Last Updated on March 29, 2022 by asoulwindow
Information About Alwar
Alwar is an offbeat destination in Rajasthan near New Delhi. While visiting places in Alwar I realised there is so much to see here and yet not many people travel here. This is why I feel Alwar is an offbeat destination in Rajasthan. The main Alwar tourist places took me by surprise with their understated grandeur.
The medieval Hindu temples, wildlife hotspots, lakes, forts, palaces, museums etc make Alwar a complete destination which can be covered in 2 days. The historical places to visit in Alwar are unpretentious and worth writing home about.
What’s more? Places to visit near Alwar such as the famous and haunted Bhangarh Fort or the unheard-of waterfall make it a fulfilling weekend break from New Delhi.
I have been to all bigger destinations of Rajasthan such as Udaipur, Jodhpur, Jaipur, Bikaner etc. It was natural for me to start looking for offbeat destinations in Rajasthan such as Alwar. This is the most comprehensive travel guide on Alwar you will find on internet.
Why is Alwar Famous?
Alwar is famous for its unique offerings. For a small place like Alwar it has so much to offer, which is why Alwar is also gaining popularity with discerning travellers who look beyond the outdated guide book format. From ancient Hindu temples topalace hopping to fort, gorgeous cenotaphs, lakes and even a Tiger Safari, there is much to see and do in Alwar.
Alwar is very famous for its wildlife trips in Sariska Tiger reserve. Many people come from Delhi to Alwar only for the wildlife experience. Also, the milk cake of Alwar is very famous too. I saw many shops selling milk cake as soon as I got down at the Alwar Railway Station.
The travel guidebooks are usually dull and follow a boring format. They often skip hidden gems like Alwar in their list of unusual places to see in Rajasthan. This is why I prefer travel blogs for inspiration to discover new places.
Hope you are enjoying these amazing facts about Alwar? Alwar is a must-see place in Rajasthan near Delhi.
Where is Alwar located?
Alwar is located in a beautiful countryside near the Indian Capital New Delhi in North India. Yes, you can reach Alwar from New Delhi in under 3 hours by train! I bet you didn’t know that! That makes it a nice weekend getaway from Delhi.
Nomenclature of Alwar
What did the term Alwar mean? There are several versions of why Alwar was named so. According to some versions, Alwar was earlier called as Aravalpur which meant the city of Aravali mountain ranges.
The other version says that Alwar was named after the Maharaj Alaghraj who ruled in the 11th century. He was the 2nd son of Maharaja Kakil of Amer, which was the old seat of Jaipur state. During the reign of Maharaj Alaghraj, his territory reached as far as where Alwar is present now.
He formally founded a new city which was known as Alpur in the year 1049 C.E. (or 1106 Vikrami Samvat). Alpur, which Maharaj Alaghraj named after himself, eventually was known as Alwar. Earlier it was spelt as Ulwar. However, that changed during the rule of Jai Singh. The city has been known as Alwar since then.
Another local version says that Alwar was christened after Alaval Khan Mewati.
As per Cunningham the word Alwar was named as Salwapur after the Salva tribe. Over the years Salwapur turned into Salwar and Halawar before finally settling for Alwar. I personally prefer the native version than a western view on Indian subjects.
Places to visit in Alwar
You will be surprised to read that there are so many places to visit in Alwar. It can easily take 2 or 3 days to see the best places in Alwar. But the best part is that most of the major attractions of Alwar are located very close to each other. Let us have a look at the list of places you can visit in Alwar. All you wanted to know about the best places to see in Alwar.
Bala Quila Fort -Top place to visit in Alwar
Bala Quila Fort is one of the top places to see in Alwar. How can you visit Alwar and not see the famous Bala Quila Fort? Perched on a height of 1,000 feet, it sprawls over an area of 5 kilometres. The Bala Quila Fort which can be seen from many places in Alwar. This medieval fort has 15 Hindu temples, 51 small and 15 large towers and 446 openings for musketry.
Originally constructed by Hasan Khan Mewati in the year 1550 C.E., it was later controlled by the likes of Khanzadas, Mughals, Pathans and Jats. The fort gives sweeping views of the Alwar city from the top. One of the best things to do in Alwar is to soak in views from here.
The walls of the fort are so strong that it was difficult to damage it even with canons. However, many canon spots can still be seen here. There are a total of 446 holes across the Bala Quila Fort which were used for operating the canons. There were many canons in the fort premises, one of which is said to be the second largest canon in Asia.
Some of the most important Hindu Temples to visit in Bada Quila Fort of Alwar are Top wale Hanuman Ji Temple, Sita Ram Mandir, Chakradhari Hanuman Mandir and so on. Keep exploring and you may end up finding new secrets of Bala Quila Fort. You may need 2 days in Alwar if you want to see Bala Quila Fort in detail. The second day can be spent in general sightseeing in and around Alwar.
