Rajasthan itinerary

Grand old forts sitting atop strategic hills, intricately decorated and carved palaces, bustling maze-like bazaars, and splashes of colour and constant aroma of spices rising from the hot streets; welcome to Rajasthan. Undoubtedly one of India’s biggest drawcards, the state of Rajasthan is home to some of the country’s most impressive sights. With this two week Rajasthan itinerary, you’ll be able to see the best of the region.

The Land of the Kings and the realm of maharajas, you’ll visit the White City (Udaipur), Pink City (Jaipur), Blue City (Jodhpur) and Golden City (Jaisalmer), each offering more “wow” moments than the next. While I’m not going to lie, Rajasthan can be intense. But soaking up the golden light on Lake Pichola in Udaipur, watching pilgrims bathe in the ghats in Pushkar, climbing the ramparts of Jodhpur’s fort, and riding a camel into the sunset outside Jaisalmer; this is quintessential India.

I’ve put together this 2-week itinerary for Rajasthan, so you can see all the best attractions in a short time. If you have longer than two weeks, feel free to add a couple more days to each city and you’ll be able to soak up the views at a more leisurely pace.

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When to Visit Rajasthan

The best time to visit Rajasthan is during the cooler winter months between October and March. The days are usually sunny during these months, but not too hot, with cooler nights.

Temperatures tend to be unbearable after April, as the heat of the desert soars. Then, monsoon runs from July to September, making it a little rainy and miserable to travel around freely.

If you want to time your visit with any annual festivals; Holi is usually in March, Diwali is usually in November, and the famous Pushkar Camel Fair is also in November.

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How to Get Around Rajasthan

The best way to get around Rajasthan is to use public transport; both trains and buses. These run consistently between all the destinations on this itinerary, so you’ll be able to get around smoothly. In the detailed itinerary below, I’ve included how to get between each destination, but here’s an overview:

Trains are a great way to travel around Rajasthan. However, it’s best to book these in advance, especially if you want a better class like AC First Class or AC Second Class. You can try navigating the official government website at IRCTC, but I usually find it easier to book using ixigo as a foreigner.

Buses require less planning, especially to/from major cities like Delhi and Jaipur. You’ll find many buses throughout the day and night for most destinations in Rajasthan. You can choose between government buses RSRTC (slower, older, less comfortable, cheaper) or private buses (faster, more comfortable, more expensive). I usually just arrive at the bus station and get a ticket on arrival for the next departure, or check Redbus if you prefer to book in advance.

Prefer to book a group tour of Rajasthan? 15-Day Rajasthan Adventure with G Adventures Small Group Tours

Jodhpur bazaar
Jodhpur bazaar

Two Week Rajasthan Itinerary Overview

  • Days 1 & 2: Delhi
  • Days 3 & 4: Jaipur
  • Days 5 & 6: Pushkar
  • Days 7 & 8: Udaipur
  • Days 9 & 10: Jodhpur
  • Days 11 & 12: Jaisalmer
  • Day 13: Bikaner
  • Day 14: Delhi
Humayun's Tomb
Humayun’s Tomb

Detailed Rajasthan Itinerary Day by Day

Here’s how I would spend two weeks in Rajasthan, if you’re prepared to move every couple of days and see all the best places in the region.

Days 1 & 2: Delhi

Where to stay: Joeys Hostel (budget), Casa Central (mid-range) or Maidens Hotel New Delhi(luxury)

Best places to eat: Karim’s Restaurant (family owned for over 100 years near Jama Masjid) and Andhra Pradesh Bhavan Canteen (budget place serving cheap and delicious thalis and biryani)

While a lot of people fly in and move on from Delhi straight away, I suggest at least spending a couple of days there for this Rajasthan itinerary. While it can be chaotic, overwhelming, and loud, it is the heart and soul of India, and there’s actually a lot of things to do in Delhi.

