Laxmi Niwas Palace
Bhandasar Jain Temple
Laxmi Nath Temple
Welcome to Bikaner,
Bikaner lies to the North - West of Rajasthan, dating back to 1486 A.D. Rao Bikaji is the founding fatherof this city. It houses the celebrated Deshnokh Temple, the abode of the sacred white mouse, that ushers good fortune. It is dotted with relics of the glorious yester years and is also the seat of several holy shrines.
The Junagarh Fort, the Raj Ratan Bihariand Rasik Siromani Temple, the Laxminath Temple, the Bhandasar Jain Temple and the Ganga Golden Jubilee Museum, are among the famed tourist destinations. The doors of luxurious havelis, once the dwelling place of the royalty,are now thrown open to the backpackers. You can stack your bags with exquisite durries, mojari footwear and carpets, that are taking the global fashion world by storm. Cap off your sojourn with an exciting camel ride.
Out of the 27 beautiful Jain Temples adorning the landscape of Bikaner city, this temple dedicated to 5th Tirthankar Lord Sumatinath is considered to be the most beautiful and also the highest. This temple was buit by a Jain merchant Bhanda Shah. The foundation of this temple was filled by pure ghee and dry coconuts.
This temple is mainly famous for wall paintings and usta art. The temple is built of red sandstone and is divided in three floors. One can see the skyline of Bikaner by climbing to the topmost floor of this temple.
National Research Center on Camel located at Jorbeer in Bikaner. Popularly referred to as the Government Camel Breeding Farm, the National Research Center on Camel breeds the best camels in Bikaner and conducts research work related to "the ship of the desert."
Large number of camels can be seen here.
Devi Kund sagar is situated 8 km in the east of city. The members of ruling family of Bikaner subsequent to Jet Singh, the great grandson of Rao Bikaji, have been cremated here.On the sides of reservoir of water lie the Royal cenotaphs of rulers of Bikaner dynasty from Rao Kalyan Singhji to last Maharaji Karni Singhji as well as those of their wives and other important members of families.
There are cenotaphs (Chhatries) of 22 SATIES of royal family prior to Maharaja Gaj Sigh Ji (1745-1787). There is also one cenotaph of a SATA (male sati) of a ruler.The architecture of the cenotaphs is the prime attraction of this place. Maharaja Surat Singh's Chhatri is built entirely in white marble with spectacular Rajput paintings on its ceiling.
It is just 30 km away from Bikaner.Gajner Palace has often been described as 'an incomparable jewel in the Thar desert'. Palace stands on the embankment of a lake . The architecture of Gajner palace is truly outstanding. Built in red sandstone with intricately carved pillars,jharokhas and screens , the craftsmanship here is amazing. A part of palace has been transformed into hotel.
The wildlife sanctuary provides shelter to chinkaras , blackbucks, blue bull (neel gai),Wild Boar and flocks of imperial sand grouse and many other birds and waterfowls which flock here in large numbers.
Established near the Lalgarh Palace in Bikaner in 1937, this Museum now run by the Government of Rajasthan, was shifted to a new building in the Civil lines in 1954. It is having one of the richest collection of Terracotta ware, weapons, paintings of Bikaner school, Lacquer work, Wood And Stone carvings, Sculptures and coins. The exhibits are splendid master pieces of Harappan civilisation, Gupta and Kushan era and sculptures of the late classical time.
Guru Jambheshwar was a strong follower of 'Arya Samaj'. Near the village Nokha, District Bikaner the marble tomb of Jambhoji is present. The entombed of Jambhoji is present at Mukam, 18 kms from Nokha on Nokha-Jasrasar road in Nokha tehsil in District Bikaner, Rajasthan. The tomb of Jambhoji is magnificent and big. The whole site is covered with marble. The huge tomb is round shaped. The entire temple is made of Marble and is on elevated position. This can be seen from a distance. There is a magnificent gate at the entrance of this site.
The fort was built by Raja Rai Singh, the sixth ruler of Bikaner who reigned from 1571 to 1612. Rai Singh had conquered part of Marwar and had been granted territory in Gujurat and Burhanpur by the Mughal emperor Akbar as a reward for his services as military commander.
These palaces, made in red sandstone (Dulmera) and marble, make a picturesque ensemble of countryards, balconies, kiosks and windows dotted all over the structure. The imposing fort has 986 long wall with 37 bastions and two entrances. It is approached through the Karan Poal which is the main entrance.