Soul Window Facts
Did you know that a dog named Victor used to operate canons in Bala Quila Fort? Just 200 meters ahead of the fort, is the canon workshop. Canons used to be made and tested here.
A dog named victor was trained here to test the canons. While testing the second largest canon of Asia, it exploded and the dog died on the spot. A samadhi was later built in the memory of the dog. Isn’t it an interesting lesser-known fact?
Address of Bala Quila Fort: It is located on the Bala Quila road, close to Nikumbha Mahal Palace, Alwar, Rajasthan. Pin: 301001
Timings: Bala Quila Fort is open for tourists between 10 a.m. and 5 p.m.
Siliserh lake is a famous tourists spot of Alwar. Both locals and tourists visit Siliserh lake, especially during evening to enjoy the breath-taking views of the lake and the majestic Aravalli range of mountains from here. It is clearly one of the best places to visit in Alwar.
The sun started to set as I stared at the turquoise blue water of the Siliserh lake. Tourists and locals also enjoy boating and sailing in the vast Siliserh lake. I enjoyed the view from a vantage point of Lake Palace Hotel near the canteen.
After sometime I had the food and soft drinks from the canteen and sat at the open-air restaurant overlooking the lake. The food tasted average but was still good. Siliserh lake is located near the Siliserh circle. Do visit this major point of attraction in Alwar. Boating in Siliserh lake is best thing to do in Alwar.
City Palace, Alwar
When I visited the city palace of Alwar, I was amazed with the grandeur of this medieval fort. Whether it is the large courtyard space or bird’s eye views from the roof, it impressed me as I didn’t have much expectations before arriving here.
A classic blend of Rajputana and Mughal architectural style, the Alwar City palace was constructed in the 18th century. It was getting dark when I visited City Palace. I wish I had spent more time here studying the finer architectural details. It is worth it. This underrated place is often missed by tourists despite being one of the top places to visit in Alwar.
Nestled in the foothills of the Aravalli mountains, it is also home to an artificial lake and a museum. City place is one of the top places to see in Alwar, Rajasthan. What might be a tourist attraction for you and me, is home to several Government offices today.
Yes, it’s only in Incredible India that Government offices run from heritage buildings like City Palace. City palace is open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
City palace is free to visit. However, if you want to visit its museum, a small fee is charged. A stroll at City Palace is one of the top things to do in Alwar Rajasthan. If you have only 1 day in Alwar, make sure you include City Palace. It is one of the major highlights of Alwar tourism.
Moosi Maharani Ki Chatri, Alwar
You can’t visit Rajasthan and not see a grand cenotaph. I have seen beautiful cenotaphs in Bikaner, Bundi and even the remote Ladnu between Tal Chappar blackbuck sanctuary and Nagaur Fort. However, despite having seen beautiful cenotaphs across Rajasthan, I am yet to see a Cenotaph aka Chattri as grand as Moosi Maharani Ki Chatri of Alwar.
Built by Vinay Singh in the memory of Rani Moosi, the wife of Maharaja Bakhtawar Singh, it is an architectural marvel. Rani Moosi was known for performing ‘Sati’ on the funeral pyres of her husband. The tombs of both the queen and King are located within the Chatri.
It offers great views of the fort, palace and the lake. Beautiful carvings, liberal use of marble and awe-inspiring architecture makes it larger than life. But then, Indians never built anything small ever! Moosi Maharani Ki Chatri is located in Mohalla Ladiya, right outside the main palace of Alwar and the lake.
Timings: Moosi Maharani Ki Chatri is open from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.
Government Museum of Alwar
It is not surprising that a city as historical as Alwar has a museum of its own. Also known as the Palace Museum, a walk here acquaints the tourist with the history of Alwar and Rajasthan. Some of the best things to see in Government Museum of Alwar are old coins, paintings, sculptures, arms, weapons, manuscripts, metal objects, inscriptions, musical instruments, local art and craft.
The history of not just Alwar but all of Rajasthan has been very rich and vibrant. Visiting museums help provide fresh perspective out of the jaded and often biased class rooms sessions.
Jai Pol, Alwar
Many cities in Rajasthan such as Jaipur have ancient gates. Alwar is no exception. Jai Pol is a beautiful gate from medieval times. It served as an entry point to Alwar in those times.
I saw similar gates in Bhuj near Rann of Kutch in the neighbouring state of Gujarat. Literal meaning of Jai is victory. True to its name, Jai pol of Alwar was erected to commemorate the victory of the erstwhile ruler. Though there is not much to see here apart from the entrance gate, it is still an important tourist place in Alwar.
Sariska Tiger Reserve
Alwar is also known for its top wildlife destination known as Sariska Tiger Reserve. Some people also call it Sariska National Park or Sariska wildlife sanctuary. It is famous as the home of Royal Bengal tiger in their natural habitat.
Other animals that live inside Sariska Tiger reserve are Hanuman Langur, Rhesus monkey, wild dogs, wild boar, Cheetal, 4 horned antelope, Nilgai, Sambar deer, Chinkara, Chausingha, Jungle Cats etc. What’s more? Even the rare Indian Eagle Owl is found here.
