The airport in Udaipur is an hour out of the city and there is a pre-paid taxi stand. We shared a ride with someone to reduce the price. We’re staying at Hotel Gangaur Palace – an old haveli (house with a central courtyard) which is 250 years old and has been converted into a hotel. It’s really nice and the thick old walls kept us warm last night and still cool this morning.Did a whole bunch of shopping and a little sightseeing – the crafts and particularly the textiles are beautiful here. If you’ve seen the Indian wallcoverings with the mirrors and embroidery in them that’s from Rajasthan – the area of India that we’re in. So it’s fun browsing through everything.
We went to see a temple yesterday. Shree Jagdish Mandir Temple which is a 17th century temple in the middle of the Old City dedicated to Vishnu’s avatar Jagannath.Today we just finished touring the City Palace and then we went on a short boat ride around the lake. Very pleasant. The weather is beautiful, sunny and warm – Wendy’d be in shorts if any of the other women were wearing them!
We visited a horrible puppet museum -Bharatiya Lok Kala Mandal Folk Art Museum – where we took photos of graffiti drawn right onthe main exhibits…We’re off to do more shopping, and hopefully pick up something nicer to wear tonight for dinner at the Lake Palace. Good thing that Ian kept the email reservation – they’ve more than doubled their rate, but they’re agreeing to honour the price they quoted him in email – yeah!
The Lake Palace is the one that was featured in Octopussy – it was built on an island in the middle of the lake but it takes up the whole of the island – giving the effect of a palace that’s floating. It should be a special way to ring in the New Year!