I wish we had got to spend at least a couple of nights here to know the city a bit more and enjoy the scenery for longer. Although it’s not as holy, the shopping isn’t great, and there isn’t that many activities to do, Jodhpur feels a little different and nice to be in. I like the quaint streets you can walk through to hunt for the blue buildings, shop keepers also aren’t pushy here, and the locals are somewhat more friendly and seem more trusting. I have to also mention the star attraction of Jodhpur – Mehrangarh Fort. It sits magnificently on the tope of a small hill overlooking the entire city, and at night it’s illuminated for a couple of hours. However I think a big reason why I wanted to stay an extra night is because of the hostel we stayed in! Hostelavie. It’s simply the best we’ve had throughout India and the rooftop view of the fort is KILLER. They’ve really designed the hostel well and there’s even a little rooftop bungalow chill area. Plus, shared kitchen, free use of laundry machine, and free breakfast 😀 The ONLY setback is that the wifi is dodgy, but they say they’re working on it. Anyway, Jodhpur was short and sweet – here’s my recount of what we did in 1.5 days!
SADAR MARKET (MAIN BAZAR)
The first place we hit was the market. We were hoping for some good textiles shops, leather bags and wool ponchos like the one’s we found in Pushkar. But we were so disappointed! There are a few nice antique stores with interesting stuff but the markets weren’t much. There’s lots of fruit and veggies, bangle stalls and locals selling their old clothes. But Jodhpur definitely isn’t known for great shopping.
Ah the almighty fort you can see from almost every point in the city below. Batman (the dark knight) was apparently filmed here and it actually looks more like a European castle. It’s pretty impressive and for 600 rupees entry, it was much more enjoyable to explore than the Taj Mahal. Mehrangarh fort is supposedly one of the largest in India and the views from the top during day and night are spectacular. There’s even a flying fox zip line you can do for 1800 rupees per adult. This was a little expensive for us so we gave it a miss, but it was nice to have the opportunity for some physical/adventurous activity.
The fort was just a 7-8min climb up from our hostel and we took around 2 hours to explore it. There’s lots of old artefacts, gallery displays in various rooms, a couple of cafes and a gift shop as well. I’m just glad we went early in the morning because the tourist buses were lining up on our way out!
JANTA SWEET HOME
I read about this place on a couple of blogs as THE place to go for your sweet afternoon fix, or even for a snack and meal. It’s quite popular amongst the locals and we did come by a similar place in Jaipur. All sorts of Indian fried snacks are sold here along with sweets and ice-cream. The ice cream is really not great in India haha but I tried an almond flavoured one. For some reason they wouldn’t let me order it in a wafer cone – ‘it’s not possible’ they said. So I said fine, give me it in the cup and I’ll buy the wafer separately and put it in myself. The guy ended up making a wafer cone for me – how hard was that?!
Note to self – no more ice cream in India. After a couple of bites it just tasted like condensed milk. But the wafer was decent.
STREETS AND STALLS
We probably spent most of our time just walking through Jodhpur city streets and discovering what locals were selling. We got ingredients to make pasta from the outdoor markets – Sheena made red shell pasta and I found corn maize! We got some spinach, tomatoes and eggplant to go with everything. Dinner for less than 100 rupees – wooh!
We also tried the famous Omelette Shop near the entry to Sadar bazaar. I don’t think a lot of travellers know about it but I only heard of it from reading a couple of blogs. There’s only one man who cooks and he only does egg sandwhiches, egg omeletes, momos and chowmein. There’s almost always a line!
There were a couple of other places we could’ve filled our day with (we skipped Jaswant Thada and Maid Bhavan Palace) but we just wanted to chill back our hostel and take in the view of the Fort from the rooftop. Besides, I think we had enough of temples and forts. Sometimes (all the time) it’s just nice to do nothing.