Sprawling on an area of 866 square kilometres, Sariska is a must visit place near Alwar. As is common in many wildlife destinations of India, you can also visit many historical Hindu temples inside the forests. These medieval temples belong to the Garh-Rajor aand were built between 10th and 11th century C.E. Some tourists also enjoy trekking in the sanctuary.
The landscape of Sariska Tiger Reserve is punctuated with open grasslands, rocky outcrops and cliffs. The forest type of Sariska is dry deciduous. This offbeat wildlife haven is worth a visit. It is in fact one of the jewels of Alwar Tourism and one of my favorite places to visit in Alwar.
Soul Window Facts
Did you know that there were zero tigers in Sariska till the year 2004? That was when a tiger was airlifted in a helicopter, all the way from Ranthambore National Park, also in Rajasthan.
It is a myth that it is not easy to spot a tiger in Sariska.I know many people who have frequently spotted a tiger in Sariska Tiger Reserve.One just needs to have patienceandtry another safari if one fails.
Timings: Sariska Tiger Reserve is open from 6:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. First Tiger Safari happens at 6:00 a.m. while second tiger safari happens at 3:00 p.m.
Modes: You can either take a 4 x 4 jeep safari/gypsy which accommodates 6 people and better movement. Canter is another option but movement is more restricted here. Jeep safari is of course more expensive than the canter. Canter takes up to 20 people.
Address: Sariska Tiger Reserve is located on the Subhash Chowk Station Road, Malakhera, Alwar.
Neelkanth Mahadev Mandir, Sariska
Did you know about this Hindu temple devoted to the trinity of Brahma, Vishnu and Mahesh? Located deep inside the Sariska Tiger reserve, not many know about this offbeat place in Alwar. This extraordinary temple complex was built somewhere between 6th to 9th century C.E. Archeologists have unearthed a rock edict and an inscription which date back to 961 C.E.
Tourists need to walk on a rocky path to reach this temple. It is best to arrive here on foot. Vehicles can also reach Neelkanth Mahadev Mandir but beware of the rocky and rough path. All the pain to arrive at this historic destination is worth it. You can unravel the mystery of this temple only when you pay a visit here.
Surrounded by thick jungles, only the temple devoted to Shiv ji is open at present. The temples of Brahma ji and Vishnu ji are usually closed for tourists. Located on an isolated hill top, this old temple is a must-see place near Alwar.
This 1300 years old temple is also home to Khajuraho style erotic temple art. No wonder, it is also known as mini Khajuraho. James Tod had also mentioned about this temple in ‘Annals and antiquities of Rajasthan.’
This hidden gem of a place is full of exquisite carvings on the walls and pillars of the temple. Do not miss the geometric and floral patterns on the mandapa ceiling of the temple. Lotus flower is important in Hinduism. The lotus flower in full bloom on the ceilings deserves special mention.
The carvings on the Chatri are spellbinding. Every inch of the capital and pillars is carved with Gods and Goddesses from the Hindu pantheon and figures of apraras, saptamatrikas, yalis, kirtimukhas, mithuna and gandharvas. The mukhmandapa also has lovely carvings on the pillars.
It was built by a King called Maharajadhiraja Mathanadeva. He had built a temple devoted to the Neelkanth avatar of Lord Shiva. In fact, he had built around 350 of such Shiv temples and baolis aka step wells here. However, much of it has been lost to time or as was common in those days, barbaric Islamic destruction of temples. Only Neelkanth Mahadev Mandir survives now.Some idols are so badly damaged that it is difficult to identify it. It is a lesser-known fact.
You can see many partially damaged excavated sculptures in the temple premises. The exterior walls of the temples are carved brilliantly as well. You can also see a carving of Tripurantaka, Ganesh ji, Narasimha avatar and Harihara.
In the garbhagriha or the sanctum sanctorum, idols of deities from the Shiv Parivar or the family of Shiv ji around the Shivling which is built in black stone.
Neelkanth Mahadev Mandir is located in Rajgarh tehsil, Tehla post and Alwar district. It was called as Paranagar or Rajyapura in those days. The adventurous ones can visit the scattered ruins of other temples and step wells in nearby area. The other nearby points of interests are Hanuman ki Deori, Dabar ki Deori, Bagh ki Deori, Bataka ki Deori, Lachholava ki Deori and Kotan ki Deori. I am sure you are planning your vacation to Alwar now.
This is a Jain temple located near the Neelkanth Mahadev temple. The statue of Jain tirthankara Shantinatha perched on a jagati stands out. It is carved out of reddish orange sandstone.
From an inscription, now kept in Delhi Museum, we know that it was built between 922-923 C.E. under the rule of Mahipala I deva of Kannauj, the Gurjar Pratipala emperor.
