of the best rooftop restaurants in the state. With delicious Rajasthani food and scenic view, you can enjoy the best of both worlds at popular rooftop cafes in Jodhpur. One of the most known restaurants in the city is ‘Indique,’ which offers luxury dining with a breathtaking view around the Pal Haveli Hotel. Located in Hotel Haveli, ‘Jharokha’ is another open-sky restaurant famous for its multi-cuisine food and a stunning city view.
You can also try the exceptional cocktail menu of the ‘White House Cafe.’ I tried some of the best cocktails in the cafe, along with a quaint ambience. Travellers can savour the famous Makhaniya lassi at the Clock Tower Market and other chaat items at the Pal Road. The blue city is also famous for its Kadhi Pakoda and Mirchi bada, along with Ker sangri (a traditional Rajasthani dish made using dried ker berry and sangri beans).
My personal favourites
Also, don’t forget to enjoy the deep-fried savoury Pyaz-ki-kachori (onion kachori) stuffed with a spicy mixture of onion, potato, dry fruits, and varied Indian spices. Trust me, it’s a burst of flavours.
I gobbled onto some of the best pyaaz kachori, samosa, and Indian sweets at the famous Janta Sweet Home at Jodhpur’s Chauraha district. If you are looking for the perfect blend of taste and tradition in Jodhpur, visit Janta Sweet House. It is heaven, and I’m not even kidding!
While reading through this travel guide to Jodhpur, take a look at 15 Non-Touristy Places in Rajasthan.
Places to visit
The highlight of Jodhpur city, Mehrangarh Fort, is located at the centre of the town. It is one of the largest forts in the entire country, depicting the best example of the bygone era’s robust architecture in the state. If you reach the fort early morning, before 10 am, you will be able to get your entry tickets immediately. However, post the morning hours, you may have to wait in the queue for tickets. You can choose to hire a local guide via Airbnb Experience or buy an audio guide to help you with the awe-inspiring fort’s history. The fort is known for its Sheesh Mahal (Mirror Hall), Moti Mahal (Pearl Hall), and Phool Mahal (Flower Hall).
It is a crime if you don’t take a good look at the sprawling city of Jodhpur from the top of the fort. The sight is just so spectacular with houses coloured in blue hues. The fort encloses a museum exhibiting fine art, weaponry, and belongings of the yesteryears’ royals. There are many restaurants near the fort, so you can have lunch in one of them during your day tour.
The entry ticket costs Rs 100 for locals and Rs 600 for foreigners. The fort is open to visitors every day from 9 am to 5:30 pm.
Ghanta Ghar (Clock Tower)
One of the most famous landmarks in Jodhpur is the century-old Ghanta Ghar or Clock Tower. Built by Maharaja Sardar Singh, the tallest tower in the city provides a birds-eye view of the entire blue city from the top. You can walk up the clock tower through the staircase to understand its mechanism. It is located in the city’s largest marketplace, bustling with vehicles, people, and traffic. It is open for visitors daily from 10 am to 6 pm.
There will be vendors setting up their stalls on the street side, selling souvenirs and items. You can also buy souvenirs from these lanes for your family and friends back home. However, make sure to not get ripped off! Read my blog on how to bargain like a local in India to know the insights into haggling.
From the Ghanta Ghar, head towards Sadar Market for some exceptional Rajasthani food dishes. You must try delicious street food like samosa and makhaniya lassi at the roadside stalls. Since it is the main market in Jodhpur, you can also enjoy some shopping time in the Sardar Market. It is important to take care of your health while you’re travelling solo across India. So make sure to watch what you’re eating and follow the tips from my blog How to deal with Delhi belly.
You can buy the famous bandini or bandhej sarees of Rajasthan across the garment emporiums on the main road. You can also pick some tie-and-die kurtas, suits, and bags with bandini work at these shops. They’d make cute souvenirs for your friends back home.