Among the palaces of interest are Anop mahal, Ganga niwas and Rang mahal or palace of pleasure. The Anoop Mahal is famous for its gold leaf painting. Har Mandir- a majestic chapel where the royal family worshiped there Gods and Goddesses. Chandra mahal or moon palace has exquisite paintings on the lime plaster walls and Phool mahal or the Flower palace is decorated with inset mirror work.
The gigantic columns , arches and graceful screen grace the palaces. Karan Mahal was built to commemorate a notable victory over the Mughal Aurangzeb.The other important parts are Durbar Hall, Gaj mandir, Sheesh Mahal or mirror chamber etc.
The world famous shrine of Karni Mata can be found in the town of Deshnoke 30 km south from Bikaner on the road to Jodhpur. Karni Mata is worshiped as an incarnation of Goddess Durga. She blessed Rao Bika, the founder of Bikaner in establishing his kingdom and since then she was also worshiped as the tutelary deity of the erstwhile Bikaner dynasty.
The temple is unique as the rats called Kabas, are venerated here and the shrine is a sanctuary for them. It is believed that these Kabas carry souls of future Charans/bards (children of the goddess) who inhabit the town of Deshnok. These Kabas are held sacred and they move freely in the temple precincts. It is considered highly auspicious. It is considered highly auspicious to sight a white Kaba.
The temple has fascinating huge silver gates and marble carvings. The most attractive feature of temple are the rodents who scamper freely within the premises and if one touches your feet its considered auspicious. They are regarded sacred and devotees buy prasad (feeding) to offer to them.
Kolayat is a famous pilgrimage spot with a temple dedicated to Kapila who, according to his devotees, sat in meditation near the lake. One week before Pushkar Festival and till one week later this lake is more interesting if you like to see Sadhus. Pushkar will have some Sadhus but Kolayat will have many hundreds.
Kolayat has a series of charming marble temple, sandstone pavilions and 32 ghats (bathing places) built around a huge artificial lake which never goes dry. Here one can see sadhus and pilgrms taking a holy dip, surrounded by the vast emptiness of a timeless atmosphere and the golden desert. On Karthik Purnima day a grand fair is held in which devotees from all over the country come to take a holy bath in the lake.
The temple is the venue for an annual fair held in the month of Kartik (Oct-Nov) when the thousands of devotees gather in a large number to take a sacred dip in the holy waters of the Kolayat lake( Kapil Sarovar) on the full moon day. Lake is considered to have the effect of washing off the sins of devotees. A cattle fair ,especially for the trading of camels is a part of he festivities.The town is connected to Bikaner by road as well as rail.
The chronic shopaholic never misses the whiff of local market food stuff and the by lanes which are hidden from the world, carving out magnificent masterpieces for throwaway prices. The Kote gate in Bikaner is one such place which is full of surprises for the ardent shopper. Being a part of history has endowed Bikaner with numerous art forms and handicraft artisans who produce creative wonders relentlessly. It is possible to lay hands of buffed camel hide articles, miniature paintings, Khadi industry articles, as well as wood carvings apart form mouth watering Bhujia and Rosogollahs.
Lalgarh Palace was built between 1902 and 1926 according to Rajput, Mughal and European architectural styles. The building was commissioned by Maharaja Ganga Singh (1889 - 1925) in memory of his father Maharaja Lall Singh and was designed by the British architect, Sir Swinton Jacob. It is coated in red sandstone and has several grand halls, lounges, cupolas and pavilions.
The building features magnificent pillars, elaborate fireplaces, Italian colonnades and intricate latticework and filigree work. The palace houses the Shri Sadul Museum as well as the fourth largest library in the world. Though the Bikaner Royal Family still live in the palace, part of the building has been converted into a Heritage hotel operated by the Royal faimly of Bikaner.
Laxmi Nath Temple is one of the oldest temples in Bikaner. The foundation of the city was laid here in 1488 by Rao Bikaji. The temple was erected during the reign of Rao Lunkaran and was added to by Maharaja Ganga Singh.
It being a historical monument has special identity. Statues of deities- Vishnu and Laxmi - have all along received the unwavering devotion of countless people through the last four and half centuries.
The Laxmi Niwas Palace is a former residential palace of the king of the former Bikaner state, Maharajah Ganga Singh in Bikaner in the Indian state of Rajasthan. It was designed by the British architect, Sir Samuel Swinton Jacob in the year 1902. The style of architecture is Indo-Saracenic. It is now a luxury hotel owned by Golden Triangle Fort and Palace P. Ltd. The magnificent structure in red sandstone is one of the most popular destinations for tourists in Bikaner.
