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Udaipur – The City of Beautiful Lakes

Udaipur is a beautiful city of lakes, palaces, pastoral customs and handicraft. It is a popular location in the world that attracts thousands of western tourists and is home to the legendary Picchhola Lake. It was once the capital of one of the imperial state of Mewar and is considered to be the Venice of India. Udaipur has three main lakes in all connected to each other in series. They are:

  • The Picchhola Lake
  • The Fateh Sagar Lake and
  • The Swaroop Sagar Lake.

The Lake Palace, in Udaipur is one of the most quixotic places on this earth. The Palace is situated amid of the picturesque and beautiful Pichola Lake. The tourists can have a heavenly view of this lake from the palace. With impressive Aravalli Hills on one side and very tall palaces on the other, make the wonderful surroundings to this attractive Lake Palace. Maharana Jai Singh II was the name of the person who constructed Lake Palace in 1746. The complete complex is made up of white marble. This splendid complex spread wide across a four-acre island forming a surreal impression.

Formerly, this Palace was known by the name Jag Niwas after the name of the Maharana. At present times, it is well known by the name of Lake Palace. Jag Niwas was designed to offer a summer resort to the royal family of Udaipur. In the later years, it was used as the summer resort by the progeny of Jagat Singh. The remarkable exteriors would make you yearn to have a glance at the beautiful Lake Palace. While entering this amazing Palace, you would feel that you are on cloud nine because you will find everything to be just perfect.

Interestingly, the spectacular architecture of the Lake Palace will leave you jaw dropped and spellbound. It has a series of courtyards that are arranged in one line with several columns, terraces, gorgeous fountains and well laid gardens.

Lake Palace also encompasses numerous rooms by the name of Bada Mahal, Khush Mahal, Ajjan Niwas, Phool Mahal and Dhola Mahal that invigorate the beauty of charming palace. These highly unusually and colorful rooms are decked with engraved arches, paintings, crystal and stained glass work, internal stones of pink and green lotus leaves.

To summarize, would say that a glimpse of this Palace will captivate you by its magnetism. So, whenever you get time plan your vacation and do visit this incredible romantic palace of the World.

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Key Tourist Attraction of City Palace in Jaipur

The City Palace is an impressive fusion of customary Rajasthani and Mughal art and construction. The City Palace complex basically encompasses of numerous splendid and royal structures. In the heart of the old Jaipur city, this palace covers a huge area which is further segmented into a sequence of courtyards, gardens and buildings.

Interestingly, the outer wall of this world famous complex was constructed by Jai Sing; however other additions were undertaken much later, somewhat near around the beginning of this century. The City Palace spread around one-seventh of the vicinity of the walled city. Additionally, it comprises of the Chandra Mahal, Shri Govind Dev Temple and the City Palace Museum.

The first structure in this palace is Mubarak Mahal, which was fabricated by Maharaja Madho Singh. It has a magnificently engraved marble gate with heavy brass doors on each side of this gate. Outside this gate, there is the Diwan-E-Khas (also known as the Hall Of Private Audience) with a marble covered gallery. Across a marble paved square, you will find the Diwan-E-Am (popularly known as the Hall Of Public Audience) with its detailed decorations and manuscripts written in Persian and Sanskrit languages. Plus, there is a clock tower and the newly constructed Mubarak Mahal.

When you will go the north-west direction of the palace you will find the majestic and charming seven-storey Chandra Mahal, the house of preceding ruler. The seven storey of Chandra Mahal has been considered as the symbol of pride and joy with magnificent views of the gardens and the Jaipur city.

The complex also has an exceptional museum, a munitions store and quite a lot of outstanding halls. The apartments are maintained in lavish manner and the museum of Maharaja Sawai Man Singh II has an all-embracing compilation of art, carpets, enamelware and old weapon.

The paintings that are showcased in the museum mainly include miniatures in Rajasthani, Mughal and Persian schools.  The munitions dating back to the 15th century as well as numerous inventive and complicated weapons, which the Rajput soldiers used at that point of time. A division of museum also consists of dresses and costumes of the preceding Maharajas and Maharanis of Jaipur.

Each storey has a unique name and is a place of absolute exquisiteness and opulence. Paintings, flower-patterned decorations, mirror walls and ceilings in the conventional style are some of the key aspects that festoon the palace. And, the topmost storey is known as the Mukut Mahal. Every year thousands of visitors come to India to view these palaces in Rajasthan.

Ultimately, would say that witness the magnificence of the City Palace, whenever you visit Rajasthan.

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What makes Hawa Mahal famous

Hawa Mahal

The well-known Palace Of The Winds or Hawa Mahal is one of the attractive tourist spot in Jaipur city, in Rajasthan. Situated in the center of Jaipur, this attractive five-storey complex was built in 1799 by famous Maharaja Sawai Pratap Singh who was the monarch of Kachhwaha Rajput dynasty.

