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Jodhpur, the blue city, is located in the Thar desert and is the second largest city in Rajasthan.

For a long time, being just a convenient place to stop en route to Jaisalmer, Jodhpur was not considered a tourist destination. However, with two famous music festivals held in Mehrangarh Fort every year, and aided by many a travel magazine’s photos of the iconic blue houses of Jodhpur, it has now become a tourist destination in its own right.

Jodhpur was founded by the Rathore king Rao Jodha in 1459, when he shifted the capital of Marwar to Jodhpur from Mandore. The king embarked upon building the magnificent Mehrangarh Fort overlooking the blue houses of the Brahmin community; and if you’re wondering why the houses in Jodhpur are painted blue, it is believed that this was started by a community of Brahmins, to mark their status as distinctive. The practice has remained in vogue because of the blue paint’s supposedly insect-repelling qualities.

We recommend staying in Jodhpur for two days, which will give you ample time to visit Mehrangarh Fort and a few more places in the city (which can be done in a day), and maybe a day trip to Osian Temples and Dunes or to the Bishnoi Villages.