Mount Abu Hill Station
Mount Abu is the only hill station in Rajasthan. It has an elevation of 1,220 m (4,003 ft) and situated on a rocky plateau which is 22 km long by 9 km wide. The highest peak on the mountain is Guru Shikhar at 1,722 m (5,650 ft) above sea level. Someone has referred it is as ‘an oasis in the desert’ because its heights are home to rivers, lakes, waterfalls and evergreen forests.
The ancient name of Mount Abu is Arbudaanchal. In the Puranas, this region has been referred to as Arbudaranya (“forest of Arbhuda”).It is also described in the epic Mahabharata which is mentioned in the travels of Arjuna during his twelve-year pilgrimage.
How to reach to Mount Abu
Mount Abu is connected with Airways, Railways and Roadways.
Nearest airport is Maharana Pratap Airport, Udaipur which is 210 Km from Mount Abu.
The nearest Railway station is Abu Road railway station which is 28 km.
It is also well connected with private (luxury and deluxe bus) and state-run buses from Udaipur, Jaipur, Jaisalmer and Delhi. It is also connected with daily bus services from the cities like Vadodara and Ahmedabad.
What to see in Mount Abu:
Nakki Lake, Arbuda Devi Temple, Dattatreya Temple, Achaleshwar Mahadev Temple, Dilwara Jain Temples, Mount Abu Wildlife Sanctuary, Adventure activities
Day 1: Reach Mount Abu from Delhi and visit Nakki Lake.
The Nakki Lake is center of attractions in Mount Abu. The lake is about half mile long and a quarter mile wide with 20 to 30 ft. deep towards the dam. Mahatma Gandhi’s ashes were immersed in this Holy Lake on 12th February 1948 and Gandhi Ghat was constructed.
Boating in the lake and horse rides around the lake is available.You can do some shopping at Nakki Lake market.
The Toad Rock is a rock facing the lake which looks like a toad about to jump into the lake. The Sunset Point is also a nearby attraction but going towards it is forbidden because of safety and security. Hence, watch sunset from the lake and not from the sunset point.
Raghunath Temple and Maharaja Jaipur Palace are also on hills near the Lake.
Day 2: Temples, Mount Abu Wildlife Sanctuary, Adventure activities
Mount Abu is famous for its Hindu and Jain Temples including:
The Arbuda Devi Temple or Adhar Devi Temple was carved out of solid rock.
The Dattatreya Temple was built atop the Guru Shikhar peak.
The Achaleshwar Mahadev Temple is a popular Shiva temple.
The Dilwara Jain Temples are a complex of temples carved out of white marble which are located about 2½ kilometres from the Mount Abu settlement.
The spiritual headquarter of the faith community of Brahma Kumaris is also located here.
Mount Abu Wildlife Sanctuary
The Mount Abu Wildlife Sanctuary is just 3 km away from the Dilwara Temples and is home to leopards, foxes, deer, and bears.
Adventure other popular activities like hiking, rock climbing, camping, rappelling and some more are waiting for your indulgence.
Day 3: Mount Abu to Udaipur (163 KM) & visit City Palace, Pichola Lake, Jag Niwas, Jag Mandir.
Udaipur- The Lake City:
In 1558, it was founded by Udai Singh II of the Sisodia clan of Rajput when he shifted his capital from the city of Chittorgarh to Udaipur. It is also known as the ‘City of Lakes’ and ‘Venice of East’ because it has most beautiful lakes as Pichola Lake, Fatah Sagar Lake, UdaiSagar, Rangsagar Lake and Swaroop Sagar Lake.
Besides lakes, Udaipur is also known for its historic forts and palaces, museums, galleries, natural locations and gardens, architectural temples, as well as traditional fairs and festivals.
The lakes of the city are interconnected and form a lake system. This supports and sustains the groundwater recharge, water availability for drinking, agriculture, industries. It is a source of employment through tourism.
How to reach Udaipur:
It is well connected with major cities of the country through Airways, Railways and Roadways.
MaharanaPratap Airport is a small domestic airport situated about 20 kilometres away from Udaipur. Daily flights connect Udaipur with Jaipur, Mumbai, Delhi, Chennai, Aurangabad, Bangalore, Hyderabad, Surat and Varanasi. Air India, IndiGo and Spice Jet are operational at present.
Udaipur City railway station and RanaPratap Nagar railway station are two railway stations in Udaipur. These are connected with major cities of India. Some luxurious trains like The Palace on Wheels, Royal Rajasthan on Wheels, Maharaja Express have scheduled stop too.
The city lies on the intersection point of East West Corridor, Golden Quadrilateral, National Highway (NH) 76 and National Highway (NH). It is around 660 km from Delhi, 394 KM from Jaipur, 249 KM from Jodhpur, 163 Km from Mount Abu, 262 Km from Ahmedabad and 760 km from Mumbai.
What to see in Udaipur:
City Palace, Pichola Lake, Jag Niwas, Jag Mandir, Fateh Sagar Lake, Deen Dayal Upadhyay Park, Doodh Talai Lake, Bharatiya Lok Kala Mandal, Badi Lake and Shilpgram.
It is a 400-year-old palace located on the east bank of the Lake Pichola. Its main entrance is through the triple-arched gate – the Tripolia, built in 1725. This gate leads to a series of courtyards, overlapping partitions, terraces, corridors and gardens. The palace now houses a museum with many antique articles, paintings, decorative furniture and utensils from the royal era.
Monuments like the Lake Palace, Jag Mandir, Jagdish Temple, Monsoon Palace, and Neemach Mata temple, are all in the vicinity of the palace complex. City palace was also used for shooting of movies like Octopussy and Goliyon Ki Raasleela Ram-Leela.
It is an artificial fresh water lake created in the year 1362 AD. The lake was built by Banjara, a gypsy “Banjara” tribesman who transported grain, during the reign of Maharana Lakha. Later, Maharana Udai Singh, impressed by the charm of this lake with the backdrop of green hills, founded the city of Udaipur on the banks of the lake and also enlarged the Lake by constructing a stone masonry dam in the Badipol region on the shore of the lake.
There are four islands on the lake viz.
- