It is great if you had been to Venice. If not and if you would like to know how it would feel like to be in such a lovely atmosphere, you may have to land in Udaipur, famously called the ‘Venice of the East’ and ‘The City of Lakes’. Udaipur, a city in Rajasthan is a stunning location and has a rich cultural background and a great history. The palaces reflect the architectural grandeur prevailed during the period of Rajputs and the scenic landscape is descriptive of how nature could be generous where it chooses to be. Here are top 10places to visit in Udaipur, which you just cannot miss.
City Palace was constructed in the year 1559 by Maharana Udai Mirza Singh. The palace is situated on the banks of Pichola Lake. The palace is a blend of European, Medieval and Chinese styles of architecture. City Palace houses 11 magnificent palaces and they were all constructed during various periods and by various rulers. The size of the palace is awe inspiring with the courtyards, terraces, pavilions, hanging gardens and a lot more. Everything about the palace is magnificent be it the architecture, the antiques inside and the exclusive paintings hanging on the walls.
Another man made wonder in the city dominated by nature, Lake Pichola was created in 1362 AD. Rana Udai Singh II extended the lake in 16th century. The picturesque lake is surrounded by huge hills, magnificent palaces, temples and bathing ghats. The islands in Lake Pichola offer various tourist attractions and hence by cruising in Lake Pichola, you are sure to have a whale of a time. Sunset views are stunning. Boat cruise offers lovely views of the town, particularly in the evenings as you watch the sun go down on your eyes, you will find the city lit up. The palaces look stunning with the lights on and it is a great view from the lake.
Boat riding during sunset.
Stroll along the pathways surrounding the lake.
Visit the attractions like Lake Palace and Lake Garden Palace.
The symbol of Udaipur tourism and a famous wedding destination, Lake Palace or Jag Niwas is an architectural marvel. The palace is situated on the island of Jag Niwas in Lake Pichola and was built in the year 1746 by Maharana Jagat Singh II. It was later converted into a luxury hotel in 1960s and now is a part of Taj luxury resorts. This stunning location has also been featured in many Hollywood and Bollywood movies.
Jagmandir or Lake Garden Palace is said to have served as an inspiration for the Taj Mahal when Shah Jahan took refuge here in his younger days. This palace has a long history and is considered one of the symbols of friendship between the Mughals and Rajputs. A series of impressive structures give this palace a regal feel and would delight any visitor.
Visit the flower garden.
Boat Ride in Lake Pichola.
Savour Rajasthani cuisine at the Darikhana restaurant.
A paradise for all motor enthusiasts, The Royal Vintage Car Museum is a must visit for any visitor. It was inaugurated in Feb 2000 and has become a very popular tourist destination since then. The museum houses many famous vintage cars like the 1934 Rolls-Royce Phantom used in the Bond film Octopussy and many rare Rolls Royce models to name a few. The quiet and peaceful environment here is an added bonus.
Have traditional Rajasthani thali at the Garden Hotel.
Bagore Ki Haveli is situated near Pichola Lake. The 18th century construction was built by Amir Chand Badwa, Chief Minister at the Royal Court of Mewar. The Haveli became the residence of Maharana Shakti Singh of Bagore in the year 1878 and hence the name Bagore Ki Haveli. This was converted into museum retaining the royal touch to the building. The museum presents the culture of Mewar. The antique collections include the stuff used by Rajputs such as jewellery boxes, hand fans, copper vessels and so on. The massive building has over 100 rooms and looks splendid with its unique style of architecture. When you are there, make sure you present yourself for the shows conducted here in the evenings.
Visit the museum in the haveli.
Witness the musical and folk dance shows.
Catch a theatre show at theatre ground.
Enjoy a puppetry show listen to folk tales.
View the beautiful sunset.
Shop forhandicrafts, souvenirs and other artworks.
Built by Sangram Singh II as a gift to queen and her maids, Saheliyon Ki Bari (Garden of Companions) is a beautiful sight to behold. The king designed the garden himself and strived to make it a relaxed place where the queen could relax with her 48 maids. The garden still serves its purpose in many ways and people come to this place to escape the chaos of the city.