With two days, I suggest visiting the following places:

  • Old Delhi and Chandni Chowk: The middle of the city where you can find the main market area, incredible street food, and much of the chaos that India is known for.
  • Red Fort: The Mughal-era fort is in Old Delhi and houses a museum. It’s a beautiful place to wander around and admire the grand architecture.
  • Jama Masjid: The biggest mosque in the city is a centre piece of the Muslim community near Old Delhi and has some of Delhi’s best restaurants surrounding it.
  • Connaught Place: Delhi’s main shopping mall area with almost every brand and store you can think of housed in old colonial buildings.
  • India Gate: Huge arc memorial commemorating WWI and an impressive sight.
  • Humayun’s Tomb: A beautiful sandstone tomb built for a Mughal Emperor in 1572 and surrounded by stunning gardens.
  • Lodi Gardens: One of the most beautiful urban parks in the city, a British era green space with ancient tombs, flowers and a lake.
Hawa Mahal in Jaipur
Hawa Mahal in Jaipur

Days 3 & 4: Jaipur

How to get there: Trains take between 4-6 hours from Delhi to Jaipur or hop on a bus which should take about 6 hours

Where to stay: Moustache Hostel (budget), Hotel Arya Niwas (midrange) or Royal Heritage Haveli (luxury)

Best places to eat: The Tattoo Cafe & Lounge (rooftop views of the Hawa Mahal) and Govindam Retreat (traditional Rajasthan food right across from the City Palace)

Known as the Pink City, Jaipur is one of the must visit places in India. The famous city is home to some of the most incredible architecture in the country, with old royal palaces painting the chaotic streets in pink and orange hues. Of course, this has made Jaipur one of the most “Instagrammable” places in India, meaning it’s incredibly busy with tourists and photographers at all hours of the day.

Jaipur is a huge city though, and while it’s home to incredible attractions, it can also be very overwhelming. I found parts of Jaipur more chaotic than Delhi, so you need to be prepared to battle rickshaws, pedestrians, cows, and tourists as you explore the city.

City Palace in Jaipur
City Palace in Jaipur

With two days, don’t miss the following places:

  • City Palace: An opulent 18th century palace complex that is still home to the last ruling royal family. It’s worth the steep entry fee for it’s spacious courtyards, colourful patterned doorways, and symmetrically aligned arches.
  • Hawa Mahal (Palace of Winds): Just in front of the City Palace complex, Hawa Mahal is now one of the most recognisable buildings in India. The stunningly unique palace has an impressive window-filled facade built from red and pink sandstone. The best view is from the street in front or opposite in a rooftop cafe. Otherwise, you can pay to go inside to learn more about the history.
  • Bapu Bazaar: The most colourful part of the city, the Bapu Bazaar area is filled with local shops that have been trading for generations. The market is known for its exotic Rajasthani products which include textiles, handicrafts, brass work and precious stones.
  • Amer Fort or Amber Palace: Located about 10km away from the city centre, allow half a day to visit Amer Fort. Sitting atop the rugged hills of Aravalli, this imposing and well-preserved fort is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. It’s easily one of the finest examples of Rajput and Mughal architecture.
  • Nahargarh Fort: Offering incredible views over the city, this fort is another impressive 18th century fortress on the hilltops of Aravalli. Used in conjunction with Amer Fort to protect the city, it’s another impressive example of Rajput and Mughal architecture.
Ghats in Pushkar
Ghats in Pushkar

Days 5 & 6: Pushkar

How to get there: From Jaipur, you can take the train to Ajmer and then take a local bus or rickshaw to Pushkar, or just take a direct bus from Jaipur to Pushkar which takes about 4 hours

Where to stay: Milkman Guesthouse (budget), Kanhaia Haveli (mid-range), or Pushkar Organic Farm Resort (luxury)

Best places to eat: Rainbow Restaurant (beautiful view of the lake with western and local food) or The Laughing Buddha Cafe (vegan cafe)

An absolute backpacker favourite, Pushkar is a pilgrimage destination for Hindus and Sikhs on the outskirts of the major city of Ajmer. One of the most peaceful places to visit in Rajasthan, Pushkar has a small-town vibe, but it can still get very busy with tourists in high season.

I personally loved exploring the town in the early morning, when I would head down to the ghats on the lake at sunrise to admire the temples in the glowing light and watch the locals heading down to bathe in the holy water.

Local women in Pushkar

While many of the streets around Pushkar Lake have become filled with cosy cafes, souvenir shops, and street food stalls, you can still find the cultural and spiritual side to the town if you look for it.