It is one of the most unusual things to do in Alwar. Holiday in Alwar comes with many surprises!
Narayani Mata Mandir
This temple is famous because it is the only temple of Sain Samaj in India. Hindu devotees throng here in large numbers every day. It is said that Sati happened here in ancient times. There is also a small spring nearby. It is open from sun rise to sun set and entry is free here. It is located near Sariska wildlife sanctuary.
The Moti Dungri palace, much of which lies in ruins now was commissioned by Maharaja Mangal Singh in the year 1882. The royal family of Alwar used to live here once. The tourists can also pay a visit to the sacred Ganesh Temple and Laxminarayan Temple located in the same premises.
Did you know that Hindus and Muslims pray together at Moti Dungri, perhaps more out of force than willingness? Both Hindu Sankat Mochan Vir Hanuman Mandir and Islamic Sayyed Darbar are located in the same premises without a wall separating them. It is unique to walk through the premises as the fragrance of the Hindu camphor and desi ghee blend with the Islamic lobaan.
In fact, the saffron and green flags are unfurled together as well. Every Thursday, the temple premises echo with the soothing sounds of Hindu bhajan in the morning while the qawwalis happen in the evening.
Alwar Palace Lake
The most visually stunning place in Alwar is the Alwar Palace Lake. It is therefore also the most Instagram friendly place in Alwar. I walked around the lake and discovered many interesting places on my way. A walk here is also a nice way to immerse in the local culture and interact with the local people. A tour to Alwar never disappoints.
Vijay Mandir Palace
Located slightly away from Alwar, Vijay Mandir Palace is one of the best sightseeing places around Alwar. Spread across a large area, there are many beautiful spots in this palace. You can take a tour of its various halls and corridors to understand the grandeur of old days.
Vijay Mandir Palace is located near Vijay Sagar Lake which is just 10 kilometres away from main city of Alwar.
Timings: Vijay Mandir Palace is open from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.
Fateh Jang Gumbad, Alwar
It was built by Muslim invader Shahjahan in the memory of Fateh Jung. The latter was one of the Mughal courtiers. As is typical in Rajasthan, Fateh Jang Gumbad borrows from both Mughal as well as traditional Rajasthani or Rajputana architectural style.
It is a pretty large tomb and has carvings, minarets and a large dome. Built of sandstone, it stands as an oddity in a city full of Hindu edifices from the past. Fateh Jang Gumbad is open from 6 a.m. to 6 p.m. Entry is free here.
Karni Mata Mandir
Located near the Sagar palace, the Karni Mata Mandir of Alwar is not to be confused with the Karni Mata Mandir of Bikaner.Also known as the rat temple,devotees worship rats here along with the presiding deity.
The rats are considered sacred here and are fed by the people.Once the rats eat the food it is served to the devotees as prasad or the temple food. These holy rats are known as kabbas.
The marble work and Mughal style architecture of this Hindu temple is worth a dekko. It is located near Bala Quila. Do see this place to visit in Alwar with friends.
Jagannath Ji Temple, Alwar
Not to be confused with Sri Jagannath Ji Temple of Puri in Odisha, this temple is located in Alwar, Rajasthan. Devoted to Vishnu Bhagwan, the temple has beautiful architecture. The deities worshipped here include Prabhu Jagannath of Puri, Sitaram ji, Shaligram Maharaj and Lakshmi mata.
Also, to not forget to crane your neck to admire the beautiful floral designs on the pillars and walls of the temple. Entry is free here. It is open from 7 a.m. to 8:30 p.m.
Biodiversity Park Alwar
What can I do in 2 days in Alwar? If you have spare time, include some offbeat places such as Biodiversity Parktoo.
The Biodiversity Park of Alwar attracts the picknickers, tourists, nature lovers, serious botanists and birdwatchers alike. It is located in a beautiful place, what with Aravalli range of mountains and verdant hills surrounding it.
Located in the Mohalla Ladiya, it is open from 6 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Village Walk in Alwar
What is there to do in Alwar? I took a free walking tour in the villages behind my hotel Alwar Bagh. While walking I came across temples, cattle sheds, homes of locals and even an old haveli in dilapidated state. I also did a small trek here in the backdrop of the mighty Aravalli Hills.
While hiking, I stepped upon the ruins of an abandoned village. Sensing my curiosity, my local travel guide told me that a village used to exist here hundreds of years ago. And what I stepped on once used to be the work-shop of a potter many moons ago. Did you know about these secret places to visit in Alwar?
Visit Abandoned Havelis
I also came across an abandoned Haveli. My co-travelers warned me not to step inside or walk on the first floor because it looked like the haveli could collapse any time. However, I took the risk and explored it.
The black spot on the wall from the smoke of choolha (traditional earthen cooking stove) still existed where once was a kitchen. Spiders were having a field day, where once kids played and laughed. It is places like these which stay with you for a long time and leave a lasting impact. Perhaps more than what a popular tourist attraction can do!
There are many such free thing to do in Alwar.
