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Enjoying some peace and relax in Udaipur in 3 days is what we need after 2 long days of chaos in the capital city of India!
Udaipur is a quaint village on the shores of Lake Pichola. It’s the classic “quiet” place (however quiet India can be) where you can easily wander around.
Udaipur is a little oasis, far from the hustle and bustle of India, where you can focus on your physical health and mental well-being.
UDAIPUR IN 3 DAYS. DAY 1: ARRIVING IN UDAIPUR.
We arrive in Udaipur by plane from Delhi at lunchtime. The first thing we do is order some super spicy Indian food on the terrace of one of the many restaurants that overlook the lake.
Then we walk around from one side of the lake to another with no destination.
Suddenly we end up in a colorful parade of Indians celebrating something. And here we thought that we could finally relax!
You will realize that in Rajasthan, everywhere you are, every day is a “special day”. There is always something to celebrate!
We found out that we arrived just at the beginning of a festival which is strongly felt in all Rajasthan: the Gangaur Festival. It just so happened that the festival began on the day of our arrival and ended on the day of our departure! So we have no choice but fit in the chaotic celebration and get carried by the crowd.
The festival celebrates Gauri, the wife of Shiva, and together they represent the perfect love. It’s a festival observed with great devotion especially by women. The ones who are married worship Gauri for granting them a happy marriage, while the single ladies do it for finding a good husband.
And even if we don’t have any marriage to bless, or aren’t in search of any husband, we get carried away with the Indian ladies. They all are in beautiful and colorful dresses that they wear with pride.
When the parade is over, we enjoy a wonderful sunset on the lake shore and then we treat ourselves with a fantastic Ayurvedic massage.
The Ayurvedic massage is a slow but strong massage that requires the use of scented oils chosen according to the individual features of each person. It’s based on the unbreakable bond between the mind and the body in order to restore the balance in your system.
It goes without saying that after the massage you feel new. It’s absolutely a fantastic experience to try!
UDAIPUR IN 3 DAYS. DAY 2: MONSOON PALACE, MOTI MAGRI, FATEH SAGAR, SAHELIYON-KI-BARI AND EVENING SHOW AT BAGORE-KI-HAVELI.
First morning waking up in Udaipur. We decide to have a first glance to the village from above at the Monsoon Palace, also called Sajjan Garh.
The palace is on top of the Aravalli Hill. It hosted once an astronomical centre and then it began the residence of the Maharana Sajjan Singh for the monsoon season. Finally the palace turned into a hunting lodge.
The palace is nothing special. It actually looks pretty much abandoned. But the view over Udaipur and its lakes is phenomenal.
While we are engaging in our panoramic photos, some langur monkeys pop out of nowhere.
After our regular selfie activity, we say goodbye to our furry ancestors and get down the palace hill to head to Moti Magri, the Pearl Hill. The entrance ticket includes the visit to a museum that displays some paintings about the war.
I have to say that if you are used to the European art style, these paintings will strike you!
On top of the hill you can see the statue of the Maharana Pratap, which is considered one of the Rajput heroes for fighting the Mughal on several occasions.
Near Moti Magri, there is Fateh Sagar, the other big lake of Udaipur.
We take a nice walk along the lake and we arrive at Saheliyon-ki-Bari, the bridesmaids garden.
At the end of this long day, we relax while watching a traditional show at Bagore-ki-Haveli. We really enjoyed the show! It starts with a musical performance and some Indian dances. The most exciting part is when the dancers perform while balancing a water pot on their head.
Finally a guy wearing a turban entertains the audience with his funny puppet show.
The puppet show plays a very important role in the popular entertainment in Rajasthan, especially in Udaipur. If you want to fit in the culture of this part of India, you can’t miss it.
And talking about puppets… here’s the surprise we found back to the hotel.
Will we be able to sleep now?
UDAIPUR IN 3 DAYS. DAY 3: CITY PALACE, MACHLA MAGRA, JAGDISH TEMPLE, ART CLASS AT ASHOKA ARTS AND SHIRODHARA MASSAGE.
Well, despite the presence of the funny-but-also-a-little-creepy puppets, we could sleep very well! We are ready for another day exploring Udaipur!
Today we will visit the largest palace in Rajasthan: the City Palace of Udaipur.
Among the wonderful palace are courtyards, gardens and lavish rooms that display mirrors, paintings, weapons and antique work and furniture.
The most fascinating part of the palace is the Peacock Square, an amazing chamber decorated with mosaics that represent the symbolic animal of Rajasthan.
The City Palace is large: its visit will take you half day.
After visiting the palace, we decide to take another look of the city from above. This time from the opposite side of the Monsoon Palace.
We take the ropeway to go up to Machla Magra hill to enjoy a spectacular view over the village and its lakes.
Then we take the ropeway again to get down and we go back to the centre of Udaipur to visit Jagdish Temple: the main temple of Udaipur.
We are in front of a steep staircase and this time there is no ropeway to help us!
Once up, we follow the usual ritual: take off your shoes and wash your hands.
We look at the fine carvings of the spires and the little shrines that contain the icons of the gods of the temple.
Our next stop will probably leave my friends and family speechless. I don’t know how she did it but Mallory convinced me to take part in an art class. Now, who knows me knows that my artistic abilities are the same ones of a 3 years old. Actually, my six years old niece can draw way better than me. But then I said why not? Let’s try this public humiliation! After all, no one knows me in India!
Once at “Ashoka Arts” we choose the picture that we want to draw and paint. They are all miniatures representing traditional images of the Indian culture. I choose that the victim of my artistic disaster will be the poor God Ganesha.
You pay the class per hour. So basically, the worse you are, the more hours you need, the more you pay.
It goes without saying that I paid a lot.
But honestly… I must say that my result was not bad at all!
Well the lotus flower is not the best, and some proportions are a little weird, but trust me! For an absolute beginner like me, I can totally say that this is my masterpiece!
And after consuming all my inner energy for my artistic production, I decide to end this day with another massage.
This time I want to try the Shirodhara massage.
During a Shirodhara massage, the therapist pours some hot oil onto your head and then spread this oil all over your hair.
In theory, they say that the Shirodhara massage boosts the relaxation of your mind and your body by nourishing the nervous system. But honestly, this massage was a torture for me! First of all I found it very boring, and second of all very painful! Every time the masseuse was spreading the oil over my head, she would pull a hair or two, causing me unbearable pain.
Luckily the shop was about to close and I couldn’t do the entire hour, but only half. Thank God!
Or perhaps I should say: thank Ganesha!
But Ganesha wasn’t always on my side. We would have liked to dedicate more time in the exploration of Udaipur but unfortunately I went through some misadventures that changed our plans. But I have to say that planning in India is almost impossible so we had no choice but adapt to the new program.
So here it ends our visit to Udaipur in 3 days and we are ready now for a long road trip to the golden city of Rajasthan: Jaisalmer.