Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Roopengarh Fort to Jodhpur

We had time for another walk down to the Roopengarh market Saturday morning (5th October) – time to buy more bangles and lengths of decorated fabric. The town has no tourist trade so the shopkeepers don’t ask tourist prices and are completely natural in the way they interact with us. We shopped like the locals.

Rob got head butted (slightly) by a cow on the walk back. Our farming friends thought it was just a bit of an irritable head move that Rob was unlucky enough to be on the receiving end of…..but as a trip story I think we’ll have to say he was “gored by a bull” in Roopengarh.

We left a bit after 10.00am, on the busy road to Jodhpur, stopping for lunch about half way (it’s a distance of around 260klm), and regularly congratulating ourselves that we don’t have to drive in India!

We arrived in Jodhpur, the second biggest city in Rajasthan well after 4.00pm and had to leave our van on the outskirts of old Jodhpur town and catch tuk tuks into the old city and our beautiful Raas Jodhpur hotel.

There were lots of WOWs as we realised how beautiful this contemporary designer hotel really is with its full length incised red sandstone walls and lattice screens and the beautiful pavilion style dining and spa areas and muslin draped day beds lining the pool area. This is the best hotel we’ve stayed in, by a long shot.

But we had to do some sightseeing and get our bearings in this noisy, clanging chaotic city. Our guide Raghu led us as gently as possible through the narrow laneways of old Jodhpur while we watched carefully for errant cows, cow poo and on coming scooters and tuk tuks.  

Raghu led us around the central market area – no tourists here and no touts either. I was fascinated with all the textiles. Jodhpur was on the ancient silk route and is renowned for its silks and cottons (and all their associated handicrafts).

Raghu took the trouble to explain the local costume - not a sari: a long full skirt a sleeved bodice top and this sleeveless tunic and a long head scarf.

This shop only sold the distinctive "mouth fresheners" served at the end of Indian meals - they're usually based on aniseed.

We were exhausted by the time we returned to Raas Jodhpur but still with enough energy to appreciate this magnificent vista - provided for our benefit.

1 comment:

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