The major architect of this palace is made up of red and pink sandstone. This complex had been believed to have been constructed in the form of the coronet of Krishna, the Hindu god. The main person behind construction of this palace was Lal Chand Ustad. It has been considered as an epitome of Rajputana building with key highlight of Hawa Mahal.

Hawa Mahal
Image courtesy of wikimedia.org

Hawa Mahal is in pyramid shape and has near about 953 windows (also known as Jharokhas) which are festooned with detailed and unique designs. The foremost purpose behind the edifice of the Mahal was to facilitate the majestic women and present them a vision of day to day life through the windows, as they were not suppose to appear in public.

Unique Architecture of Hawa Mahal

Famous for its distinguished and world-famous architecture, Hawa Mahal was constructed under the regime of Maharaja Sawai Pratap Singh and was designed by Lal Chand Usta. The architecture of Hawa Mahal is undoubtedly an unforgettable sight to behold. Designed as beehive castle with small portholes, Hawa Mahal has a height of 50 feet from its high base.

The world-known palace is a five-storey pyramidal shaped monument. The top three floors of the monument have a dimension of one room width. On the rear side of the structure, first and second floors have patios in front of them.

The street view of the front elevation of Hawa Mahal resembles a beehive built with small portholes. Further each pothole seems to have small windows beautified with carved sandstone grills, finials and domes. The monument has semi octagonal bays, largely contributing to its exquisite facade. Hawa Mahal is also considered unique for its breathtaking interiors that are known to be embellished with colored marbles, relieved by inlaid panels or gilding. Adding to the scenic view of the Mahal are the fountains adorn the centre of the courtyard.

 

 

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Popular Palaces in Rajasthan – A Sneak Peek into Royal India

City Palace

Rajasthan has been considered as one of the most colorful states India. Undoubtedly, it has so much to offer to the visiting tourists. The scenery, festivals, and flora and fauna, all hold an irresistible charm that draws tourists from worldwide towards itself like a magnet. Moreover, the people of the state are highly spirited and warm.

Interesting, the palaces of Rajasthan have been one of the major tourist attraction. They have been gloriously standing since decades in this princely state. Broadly speaking, the name ‘Rajasthan’ in itself invokes an image of insurmountable forts and graceful palaces in the mind of travelers.

These remarkable structures have become a royalty symbol for Rajasthan. Through this post, let’s have a short journey through these masterpieces to know what makes tourists come back here time and again to take pleasure in the splendid blend of imperial times of yore and contemporary comforts.

City Palace, Jaipur

This sprawling palace is a fantastic mix of Rajput and Mughal architecture. Today, a part of this palace is open to the public as the Maharaja Sawai Man Singh II Museum, commonly known as the City Palace Museum. Its treasures miniature paintings, manuscripts, Mughal carpets, musical instruments, majestic costumes and armaments, which gives a wonderful introduction to Jaipur’s princely past, and it’s captivating arts and crafts.

City Palace
Image courtesy of hywards / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Hawa Mahal, Jaipur

The whimsical Hawa Mahal, also popularly known as Palace of Winds, is a remarkable addition to Rajasthan’s rich heritage. The design of this complex was created by Lal Chand Utsa. And, it was created by Sawai Pratap Singh in 1799. The key attraction of this palace includes ornate pink façade, tiered Baroque-like work of art, 953 projecting windows, 900 niches and balconies and much more.

Lake Palace, Udaipur

This beautiful monument is situated on the Jag Niwas Island (exactly in Lake Pichola of Udaipur), which offers an inherent ground for the Palace. This island was created by Maharana Jagat Singh in the year 1754. It has been designated as one of the most romantic place in India and across the globe. Key attraction of this splendid Palace is beauty of Lake Pichola.

Umaid Bhawan Palace, Jodhpur

This huge palace, made up of creamy-pink sandstone and marble that has been designed without the usage of mortar. It has been considered as one of the perfect example of India’s opulence. Key attraction of this massive complex includes 347 rooms that comprises of eight dining halls, two theatres, a ballroom, numerous opulently festooned reception halls and an immense underground swimming pool.

In a nutshell, explore the beauty of Rajasthan by visiting these interesting historical monuments and know more about mythical legends associated with them.

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Explore the Heritage of Rajasthan Forts

Amber Fort

Forts of Rajasthan magnificently reflect the architectural heritage of the state. These forts hold their own distinct place in the times gone by and culture of Rajasthan. They have been considered as the insignia of Royal Rajasthan. Today each and every city and town in Rajasthan, which was once a princely state, possesses at least one spectacular and captivating fort.

Here are some of the most famous forts of Rajasthan:

Golden Fort
Image courtesy of flickr.com

Golden Fort or Sonar Qila – Golden Fort is situated in Jaisalmer and is one of the oldest forts in Rajasthan. It was built on top of the Trikuta Hill back in 1156 AD by Bhatti Chief Jaisal. Interestingly, this fort still offers shelter to near about one fourth population of Jaisalmer city. There are many places that attract tourists inside the fort campus, such as Jain Temples, Havelis, Gadsisar Sagar Lake and Museum.

