Amritsar to delightful Udaipur after a very early start.

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February 23rd 2019
Published: February 25th 2019
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Up before the crack of dawn ready for taxi at 3.45. Could have had an extra half hour’s sleep as only took 15 minutes to the airport because the road was pretty well empty.

Slightly chaotic moment as we entered the airport. First we show boarding passes to security on the main door and then cases go through the scanner. That is how they operate here, you don’t get into the airport until your cases have been checked.
We were surrounded by an Indian party with multiple cases and it was all very disorganised as we queued for our turn and were generally pushed and shoved into line.

There was a Swedish couple in front of us who were getting the same flight and the man decided to go off to check if we were in the right place. Came back to announce we were in the Air India scanner queue. Not our fault, that is the way we had been pushed.

We left that one and found the far quieter Jet Airways scanner and were through there in minutes. Then we had to sit and wait for an hour before boarding.

Speedy flight to New Delhi and they surprisingly served us with food, a wrap and a bottle of water. Surprising as as soon as we were up in the air we were starting back down again.

Then a long long wait at New Delhi for our flight to Udaipur. Our first flight being 4 hours earlier than originally booked (The 10am flight was cancelled and we had to take the 6am instead) it was 6+ hours before the next.

Had a wander, a coffee, edited some photos on the laptop and charged a camera battery as there are charging stations everywhere in the Indian airports. Then I found a couple of comfy loungers, set the alarm on my phone and we both had a snooze. Annoyingly my first sleep lasted only 10 minutes as a very loud voiced Indian came to sit right beside the 3 of us who were trying to sleep and phoned all his friends and relatives to announce he was at the airport. He could just have shouted, didn’t need the phone at all.

Eventually Bob’s glare, which was more glarey than mine, got through to him and he moved and we got a bit more sleep.

Then to our Udaipur flight, again just over an hour and we were landing.

The hotel had, as requested sent us a taxi (strongly recommend anyone travelling in India does this, much better than getting your own taxi and undoubtedly cheaper). The drive to town took an hour along a road which was being built and we suspect will always remain in that condition.

At last we were in Udaipur and the taxi took us down a little lane and then stopped and we got out and transferred to a tuktuk. The road down to the hotel is too narrow for cars so it is pretty well tuktuk and scooters only.

Surprisingly as we were transferring an elephant appeared. Don’t know where it was going but it did make me jump as it was suddenly there by the taxi door

Our hotel is Lake Pichola Hotel, right on the lakeside and an Heritage hotel. Absolutely delightful. We have a balcony which looks out over the lake and there may be some shabby aspects to the room, as we find everywhere we go over here, but the charm of the place beats any imperfection and idiosyncrasies.

The weather here is definitely warmer than in Amritsar as we are a good few miles further south. If this is Winter bring it on.

We reserved a table in the rooftop restaurant and enjoyed a really good dinner sitting at a table overlooking the lake. The Indian food we eat here bears no resemblance to the ‘curry’ on offer in the Indian restaurants we occasionally frequent in England and have to say that our desire to visit them is much reduced since eating real Indian food over here. The butter Naan bread is to die for. Thin as an English pancake with crispy edges.

After dinner just a leg stretch along the narrow street outside which somehow manages to fit in an array of little shops which seem to be selling a most tempting selection of things, most of which seem to be genuine handicrafts at super low prices. Shopping may follow later. Also rather delightful are the many decorations on the walls and doorways along the street outside our hotel. My poor camera is getting quite tired.

We made it back to the hotel for an earlier night without being run down by the scooters which zip along the street and we made the acquaintance of a cow or two as they roam freely up the street and goodness knows how they survive the traffic.

Additional photos below
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25th February 2019

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