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By: REVATHI S NAIR
TRAVELOUGE : UDAIPUR – REVATHI S NAIR
There are some places that touch your heart. Places that you cannot get out of your mind. Places that have etched your heart and mind like no other.
It has been a little above two years since I visited the majestic city of Udaipur. No amount of adjectives will ever do justice to the city. It is beautiful, it is mesmerising, it is extravagant and the city beams with Royalty.
It was never a plan, never on my bucket list (I don’t know Why?) to go there. But thank God Dad thought of it. I was all set with the to-do list and the places we should go to and not miss. The excitement was real.
It was a road trip on a fine Winter Day and we reached there in the evening. Our first stop was Lake Pichola. The lake is surrounded by the Aravalli Mountain ranges. We took a boat and reached the Jagmandir Island Palace (which is on Lake Pichola itself). We took some pictures and went ahead to see the splendid Sun set on the Aravalli Hills. There was some soothing live music going on which just added on to the serene ambience of the place.
We looked up for a hotel, freshened ourselves up and then we proceeded to get our tummies filled. Hot delicious, homely food on a chilly winter night in the streets of the royal city. What else could I ask for!!
The next day we went to the Fatehsagar Lake where we went on a speed boat ride for the first time EVER and damn, it was one of the best adventures of our lives I would say. It was one such moment where you feel scary and thrilled at the same time. The boat wasn’t just moving on water it was literally hopping on the lake. And oh my god, the smile that the three of us had after the ride got over, was one that we can never forget.
Next, we went to a Museum nearby which had the weapons used by different kings of the Mewar Dynasty and there were models of the forts of Rajasthan.
Next stop, Saheliyon ki Bari (Garden of Maids)
It is another major tourist destination in Udaipur. We went there not having many expectations, we thought it was some normal, well-maintained Garden but we decided to go there and give it a shot anyway. That place mesmerised us as well (this is the thing about Udaipur, even the little things have the capacity to live you speechless). Had we not taken a tour of the garden with the guide, we would have considered it to be a normal garden like any other.
The guide told us about its History, the Garden was built in the 18th century by then king, Maharana Sangram Singh for his Queen and the 48 maids that came along with her. The Garden is adorned with lush green shrubs and trees and fountains. It was built and created in order to give some leisure time to the maids and the Queen as in those days, women could not openly talk or come out in front of people. So, this was a space where every lady could have her own liberty (as no males were allowed inside). Moreover, the garden has been divided into three major sections (bifurcated on the basis of the three main seasons of the country). For instance, when the Queen wanted to enjoy the rains especially when it’s not monsoon, the monsoon area has these big gigantic leaved plants. When the fountain starts and it falls on these leaves from a height, it gives the effect of a Rainfall. And many more of such facts which left us speechless considering the time and effort and brains that went behind creating all these.
Well moving on, in the afternoon we went to The City Palace. Yes, that picturesque, majestic palace that you see on Postcards. It is the biggest Palace in Rajasthan (was built over a period of 400 years) and it’s, one word, ROYAL. The palace has been divided into two, one has been transformed to a luxury hotel and the other is open to visitors.
Well, we didn’t have someone guide us here (because of time constraints), so I’m not that aware of the history of the Palace and all the things I recall now are pretty vague.
Karni Mata Temple
Situated at the peak of a hill which overlooks the city. Our plan was to watch the sunset from atop but because of the huge queue, we were late so that didn’t happen. But we reached on time for the evening Aarti and by the time we left it was dark and all you could see was the beautiful Cityscape of Udaipur. Splendid.
After dinner we just strolled through the streets and came back to our room.
The next day, we went to the famous Jagdish Temple (oh how peaceful it was) and then we went to Bagore Ki Haweli (some more museum and models and a huge room replete with Puppets). Our plan was to go to Kumbalgarh Fort but for some reason we missed it.
We did see quite a lot of places but we have also missed quite a few. And if you ask me if I will ever go back to Udaipur, Yes, I will. Not only to visit all the places we missed but also to relive all of those moments again and again and be awestruck by the beauty of the “City of Lakes” “The Venice of the East” once again.
P.S. Do not visit such tourist places during Holidays or Vacations
-REVATHI S NAIR