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Places Near Udaipur

There are many places around Udaipur. The Dilwara Jain temples, about 5 km to the north. These brilliantly carved temples which are amongst the finest in the world. Two of the temples in the complex, the Vimal Vasahi (built in 1031, and the oldest) and Tejpal Temple (built in 1231), are especially brilliant and leave you spell bound. The carving here is so intricate and delicate that they appear to be made out of ivory rather than marble!

Eklingji, (22 km) the complex of 108 beautifully sculpted temples dedicated to Lord Shiva, built in 734 AD. At Nagda, which lies, just 2 km away are the 10th century richly carved Sas-Bahu temples, and the splendid Jain temple of Adbudji.

Devigarh, 27 km from Udaipur, is an 18th century palace which has been converted in to a resort. Located in the village of Delwara, it is fast gaining the reputation of one of the plushest hotels in the world. The Resort offers recreational facilities like site seeing, camel rides, spas and lots more. Although it’s a little on the expensive side, you’ll have little complaints as Devigarh promises an extremely comfortable stay.

Nathdwara, (48 kms north) with its temple of Shrinathji (Lord Krishna) is a renowned pilgrim centre. It is said that in 1691, while the statue of Shrinath (Krishna) was being moved from Mathura to escape an attack by the fanatical Aurangzeb, the wheels of the carriage carrying the statue got stuck in the mud. Taking this as a divine message that Lord Krishna wanted to make that his abode, a temple was built there and the town grew around it. In the colourful bazaar outside the temple you can find some of Nathdwara’s famed Pichhawai cloth paintings.

Jaisamand Lake and Wildlife Sanctuary lie some 48 km southeast of Udaipur. The exceptionally picturesque area around one of Asia’s largest man-made lakes, built in the 17th century, with palaces, temples, graceful cenotaphs and marble steps leading down to the water, makes a pleasant getaway.

Kankroli, on the banks of the Rajasamand Lake, 65 km from Udaipur, is the site of a Vaishnava temple of Dwarkadhish and a beautiful Jain temple built by Dayal Shah, which has some intricate marble carvings.

Kumbhalgarh (84 km) is the most spectacular of the 32 forts built by Rana Kumbha. Lying on top of the Aravalli range at 1100 m, it fell only once in its history. Its ramparts run for 4 km along the Aravalli hills.

Other such nearby places are Ranakpur, is in a peaceful valley some 90 km north of Udaipur, it is one of the five main pilgrim centres for the Jains. The main shrine in the 500-year old temple complex (preserved in near perfect condition) is the huge Chaumukha Temple dedicated to Adinath, the first Jain saint. It is the largest and most complex Jain temple in India with 29 halls and 80 domes supported by 1444 ornately carved pillars, no two pillars alike. There are two other Jain temples in the complex, and,some distance away,a Sun temple.

The Fortress of Chittaurgarh, replete with heroic tales of the Sisodia rulers, is 112 km to the east. Capital of Mewar for 800 years this historic hilltop fortress was repeatedly ravaged by Muslim invaders and epitomises Rajput values and valour. The exploits of Rani Padmini, Rana Kumbha, Rana Sanga, Maharana Pratap, the poet-saint Princess Meerabai and others who lived here before them, are still recounted with pride throughout Rajasthan.

The Rawla Narlai at a driving distance of 140 Kms is a reflection of Jodhpur's glorious past. A heritage hotel enshrined in the Aravallis, Rawla Narlai is a royal oasis for terrific a stopover while coming to Udaipur.

Mount Abu may be just the place you need if your tour of Mewar has left you hot and dusty. Lying due west of Udaipur, about 185 km by road, this is the only hill station in Rajasthan (Altitude 1200 m). There are excellent walks, boating in the picturesque Nakki Lake, and several popular viewpoints (including the inevitable ‘Honeymoon Point’!) where you get enchanting views of the surrounding landscape.

Come to think of it, this just has to be another ‘must see’ destination of Rajasthan.

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