Soul Window Thoughts!
In India, which is the oldest civilization of the world, stumbling upon the relics of past is not very uncommon. India is one of the most advanced societies of the world for a reason.
Another top thing to do with family and kids, Purjan Vihar is also known as the Company Bagh. Locals visit Purjan Vihar for picnics, leisurely walks, yoga and meditation sessions. Set in a peaceful location, it is a must visit. Entry is free here as well. It is a lesser-known visiting place in Alwar.
Excursions from Alwar
Some of the best places to visit near Alwar are located as below:
- New Delhi
- Raman Reti
- Raskhan Ki Samadhi
I am also elaborating at other nearby attractions from Alwar below:
It rained heavily when I reached the haunted Bhangarh Fort from Alwar via shared auto and public buses. Since I visited Alwar during monsoon, we passed through roads surrounded by lush green mountains even as a gentle breeze was a constant companion.
The first place we visited here was a beautiful temple which was located close to the main entrance. From here, one needs to walk a little further to arrive at the main Bhangarh Fort. It is supposed to be a haunted place and it is said that ghosts roam here after dark.
It is therefore advised to leave Alwar early morning and after visiting Bhangarh Fort, return by noon or early evening. Bhangarh is one of the top places to visit near Alwar.
Known for offbeat places such as Kishori mahal and Deeg palace, not many know that Bharatpur is not always only about wildlife and birdwatching. While the more famous Bharatpur bird sanctuary is popular with birdwatchers, the old palaces and edifices of Bharatpur are popular with heritage aficionados. It makes for a nice and quick excursion from Alwar.
The famous Neemrana Fort is already a popular weekend destination from New Delhi NCR region. A luxury hotel now, it was originally a fort palace. Set amidst wilderness and silence, many upwardly mobile urban Indians from Delhi, Noida, Gurgaon visit Neemrana Fort for a quick and economic weekend getaway.
The main features of this luxury palace hotel are an Ayurvedic Spa, 2 outdoor pools, hanging gardens, fine dining options and what not. The property looks ethereal when it is bathed in lights after dark. India’s first zip line is also located here and is popular with adventure lovers of all ages.
It is only in India that one can stay in world class heritage hotels for a very small price. In evenings guests love to take a walk in its garden which is spread across 6 acres. There are 7 palace wings here built across 14 layers. Neemrana Properties are known for restoring ancient historical forts and buildings and turning them into world class heritage properties. You may want to check out 23 of their properties across India.
Neemrana Fort is located on the Delhi Jaipur highway.
Christened after Bhartrihari baba, the ruler of Ujjain, this Hindu temple is a top place to see near Alwar Rajasthan in North India. Besides spirituality, it is also known for its architectural brilliance. Constructed in typical Rajasthani architectural style, it is visited by Hindus all day long who come here to fulfil their deepest wishes.
The floral patterns on the shikhara or the temple tower, columns and mandapa are worth writing home about!
Entry here is free. Bhartrihari Mandiris open daily from 6 a.m. to 7 p.m.Bhartrihari mandiris located 30 kilometres away from Alwar city.
This off the beaten track destination near Alwar is actually a hot water spring. As is common with other hot water springs I visited such as the one in Yumthang valley in Sikkim and Manikaran near Manali in Himahal Pradesh, water of Talvriksha too has healing and medicinal properties.
As per the local oral tradition, a saint called as Mandav did his penance here eons ago. As a result, the land got split and hot water spring emerged. Temples devoted to Maa Durga and Ganga Maiyya are also located here. Hindu devotees and tourists offer their prayers daily here.
Talvriksha is located in a natural setting, complete with lush green jungles and fresh air. Thanks to the pure air and biodiversity, this place is also popular with trekkers and ornithologists. It is also a great place for family picnics in Alwar.
The historical figures of Mahabharat, the Hindu epic come alive at Pandu Pol. This place near Alwar is linked to the Pandava brothers of Mahabharat. Located near Sariska National Park, Pandu Pol is located right in the middle of dense jungles. It is open from sunrise to sun set and entry is free here. Apart from spirituality, the area around this temple is also a famous picnic spot near Alwar.
This small Shivling has existed near Alwar since centuries. However, it was not protected earlier. Around 18th century, a temple was constructed to enshrine the Shivlinga. Since then, it has been known as the Naldeshwar Mandir.
It is located in a peaceful setting and is apt for meditation. There are two naturally formed ponds nearby. Entry is free here. It is open from 6 a.m. to 6 p.m.
Another famous picnic place of Alwar, Garbhaji Falls is popular with both locals as well as tourists. Many assume that there are no waterfalls in Rajasthan. They are right to an extent. However, during my visit to Alwar in rainy season, I realised how many parts of Rajasthan are so green and abundant with water.
Calling Rajasthan a desert state is unwise. Desert is just a small part of the huge state of Rajasthan. That said, Garbha ji falls of Alwar is still one of the very few waterfalls of Rajasthan. Much like Jog falls of Karnataka in South India, this waterfall of Rajasthan is also at its best during the monsoon when it is gushing with water.
