Rajasthan, India, 2004

In late November and early December 2004, I traveled to India with my wife and 6-year-old son to tour the state of Rajasthan. While not strictly focused on shooting, this trip did provide some opportunities for photography. Rajasthan (literally "land of rajas" or kings) is located in the dry northwest region of India near the Pakistan border. It has a long and storied history filled with chivalry, conquest and passion. For more than 1,000 years this desert land has seen kingdoms and empires flourish and fall, from Mughals to Marwars, and prior to independence it was closely allied with British influence in the region. Rajasthan is a place of color and adventure; even today, there are cautionary tales for travelers.

We were fortunate to be able to experience this amazing country as guests of our good friend Abhay Maskara and his family. Our insight into the people we met and the places we visited was greatly enhanced by their enthusiasm in sharing their country with us. I hope you enjoy visiting and exploring my India photo galleries.

 

After a flight that seems to never end, we arrive in New Delhi (via Amsterdam) and spend a couple of days visiting with friends and taking in the sights (including a polo match) before beginning our journey into Rajasthan. On the way, we visit our first historic fort.

Jaipur, the capital of Rajasthan, is called the "Pink City" because its heart was painted a brilliant pink color in 1876 to celebrate a visit of the Prince of Wales. We explore the City Palace of Jaipur and ride an elephant to the top of Amber Fort.

One of the most colorful spectacles in all of Rajasthan is the Pushkar Fair, a giant bazaar where camels, horses and cattle are bought and sold. We timed our visit to be able to experience and photograph this unique fair.

We visit Jodhpur and Udaipur, highlights of the trip, and stay in the beautiful Umaid Bhawan Palace, once among the largest private residences in the world. We also visit the Jain temple of Adinatha at Ranakpur, a "veritable hymn in stone and marble."

The last leg of our journey brings us "face to tail" with a wild tiger at Ranthambhor National Park and the eerie beauty of Ranthambhor Fort. And we visit Agra, home of the world famous Taj Mahal--easily the most beautiful mausoleum in the world.

More images from the trip, and a cautionary tale or two. Go "behind the scenes" with us to see what travel in India is like.