With two days, here are the best things to do in Pushkar:

  • Watch an evening aarti (offering to the gods at the ghats) at 7pm down by the lake
  • Hike or ride the cable car up to Savitri Mata Temple for sunrise or sunset
  • Watch the sunset with the locals at Sunset Point on the edge of the lake
  • Spend time in the vegan cafes around the lake
  • Shop the cheap clothing stores
Lake Pichola sunset
Lake Pichola sunset

Days 7 & 8: Udaipur

How to get there: You could get a train from Ajmer near Pushkar to Udaipur taking around 6 hours or a bus that will take around 8 hours from Pushkar bus stand to Udaipur

Where to stay: Dreamyard Hostel (budget), Madri Haveli (mid-range) or Trident Udaipur (luxury)

Best places to eat: Millets of Mewar Restaurant (for healthy, gluten free and vegan food) or Sun N Moon Cafe and Restaurant (for great rooftop views and all round good food)

Udaipur is a bit further south in Rajasthan, which means many people who are short on time simply skip it and head straight from Pushkar to Jodhpur by bus which only takes less than 5 hours. Still, I would say Udaipur is one of the most beautiful cities in India, so try to allow at least a couple of days there.

City Palace in Udaipur
City Palace in Udaipur

Successive Maharaja’s slowly built this city known as the Venice of the East over hundreds of years, adding floating palaces on the lake, hilltop forts, and intricately decorated doorways and windows. Set around the shores of Lake Pichola, it has several nicknames including City of Lakes, White City or Venice of the East describing its regal aura.

It’s definitely more of a relaxing place to sit back and admire the lake; so spending time in rooftop cafes, taking a sunset boat cruise, and shopping for handcrafted pieces of jewellery and clothing is how most people spend their time.

Folk Dance Show in Udaipur
Folk Dance Show in Udaipur

Here are my favourite sights you can’t miss in two days:

  • City Palace is undoubtedly Udaipur’s main attraction. The stunning white palace was originally built in 1599 and is the largest of Rajasthan’s palaces. Explore the various ornate rooms, balconies, and courtyards.
  • Boat ride on Lake Pichola at sunset is one of the most memorable things you’ll do in Udaipur. While it’s more expensive at sunset, the colours over the palaces and water is worth it. You can either arrange a boat ride thorugh your accommodation or head down to the Boat Ride Point and you can book directly on the spot.
  • Ambrai Ghat and Gangour Ghat are two of the best places to people watch and soak up the sunset views of the lake backed by the imposing city palace and fort.
  • Lok Dharohar for a Folk Dance Show is also a great way to delve into Rajasthani culture. I’m not usually into these kinds of dance shows, but I thought it was worth the money to see all the traditional dances, music, and costumes of Rajasthan.
Mehrangarh Fort in Jodhpur
Mehrangarh Fort in Jodhpur

Days 9 & 10: Jodhpur

How to get there: Bus is the easiest way to travel from Udaipur to Jodhpur which should take around 6-7 hours

Where to stay: Moustache Hostel (budget), Dev Kothi Boutique Hotel (mid-range) or The Almond Tree (luxury)

Best places to eat: Shri Mishrilal Hotel (famous for its lassis) or Gopal Rooftop Restaurant (Rajasthani restaurant with a view of the fort)

Arguably one of the more underrated places in Rajasthan, Jodhpur is a must visit in my opinion. The Blue City is as it sounds, a huge cluster of mud brick, square buildings that have been painted in a baby blue colour.

Some say the blue represents the Brahmin priests (the upper caste in Indian society) while others say it keeps the houses cooler and wards off mosquitoes. Either way the maze of blue, white and brown make for a unique image that you won’t find anywhere else in India.

Blue City
Blue City

Standing tall above the jumble of houses is the impressive Mehrangarh Fort, a grand Rajput fortress that is the most impressive of all the forts of Rajasthan. However, the city also has more of a chilled vibe than Jaipur or Udaipur, so it’s a great place to get lost amongst the sights, smells and sounds of the bazaar.

