Curious eyes, gazing at whatever passed their way, multi-colored turbans, warmth of the locals, hospitality so free from formality, shy smiles, mud huts, peacocks dancing on brown sands & dusty roads that make for a suddenly bumpy ride……. are few of the inescapables that accompany the vast dry-brown fields of Shekhawati. It is one of those places where the weekender can truly and peacefully co-exist, luring you with the promise of a medley of experiences. The town is Oh -so- different, it responds perfectly to cultural, historical and linguistic differences. With every step you realize that the town is highly privileged with havelis and villages. Having spent years in Rajasthan, this state has never let my curiosity diminish. Every step further introduces you to its uniqueness. By this I mean some places yield secrets as they are explored.
We started fairly early from Delhi to give ourselves the advantage of avoiding the traffic congested stretch. The reason being, no matter how early you leave, somewhere or somehow you are bound to get stuck in the crazily noisy traffic. Weaving our way through a sea of trucks, tuktuks, bikes, bullock carts, lazy camels & loaded jeeps (surprisingly you would read Don’t Honk signs virtually on every vehicle, nevertheless with almost everyone honking their horns) on not so good roads left us drowsy by the time we made our entry in the region. Those eager eyes that greeted us, the sheer color, gaiety & cheerful confusion of the bazaar that pampered us and left us with a feeling of home away from home and a step closer to the touch and feel experience of a Village life. The narrow lanes with hawkers selling a variety of different things, petty food stalls with locals munching the local delicacies, camel carts, horse carts & plenty of hand pulled carts unfolded before us as we drove along. Trust me you can feel that there is something in the air. We continued towards the hotel that we were staying in. On arrival, we received a warm-hearted welcome in true Royal Rajasthan style. The hotel was magnificent, and we were charmed by its magnificence. We made our move towards its interiors; it was a palatial haveli that has been converted into heritage hotel.
Activities to do in Shekhawati
Shekhawati offers a number of weekend options that can be incorporated easily within an itinerary either in the beginning or in the end. You can come to one of the Haveli-turned-hotels, relax at the swimming pool, stroll through the extensive streets, enjoy the local dishes, visit farms, play rural games, and hop on to camel and jeep safaris. Definitely a trip to Shekhawati is incomplete without visiting the Havelis with its fine frescos. The beautifully painted havelis are enough to mesmerize the visitors. They’re truly a feast for the eyes. Wait; let me assure you, Shekhawati can equally satisfy the thirst for adventure. The town not only boasts its rural village feel, but offers a range of adventure activities. If you have a penchant for adventure, attempt some easy treks through the fields but if all the walking gets your feet sore, don’t fret, riding on a horseback is an exciting alternative. We planned to do horse riding the following day. And believe me; the town bestowed me with awesome-first-time-experiences. The horse ride through the scenic countryside happened to be the best part during the trip. With so many inter-connected villages, a vast, flat field stretches far beyond what the eye can see. I must say it offers the most spectacular view which eventually brings you near locals. Trotting through narrow mud roads makes it more thrilling. We were led by experienced guides, who entertained us all throughout the horseback ride; they don’t rush you and tell you fun facts about horses and mares. Each of us was assigned a wonderful horse. The put-in point is that all the horses are well tempered for novice riders. We went to Roop Niwas in Shekhawati and saw a really huge stable with an assortment of animals including sheep, cows and ducks along with horses, giving us the closest possible look at them. It was so interesting watching animals doing different things. This was certainly the highlight of our trip.
Needless to say, Shekhawati is unique in many ways. The visitors get an introduction of Rajasthan & carry an everlasting impression of the simplicity & rural ethnicity of the inhabitants.
Shanti Travel has many customised tours in the magical land of Rajasthan.