Walk through the gardens.
Visit the museum.
Have a meal at the multi cuisine restaurant, 1559 AD.
Built in the year 1651, Jagdish Temple is Udaipur's largest temple. An estimated 1.5 million INR were spent on this stunning Indo-Aryan architectural marvel. It is dedicated to Lord Vishnu and also houses other shrines dedicated to Lord Shiva, Ganesh, the Sun God, and Goddess Shakti. This temple should be visited not only to offer your devotion but also to witness beautiful wall carvings, elephant sculptures and for the stunning architecture.
Set up in about 70 acres of land and situated in the lap of Aravali ranges, Shilpgram is a rural arts and crafts complex set up to promote the traditional arts and crafts of Rajasthan. It provides employment to many rural craftsmen and is a centre of many cultural festivals which are organised here on a regular basis. Another attraction here is an open air Amphitheatre which provides the centre stage for many art festivals. Visit Shilpgram to experience the simplicity of village life, attend art or dance showcases and shop to your heart's content.
Eat at the Shilpi restaurant.
Shop at the Rural Arts and Crafts Complex.
Visit two museums near the shopping complex.
Enjoy theatre, art or dance showcases at the Amphitheatre.
A fitting tribute to the memory of Maharana Pratap and his beloved horse Chetak, Moti Magri hosts a stunning bronze statue of Maharana on his horse Chetak.It is situated on a hilltop overlooking Fateh Sagar lake and also offers some really beautiful lookout points to not only the nearby lakes but also of Udaipur. Visit Moti Magri to know the stunning legacy of events associated with Maharana Pratap and get some really stunning views.
Visit the Moti Mahal museum
Enjoy the Light and Sound show in the evening.
Visit the Japanese Rock Garden
Visit the nearby Fateh Sagar Lake and Swaroop Sagar Lake.
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Other attractions nearby Udaipur include Sajjan Garh (Monsoon Palace), Kesariyaji Temple, Sukhadia Circle, Neemach Mata Temple and Karni Mata temple.
Places to Visit Near Udaipur
Your trip to Udaipur would be incomplete without a short visit to the following places. If you have some time to spare then take less than a day’s trip to some of the locations below:
Nathdwara is an important hindu pilgrimage site for Lord Krishna devotees and is commonly called Shrinathji, after the presiding deity. A famous legend is associated with the Shrinathji temple here and therefore throngs of devotees come here everyday to pay their respects to the lord. Apart, from being a pilgrimage site, Nathdwara is famous for a specific style of paintings dedicated to Shrinathji, mouthwatering cuisines etc. The cultural beauty of town has led to it being called ‘The Apollo of Mewar’.
Distance from Udaipur: 1 hr (53.2 km).
The tales of Maharana Pratap’s valour are still told in the hills of Haldighati, which witnessed a major historical battle between the forces of Maharana Pratap and Mughal Emperor Akbar’s forces led by Man Singh I. The Haldighati museum showcases this event and also the life of Maharana Pratap.
Ranakpur is mainly known for its Jain temple built in the 15th century after a divine vision. It pays homage to Adinath, the first Tirthankar of the present half-cycle according to Jain cosmology. This temple is known for its beautiful marble carvings and stunning architecture and has even called one of India’s most beautiful Jain temple.
This massive fort has the distinction of having the second largest wall in the world after the Great Wall of China. A trip to Rajasthan would be incomplete without witnessing Kumbhalgarh Fort‘s astounding architecture and fascinating history. The stunning views from the fort is an added bonus along with the light and sound shows during evenings.
Get some respite from the scorching summers in Mount Abu, the only hill station in Rajasthan. Mount Abu is also the place to Five Unique Temples of Dilwara, which are famous worldwide for their architectural beauty. It’s picturesque beauty is also something to look forward to if visitors are looking for a laid back vacation with some stunning viewpoints.
There are not enough descriptions about tourist places in Udaipur and its beauty. There are more palaces and places to see that would enthrall you. Famous temples and wildlife sanctuary assure you of quality time spent. Have a great time in the city in India that is more like a European city. Also check out other places to visit in Rajasthan to learn more.