A wondrous city full of eye-pleasing architectural marvels, Udaipur is by far the most glamorous city of Rajasthan. Owing to its seductive charm and the picturesque settings of the grand palaces standing ashore beautiful lakes, Udaipur is often called as the Venice of East. Udaipur has been shot in several major international films, including the Bond film, Octopussy and the winner of 8 Oscar Awards, Gandhi. Udaipur scored the highest position in the ranking of Travel + Leisure in 2009 ahead of some of the major cities such as New York, Rome and Sydney.
The capital of Mewar region, previously a state, Udaipur was inhabited in later half of the 16th century. Rana Udai Singh had a previously built residence in Udaipur, where he decided to move in after his existing capital Chittor was taken by Emperor Akbar in 1568. Maharana Pratap, son of Udai Singh and a national figure, later brought glory to Mewar through his heroic lifetime of an epic struggle against the Mughals. Udaipur, due to its hard to reach location in Arawali Mountains always remained away from the clutches of the Mughals.
Udaipur offers various attractions for the tourists. The tour normally begins in the morning with the City Palace. This grand complex of palaces, started by Rana Udai Singh and later added to by his descendants, is the largest palatial construction in the state, and not to mention one of the most beautiful. The City Palace welcomes you with a grand façade and an attractive garden before it. From inside, this complex of palaces is so large that it can easily take a couple of hours simply to visit all the places. On your tour of City Palace, you come to pass from the balconies which offer glorious views of the town and the beautiful Lake Pichola. The City Palace also hosts a Museum comprising of several beautiful halls and chambers which displays important artifacts. Mor Chowk, Krishna Vilas, Moti Mahal, Chini Mahal, Manak Mahal and Zenana Mahal are the highlights of the City Palace Museum. Another museum, run by the government also displays interesting artifacts such as portraits of the maharajas and sculptures.
Lake Pichola is by far the most distinctive of the other four lakes in the city. In the near barren land of Rajasthan, where the rainfall is very low every year, it is a wonder to see a large and beautiful lake such as Pichola. Rarely brimful, yet always reflecting glamour, this lake casts a special magnificence on Udaipur when the rains have been good. Since 2006, Lake Pichola has been in a good state due to good rains. A boat-ride in Lake Pichola provides majestic views of the palatial Udaipur standing on its edge. The islands Jagmandir and Jagniwas in Lake Pichola attract a lot of attention. Jagniwas Island is where stands the Lake Palace, which has now been turned into one of the finest heritage hotels in Udaipur and India. There is another palace on the nearby Jagmandir Island, where it is believed that Shah Jahan, the Mughal Emperor, sought refuge during his revolt against his father. Historians deduce that he may have been inspired by the Jagmandir to such an extent that it reflected in his later construction of the Taj Mahal. After dark, when the lights come on, both these structures glow appealingly, casting a bright reflection in Lake Pichola and giving Udaipur a shade of glamour.
One of the highly visited spots in Udaipur is the Jagdish Temple. This temple of Lord Vishnu lies in the proximity of the City Palace. Built in the Indo-Aryan style of architecture, Jagdish Temple was constructed in 1651 by Maharana Jagat Singh. Jagdish Temple hosts a sculpture of Vishnu in the form of Jagannath, in front of which stands an attractive brass figure of Garuda.
Amongst other attractions of Udaipur is Fateh Sagar Lake. It was built originally in late 17th century by Maharana Jai Singh and later reconstructed by Maharana Fateh Singh after it was destroyed by rains. There are three islands in the lake, one of which hosts the important Udaipur Solar Observatory. One of the other islands is Nehru Park, which is more a local spot of Udaipur.
Situated in the south of Rajasthan, Udaipur is certainly one of the most important settlements of the state. There are several other attractions around Udaipur, such as Mount Abu and Chittorgarh, which makes it a good destination. You can make Udaipur your base for four to five days and peacefully visit all the interesting places in Mewar. Well connected by railway and also by air, Udaipur can be reached from Jodhpur or Jaipur within five to six hours.
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Udaipur is a princely city of Rajasthan famous for its lakes and palaces. The major tourist attraction of Udaipur is City Palace, which is a grand complex of palaces and hosts a museum too. Lake Pichola is the distinctive and captivating lake hosting the Islands that have the structures of Jagmandir and Jagniwas. One more spot that is worth watching is the temple of Lord Vishnu, Jagdish Temple. Other attraction of Udaipur is Fateh Sagar Lake, which has three islands and with the important Udaipur Solar Observatory.
||A (What is this?)
|5 Star Hotels:
||Inder Recidency, Lake Palace
||Ashish Palace,Baba Palace
||Udaipur Airport (22 km) and Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel International Airport,Ahmedabad (198 km)
|Nearest Major City(s):
||Bhilwara (129 km), Pali (137 km), Gandhinagar (182 km).
|Major Tourist Attraction:
||Lake Palace, City Palace, Jag Mandir, Saheliyon-ki-bari, Jagdish Temple, Fateh sagar.
||City of Lake
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