Alwar, a captivating city in the Indian state of Rajasthan, is a treasure trove of history, culture, and natural beauty. Nestled amidst the Aravalli Hills, Alwar is a perfect blend of ancient and modern India, offering a wide range of experiences sure to please even the most fickle of traveller. That said, to help you hone your itinerary into a well-oiled, focused unit, we’ve pulled together a rundown of the 11 of the best things to do in Alwar, India.
But firstly, a bit of housekeeping…
Getting To Alwar From The UK
Travelling from the UK to Alwar, India, is a journey that involves a combination of air and road travel. Here’s a step-by-step guide to help you plan your trip.
Step 1: Flight to India
The first leg of your journey will involve flying from the UK to India. There are no direct flights to Alwar as it does not have an international airport, with the nearest international airport to Alwar being Indira Gandhi International Airport in Delhi.
London Heathrow is the only UK airport to fly direct to Delhi. The flight duration is approximately 8-10 hours, depending on your departure point in the UK. Expect to pay around £500 for a return flight.
Other major airports in the UK, including Manchester, Birmingham and Edinburgh, also fly to Delhi, though you’ll need to transit, usually in Doha, Dubai or Istanbul. The total flight time increases accordingly, usually to around 12 hours or so.
Step 2: Road Travel to Alwar
Once you arrive in Delhi, the next part of your journey to Alwar will be by road. There are several options available:
By Taxi: Hiring a taxi from the airport is the most convenient option. The journey to Alwar from Delhi by taxi takes approximately 3-4 hours, depending on traffic conditions.
By Train: If you prefer to travel by train, you can take a taxi or an auto-rickshaw from the airport to New Delhi Railway Station. From there, several trains run to Alwar. The train journey takes about 3-4 hours.
By Bus: There are also regular bus services from Delhi to Alwar. The bus journey can take anywhere from 4-5 hours, depending on the service.
When Is The Ideal Time Of Year To Visit Alwar?
When planning your trip to Alwar, it’s important to consider the local climate to ensure you make the most of your visit. Alwar, like much of Rajasthan, experiences a tropical monsoon climate, with three main seasons: summer, monsoon, and winter.
Summer (April to June): Summers in Alwar can be quite hot, with temperatures often soaring above 40°C. While the city’s historical sites remain open, the heat can make sightseeing challenging during this time; a mistake first time visitors to India often overlook.
Monsoon (July to September): The monsoon season brings much-needed relief from the summer heat. However, heavy rainfall can sometimes disrupt travel plans and outdoor activities.
Winter (October to March): Winter is widely considered the best time to visit Alwar. The weather during this period is pleasant and cool, with daytime temperatures typically ranging between 10°C and 25°C. This is the ideal time for sightseeing, exploring the city’s markets, and visiting the Sariska Tiger Reserve.
In particular, the months of February and March are a great time to visit as Alwar hosts the popular Alwar Festival. This vibrant event showcases local culture, art, and music, and features a variety of performances, exhibitions, and competitions.
So, if you’re planning a trip to Alwar, aim for the winter months. You’ll enjoy comfortable temperatures, clear skies, and the chance to experience the city’s cultural festivities.
Where To Stay In Alwar
From beautiful resorts in Alwar all the way to budget-friendly guesthouses, when it comes to accommodation here, you’ll find a range of options to suit every traveller’s needs and budget. Here are some of the best places to stay in Alwar.
Neemrana Fort Palace: A short drive from Alwar, the Neemrana Fort Palace is a 15th-century fort turned heritage hotel. Its stunning architecture, luxurious amenities, and breathtaking views make it a top choice for those seeking a lavish stay.
Hill Fort Kesroli: Another magnificent fort-turned-hotel, the Hill Fort Kesroli offers panoramic views of the surrounding countryside. Its history dates back to the 14th century, making it one of the oldest heritage sites in India. The hotel offers a unique blend of history and luxury, ensuring a memorable stay.
Alwar Bagh by Aamod: This luxury resort is nestled amidst the Aravalli hills, offering a serene and tranquil environment. With its spacious rooms, modern amenities, and excellent service, Alwar Bagh by Aamod is a perfect choice for a comfortable and relaxing stay.