Amber Fort – Amber fort is one of the best exemplar of Rajput passion for majesty, spendlor and opulence. It is located about 11 km from Jaipur city on the Aravalli hills. It is made up of red sandstone and white marble. And, the structural design of the fort is one of the live examples of Rajput and Mughal trend. Within the fort complex, you will find numerous of places of your interest to explore. Well-known Jai Mandir with its renowned Sheesh Mahal is located inside the Amber fort complex.

Amber Fort
Image courtesy of wikipedia.org

Mehrangarh Fort – Mehrangarh fort in Jodhpur is one of India’s largest forts that take you back to the splendid past of the Rajput. This fort is also made up of red sandstones. Interestingly, there are numerous palaces within the territorial boundary of Mehrangarh fort. These palaces are well-known for elaborated carvings and extensive courtyards.

Junagarh Fort – Junagarh fort has been considered as one of the most attractive forts of Rajasthan that was built in the medieval period. With consistent efforts to preserve this beauty by the Rajasthan government has helped a great deal in keeping the exquisiteness and magnificence of this fort intact. It was built way back in the year 1588 AD by famous Raja Rai Singh.

Junagarh Fort
Image courtesy of flickr.com

It is a unusual illustration of a medieval period memorial. Some of the key attractions of this fort are few attractive palaces, courtyards, pavilions and balconies.

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Rajasthan Temples: Reflecting Glory of India

Mehandipur Balaji

Rajasthan is well-known for its architectural glory and magnificence. Temples of the state reflect faith and religious belief of the people. They are the evidence of the remarkable architectural movement of the early 8th century and symbolize the artistic brilliance of the sculptors of the ancient times. The temples also act as meeting ground for people, while celebrating various festivals and traditions. The common lynchpin running in these shrines are the mandap and shikhara. The shrines are beautifully sculptured and carved, and are delightful to view.

The holy shrines are found in most part of the villages, cities, and towns of Rajasthan. Some of the famous temples are:

Mehandipur Balaji
Image courtesy of panoramio.com

Mehandipur Balaji: Located in Dausa, the temple is a unique creation. It is believed that the temple has divine powers of the God Mehandipur Balaji, and can miraculously cure a person controlled by an evil spirit. The magical divine powers and impeccable designs of the temple are a delight to watch.

Birla Temple
Image courtesy of http://pixabay.com

Brahma Temple: The temple is situated in the great Pushkar city and is visited by several Hindu devotees all through the year. The temple dates back to the early 14th century, and rests on a high platform made of marbles. Adorned with beautifully engraved silver turtle on the garbhagriha, the temple is an amazing sight to watch.

Kaila Devi Mandir: The temple is nestled on the banks of holy Kalisil River and is about 23 kilometers from the Karauli village of Rajasthan. Devoted to the deity Kaila, the temple was built by the Jadaun Rajput emperors of the Karauli dynasty. Goddess Kaila is believed as the savior and protector of the mankind.

Birla Temple: The temple is one of the main tourist attractions of the pink city Jaipur and is believed to be a replication of a castle located in the Scotland. The mandir was constructed by the affluent Birla family. It was constructed in 1988 and reflects the religious beliefs of the Hindu mythology. The architectural magnificence of the temple is really appealing and its exteriors are splendidly carved with exquisite sculptures, based on mythological themes. The Laxmi Narayan mandir is one of the architectural masterpieces and showcases the spiritual heritage of the country.

Rajasthan is the most vivacious and beautiful state of our country. All the temples located in the state reflect a true glimpse of the country’s rich historical and cultural heritage. The land is famous for its majestic monuments, forts, and beautiful havelis, and attracts domestic and international travelers throughout the year.

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The Serenity of the Arid Lands – Rajasthan

The largest state of the Indian sub –continent offers the serenity of its largely arid lands. Rajasthan is a traveler’s delight with much more to offer than what merely meets the naked eyes. A hub to many stripes of the nation – tigers, the national animal of India – Rajasthan houses three tiger reserves namely Ranthambore, Sariska and the Mukundara Hills.

The majestic forts of the state, inexplicably beautifully carved temples, the lakes of Udaipur, the Jain temples, the pink city of Jaipur, the pilgrimage places, the tales of the chivalrous Rajputs, the magnificent cities, the heritage, the culture and the food – Rajasthan till this day lives up to the folklores that have echoed for ages. When it comes to the horizons of the Thar, tourist cannot resist a tour on the humble single humped Indian camels. The Forts, some with the best that the pages of history can offer are a delight to the eyes.

The local culture, the herds of sheep, the camel cart, the mesmerizing tunes of the Rawan Hathha and many more – Rajasthan cloaks one away from the hustle bustle of the world to its rich history. As they say, the land of kings still holds on the essence of the many royals who still wander in its breeze. A travel to this north western region of India will surely open up more to savor. The delicacies of the state are a must on the traveler’s list. Come home to Rajasthan, it houses all that could foray on one’s imagination.

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