3 road trips to experience Rajasthan Tourism

Judging from the queries that I have been getting on my last post on Jaipur, it appears that a lot of people are keen on Rajasthan tourism. It is not just Jaipur that seems to hold the charm. Everyone wants to cover more than this city. Rightly so, given the rich heritage and culture that Rajasthan tourism has been promoting. I have been warning people that one trip will not be able to cover all the places in Rajasthan – it is the largest state of India! However, to do justice, you definitely can cover some major cities in one go.

Road Trips - the best way to experience Rajasthan Tourism
Road Trips – the best way to experience Rajasthan Tourism

One of the major queries that I have been getting include which is the best way to experience Rajasthan tourism? Road, rail or flight? My personal opinion is to take a road trip across Rajasthan. There is so much to discover along the way. Given the nature of queries, I thought of sharing 3 best road trip options to experience Rajasthan tourism. Note that these road trips start pretty much after you have flown into a city and end with you flying out of one. The flight tickets are an option and can be replaced with a rail journey is so desired. Also, note that each option covers smaller places like Pushkar, Ajmer and Kumbhalgarh along the way.

So, here goes my three Rajasthan road trip itineraries –

Rajasthan Tourism Road Trip One – Jaipur, Jodhpur & Udaipur

Udaipur - a definite recommendation when experiencing Rajasthan Tourism
Udaipur – a definite recommendation when experiencing Rajasthan Tourism

This one is the most popular circuit covering the pink city of Jaipur, the blue city of Jodhpur and my favorite Lake city of Udaipur. My suggestion here is to book flight tickets into Jaipur and fly out from Udaipur.

- Fly into Jaipur and spend around 2.5 days here. You can access the suggested itinerary here.
- Start early to Jodhpur by road.  Along the way, you can stop at Pushkar and Ajmer. Both these destinations are exactly midway between Jaipur and Jodhpur. Again, between Pushkar and Ajmer, the drive time is just 45 minutes. Keep aside one full day for this road journey so that you can explore both these towns before you arrive at Jodhpur.
-Spend around 2 days in Jodhpur discovering the lovely monuments - including Mehrangarh Fort, Umaid Bhavan, Mandore Gardens and Jaswant Thada
- Start early to head to Udaipur. Again, keep aside a full day for the journey as you can stop by at Ranakpur Jain Temple and explore the Kumbhalgarh Fort along the way. You are likely to reach Udaipur only by night.
- Once in Udaipur, keep aside at least two days to explore the gorgeous city - starting with Lake Pichola, the city palace, Saheliyon ki Bari and more.
- Fly back home from Udaipur
India's longest wall at Kumbhalgarh fort
India’s longest wall at Kumbhalgarh fort

There are two variations that I can suggest in the above plan. For this, you may need to extend your stay in Udaipur.

Option One –  Cover Chittorgarh from Udaipur. This is just 2 hours from the lake city. Here you can experience the historic tales of Rani Padmavati while touring the mighty Chittorgarh fort. Consider booking a day-trip from Udaipur online through this website. It offers you a pick-up and drop from your Udaipur hotel at a discounted rate.

Option Two –  Head toward the West of Udaipur to the famed hill town of Mount Abu with its stupendous Jain Temple. This is around 3 hours from Udaipur.


Rajasthan Road Trip Two – Jaipur, Jodhpur, Udaipur & Jaisalmer

Desert experience at Jaisalmer
Desert experience at Jaisalmer

Jaisalmer is extremely popular among the tourists in Rajasthan and one does not really want to leave out the Golden city. However, be warned that adding Jaisalmer means adding a long stretch to your journey for it is the further most from all the major cities of Rajasthan. Moreover, you cannot fly into Jaisalmer. The closest airport is Jodhpur. If you are short of time and are looking for just a desert experience, then I would recommend spending time in Pushkar as against Jaisalmer. It is bound to save you time and give you the same or maybe, an even better experience. However, if you are like me and enjoy heritage, there is no avoiding the golden city. So, here goes my suggestion of this Rajasthan road trip –

 - Fly into Jaipur and see the city over the next two days
 - Leave early and head straight to Udaipur via Ajmer and Pushkar. Keep aside this entire day for a road journey as you explore Ajmer and Pushkar along the way
- Spend around 2 full days in Udaipur
- Start early to Jodhpur via Kumbhalgarh, Haldighati and Ranakpur. Keep a day for this journey as you will spend considerable time at Kumbhalgarh
- Stay in Jodhpur for around 2 days and then leave for Jaisalmer. There are no pit stops here for you to explore. It is a straight journey of 5 hours.
- Spend around 2 days in Jaisalmer. Once you are done, you can either head back to Jodhpur to fly back out or Jaipur (12 hours by road) to head home
Junagarh Fort at Bikaner - a break journey between Jaisalmer and Jaipur
Junagarh Fort at Bikaner – a break journey between Jaisalmer and Jaipur