The Mahatma Gandhi Road has a special emotional value attached to it, not only because of the great man's name but also due to the fact that this road irrespective of its city identifies the shopping avenues which are available over it. The M.G. Road in Bikaner is no different and is like a magicians pot which throws out surprise galore. Studded with many small as well as huge vending establishments M G Road boasts of awesome collections of chiffon, georgette as well as the special Bandhani (tie-dye) saris. Also worth a mention are the leather and wood souvenirs which are available at an affordable price and are a must carry memorabilia.
Constructed in 1486, Moolnayakji was the first Vaishnav Temple built in Bikaner. It was the principal seat of the Vaishanv sect. The first of the Bhagavad Katha Vachaks of the Rattani Vyas clan of Bikaner Shri Rattoji Vyas gave the Bhagavad Updesh to the king, Rao Bika and his aide Salloji Rathi. This practice is carried on till date. The presiding deity is Lord Moolnayak Krishna.
This temple was built by Ratan Singuji and Sardar Singuji in the early 19th century and retains much of its old charm and grandeur even to this days. Raj Ratan Bihari and Rasik Siromani Temple at Bikaner is one such religious spot that truly deserves the attention of the tourists.
Raj Ratan Bihari and Rasik Siromani Temple at Bikaner reflect the true essence of beauty and thus make for a good place to visit. The atmosphere in and around the temple is very pleasing and hence adds to the flavor of vacations. The structure is a fine instance of some of the best architectural wonder and is made up of red sandstone and built in the mansion style. The temple is located in the north of KEM road inside the Ratan Bihari Park. This temple frequented by a large number of pilgrims who come here from different parts of India.
This Directorate is located in Bikaner. The archives have in their custody some very precious administrative record of Mughal period like Persian Farmans, Nishans, Manshurs, Akbarat, Vakil Report, Arzdasht, Khatoot and the record created during administration of the Princely states of Rajasthan such as Bahiat, Pattas, Parwanas, Rukkas, Chithiat etc.
Because of this exceptional collection of records the department is of immense value to researchers all over the world. Facilities like microfilming, reference library and research rooms are also available to researchers. An exhibition of important documents is also set-up specially for tourist interest.
Bikaner is also famous among tourists for marvelous mansions (Haveli) which are a wonder in home architecture. Aldous Huxley a famous English writer, visited these havelis reportedly said ?They are the pride of Bikaner".
The most famous cluster of havelies is the Rampuria Group of Havelies. These havelis are built by Balujee Chalva under instructions from Rampuria family. Rampuria havelis are many in number and are big in size and located at nearly adjacent positions make great impression like the patwa havelies of Jaisalmer.
The interior scheme of decoration of these havelies is very different. The Rampuria havelies are built of dulmera stone, which are red in color. Exquisite and minute carvings come naturally to the havelis's stones. The Rampuria havelies are decorated with golden work of the highest quality.
They have Drawing Room which take us to the mughal and rajput period of amalgamation and synthesis. Another interesting feature is that Rampuria havelies have diverse exterior and each haveli has a pattern of its own.
The Sadul Singh Museum covering the entire first floor of the Lalgarh palace is dedicated to the lives and exploits of three successive kings of Bikaner, Maharaja Ganga Sigh, Sadul Singh and Karni Singh. The Museum depicts these three kings and their passions through numerous artifacts, displays as well as photographs and life size paintings in more than 20 rooms. The royal family of Bikaner still resides in one part of the palace. A wide spectrum of Georgian paintings, hunting trophies and rare artifacts adorn the museum displays and walls.
Built from red sandstone by Dungar Singh in the late 19th century, the temple is surrounded by a wall with battlements. It has a four faced black marble statue of Shiva and a bronze Nandi facing the Shiva Lingam. There are also two large reservoirs of water known as bawaris. The temple attracts thousands of visitors during Shravan (August) especially on Mondays.
In connection to continuous development of 'Bikaner' city Maharaja Shri Soor Singh ji constructed Sursagar in front of Junagarh fort in 1614 to collect rain water.Sursagar was also known as 'Tajuk-a-Sagar' (as mentioned in book 'jal and samaj' by Brij Ratan Joshi).
According to an old inscription the water of Sursagar was used for day today activities, drinking, generating electricity etc. The lake is 22,800 Sqm(approx.) in area of a rectangular in shape with approximately 184m in length and 120m in breath and approximately 8 m in depth. The lake collected fresh rain water during rains and was place of attraction during the earlier days.
- Public Park and Zoo, Vaishno Dham, Historical Gopi Nath Temple, Vaidehi Global Trust etc.