We wanted to spend that weekend as much lazily as possible.
Opted for Chokhi Dhani, Jaipur. This is my 2nd visit there. I always find the place very comfy to stay for a short visit, with incredibly attractive and contended ambience around.
The whole Chokhi Dhani resort is also very photogenic to say the least. It is definitely one of the most innovative ethnic village resorts around. Rajasthani style and culture always attracts me. Their traditional music, dressing, colorful appearance makes it truly royal, the place of the Kings.
I directly called their Delhi office, and after due official transactions, booked a Royal Cottage. Two days later, on a Friday morning we started. The National Highway 8 once used to be a very exciting drive. Now-a-days they are building lots of flyovers on the way; an exercise seems to be never ending. Had a brief breakfast in a countryside dhaba, and drove off to Jaipur.
From Jaipur, the route to Chokhi Dhani is a bit clumsy. It is located at 12 Miles Tonk Road, south Jaipur, pretty much on the outskirts of the main city. Here is the route map of the resort if you are driving from Delhi via NH8.
They welcome you at Chokhi Dhani resort majestically. Soon after entering, the aura of the place encapsulates you. You feel you have reached to an out of the ordinary place.
The Reception area will set the tone of your stay. You know what to expect. The behavior of the desk staff is quite encouraging and reassuring. After a rough drive from Delhi, helps you comforting yourself.
After the formalities they will take you to your cottage, for a first time visitor the path to the cottage would be inviting.
We finally reached to our cottage, was quite fascinated by the size of the room. Somehow one of my purposes to book the Royal Cottage, instead of Double Occupancy Cottage, was the size of the open area in the room. My little kid needs some space to roam around. During my first visit, I stayed in a double occupancy cottage, but found the cottages are not that big. If you have small kids, or like some open liberty in your room, suggest going for Royal Cottages instead.
Soon enough we went to the Bindola Restaurant, had our lunch there. The multi continental cuisine offers a whole variety of options. We, however, opted for typical Rajasthani dish. I have a habit of exploring the local food, archetypal and traditional food wherever I go.
After a brief rest, we went out. We didn’t want to go to the main city, to those hush hash places. Our main intention was to relax at the resort itself. Thus we chose Chokhi Dhani, since the place to good enough that you don’t need to go out for enjoyment, especially if you are going in a group.
Roaming around in the gullies of the resort, between all those very colorful cottages, will definitely lift your spirit. Bring a good fatty memory card in your camera, and make sure you don’t run out of your batteries.
It was evening by then. The lights were lit up all around. The beauty of the place multi folded, and emerged before you with a different face altogether.
As the occupants of the resort, we are entitled with a couple of passes to the Chokhi Dhani Village, a Rajasthani happening joint just by the side of the resort. You need to get these passes from the reception. Each day you stay in the resort, you receive these passes for the evening, complementary.
The Chokhi Dhani village is like a rural community fair, with all the modern amenities added to magnetize the urban visitors. You can enjoy camel ride, camel cart ride, elephant ride, Rajasthani folk songs and dances, shopping for local dresses and many more. During the weekends this is definitely a place to visit. We spent our evening there, and quite enjoyed our stay. The passes also include the dinner – Rajasthani dinner – eat your hearts out! But beware of the “desi ghee” they spread on your Dal Bati Churma, quite heavy, but delicious. I suggest you get your place in the area where people do not sit on the usual tables and chairs. Sit on the ground, like a traditional way, you would enjoy the taste.
Next morning. Breakfast is available in Aarogosa Restaurant, they offer whole variety of breakfast options you can think of, in buffet system. After a pretty heavy breakfast, we went out exploring.
You will find each turns and passages very exclusive and inimitable. Each of the cottages having their own features and manifestations.
After strolling around, we reached the swimming pool. As the part of our itinerary (which was essentially nothing but spending the day quite sluggishly), we decided to dive into the pool.
I got a couple of beers (you can order from the pool itself), and just lay down there in the water, total bliss. We spent a couple of hours just there, absolute leisure.
It was lunch time by then. We ordered our food to deliver at the cottage itself, as it was somewhat hot outside. You will be impressed by the hospitality of the hosts.
How can a Jaipur trip be concluded without some shopping? We grabbed a local cab (can be booked from the resort reception only) and requested him to get to a single good place where most of the things are available. Unlike many of the Indian tourist places, drivers and guides in Rajasthan are still unbiased and reliable. He took us to a factory outlet, where they produce staff at the two levels of basement and have three floors of retail and wholesale shop. Got a good bargain of various stuff there. Some of the materials are also available in the resort itself, but as you can imagine those are unreasonably costly and very small collections as compared to the outside outlets.
After coming back, we again had our dinner at Chokhi Dhani village. This time in an another food joint, having a different menu options. There was a folk dance program being performed by the local artists, you will be amazed by the skills those guys possess. In a short distance another performance on sword fighting was happening, quite a good show. Our little kid also enjoyed the puppet show there.
Next day. After this very short visit today we will return. But we didn’t want to miss the morning as well. Quite fortunately for us it was raining in the morning. We just went out in the downpour; you just cannot miss the opportunity to walk in the rains, can you?
The rain was short-lived, but lowered down the temperature to a very comfortable level. We spent some time on the way to breakfast and coming back.
After lunch, it is time to get back.
We drove almost non-stop to Delhi, only stopping at the RTDC Midway Restaurant, Behror. This place was once a confirmed stop for all tourists to and fro; but an un-strategically placed flyover impacted its reach. I felt these days it is not that a popular place any more.
As their tagline suggests, Chokhi Dhani Jaipur is truly a five star ethnic village. A favorite place very often visited by the foreign tourists, you will find it very striking and gorgeous. Come with your family and friends. Relax and Enjoy.
If you are visiting the Pink City Jaipur; this place would be a bit far from the main city and from the other attractions like Amer Fort, Hawa Mahal, City Palace, Jal Mahal, Nahargarh Fort etc. But if you can manage, it is worth staying here instead of some usual hotels and resorts. Just add half an hour to your local journey – you won’t regret your decision.
Jaipur is one co-ordinate of the India’s Golden Triangle tourist circuit. For a first time tourist, there are a number of spots you must visit.
Most prominent places and distances from Chokhi Dhani are:
- Hawal Mahal – 3 kms
- Amer Fort – 13 kms
- City Palace – 4 kms
- Jal Mahal – 9 kms
- Birla Mandir – 4 kms
- Jantar Mantar – 5 kms
- Jaigarh Fort – 15 km