I had opted for this route, except that in my case, I chose to add a day extra at Bikaner. Bikaner is another half-way point between Jaipur and Jaisalmer. Hence on the way back from Jaisalmer, you can choose to break the journey at Bikaner, stay the night, explore the city and continue back to Jaipur. While at Bikaner, don’t miss the intriguing Rat temple with its live rats at Deshnok.

Road Trip three – Jaipur,  Ranthambore, Jodhpur and Udaipur

Tiger at Ranthambore. Photo Credits : Karthik Dwarkanath via Flickr under CC by NC-ND 2.0
Tiger at Ranthambore.                                                                                                      Photo Credits : Karthik Dwarkanath via Flickr under CC by NC-ND 2.0

Rajasthan tourism is not just about heritage. Throw in some bit of wildlife with the tiger spotting at Ranthambore and you can add another flavor to this place. Here is a road trip covering the same –

- Start with arriving into Jaipur and spending time here.
- Leave early and head straight to Ranthambore which is around 4 hours from Jaipur. Spend at least one day at a resort here. Consider booking your Ranthambore Safari through this website that offers you a discounted rate.
- Head straight to Jodhpur. Again you can take a stop at Ajmer and Pushkar along the way,
- Keep aside around 2 full days for Jodhpur
- Start early to head to Udaipur. Remember to stop at the Ranakpur Jain Temple and Great wall of India at Kumbhalgarh Fort, thus, making this 5-hour journey a complete day trip.
- Spend at least 2 days in Udaipur before you fly back straight home from here.

Travel Tips for road trips to experience Rajasthan Tourism

  • Most of the journeys that I have suggested here are just longer owing to the suggested pit-stops. Should you avoid the same, you will be able to complete most of them within 5- 6 hours. In some cases, the distance is even lesser.
  • Hiring a car is not difficult in Rajasthan. You can find plenty of cab services online as well as through your hotel or resort. Booking through this online link will not cost you anything additional but will help me make some money to keep this website going. In fact, you are likely to get a discounted price by booking through the website. 
  • The charges for the cab would include a round trip to the city where you are hiring the cab. Even if you are not returning to your city of origin, you will have to include that journey into your trip tab. Other than that, you will have to include the Driver Bata charges and any toll charges.
  • I would recommend stopping along the roadside restaurants for your meals. The small dhabas along the way treat you to some really authentic Rajasthani food. It definitely adds to the experience of the state.
  • Most of the restaurants and petrol bunks have restrooms for you to use. However, note that they are not always the cleanest. Keep a hand sanitizer and toilet paper with you all the time.
  • The road conditions in Rajasthan are fairly decent. A few roads are just single-laned.
  • There are enough food options and shops along the roads. However, I would still recommend carrying some snacks and water in the car so that you do not waste too much time stopping around.
Also read Travel tips for a memorable road trip

I hope that makes your planning easier now.  Message in and let me know if you have been for any of these road trips or if you are planning one.

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P.S: I have several posts detailing the cities and attractions mentioned in this post. You can click on the relevant links to get more information on them


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88 thoughts on “3 road trips to experience Rajasthan Tourism”

  1. An Absolutely comprehensive post , well put! Rajasthan is one of my favourite travel destinations in India and can never get tired of visiting it! The best way indeed is a Road trip savouring the landscapes and culture bit by bit!

    You’re awesome with your Rajasthan documentation! ( I think I have told you this before):)

  2. Udaipur is to dai for! Some other parts of Rajasthan are equally worth dyeing for – though they believe in Tie & Dye. Of course, till you have been to Kota to see the miniature Seven Wonders – you can never claim to have had your full quota of Rajasthan! I enjoyed this comprehensive post!

  3. Hello, Thanks for sharing a great detail about to make a road trip about Rajasthan tour. Such a nice post and all images look so beautiful. Rajasthan culture and tradition is main attraction parts that excite everyone to visit this place.

  4. Nice itinerary plans to visit Rajasthan. As a traveler, i must say Oct to Dec months are best to visit Rajasthan as weather is very nice here in these days. I would love to visit Jaisalmer again as i love deserts. Great write up Ami!

