Every year, the Department of Tourism, Art and Culture, Rajasthan, organises the Camel Festival in Bikaner, which is typical to the state. The desert gets adorned with vibrant hues of saffron, red and orange and it’s a festival unlike any other. The festival is held in reverence to the camel, the desert’s ship, on whom the survival of the Rajasthani people depend to a large extent. Even though it’s a two-day affair, it isn’t celebrated with any less pomp and show. By Shubhanjana Das

If you’re planning to start your year on an unusual note and have the Camel festival of Bikaner in mind, we have all the deets you need to have a blast there: 

When: 

The dates for this year are fixed on Jan 12 and 13th.  

Where: 

The festival will be held in Bikaner against the stunning backdrop of the Junagarh Fort. 

What To Expect:

  • The richly adorned camels against the backdrop of the sand dunes and the historic Junagarh Fort are worth seeing as much with eyes as with your lens. The camels are decorated with heavy anklets, bridles, traditional necklaces. In fact, there are also competitions held based on whose camel is the best dressed (we mean, decorated). 
  • There will be camel games, camel-race events along with cultural performances that are a highlight of Rajasthani folklore and tradition. The fire dance and the folk music breathe life into this desert city during the festival that attracts thousands from all over the country! 
  • Remember the good-old childhood days when we used to enjoy puppet shows? The other urban cities and states may have forgotten the art form but not Rajasthan. And, what better way to learn about the local folklore than through puppet shows.  
  • For souvenirs, you can take away locally-made pottery, handicrafts and jewellery and support the local artisans for their craft to survive. 
  • Go for the best camel safaris that the country has to offer and explore the Junagarh fort. If you are a shopaholic, you can end up with some of the most unique finds here at the Bikaner market. 

In brief, expect the absolute unexpected here at the Camel festival in Bikaner.  

Weather In Bikaner In January: 

Characteristic of the desert weather, the days are warmer than the nights, which tend to get chilly. So, make sure you’re carrying enough clothes that help you layer as the day advances. 

Where To Stay:

Bikaner boasts of a number of hotels, which are lavish and opulent to say the least. The services and the hospitality they offer will make for an entirely comfortable and relaxing stay. Although, zeroing in on one among so many will surely be a challenge. 

How To Reach:

The Jodhpur airport is the closest to Bikaner and is located at a distance of 251 km. It is connected with every major city in the country including Mumbai, Kolkata, Hyderabad, Mumbai, Bengaluru, and etc. Bikaner has two rail heads – one being the Bikaner Junction and the other Lalgarh Railway Station, which are located well within the city. Jodhpur is also connected by buses with Delhi, Ganganagar, Pali, Jodhpur, Agra, Ajmer, Ahmedabad, Jaipur, Jhunjhunu, Jaisalmer, Udaipur and Kota. 

Related: 9 Travel Experiences In Rajasthan That Are Hard To Find Anywhere Else