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Mandawa Tourism And Travel Guide
24.9° C / 76.8° F
October to March
1 to 2 Days
Jaipur International Airport (182 kms)
Jhunjhunu Railway Station (28 kms)
On the western side of the state of Rajasthan lies the city of Mandawa. Being surrounded by almost nothing but sand and thorny shrubs, it may seem odd that a city could exist there, let alone be prosperous; but it was. Being a part of the ancient silk route helped this trading stop flourish in an astonishing manner. The merchants became so rich they spent a lot of effort constructing havelis that outdid their neighbours. These havelis are still known today for their grand architecture and the paintings and exquisite mirror work on walls. Tourism in Mandawa can only be described as a trip to the past. So if this is your idea of a perfect vacation, then take a look at the travel guide to Mandawa that we have designed for you.
How To Reach
Having been one of the pit stops on the silk route, Mandawa has a reputation for accessibility. The haveli-town of Rajasthan is easily accessible from most parts of India and visitors can reach the place by air, rail or road. The best way though to reach Mandawa is to take a flight to the Jaipur International Airport and take a taxi from there.
The closest airport to Mandawa is located in Jaipur, The Jaipur International Airport. The airport is well connected to major cities in India and also has services to some international destinations. The Jaipur airport is located at about 182 kilometres from the town and plenty of taxis ply on this route that will take you to Mandawa with ease.
The closest railhead to the town of Mandawa is located in the town of Jhunjhunu which lies at a distance of 28 kilometres. Jhunjhunu has extensive service to the national capital, New Delhi with trains plying on the route almost every day. It can also be reached from other places in the country via Delhi. Jhunjhunu also has frequent trains to Haryana. There are taxis that ply from Jhunjhunu which make it easy to reach Mandawa on arriving at the station.
At about 260 km from the National Capital, New Delhi, Mandawa lies on the national highway 11. The route to Mandawa can be rather scenic and representative of the arid beauty of the region. Driving down to Mandawa can take about 7 odd hours if all goes well. The town is also connected to many important cities in the region like Jaisalmer and Jaipur, making it easy to access. There are also buses that ply to Mandawa from Delhi and other parts of Rajasthan. The prices are nominal but can vary depending on the service. Visitors can also hire taxi from most cities in the region.
Given that the town is rather small, most places in Mandawa can be reached on foot while for those who prefer a vehicle can also hire taxis.
Weather and Best Time to Visit
The weather in Mandawa is like any other place in the region, dry and arid. There are three major seasons, the summer, monsoon and the winter. While summer is extremely hot and the monsoon is not great for sight-seeing, the winters are the best time to visit the place.
Summer: April to June
Summers are usually marked by high temperatures, sand storms and hot winds called ‘loo’. Day-time temperatures can go up to 45°C, accompanied by hot winds. While nights are relatively cooler, they can still be uncomfortable. If one can withstand high temperatures then this time of the year can be the most pocket-friendly as prices drop. There are also a couple of festivals that one can catch if visiting in the summer.
Monsoon: July to September
The arrival of monsoon is a much awaited phenomena. The waters that the monsoons bring can sustain life here until the next year. Although the region doesn’t receive a lot of rain, the monsoon plays a vital role in bringing the temperatures down. It can get humid during the day but nights are rather pleasant. While the rains can hinder some of the activities here, it can be a good time for a budget-friendly holiday in a cooler weather.
Winter: October to March
The region finally gets a break from the scorching heat with day-time temperatures hovering around 20°C to 22°C. The nights though get cold and chilly but nothing too severe to bear. Winters mark a boom in business here as the number of people who visit goes up. Numerous festivals also take place in winter, bringing in even more people. The steep rise in the tourist inflow also marks a rise in prices and planning in advance would be wise.
Things To Do
The main reason to visit Mandawa is the havelis, so it is only natural this should be the first on your list. However this is not all it has to offer. Though a small city, Mandawa still shares a lot of the Rajasthani culture and this is a great place to explore it.
There were so many havelis under construction at one point, that if you should walk on the streets at random with no purpose at all, you would still run into havelis. Admitted, some of them are locked up, but you can still find plenty to explore. Havelis like the Bansidhar Newatia Haveli and the Murmuria haveli were built during the 1900s and contain some fascinating modern impressions on them. Others like Hanuman Prasad Goenka Haveli, Goenka Double Haveli and Chokhani Double Haveli are almost as old as the city itself and are some of the best maintained havelis around.
Stay at Heritage Hotels:
The Mandawa Fort was the consequence of the success of the trading post that was Mandawa. The fort embraced traditional architecture and is a majestic sight. Today most parts of the fort have been converted to a heritage hotel known by the name Castle Mandawa. Residing within this historic monument can be quite thrilling, especially since you can explore at leisure. The rooms are decorated by elaborate frescoes and mirror works that are a speciality of the region.
One of those things you must to do if you are anywhere in the state and especially in Mandawa is to take a camel safari. Here the safari entails a show of the streets and then they move onto the desert where you will camp for a night. A number of agencies exist in Mandawa, Castle Mandawa included.
The Shekhawati region is quite large and worth exploring and Mandawa is a great place to camp while you do that. This region is known for some interesting forms of art and craft. Some of the places you can go to include Churu, Sikar, Jhunjhunu and Nagaur.
If you were hoping to have some authentic Rajasthani food then a number of eateries like Shekhawati Restaurant and Gwala Rooftop Restaurant are great choices. For other cuisines Monica Rooftop Restaurant and Bungli Restaurant is a must try and they are very popular among tourists. The eateries here are carefully decorated to give a regal ambience and a comfortable experience so dining is as fun as everything else in the city.
The markets of Mandawa offer a unique selection of items. The cities in the Shekhawati region had developed some interesting forms of art like wood carving, sandal making and the tie and dye method of colouring fabrics. Such things can be found easily in these markets. Also look out for government run emporiums; they are always a good place for handicrafts and other appealing souvenirs.