Decorated with colorful epithets such as Sun City, Blue City and Gateway to the Thar, Jodhpur is another tourist magnet in Rajasthan. Amongst the multitude of attractions here, a couple of interesting places are Mehrangarh Fort and Jaswant Thada. Mehrangarh Fort holds the distinction of being the biggest of Rajasthan's numerous forts, appearing especially grand at night. Jaswant Thada is a historic lakeside place with royal cenotaphs built in marble.
Rao Jodha of the Kanauj family founded the house of Jodhpur in Marwar, the Land of ‘Maroo’ or death, thus named because of the region’s extremely hostile living conditions. Their first capital was at Mandore, an honour which went to Jodhpur after the Mehrangarh Fort was constructed towards the end of the 15th century. The fort was built with defence in mind, and the slopes and the sudden twists and turns in the structure were meant to hinder the movement of enemy elephants.
There was good reason for this too — the state was often at war with the neighbouring Rajputs and Mughals. Nevertheless, the Rathore clan managed to hold on to its possessions and expanded over time. It eventually rose to become one of the strongest and biggest kingdoms of Rajasthan, along with Mewar and Amber. It is said that at the time of Independence, Jodhpur was so prosperous that it was slated to be the capital of the new state of Rajputana in the Union of India. However, because of its distance from Delhi, and assorted political factors, it lost out to Jaipur. The airport is situated near Ratanada, 6 km from the main town.
Jodhpur has good local transport, comprising buses and autos (for some reason, more popularly known as taxis). The main bus stand is at Raika Bagh and the local buses take you almost anywhere within Jodhpur and also to Mandore and Kaylana Lake, on the Jodhpur-Jaisalmer Road. Autos don’t run on meter and what you end up paying will mostly depend on your bargaining skills. Ideally, the fare should range between INR 20 for a short distance and INR 300-350 for a full day-trip around the city. The most comfortable way of moving around is to hire a taxi from a travel agency or hotel. The average fare is INR 7- 10 per km. The fare will be more if you want to travel out of the city.