With two days, you’ll have time for:

  • Mehrangarh Fort: Perched on a hilltop over 100m above the town, you can’t miss this fort. Built around 1460 by Rao Jodha, I definitely recommend going inside the fort to admire the museum and various rooms housing important artifacts. Plus, the view of the town from its ramparts allows you to really admire the city painted in blue.
  • Jaswant Thada: Built in 1899, this elaborately carved and sculptured marble monument was built to remember Maharaja Jaswant Singh II. It’s not far from the fort, so it’s worth visiting to admire the beauty of the architecture.
  • Singhoria Hill: A must visit at either sunrise or sunset, this little vantage point slightly behind Mehrangarh Fort, offers an incredible view of the entire fort complex. I headed up there at sunset and had it all to myself, as the golden light spread across the valley.
  • Ghanta Ghar Jodhpur: Standing tall in the middle of the bustling marketplace of Jodhpur, this 19th century clock tower is a popular landmark. Running south of the clock tower is the Sardar Market, a local bazaar filled with fruit, spices, and handicrafts.
  • Toorji Ka Jhalra Bavdi: Just north of the clock tower amidst the winding streets, you’ll find this restored 18th century step well with intricate sandstone carvings, and symmetrical steps. It’s a popular instagram location for photos, so you won’t be alone!
Jaisalmer fort
Jaisalmer fort

Days 11 & 12: Jaisalmer

How to get there: There are frequent buses from Jodhpur to Jaisalmer throughout the day taking around 5-6 hours, or you can also take one of three daily trains linking the two cities which also takes around 5-6 hours

Where to stay: Crazy Camel Guesthouse (budget), Hotel The Surya (mid-range), or Hotel Garh Jaisal Haveli (luxury)

Best places to eat: The Big Tree Cafe and Restaurant (rooftop cafe with views of the fort walls) or Desert Bite Restaurant (for traditional Rajasthani thali)

Travel from the Blue City to the Golden City. Jaisalmer is often skipped by those short on time because of its location far out west, but don’t skip it! Jaisalmer rises from the edge of the Thar Desert like a lost city amongst the golden sand dunes.

Camel Safari in Thar Desert
Camel Safari in Thar Desert

The fortified city and former trading centre is filled with temples and a palace, souvenir and handicraft stores, and airy cafes worth exploring. Restaurants and shops spill out and around the fort though, with many rooftop cafes offering stunning views back towards the old city walls.

However, the real reason most people visit Jaisalmer is to spend the night out in the desert after a camel ride through the dunes. Many local companies and accommodation places will help you organise a camel and camping safari into the Thar Desert. It usually includes dinner and breakfast and a night spent under the stars or in a glamping style tent.

Bikaner Bazaar
Bikaner Bazaar

Day 13: Bikaner

How to get there: There are a couple of trains between Jaisalmer and Bikaner, one overnight and one during the day, taking around 6 hours or there are several buses throughout the day taking around 6-7 hours

Where to stay: The Prince Haveli (budget), Udai Niwas Boutique Guesthouse (mid-range) or Narendra Bhawan (luxury)

Best places to eat: Gallops Restaurant & Coffee House (just in front of the fort, selling Rajasthani and Chinese dishes) or Hotel Lalji (no frills local restaurant near Kote Gate)

There is an overnight train back to Delhi from Jaisalmer taking around 18 hours. If you’re short on time, most people tend to book that train. However, I recommend breaking the journey up with a night in Bikaner.

Junagarh Fort
Junagarh Fort

Bikaner is another old desert outpost similar to Jaisalmer, but with far less tourists. While it might not be as impressive as other well-known cities in Rajasthan, it feels more authentic and still offers beautiful sights.

Junagarh Fort is yet another incredible 16th century fort in Rajasthan and one of the highlights of Bikaner. Inside the fort, the Prachina Museum displays traditional textiles and royal portraits. 

Bikaner is also home to some luxury old palaces turned hotels, including Laxmi Niwas Palace and Lalgarh Palace. But, I also enjoyed wandering the bazaar and main market streets around Kote Gate, oozing with culture, colour and atmosphere.

Streets around Jama Masjid
Streets around Jama Masjid, Delhi

Day 14: Back to Delhi

How to get there: There are a few trains per day between Bikaner and Delhi taking around 8 hours on average, or there are plenty of comfortable night buses taking around 10 hours to reach Delhi

Back in Delhi, you can either tick off some more sights that you didn’t see at the beginning of your trip or just relax after a long day of travel.

I hope this 2 week Rajasthan itinerary helps you plan your trip!

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