|What can you expect from a capital of a region so-called the “Open Air Art Gallery”? Nothing less than artistic brilliance! This is exactly what Jhunjhunu offers. The town is vibrant with colours famous for the frescos of its grand havelis. It could very well be the most attractive places for the tourist.
The exact foundation of this city is unknown. Historians claim it was named after a Jat ruler Jujhar Singh Nehra. But the first recorded king was Mughal Governor Mohammad Khan who reigned sometime around 1450. After him his descendents reigned on the throne till 1730. After this it was under Sardul Singh, the great Shekhawat Rajput till the Indian independence.
Havelis: The havelis of Jhunjhunu are among the best in the Shekhawati region. Adorned with beautiful wall and ceiling paintings that portray lost traditions and some about the advancement of a society along with scenes of the ruling families, elephant fights, images of the gods, symbols of the British era, soldiers, trains, cars, paddle-steamers and aeroplanes. The Muragh Das Modi and the Tibrewala Haveli are the prettiest of the lot. These impressive buildings were built by the wealthy merchants who prospered from the caravan trade that flourished in Rajasthan in the late 18th century.
Some of the nearby towns such as Nawalgarh, Fatehpur and Mandawa too are littered with beautifully embellished havelis. Nawalgarh bazaar has the largest number of painted havelis in Shekhawati. The frescoes at Devra and Singhania haveli in Fathehpur a rare mix of Indian and western styles and are a must-see. While the havelis at Mandawa such as Chokhani, Saraf, Goenka and Ladia havelis are reputed for their beauty.
Khetri Mahal: Raised by Thakur Bhopal Singh of Khetri around 1760. It is famous for its most unusual sophisticated architecture.
Bihari Ji Temple: Though not in the best state today the fine mural works on its walls are still visible. It is immensely popular for its antique paintings.
Shri Ranisatiji Mandir: Considered one of the finest temples in India. It was an important pilgrimage centre in ancient days. Waterways: Jhunjhunu is also famous for its well-developed waterworks. Evidences of which can be seen by visiting the Birdhi Chand Well, Mertani Baori (step well) and the Reservoir Ajit Sagar.
Sati Chowk: There are plenty to see here beginning with Pradhan Mand a white marble structure with an imposing shikhar. Other must-see are Laxminath Temple, Qamruddin Shah ki Darghah, Mertani Baori, Khetan Haveli, Ishwardas Mohandas Haveli and Badal Garh.