If you haven’t been to Udaipur yet, you’re definitely missing out on one of India’s most beautiful sights. Full of heritage hotels, palaces and of course the pretty lakes, this city is a delight. No wonder it’s called the “Venice of India”. Amanda from Style Coquettes lists out all the highlights that will make this destination a perfect winter getaway. P.S Do take a look at her personal pictorial diary too.
Where To Stay
The Taj Lake Palace
, built by Maharana Jagat Singh II in 1763, is a white marble façade, on a four-acre property that covers the island resting in the heart of lake Pichola. Believe it or not - but from the moment you arrive at this palace till the moment you leave, everyone tries to give you a “Royal” experience.
The private road leading to the boat ride to the royal “Flower Shower” welcome, the whole experience is truly magical.
The best part about your stay here is that you can only commute via motor boats and I have to say that the motor boat service between the palace and the main entrance of your hotel is simply amazing, you never wait too long.
The ambience and the location is beyond amazing, as well as the food. But by far the best part about the hotel is the service they try to give you. It is expensive surely but it will exceed every expectation you have.This is one island you surely wouldn’t mind being stranded on.
Taj Lake Palace, Lake Pichola, Udaipur (+91 294 242 8800; www.tajhotels.com)
The Leela Palace, Udaipur
Opened in 2010, The Leela Palace Kempinski palace hotel has 72 rooms and 8 suites, which are adorned with traditional Mewar touches and offer stunning views of the lake and unparalleled views of surrounding historical sites like Jagat Niwas and Jag Mandir. The hotel definitely has a palatial feel to it but it also has certain modern elements which make it contemporary.
The Leela Palace Kempinksi Udaipur, Lake Pichola, Udaipur (+91 294 670 1234; www.theleela.com)
The Oberoi Udaivilas
Set on the banks of splendid Lake Pichola, The Oberoi Udaivilas
looks like a majestic palace. The enormous 30-acre property boasts of two stunning swimming pools and a fabulous spa. Not to forget this huge property is also one of the most desirable wedding destinations in Asia.
The Oberoi Udaivilas, Haridasji Ki Magri, Udaipur (+91 294 243 3300; www.oberoihotels.com)
Where to Eat
Considering I was staying at the Taj Lake Palace I loved every bit of “The dine in style and Pomp” treatment at The Mewar Terrace
. The food is certainly delicious, but the sight of Rajasthani dancers at the terrace and the view of the lake and City Palace all lit up, far away on the banks, is what makes it a divine experience. They serve everything from Asian, Indian, Contemporary Western ,Italian food to the traditional Rajisthani thali.
This Multi- cuisine restaurant Ambrai
undoubtedly has the best location and ambience for dinner in Udaipur. It is right next to the Lake Pichola, hence one can enjoy the breathtaking view from their candle lit dinner tables. The service isn’t spectacular but I would still give it thumbs up purely because of the ambience.
Street Fare: Pyaaz kachori at JMB (Jayesh Mishthan Bhandar), Chetak Circle
They do a mighty pyaaz kachori
and a sweet mawa kachori
and I have to say that they are a must have!! Trip to Udaipur is incomplete without the JMB Kachoris
and the Mirchi Vada
- “Highly Recommended”
What To Do
Visit The City Palace
Built on the banks of Lake Pichola, is one of the greatest architectural marvels of Udaipur, boasting panoramic views of the lake and city from the upper balconies, towers and cupolas.
A venue for royal parties and ceremonies, is an extraordinary structure built on an island in the middle of Lake Pichola. The Jag Mandir Palace
is lit up at night, and the sight makes for one of Udaipur’s most lasting and beautiful memories. And if you happen to visit while it has been booked for a wedding, you’ll see it in it's full splendor.
This place is a must-visit especially if you are a car enthusiast. The Rolls Royce Phantom, The Cadillacs and The age-old Mercs are some of the popular cars displayed there. The cars are in pristine condition and still working and every car is a beauty in itself!!
Fateh Sagar Lake
The walk alongside the lake even with the hustle and bustle of hawkers around is extremely relaxing , it really helps you unwind. The best is to take the sun set boat ride while you are chilling by the lake.
Where To Shop
Do remember that bargaining is the key to an absolutely delightful shopping experience in Udaipur!!
The most popular market of Udaipur, Bada Bazaar is also one of the liveliest markets. Silver Jwellery, bandhani fabrics to camel leather bags and footwear is all available here at reasonable rates.
Hathi Pol Bazaar
If you have an eye for art, then this is the place for you to shop for the famous Pichwai
paintings of Rajasthan, apart from other miniature paintings and traditional Rajasthani artwork at Hathi Pol Bazaar.
Lake Palace Road
This street has a number of souvenir shops and is quite popular for handicrafts and embroidered textiles.
All images courtesy: MOTO X by Motorola
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