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If Rajasthan is up your sleeve for your next travel plan then make Shekhawati one of the top marked on your list. This is not only a place with tremendous historical significance but from architecture of the havelis to the ethnicity of the tribes, it will all keep you awestruck throughout your trip. Shekhawati has all the reasons to make you fall in love with Rajasthan.

Location of Shekhawati

Shekhawati is located in the north eastern part of Rajasthan and it includes the areas of Sikar and Jhunjhuna. Shakhawati is bordered by the state of Haryana on the north eastern side, by Mewat on the eastern side, on the south east by Dhundhar, on the southern side by Ajmer, on the south west by Marwar region and some parts of Nagaur and Churu districts are also considered a part of the Shekhawati district. The Shakhawat tribe consists of valorous men from time immemorial. A fact of immense pride is that this is the place that most of the soldiers of the Indian army come from.

How to Reach Shekhawati

If you are travelling inside the state of Rajasthan, you will get aplenty intra state bus service to go to Shekhawati from neighbouring districts like Sikar, Churu or Jhunjhunu. The bus fares are very affordable.

History and the etymology of Shekhawati

The name Shakhawati is believed to have been derived from the name of the ruler Rao Sheka who was famous for his might and valour. The Shakhawati tribe has the power of sacrifice and courage in their blood and this is why they are invincible warriors. This is why in the Indian army there are many men from this place and this is an extremely high matter of pride for them. There are many scholars and historians who believe that Shakhawati belonged to the Matsya kingdom and even the Rig Veda has seconded that it was a part of the Matsya kingdom during the era of the Mahabharata.

According to historians it was after the crumbling of the Gupta dynasty that some portions of Shakhawati like Jhunjhunu, Narhar, and Fatehpur were ruled by the Khaimkhanis who were a sect emerging from the Chauhans. The Khaimkhanis ruled this land until the Shakhawat Rajputs came and conquered the land from them. Karamchand was the last ruler of the Chauhans and he was ruling Dadrewa. Emperor Feroz Shah Tughlaq got him converted to Islam and named him Khaimkhan. Therefore, his descendents were named Khaimkhanis.

The Shekhawati Rule and the Shakhawati chapter of History

The first ruler of the Shekhawats was Rao Shekha. The kingdom of Shekhawati was ruled with its administrative capital in Amarsar. After Rao Shekha, there were successor rulers by the names Rao Raimal, Rao Suja, and Rao Lunkaran who ruled Amarsar. Rao Manohar who was the son of Rao Lunkaran, found Manoharpur and later he renamed it Shahpura.

Culture, heritage and tourism Attractions of Shekhawati

Shakhawat is a city that would make your eyebrows rise up when you hear that it has over 50 forts. The walls of some forts are as thick as 7 feet. In many heritage monuments the government has now opened heritage hotels. Just imagine once what would the feel be like for you to spend a day where the Shekhawats Rajputs had spent their lifespan and the forts that have been the mighty structures to have stood the test of time.

Mandawa Fort

It was built by Thakur Nawal Singh Bahadur in the year 1755 AD. In the zenana quarters or where the women used to live, there is architecture worth applause. Beautiful fountains decorate the huge halls, terraces and verandahs. The diwan-i-aam or the drawing room or court for the public to come and hold meetings with the king, still flaunts some ancient antique furniture. There are paintings on the walls that would pull you back in time.

Roop Niwas Kothi Palace

The former ruler of Nawalgarh by the name Rawal Madan Singh had built this palace like house as a respite for his vacations. It is built on a 100 acre land and is now a hotel. This heritage hotel has a stable and a farm on the back side of the Kothi. A Kothi is a bungalow type large pent-house that is decorated with antique furniture and it has a rich feel in its appearance.

Mukundgarh Fort

Thakur Mukund Singh Ji built this fortress in 1859 AD. The arched windows and long corridors still speak history silently.

The Mahansar Fort or the Narain Niwas Castle

It was built in the year 1768 by Thakur Nahar Singh Ji.

Alsisar Fort

Was built by the ruler of Alsisar from the Thakur clan and it has seen many battles.

There are other structures of immense historical significance and they are Surajgarh Fort, Pachar Castle, Arooka castle, and Danta Fort (Dera Danta Qila) which was the residence of Thakur Amar Singh. Also, do not forget to see the hundreds of havelis that nestle in tranquillity. They will give you the feel of a prosperous Rajasthan that used to exist at the time of the ancient rulers

In whichever season you are travelling in Rajasthaan, do not miss out on being a part of the celebrations. Dassehra, Teej and Holi are popular festivals celebrated in the land of the kings.

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