Surrounded by rocks, shrubs, dense forests and nature, spending some time here is a top thing to do in Alwar. For the best vantage point, you must climb on the steps that lead to the top. This is a paradise for the photographers, avid birdwatchers and nature lovers alike. It is another free thing to do in Alwar.
Shopping Guide To Alwar
It is another frequently asked question. Once you have finished seeing all the major places to visit in Alwar, you can do shopping after dark (because it saves time). Below is a souvenirs shopping guide to Alwar.
Churi market is the place if shopping in Alwar excites you. You can pick typical Rajasthan style clothes, jewelleries, handicrafts, shoes, traditional leather free jootis, colorful bangles, earrings, accessories, carpets, gorgeous bags, miniature paintings, sweets, milk cake and even fresh food from the Churi market at a very reasonable price.
You can check out traditional textiles of Rajasthan such as Kota Doria, Bandhani etc. Traditional jewelleries of Rajasthan are also sold in Bazaza Bazar of Alwar. This is also one of the Alwar tourist places if you love to shop.
Another nice place for shopping in Alwar, Sarafa Bazaar is known for selling the typical Rajasthani jewelleries. Women love to buy jewelleries made in gold, diamond, silver, gems, semi-precious stones and precious stones here.
The best part is that highest quality of jewellery is available here at reasonable prices. You can visit some of the shops that line the streets of Sarafa Bazaar to get an idea before buying anything. Sarafa Bazaar of Alwar is open from 11 a.m. to 9:30 p.m.
Very popular with the local people, the Malakhera Bazaar is known for housing shops that sell handicrafts, clay sculptures, artefacts, utensils, jewelleries etc. If you are a major vegetarian foodie like me, you can also check out the restaurants near the shops.
Festivals of Alwar
Isn’t it a great idea to enjoy the festivals of Alwar while also seeing all the important places to visit in Alwar? You can time your Alwar tour around these festivals for a more immersive travel experience here.
It is an annual festival which showcases the best of culture, food, heritage, music and dance of Alwar. It happens every year in the month of February. It is organised by the district administration in order to attract more tourists to Alwar.
This festival happens in the month of July every year. In this annual Rath Yatra Festival, Prabhu Jagannath is taken on a procession on a chariot known as Indra Vimana. At Jagannath ji mela, tourists can also enjoy various cultural programmes.
It is the primary festival of Mewat celebrated by the Meos mainly. Most of the festivals here are celebrated near the major places to visit at Alwar.
Other major festivals of Alwar are:
- Bhartrihari (August)
- Savan Teej (August)
- Sahibki Ka Mela
- Matsya Utsav (November)
- Bilali Mela, Bansur (March April): It is celebrated in honour of Shitla Devi near Jaipur border.
These festivals are an amazing way to experience the soul of Alwar in its entirety. It is best to plan your Alwar tour around these festivals.
Where to stay in Alwar
Accommodation in Alwar is varied. Alwar has many interesting places to stay at. Alwar is a proper city, so expect hotels, guest houses, lodges in all budgets.
If you are a solo budget traveller then it is possible to find economical and pocket friendly hotels with basic facilities.
For luxury travellers there is no dearth of world class luxury heritage properties in Alwar for a memorable stay. I had stayed in the luxurious Alwar Bagh here. That said, you can also stay in a low budget hotel. Alwar being a big city has accommodation in all ranges. From luxury to mid-range to low budget hotels, there is no dearth of places where you can stay in Alwar.
Below is the list of some of the best luxury hotels of Alwar:
Alwar Bagh by Aamod
I and my friend Jeetendra Sharma stayed in the luxurious and yet affordable Alwar Bagh. It is a sprawling property with huge lawns and dense trees. It also has a swimming pool and activity area to keep you engaged.
The room that I stayed in Alwar Bagh by Aamod was huge and its interiors were done in traditional Rajasthani style. Even the bathroom of our room was massive in size. I also had some delicious Daal Baati Choorma here.
Siliserh Lake palace
One of the best luxury hotels of Alwar, it is a heritage property run by RTDC or the Rajasthan Tourism Development Corporation Ltd. Originally, this grand building was a royal palace as well as a hunting lodge. The aesthetics of this old palace is awe inspiring.
Address: Siliserh Circle, Alwar, 301001.
Hill Fort Kesroli
As is common with many places in Rajasthan, this ancient fort has also been converted into a heritage hotel. Constructed in the traditional Rajasthani style, this fort has had a rich history. It is a visually stunning property and a good luxury accommodation option in Alwar.
Staying in Hill Fort Kesrolialso means you will be treated with superb views of the countryside of Rajasthan in far distance. Devoid of any modern-day traffic, pollution, cacophony it is a haven few know about.
