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Rajasthan see + do

Rajasthan is just to the south of New Delhi, and many visitors choose to combine a visit to the two. Spend a day, at most, to the east in Agra to see its sole attraction, the Taj Mahal, and then make for Jaipur, the most visited city in Rajasthan. Called the Pink City because so many of the buildings are painted the color of raw salmon, it's the place to do your shopping, especially for semiprecious gems (and perhaps even for jewelry being sold off by former royal families). The other big tourist city in the region is Udaipur, best known as the home of the dramatically sited Taj Lake Palace. If it's desert cities you're after, however, you'll want to push west to Jodhpur, with its magnificent, sentinel-like fort, perhaps stopping off along the way to trade for a camel in Pushkar. In all of these cities, a couple of days' stay is normally enough. Be warned, though, that Rajasthan's spell can be so compelling, you'll occasionally run into Westerners who arrived as long ago as the 1960s, and still haven't used their return ticket.

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Udaipur, Udaipur

Udaipur is without a doubt one of India's most beautiful towns—though, sadly, overzealous touts and shopkeepers tend to mar the city's otherwise...more

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Ranthambhore National Park, Sawai Madhopur

If you ever hope to see a Bengal tiger in the wild, this 150-square-mile park of brushy trees and tall, dry grasses—ideal cover for the big cats—is...more

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Pushkar, Pushkar

The annual Pushkar Camel Fair, which runs for about eight days in November each year, is the number-one reason most people visit Pushkar, three hours west of...more

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Palace on Wheels in Rajasthan

It's rightly called a cruise train, because this train has many of the advantages and disadvantages of cruise-ship travel. If you are a romantic, a train buff,...more

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Jodhpur, Jodhpur

Jodhpur's imposing Mehrangarh Fort, whose soaring walls, watchtowers, and gun turrets loom over the Blue City (named after its houses painted blue), is arguably...more

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Jaisalmer, Jaisalmer

This fairy-tale medieval fortress town surrounded by the Thar Desert is crisscrossed by labyrinthine streets. Its many havelis (private mansions) with...more

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Jaipur, Jaipur

Most of Jaipur's highlights lie within the confines of the historical center of the Pink City, so-called for the light terracotta color of the buildings. A walk...more

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Bhangarh, Alwar

Think of this little-known collection of ruins as Machu Picchu without the crowds. Once a town of 10,000 souls, it was supposedly abandoned almost overnight...more

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