Famous for its placid lakes, Udaipur used to be the capital of Mewar during Rajputana sovereignty in the region. The scenic Lake Pichola is home to the breathtaking Lake Palace, a major attraction and now a heritage hotel, besides also being the venue where guests can enjoy sunset cruises.
Udaipur attractions include names of Lake Palace, Jag Mandir, Monsoon Palace, Lake Pichola, City Palace, and Fateh Sagar Lake among others.
City Palace Complex:
The royal facade and magnificent history has made the City Palace Complex, Udaipur, a must visiting destination in India. Every palace and structure in this complex paints a unique picture of the past. In the year 1559, along with the establishment of the Udaipur city by Maharana Udai Singh II, the city was built. The place was ruled by Maharanas over the next 300 years.
The palace complex showcases magnificent history of the royal facets of Rajasthan. Maharana Udai Singh, after facing defeat at his capital Chittor, while war with Mughal Emperor Akbar, moved and established his new capital at Udaipur. He constructed the Royal courtyard ‘Rai Angan’, as his first royal building in Udaipur. Maharana Pratap took the control of Udaipur after the death of his father Udai Singh, in the year 1572. Soon, Maharana Pratap witnessed success in defeating Mughal Emperor Akbar in 1576, at the battle of Haldighati. During this peaceful time, Udaipur witnessed construction of various palaces and thus, craze for miniature paintings and artifacts also grew. Most of these palaces were constructed in the middle of Lake Pichola or at the shores of the lake.
This City Palace Complex has a huge facade of 244 meters (801 ft) length and 30.4 meters (100 ft) height, which encompasses various palaces. This complex is on the east edge of the Pichola Lake. Starting from 1559, it took very long in the completion of the complex. There are contributions made by 76 generations of Sisodia Rajputs, and several Maharanas contributed to this royal structure. There are 11 separate palaces in this complex, thus, one can witness a perfect blend of Medieval, Chinese, Rajasthani, European and Mughal styles of architecture. Marble and granite is used in the making of the palace complex. For the balconies, interiors, towers and cupolas of the complex, leftover of colored glass, inlay-work, wall paintings, murals, silver-work, marble-work, mirror-work, etc., is used for the decoration.
The complex is built with various zigzag corridors to prevent surprise attacks. After entering the complex, through the main Tripolia (triple) gate, you will find the Peacock courtyard (Mor-Chowk), the Palace of Pearls (Moti Mahal), the Public Address Facade (Suraj Gokhda), the Heart’s Delight (Dilkhush Mahal), the Palace of Glass and Mirrors (Sheesh Mahal), the Surya Chopar, Royal Residence (Shambu Niwas), the Krishna Vilas, the Palace with a Raised Garden (Amar Vilas), the Bhim Vilas, the Big Palace (Badi Mahal) the latest addition to the complex (Shiv Niwas Palace), and the Fateprakash Palace.
This 4Km long and 3km wide lake is one of the many other beautiful creations of Maharana Udai Singh II. The lake was built by flooding a village called Picholi, and has four islands. Each of the islands is bestowed with flourishing beauty having adorning forts, palaces and temples. This lake is also home to camels, elephants, crocodiles; it indeed has a sprawling wildlife and needless to say, abundant greenery too. There are many other lakes of Udaipur (As it is rightly called The City of Lakes) which are connected to Lake Pichola. Fateh Sagar Lake is another famous lake which is connected to it through a bridge.
This palace not only had left its magic spell on the tourists but also did inspire the great Shah Jahan; and this inspiration gave birth to Taj Mahal. And to describe the beauty of Taj Mahal, there isn’t an adjective apt enough and for Jag Madir, which inspired its creation indeed needs no description. Also during the First World War the island on which Jag Mandir lies was used as a shelter for women and children. The Palace has three floors, the upper area is built of yellow sandstone and the ground area is built of marble. The palace is embellished with detailed carvings. There are well chiseled elephants arrayed at the entrance which look as if they are guarding the palace.
Fateh Sagar Lake
Fateh Sagar Lake is amongst the prides of Udaipur, The City of Lakes. This lake is connected to Lake Pichola through a bridge and was built by Maharana Pratap in 1678. Fateh Sagar Lake has three small islands, two of which are parks and one has Udaipur Solar Observatory (USO). The emerald water blending with the lush green surrounding and hills looks too dreamy to be believed; and this is what makes this lake get millions of admirers. The ones who get to sail in this lake achieve an undefined level of tranquility. Don’t forget to load your cameras with enough battery and memory so you can take home an ever cherishing moment of life.