Udaipur is situated on the banks of
the lovely Lake Pichola and the lake of Fatehsagar, in Southern Rajasthan, the
Eden like Udaipur, cocooned by the Aravalli Hills, is a dotted with numerous
beautiful palaces, domes, shrines among other top tourist attractions. Udaipur
is situated around the shimmering clear blue water lakes, which whisper the mood
of a bygone era.
The city was founded in 1567 AD by Maharana Udai Singh on the advice of a sage.
Udaipur was last of the numerous Mewar capitals. It was in Udaipur that
legendary Maharana Pratap was born. He was obsessed with Chittaur and the past
glories of the Sisodia clan possessed his mind. Maharana Pratap left Udaipur to
win back Chittaur from the Mughals. But he failed in his attempts and Udaipur
remained the capital of Mewar till India got her independence.The memory of the
failure of noble Pratap gives Udaipur its pervading mood of nostalgic
The city acquires its scenic beauty from the Aravallis. Three lakes- Pichola,
Fateh Sagar and Udai Sagar make it an oasis in the desert. Udaipur is
known as the ' City of Lakes'. The two most scenic and famous lakes of the city
are Lake Pichola and Lake Fateh Sagar.
The Lake Palace
One of the most romantic cities in Rajasthan, Udaipur is also known as the city
of lakes. The marble palaces, beautifully laid out gardens and the lakes make
Udaipur seem almost like a mirage in the desert.
The founder of Udaipur, Maharana Udai Singh, was overcome by the misfortunes
that his old capital of Chittaurgarh had to face due to repeated attacks by the
Mughal armies. On the advice of a holy man, Udai Singh shifted his capital to
the banks of Lake Pichola- the city was named Udaipur after him.
This marble palace that seems to be floating on the Lake Pichola is undoubtedly
the main attraction of Udaipur. Now a luxury hotel, this palace can be accessed
by boat from the city palace which overlooks it.
Other attractions in Udaipur include Krishna Vilas, Lake Fateh Sagar,Sajjan
Niwas and Gulab Bagh, Machchalaya Magra, Doodh Talai, Jag Mandir, and the
Bharatiya Lok Kala Museum.
48 kms from the city, this artificial lake was built in 17th century by Maharana
Jai Singh. The marble 'Chhatris' along the embankment add grace to this second
largest lake in Asia. On either sides of the lake were built the palaces for the
favourite queens of the King. People of the Bhil tribe still inhabit the islands
in Jaisamand lake.
Pratap Memorial: Erected atop Modi Magri is this equestrian bronze statue of the
valiant hero, Maharana Pratap. Sajjan Garh, Gulab Bagh, Dudh Talai Park, the
Sunset point are also the places to be seen.
The City Palace
Overlooking the lake Pichola is the City Palace, a marvel of marble and granite.
The largest palace in Rajasthan, its exquisite worksmanship makes it a must on
every visitor's itinerary. The three mahals - Baari, Dilkush and Moti, the Suraj
Gokhada of the Sun Balcony, the Mor Chowk Known for its beautiful peacock
Mosaics ; the shrine of Dhuni Mata and the Museum of Rana Pratap are the
highlights of this complex.
Close to the City Palace is the Jagdish Temple which houses some imposing
sculpted figures and heavily ornamented interiors. At a short distance is the
Sahelion-ki-Bari or the Garden of Maidens which has four pools and delicately
carved kiosks and elephants in marble. Built in the early 18th century, this is
now a popular tourist spot.
On the shores of Fateh Sagar Lake was built a garden for the 48 young girls
waiting to be sent to the royal house as part of dowry. This garden is laid with
extensive lawns, fountains and shady walking lanes. There are four pools with
dainty kiosks and fountains with elephant trunks for spouts. These gardens
appear discrete and impeccable in taste.
Bharatiya Lok Kala Mandal: This is a museum of folk arts, which has rich
collection of folk dresses, ornaments, puppets, masks, dolls, folk musical
instruments and paintings. World famous puppeteers put shows here, on request in