Crafted with beautiful architecture, Jaswant Thada is the burial ground of the Marwar rulers. It is also referred to as the Taj Mahal of Mewar, built by Maharaja Jaswant Singh II’s son in his memory. It is made with fine marble, structured with very intricate work. Its beautiful Indian artwork will leave you awe-struck for sure. Honestly, I couldn’t take my eyes off it! The massive hall in the monument is adorned with pictures of the royal family of Rathores. There is a beautifully well-maintained garden around the cenotaph, adding beauty to the rocky structure. Surrounding the multi-tiered garden is a small lake and stunningly carved gazebos that you absolutely CANNOT miss! You can click a lot of Instagram-worthy pictures at this beautiful garden. The monument is around a kilometer away from the Mehrangarh Fort, and it is open for visitors daily from 9 am to 6 pm.
Umaid Bhavan Palace
While the royal Umaid Bhavan Palace has now been transformed into a five-star heritage hotel, it still boasts English architecture and regal history. While taking a walk inside the Umaid Bhavan Museum, you can explore the royal cutlery, old paintings, gold and silver artefacts that have been put on display for visitors.
You can also walk through the collection of vintage cars on the other side of the palace. The museum truly reflects the life lived by the royals in the bygone era. Luxury seekers can also book a stay at this beautiful palace-turned-hotel here. If you don’t mind spending some money for accommodation, you got to stay at the Umaid Bhavan Palace. You’re going to love it even more if you are into history.
Other lesser-known places
Besides these well-known destinations, there are other lesser-known places in Jodhpur which you can explore during your visit to the blue city.
- Kalyana Lake
- Rao Jodha Desert Rock Park
- Toorji ka Jhalra
- Sheesh Mahal
- Mahamandir Temple
- Hanwant Mahal
- Mandore Garden
You need to have a well-planned travel itinerary to visit all these places. Jodhpur is all about day tours that will take you back in time. I’d say 2-3 days would be sufficient to explore the city to the fullest!
Art and Music Culture
In Rajasthan, you cannot afford to miss the popular folk dance form of Ghoomar. It is considered a symbol of heritage and womanhood among the Rajasthani tribes. Women dressed in long skirts and heavy silver jewellery dance in circles for Rajasthani folk songs, and it is one of the best cultural activities in the state. Another popular form is the Chari dance, in which women try to balance chari (earthen pots) on their heads while dancing to melodious folk songs. If you don’t mind looking silly, you can join them too!
You can also explore the vibrance of Pichwai paintings of Rajasthan that are popular across India. With detailed, intricate work, these paintings showcase Lord Krishna’s life and various legends about the god.
Things to remember while travelling solo to Jodhpur
- For most of the year, Jodhpur has a hot climate. So don’t forget to carry adequate food and water supplies while visiting the forts and palaces.
- You can choose to stay in a wide range of homestays in Jodhpur to experience the local Rajasthani living in the city. Make sure to book your stay in advance via Airbnb for affordable prices.
- Carry light cotton clothes for your visits to the forts and palaces. You need to be comfort on Jodhpur’s weather, especially during the day.
- Carry sunscreen, sunglasses, and a hat, particularly during the summer season. It can get quite hot in the day time!
- Wear comfortable shoes as you might have to walk a lot during sightseeing across the city.
- Shopaholics can take back home various souvenirs such as clothes, traditional sweets with a long shelf-life, miniature camels and elephants, and Indian spices.
- From the Marwar Festival to Jodhpur International Desert Kite Festival, the city celebrates a wide range of festivals every year. If you visit Jodhpur at the right time, you might be able to participate in any one of these festivals.
Solo travellers get ready to experience the kindest and most heart-warming hospitality in all of Rajasthan in the blue city of Jodhpur. People will welcome you with a warm smile and pleasant gestures that will make your trip unforgettable. You are bound to fall in love after exploring the stunning palaces and forts. To know more about Rajasthan, read 25 interesting things to do in Rajasthan.
All the best for your solo trip across India!
An introverted blogger who is looking to make unforgettable solo travel memories with one short life.