Shekhawati (land of Shekha) owes its name to Rao Shekha (1433-1488), who was a cousin of the Kachchawahas of Jaipur. He challenged them, declaring independence and Jaipur was able to reassert its might again only in 1738.
This place often known as the "Open Art Gallery of Rajasthan", reveals wonderful wall paintings portraying images from traditional mythology, folklore & heroes. Frescoes painted with natural pigments are found in the Gopinath temple and the cenotaph of Shardul Singh. Several frescoes have also been executed in the mansions.
Jhunjhunu, the new capital was a stronghold of the Kayamkhani Nawabs till 1730. Hindu rule was then established by Shardul Singh. Wonderful frescoes are painted in the havelis of Tibriwals, the Modis, at the Khetri Mahal & the Bihariji temple.
Other places of interest are Badalgarh, Jorawargarh, Mertani Baori, Kamruddin Shah ki Dargah, Birdi Chand ka Kuan, Ajit Sagar and Jain temple.
Sikar was founded in the late 17th century. There are fine samples of frescoes in the Gopinath, Raghunath and Madan Mohan temples. The main centres of Shekhawati art in this district are at Ramgarh, Fatehpur and Lachhmangarh.
The Harshnath temple (10th century) with its splendid architecture is located on Harsh Nath hills about 11kms from Sikar.
Jeen Mata temple is located 29 kms from Sikar. This temple is believed to have been constructed 1000 years ago. The fair during April - May draws devotees.
Lachhmangarh was founded in the early 19th century by Raja Lachhman Singh of Sikar. This town follows the wonderful town planning of Jaipur. The places of interest here are the Ganeriwala haveli (the grandest in Shekhawati), Murlimanohar temple and the Chokhani havelis.
Fatehpur was founded in the mid 15th century by Fateh Khan, a Kayamkhani Nawab. The havelis of Devra, Singhania, Goenka, Saraogi are famous for the frescoes. This place is famous for the tie and dye fabrics.
Ramgarh was founded in the late 18th century by the Poddars. Exquisite paintings are found on the ceilings of the chhatris. Other spots of interest are the Sani temple & temple to Ganges, the havelis of the Poddars and Ruias.
Khatu Shyamji village is famous for the Shyamji temple built in white marble. There are a few other temples & a lake.