A number of Shekhawati’s havelis, traditional townhouses common to the region, have now been restored and opened as museums. Most, however, remain in a state of picturesque dilapidation and are still occupied by local families, while others have been abandoned, and are now empty apart from a solitary chowkidar (caretaker-cum-guard). Visitors are welcome to look around inside some havelis in return for a small tip, while others remain closed to outsiders. If in doubt just stick your head in the front door and ask, but remember that you’re effectively entering someone’s private home, so never go inside without permission. Visiting times are usually between sunrise and sunset. Be aware of “guide touts”, who accost you on the street with offers of haveli tours. They might take you to a haveli or two, but they are not licensed guides, and their sole objective is to get you to a shop that pays them commission.

Travel offers; book through Rough Guides

India features

The latest articles, galleries, quizzes and videos.

19 places to get utterly lost

19 places to get utterly lost

One of the great joys of travelling is stumbling across unexpected places, wandering without a single destination in mind and embracing the journey. These place…

12 Sep 2017 • Keith Drew camera_alt Gallery
The most beautiful country in the world – as voted by you

The most beautiful country in the world – as voted by you

There's nothing like an amazing view to inspire you to book your next trip, whether you're drawn by rolling countryside, isolated islands or soaring mountain …

30 Aug 2017 • Rough Guides Editors camera_alt Gallery
13 tips for backpacking India

13 tips for backpacking India

Whether you’re hurtling along in a rickshaw, eating fantastic curries, kicking back on the backwaters or hiking in the mountains, backpacking India will alwa…

15 Aug 2017 • Helen Abramson insert_drive_file Article
View more featureschevron_right

Join over 60,000 subscribers and get travel tips, competitions and more every month

Join over 60,000 subscribers and get travel tips, competitions and more every month