Lemon Tree Hotel: Located in the heart of the city, Lemon Tree Hotel offers comfortable rooms with modern amenities. The hotel also features a multi-cuisine restaurant, a fitness centre, and a conference room, making it an ideal choice for both leisure and business travellers.
Hotel Burja Haveli: This 240-year-old Rajasthani haveli has been beautifully restored and converted into a charming hotel. With its traditional architecture, comfortable rooms, and warm hospitality, Hotel Burja Haveli offers a truly authentic Rajasthani experience.
Hotel Atlantic: This budget-friendly hotel offers clean and comfortable rooms with basic amenities. Its central location, close to major tourist attractions and the city centre, makes it a convenient choice for budget travellers.
Sparrow Inn by MGB Hotels: Offering affordable rooms without compromising on comfort, Sparrow Inn is another excellent option for budget-conscious travellers. The hotel also features a restaurant serving delicious local and international cuisine.
The Best Things To Do In Alwar
Anyway, you came here to discover the best things to do in Alwar. Here they are…
Visit The Alwar City Palace
The Alwar City Palace, also known as Vinay Vilas Mahal, is a stunning example of Rajput-Mughal architecture. Built in the 18th century, the palace is a blend of grandeur and intricate design. Don’t miss the chance to explore its beautiful gardens, marble pavilions, and museum showcasing a rich collection of royal artefacts.
Explore the Bala Quila Fort
Perched atop a hill, the Bala Quila Fort offers panoramic views of Alwar and its surrounding countryside. The fort’s robust walls stretch over 5 kilometres, encompassing numerous towers and temples. The fort’s history dates back to the 10th century, making it a must-visit for history buffs.
Discover the Siliserh Lake Palace
This former royal palace turned heritage hotel is situated on the banks of the serene Siliserh Lake. The palace’s architecture is a sight to behold, and the lake offers opportunities for boating and picnicking. It’s an ideal spot for a tranquil afternoon.
Explore the Moosi Maharani Ki Chhatri
This cenotaph, dedicated to Maharaja Bakhtawar Singh and his queen, Rani Moosi, is an architectural marvel. The structure’s intricate carvings and paintings are a testament to the artistic prowess of the era.
Visit the Sariska Tiger Reserve
Located on the outskirts of Alwar, the Sariska Tiger Reserve is home to a variety of wildlife, including the majestic Bengal tiger. The reserve also houses historical sites like the Kankwari Fort and ancient temples, offering a unique blend of nature and history.
Visit the Bhartrihari Temple
This ancient temple, dedicated to the saint Bhartrihari, is a significant pilgrimage site. The temple’s tranquil atmosphere and spiritual significance make it a must-visit for those seeking peace and introspection.
Stroll Through the Company Garden
The Company Garden is a well-maintained green space in the heart of Alwar. It’s a perfect spot for a leisurely stroll or a picnic, offering a respite from the city’s hustle and bustle.
Visit the Alwar Museum
Located within the City Palace, the Alwar Museum boasts a vast collection of artefacts, including ancient weapons, musical instruments, and artworks. It provides a fascinating insight into Alwar’s rich history and culture.
Explore the Clock Tower Market
For a taste of local life, head to the Clock Tower Market. This bustling bazaar offers a variety of goods, from traditional Rajasthani textiles and jewellery to delicious local cuisine.
Explore the Hill Fort Kesroli
Another magnificent fort-turned-hotel, the Hill Fort Kesroli offers panoramic views of the surrounding countryside. Its history dates back to the 14th century, making it one of the oldest heritage sites in India.
Visit the Fateh Jung Gumbad
This five-storey tomb, dedicated to Fateh Jung, a minister in the court of Shah Jahan, is an architectural marvel. Its intricate carvings and grandeur make it a must-visit.
The Bottom Line
Alwar, with its rich history, stunning architecture, and natural beauty, offers a unique and unforgettable experience. Whether you’re a history enthusiast, a nature lover, or a culture vulture, Alwar has something for everyone. So why wait? Start planning your trip to this enchanting city today!