When I was in Mount Abu, I thought of visiting Udaipur by bus. Udaipur was not on my route of this cycling expedition but I really wanted to explore this magnificent city. Moreover, I was ahead of my schedule. There is no point reaching Manali too early as the Manali to Leh highway would not open before the first week of May.
I took a bus to Udaipur, leaving my bicycle in Mount Abu. I have three college friends who work at Taj Lake Palace, Leela Palace and Udai Vilas in Udaipur. The Udai Vilas has been ranked as No. 1 hotel in the world in terms of hospitality and service. I stayed at the Leela Palace hotel’s apartment. Udaipur is known as City of Lakes and it is really a very beautiful place. There is so much to do and explore that you can easily take a week off. The beautiful Taj Lake Palace is in the Pichola Lake. If one has to come to the Udaipur city, staying near the old city is recommended as it is where all the essence of Udaipur lies, rest of the city being just like another city. I found the old city market just like Manali, with postcards, bracelets, handicrafts, etc., hanging outside and the terrain also being similar. It is a very happening place and Udaipur has maintained its inflow of tourists very well. People are very helpful and hospitable. Many local people have developed a strong bond with foreigners.
If you want a peaceful time, sit around any ghat like the Ambrai Ghat, the Gangaur Ghat or go to the Dudh Talai, which is near the Tibetan Market in the old city, where you can enjoy a beautiful sunset. The City Palace in Udaipur is a heritage hotel with its front portion facing the Pichola Lake. It is built at various levels as the terrain is like that.
Udaipur is surrounded by the Aravalli Range from all sides. Most the palace has been converted into a museum and a heritage hotel. A portion of it is being used as an accommodation by the Maharaja and family. You can take a boat ride in the Pichola Lake and visit all the ghats of the old city. A royal boat in red and blue colour is always there in the Pichola Lake and is used by the royal family at their own will. The water in the Pichola Lake is kept clean as it is the major attraction of the old Udaipur city. You can enjoy camel ride and get yourself clicked in traditional Rajasthani dress at Dudh Talai.
The police stay very vigilant in Udaipur and look after that the interests of tourists and check that they are with a certified guide. You should not give Udaipur a miss during your next holiday as you would be missing a lot. The peak season in Udaipur is from October to March.