Hill Fort Kesroli which also has outdoor game facilities, spa, pool is run by Neemrana hotel group. You can also sit back and enjoy an Indian or western meal as the local artists perform. Stay here for its old-world appeal!
Address: Hill Fort Kesroli is located near M.I.A. post office Bahala.
For another option in the affordable luxury segment, head to the beautiful Sariska Palace. Located in the lap of nature, this luxury property is one of the best stay options in Alwar. It is located right opposite the Sariska Tiger Reserve. If you don’t want to stay here, you can just drop in after the safari for a meal and a beer in an air-conditioned restaurant.
Restored from an ancient fort, Dadhikar Fort is another luxury heritage hotel in Alwar. A perfect blend of tradition and modern-day creature comforts, this luxury property offers a great stay. You can also visit the nearby villages and have a word or two with the native people. It is one of the best luxury hotels in Alwar.
Vegan and Vegetarian Food
The moment I stepped out of Alwar Railway Junction; I was greeted with tens of carts selling fresh milk cake. A regular sweet in other cities of India, milk cake is a thing in Alwar! In fact, you get the best milk cakes in Alwar, whether it is the road side stalls or 5-star luxury hotels.
Apart from milk cake I also had delicious pyaz kachori (dep fried spicy onion pastry) and the healthy daal baati choorma in Alwar. Milk cake is not vegan, as the name suggests. Pyaz kachori is vegan. Daal baati choorma may contain ghee. They are all vegetarian.
ATM in Alwar
Being a big city near New Delhi, Alwar has many ATMs. However, many hotels in Alwar are located near the forest and remote locations, so it is a good idea to carry some cash or withdraw from ATMs before retiring in the hotel room. Most of the ATMs of Alwar are located in the market area and city center.
Photography Tips for Alwar
Alwar is picturesque. The most scenic place in Alwar is the fort area and the Moosi Maharani Ki Chatri. You can climb up the Alwar Fort aka Bala Quila and take some stunning panoramic shots from here.
Hire local tourist guide in Alwar
There are many secret places to see in Alwar. Hiring a local guide in Alwar helped me see remains of an abandoned village, a dilapidated haveli, a short trek and many such hidden gems of Alwar. The local guide also helped me see all the major points of attractions in Alwar in few hours.
This is why, hiring a local guide in Alwar helps you save time and see more in less time!
Languages spoken in Alwar
Rajasthani is the main language of Alwar. Hindi is the most easily spoken and understood language in Alwar. English is also understood by many in Alwar.
UPSC Exam question on Alwar
Questions of history of Alwar are often asked in UPSC Civil Services Preliminary Exam for for IAS, IFS, PCS. I have explained much about the past of Alwar in this exhaustive blog.
Toilet facility in Alwar
Clean toilets are available near all the tourist places in Alwar apart from hotels and restaurants.
Entry fee in Alwar
Many tourist places in Alwar are free to visit such as the area around lake and Moosi Maharani Ki Chattri.
Backpacking Budget Travel Tips for Alwar
What makes Alwar an inexpensive and pocket friendly destination is the fact that the major attractions such as the villages, City palace, Moosi Maharani Ki Chattri etc are free to visit. Also, the low cost of travel, food and hotels make Alwar a budget friendly place to see near Delhi.
Solo Trip Tips for Alwar
Since Alwar is located so close to capital of India – New Delhi, it becomes very easy and convenient to visit Alwar as a solo traveller. In fact, it was my easiest trip ever.
Luxury travel Tips for Alwar
You will love Alwar if you are a luxury traveller. Alwar has some of the best luxury hotels. The 5-star hotels of Alwar are also some of the finest in the world. The options of fine dining also add to the remarkable luxury facilities available in Alwar.
Duration of Visit in Alwar
What can I do in 1 day in Alwar? Since all the sightseeing attractions and hangout places of Alwar are located at short distance from each other, it was easy for me to cover all the places of interest in Alwar within a day.
What can I do in 2 days in Alwar? If you have more time in Alwar, you can visit all the unexplored places such as Sariska and all the hidden Hindu temples in the forest area. The wildlife safari in Sariska will take a lot of time.
There are many places in and around Alwar which are located away from the crowds. If you know where to look, that is!
This is the most comprehensive travel guide on places to visit in Alwar. This information packed travelogue, based on my own experience is the most detailed travel blog available on internet. A Soul Window is a great travel blog example for students. It has also been listed as Top 100 travel blogs in India countless times.
Soul Window Tips
- It is a good idea to start early in the morning like I did so that you can pack in more places in a day.
- Talk to the locals. They might help you identify a hidden spot.
- If you have a private car, drive to the countryside. The views are beautiful.
- If you are on a solo budget travel, just hop on a bus or shared autorickshaw to nearby places. It is worth the ride.
Is Alwar Safe to visit?
Is it safe to visit Alwar? Yes, Alwar is totally safe to visit for girls as well as boys. The people of Alwar are very tourist friendly and love to interact with the tourists. In fact, one of the local who lived near the Alwar Bagh hotel chatted with me for a long time, sharing details about his life.