  5. We have covered all of these in one round trip. We believe exploring Rajasthan can best be done on a road trip where you will get to explore more of the rustic and quaint rural lifestyles and lots of wildlife too 🙂

  6. hi Ami this is manjit here from malaysia.i am planning to visit rajasthan am reaching there 13.3.2017 at 2am.would like your advice.i want to visit fatehpur bikaner jaisalmer sam jodhpur ajmer n back to jaipur in 5 days.can it be done.i am in jaipur for a wedding on the 18 n 19 of march 2017.after this on 20th i plan to go to udaipur ahmedadbad n fly back from mumbai on 23th at 11 pm.is my trip okay or crazy.there r 5 of us in our group my family.maybe u can suggest something thanks.love to drive around.do we need international licence.

  7. Road trips have always been a way to find your soul in the lost roads of a new place awaiting to be explored. Rajasthan being so mysteriously beautiful should be explored on a road trip. The colourful and vibrant locals, their houses and palaces of course and the barren yet beautiful landscapes mesmerize you. We really enjoyed driving through the interiors of Rajasthan last year.

  8. We have done two except the Jaisalmer one, which we plan to do sometime this year. These road trips are awesome! Don’t forget the delicious food along the way, that makes the trip double worth it!

  9. These are great tips! I also found traveling around places like Brazil and Morocco that it was helpful to have toilet paper and hand sanitizer. Good to know that the roadside restaurants are yummy! And I’d certainly love to visit a pink city and a blue city on the same trip!

  10. Rajasthan is definitely a very hot destination for the tourists. The beautiful sand dunes, safari on camels, massive forts and many more places have been the attractions of many tourists.

  11. I love to travel and it is basically my passion to do so.. Last month, I visited Udaipur(RAJ.) and it was indeed a great fun exploring the beautiful lakes it has.

  12. Thanks for sharing such an informative blog Ami! I loved scrolling through it. I too had visited udaipur few months ago and discovered a lot. The place is indeed great and it has amazing architecture. thanks for sharing again, It refreshed memories of the trip.

  13. I am planning road trip (self driven) from Delhi to Jaipur (2night) to Jodhpur (Ajmer, Pushkar) (1night), then to jaisalmer (1Night) then to Bikaner (1Night) then back to jaipur (Might be 1Night) to delhi. If any suggestions please let me know

    • Hey Yatin, I think you are packing in too much on this one trip. Given it is a road trip, you might just find yourself driving and not seeing anything in particular. Have a look at my other Rajasthan posts as well to get an idea of what you might want to consider when planning the stay in each of these places. Cheers

  14. Very useful information. What about the above plan, if we consider trains to travel between the cities rather via road. We are basically planning to visit Jaipur,Jodhpur and Jaisalmer.

    Thank you.

  15. Thanks a lot for your authentic and informative comments. You have convinced me on road trip with your impressive narration of Rajasthan which I have always cherished as the last frontier of Indian Royalty.

  16. Hi, just thinking of hiring zoom car from jaipur, drive via pushkar to Udaipur (2N) drive to ranthambore reserve , stay overnight, return to Jaipur (2N).My only worry is if I missed out on Jaisalmer which is far away for a drive to include in this itinerary.Also, it is going to be about 40+ deg c by 2nd week of april? Any suggestions? Thanks.

    • Jaisalmer will be out of the way and is not recommended for such a short trip. You can get some desert experience at Pushkar instead. Maybe stay the night here. And yes, it’s going to be hot in April.

  17. Planning a road trip to rajasthan. Trip 3 seems better. Is October a good time to visit. And what should be a checklist is we are traveling on our own vehicle.

    • Hi Pooja – The post mentions the suggested plan along with the relevant links. I am sure that you will have the information that you may need for the same. Cheers

  18. I want to plan a road trip of rajasthan by road from Banaras in my car….plzz suggest me which places i should include in my itinerary for a 10 to 12 days trip

  19. I am planning to visit Rajasthan from Gujarat by car, for 6 to 7 days with family (kids are there). Please suggest me the best route from Gujarat.

    • Hi Virat, If you are headed from Gujarat, you can cover the Jaipur – Jodhpur and Udaipur circuit as they will fall well in your driving route. Alternately, you can do Udaipur, Abu and Chittorgarh.

  20. My native place is in Walrai, Rajasthan, but i am embarrassed to say that i’ve never seen my homeland. After reading your blog i’ve that i will surely explore my motherland once lockdown is opened. Thank you soo much :*


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