CITY : UDAIPUR, RAJASTHAN , INDIA TRAVELER : SADAF CHAUDHARY
That was a long weekend : 26th Jan-29th Jan, and I was in dire need for some weekend get-away. And that was when Udaipur came into the picture!
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Udaipur, formerly the capital of the Mewar Kingdom, is a city in the western Indian state of Rajasthan. Founded by Maharana Udai Singh II in 1559, it’s set around a series of artificial lakes and is known for its lavish royal residences.
So the journey started in the evening of 26th Jan,i.e., Thursday because it was raining the whole day back then. There are plenty of Volvo buses on Delhi-Udaipur route and I got one of them booked for myself. The weather was quite pleasant and the journey went really well, with occasional tea-breaks at roadside stalls during the journey.
So, I reached Udaipur Friday morning and checked into “Zostel”. It is a hostel situated in the heart of the city and within a walking distance of the City Palace. However, being the peak tourist season, it was fully booked and I could get myself a dorm for Friday night
only. But the place was beautiful. They have got a rooftop restaurant from where one can have an early-morning breakfast, alongwith the mesmerizing view of sunrise through the Lake Pichola.
After getting freshened-up, I decided to walk up to the “City Palace”. It’s a grand palace that would leave you stunned with its architectural beauty.
From here, I had a boat-ride to Jagmandir, a lovely restaurant situated in the middle of Lake Pichola. By 4’o clock in the evening, I got free for the day,got myself some lunch and went on shopping from the local market. Here in Udaipur, you’d get to see lots of Silver Jewellery shops and even more of Rajasthani textile outlets.
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In the evening, I met a few people in the Zostel only who were willing to visit Kumbhalgarh fort, which is situated about 80 km from the main city. We decided to pool a cab and leave early morning so that we can return back the next evening well in time.
Next day, we started off at 7’o clock in the morning and reached the Kumbhalgarh fort at around 9:00 AM, after traveling through the hilly terrains of the Aravalis. It is a World Heritage Site included in Hill Forts of Rajasthan. Built during the course of the 15th century by Rana Kumbha, Kumbhalgarh is also the birthplace of Maharana Pratap, the great king and warrior of Mewar. Occupied until the late 19th century, the fort is now open to the public and is spectacularly lit for a few minutes each evening. It is the most important fort in Mewar after Chittaurgarh.
After spending good 3 hours in there, we decided to leave for Ranakpur, a small village located about 20 km from Kumbhalgarh fort.Ranakpur is widely known for its marble Jain temple, said to be the most spectacular of the Jain temples.There is also a small Sun temple which is managed by the Udaipur royal family trust. The peaceful environment and magnificent architecture of the place was enough to leave us all stunned. When the evening began to set in, we decided to go back to the Zostel.
Back in Zostel, I got to know that there still was 100% occupancy and, therefore, I’d have to shift to some other hostel. I enquired from my fellow-travelers and came to know about another hostel called “Backpackers’ Adda”. Situated near the Fateh-Sagar lake, it is one of the nicest hostels I’ve ever come across.
After a nice and cosy dinner, I went for a walk along the lake and had a great “Kulhad-Coffee” along the way.
The next day,I slept to the content of my heart, stepped out in the afternoon and visited Maharana Pratap Museum, Saheliyon ki Baari and Jawahar Nagar Park. I had got a return bus back to Delhi in the evening. That journey also went well (mostly sleeping though) and I reached Delhi on Monday early morning.
Though I missed a few places during this trip (like light and sound show at “Bagore ki Haveli”), yet I came back with lots of memories to cherish for the rest of my life.
PS : Though Udaipur is great for any sort of traveler, still it’s the best for people looking for some romantic destinations, as this “City of Lakes” have all the potential to leave.
Author: SADAF CHAUDHARY
Native Place: India.
Contact Address: firstname.lastname@example.org
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