Soul Window Thoughts
Every time I travel within Rajasthan, I realize this Indian state has so much to see. I have been to so many places in Rajasthan ever since I started traveling in 2008.
Never have I experienced fort or palace fatigue or boredom while travelling to different places in Rajasthan.
Every place in Rajasthan has a different story to tell. And travel we must to discover hidden gems like Alwar.
What to wear in Alwar?
You can wear light cottons in the months of summer and monsoon. However, in winter, you need to wear thermal wear in Alwar as it gets very cold.
Best Time to visit Alwar?
October to March is the high season in Alwar. The other months such as summer is low season in Alwar.
September, October, November, December, January, February and March are the cooler months. While September, October, February and March are very mild, expect extreme cold in December and January. The weather is pleasant in these months.
Though I found monsoon to be a pleasant time to be in Alwar, winter is the best time to visit Alwar and pretty much anywhere on North Indian plains. Winter is also when the best of food is available in Alwar.
April, May and June are the hottest months in Alwar.Summers in Alwar and elsewhere in Rajasthan and India are harsh. Expect hot temperatures, humidity and heat waves.
June and July are the rainiest months in Alwar and Rajasthan. On my first trip, I visited Alwar during monsoon. My first trip to Alwar was on 29th July. It was the end of rainy season. It didn’t rain during most of the Alwar trip which lasted 2 days in Alwar and around. Alwar temperature is moderate during monsoons.
It rained only once when I and my friend Jeetendra arrived at the Bhangarh Fort. For those who think it doesn’t rain much in Rajasthan, it rained as heavily as the monsoon of Mumbai in West India.
How to reach Alwar
It is a commonly asked question. I was surprised to know that how easy it was to visit Alwar. Here are all the possible modes of transport to reach Alwar from Delhi.
Soul Window Observations
Places like Alwar have immense potential as a tourism destination. Monuments of Alwar need better maintenance and more promotion. Owing to the proximity from New Delhi, Alwar can be further developed as an international tourist destination. It is already easy to arrive at Alwar, thanks to the rail, flight and bus connectivity from the Indian capital.
How to reach Alwar from New Delhi? If you want to save time and money, then like me you can catch an easy train ride from New Delhi or Gurgaon to Alwar. I and my friend Jeetendra Sharma had arrived from Gurgaon on the Ajmer Shatabdi Express Train.
It started early at 6 a.m. It is the most convenient train to Alwar from New Delhi and leaves you with a lot of time to explore Alwar. I had booked my train ticket from IRCTC website.
Sanganer Airport in Jaipur and the international airport of New Delhi, capital of India are both connected with major Indian cities and even foreign nations. Both New Delhi and Jaipur airports have international flights.
Buses to Alwar are easily available from New Delhi, Jaipur, Mathura, Agra, Bharatpur, Udaipur etc.
Road Trip to Alwar
Thanks to the proximity, it is also a great idea to go on a road trip to Alwar from places like Mathura, Vrindavan, Govardhan, Barsana, Nandgaon, Vrindavan, Agra, New Delhi, Gurgaon, Ghaziabad and Noida. Just hire a local taxi and you can see all of these places within a few days.
Local Transport for sightseeing in Alwar
We easily took an auto rickshaw from the Alwar Railway Junction to our hotel Alwar Bagh.
Distances from Alwar City
Below are the distances of main places to see and excursions near Alwar. In are mentioned in the ascending order of distance and time taken.
Distance between Tijara and Alwar is 55 kilometres and it takes around 1 hour via Alwar Bhiwadi road or Alwar Tijara road.
Distance between Neemrana Fort and Alwar is 65 kilometres and it takes around 1 hour and 45 minutes via Narnaul Behror Alwar road.
Distance between Bhangarh Fort and Alwar is 90 kilometres and it takes around 2 hours and 20 minutes via RJ SH25 and RJ SH 25A.
Distance between Mathura in Uttar Pradesh and Alwar is 110 kilometres and it takes around 3 hours via Bharatpur road.
Distance between Bharatpur and Alwar is 112 kilometres and it takes around 2 hours and 45 minutes via Bharatpur road.
Distance between New Delhi and Alwar is 154 kilometres and it takes around 3 hours and 21 minutes via NH48.
Conclusion: Why visit Alwar?
Alwar is not your regular tourist destination of Rajasthan such as Ajmer, Bikaner, Udaipur, Jaipur etc. Alwar is an offbeat place to visit near Delhi, Gurgaon and Noida. Not only can you soak in the atmosphere of a typical Rajasthani village and countryside but you can also enjoy visiting ancient Hindu temples, palaces, forts, lakes and what not.
What’s more? Alwar has some of the most beautiful heritage properties of Rajasthan and India.
Hope this detailed travel guide on Alwar helps you plan a trip for later.
The view from my Soul Window is away from limelight!
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