There are a number of small towns in close vicinity of Churu with their set of paintings and havelis. Two of the notable towns are – Ramgarh and Mahansar. Both can be covered in a half day trip from Churu.
Ramgarh (15 Kms) is known to be the town with maximum number of havelis in Shekhawati by various guidebooks. The town was founded by Poddar merchants who left Churu in 1791 to protest against arbitrary taxation by Churu Thakur. Today it is a sleepy town and a visit must cover some impressive cenotaphs (chattris) made by Poddar family and a Shani temple with impressive Belgian glasswork. The domes of the cenotaphs have impressive paintings and are well maintained. There are also a few interesting havelis which are worth a visit.
In modern times, handmade furniture business has boomed in the town of Ramgarh. A visit to one such factory is worth the effort.
Mahansar (9 Kms from Ramgarh) has a very impressive Sone Ki Dukaan (Golden haveli) with very intricate paintings depicting stories of Hindu epics. There is also a unique temple of Shiva with good views over village.
Both these villages are a short train ride from Churu on British era meter gauge train. This 25-35 mins train journey is a rare glimpse into past.