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Published: March 12th 2013
View of the City Palace from Lake Pichola.
We arrived in Udaipur in the afternoon. After a short walk through the Sahelion ki Bari Park, where there are nice fountains and a lot of colourful flowers, we drove into the city. Our hotel was close to the city palace, so first we took a walk through some of the streets and into two temples (one of them offering a wonderful view of Lake Pichola, on which the city is located. Then we took an evening boat trip on the lake and had a great view of the huge City Palace. On the tour, we also stopped on one of the islands in the lake, Jag Mandir. There is a wonderful luxury hotel on it with a nice garden and of course a stunning view of the lake side of the city. When getting back from the tour, we were rather tired, so we had a lovely dinner on the roof top restaurant of our hotel, enjoying the view of the back side of the palace, and then simply sat there in the warm evening air for a while.
The next morning, we took an extensive tour of the City Palace, and our guide explained a lot of interesting
Jag Niwas Island, the smaller one of the two islands in Lake Pichola, with a hotel on it.
facts about the building to us. It was built in the 17th and 18th century and parts of it are still inhabited by the royal family. The whole palace is like a maze, and I think it would be really easy to get lost in it. But it is full of fine art, and the building itself has most wonderful ornaments.
At noon, our driver picked us up from the hotel, and we headed off towards the town of Jodhpur. On our way, we stopped at the most wonderful and incredibly impressive temple of Ranakpur, a Jain temple that was built in the 15th century. It has wonderful pillars, all of them with different patterns.
We continued towards Jodhpur. The traffic was really horrible, and we watched more than one dangerous manoeuvre which made even Singh, our driver, hold his breath. But finally, we arrived in Jodhpur and checked into our wonderful hotel. Our room was really luxurious, and from the roof top terrace, we had a great view of the impressive Meherangarh Fort. We took a quick walk around the market, then had dinner and enjoyed the stunning view. The fort is even illuminated at night, not
Jag Mandir Island, the second of the two islands in Lake Pichola.
so common here.
The next morning, we went into the fort. It dates from the mid 15th century and has walls up to 36 metres high and 21 metres wide. There are several gates, and due to all this, it has never been taken by an enemy. As it sits on a high plateau, it also offers a beautiful view of the surrounding city. We could easily see why Jodhpur is called the Blue City: many of the buildings are blue due to the chemicals used to protect them from termites.
At noon, we headed off for Jaisalmer in the very west of Rajasthan. First, I thought the journey would take us forever because the road was so bad that we could not do more than 30 km/h, but then it got better, and we arrived in Jaisalmer in the early evening. Today, we will go on a camel safari. More stories on this will follow soon!
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