January 6, 2018

24 hours in Bikaner

A quick escape to the warmth of Rajasthan is just what you need this winter





The colours and charm of Rajasthan never fail to enchant you. Whenever the coldness of city life starts dampening your spirit, heading to a place that welcomes you with open arms should not need much convincing.

The pleasant warmth of Bikaner meaning an escape from the Capital's chill, coupled with the long overdue visit to Karni Mata temple, made sure no moment was wasted in planning the one-day trip. Though 24 hours could have never been enough to appreciate the beauty, history and food of a place like Bikaner, making the best of what you have always holds you in good stead. The overnight journeys help you save a lot of time.

After landing at Bikaner Junction early morning, waste no time in trying to relax or grab a fancy breakfast. Let the kachoris wait for some time. When short on time, it's always advisable to check into a hotel near the station save some time in case you decide to stretch you sightseeing by those crucial 30 minutes.
The fifth largest city of Rajasthan not only boasts of spectacular architecture in its forts, but its sand dunes and colourful attire of people also instantly fills the heart with joy. And, once you have overcome your fear of rats, howsoever hard the task might be for some, you can actually spare a few moments appreciating the design, the activities around and the peaceful co-existence of man and the mammal at the Karni Mata temple.
The state of awe gets a further kick when you take in the whole Junagarh Fort at one sight. The interiors, the carving and the artwork, royal weapons, clothes and more make you marvel at the richness of the land and their royals, many wishing if they could live the same like even if for  a moment.
Yes, you can.

With Lalgarh Palace and Laxmi Niwas Palace having been turned into hotels, you can indulge in an evening of entertainment just like the royals. After enjoying a session of cultural dance and music, you can roam around the place and then sit for a lavish dinner. After delightfully adding to your appetite with creamy kebabs, laal maas, chicken in cashewnut gravy, gatte ki sabzi, kair sangri, papad ki sabzi, daal-baati-churma, baajre ki roti, missi roti, raita and rasgulla more than satisfy your stomach and soul. And, you leave promising yourself that you need to be back here for more, quite soon. Perhaps with more time in hand.

Plan your journey 
11:35PM - Delhi Sarai Rohilla (DEE)
12457 DEE BKN Superfast Express runs daily. It takes 8 hours to complete the 458-km journey.
7:30 AM - Bikaner Junction (BKN)
We reached 10 minutes early. It's best to stay in a nearby hotel, freshen up, grab a quick bite and head to Nagnechi temple.
11:00AM - Karni Mata
After visiting the temple, indulge in tasty Rajasthani delicacies at nearby food stalls. Make a quick trip to Nehriji and head back to Bikaner to gorge on Poori-Aloo and amazing desserts at Chotu Motu Joshi.
4:00 PM - Junagarh fort
Keep at least 3 hours for the fort and the museum. After a quick stop at the market at Bikanervala shop for Bikaneri Bhujia, visit Lalgarh Palace, which houses the Bikaner royal family. In the same campus is Laxmi Niwas Palace. Order the Rajasthani thali for a soul-satisfying experience.
10:20 PM - Bikaner Jn
You can take 12458 BKN DEE Superfast Express and reach Delhi at 6:10am.


Re
serve your next weekend for this new exotic weekend getaway from Delhi? In case you have some more time, Bikaner is ideally located, approx. 300 km. each from wonderful destinations of Jodhpur and Jaisalmer. Instead of train to Delhi, you have choice to board: 
22:05, 16588 BKN YPR EXPRESS to Jodhpur (JU) or
23:15, 12468 LEELAN Express to Jaisalmer (JSM)

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