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February 8th 2015
Published: February 12th 2015
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Train to Udaipur we shared a cabin with a nice elderly Brazilian couple. Left promptly, and arrived in Udaipur only minutes late. A rickshaw met us at the station and brought us to the hotel, where we sat about eating breakfast until our room was ready. Fred was still under the weather, so spent the first day indoors reading and resting. Udaipur is a city built around lakes and surrounded by hills.

Next day he was well enough to explore Udaipur, which is really beautiful in parts. It is much cleaner than Delhi or Varanasi, although there are several cows wandering about. Generally has a more relaxed prosperous feeling. The lake is really lovely and there are some lovely old buildings surrounding it. A lot of these buildings, even fairly ordinary houses, have inticate stone carvings and nice paintings. After an afternoon siesta we got up to go to the folk music, dance and puppet show at a museum in an old haveli by the lake. This was a great show....the setting was atmospheric, the dancers costumes were really colourful, and they were extremely talented.... Imagine dancing with a pot of fire on your head or balancing up to 9 pots on your head while twirling round and round!

Final day we were walking down the street when we unexpectedly came upon a colourful wedding procession which was holding up all the traffic. Two men riding decorated horses, were led by 3 turbanned marchers and a wagon which was playing loud music. Women wearing colourful beautiful saris were clapping and dancing all around them. Then we took photographs of the stonework on the outside of the temple, which is amazingly intricate. (This proximity of this temple may be the only bad thing about this hotel, which is nice and clean etc, but we get disturbed by a lot of music, chanting and drumming. The chanting starts at sunrise! ). After this we went to the City Palace to take a boat ride on the lake. City Palace was a hive of activity, with loads of people busy putting up fake scenery and a massive marquee, making flower arrangements, fixing lighting etc. It looked just like a film set. They told us that there was to be a really big wedding there soon (first day in City Palace, second day in the Lake Palace Hotel, third day another posh venue.). There are fireworks every night we have been here...and apparantly this is from weddings as Feb is 'wedding season' in India, as June is in UK.

The boat ride was a relaxing way to take in the views. We landed on one of the islands with a posh hotel, where we sat in the resuarant eating chips and drinking coke (it wasnt a meal time, so they could only do chips; but that was fine by us). We were then able to have a siesta again before getting the night train at 10pm to Udaipur, having negotiated to pay a bit more and check out at 9pm.

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