Bikaner, situated in the northern part of Rajasthan, was founded in 1488 by a descendant of the founder of Jodhpur named Rao Bhikaji. Like Jaisalmer, this town was an important city on the great caravan trade route during the medieval period. The city is surrounded by high fortifications comprising a seven-kilometre long wall which encircles the old city and has five entrances-all constructed in the 18th century.
The city of Bikaner has seen several ups and downs in its eventful history.
Its proximity to Delhi made it bear the brunt of Mughal invasions time
and again. Legend has it that before embarking on his campaign, Rao Bhikaji
sought the blessings of mystic Goddess Karni at Deshnoke. Since then the
Karni Mata temple in Deshnoke continued to be patronized by the ruling
family. Today hundreds of pilgrims flock the temple everyday to invoke
the blessings of the Goddess, who is revered as an incarnation of Goddess
Durga. Bikaner is also called the camel country, being renowned for
the best riding camels in the world. It is also the birthplace of the
world famous Bikaneri bhujia and namkeen (a salted snack made of lentils).
Being a desertscape, the summers are very hot in Bikaner. The best time
to visit this place is in winters when the weather remains cool and tolerable.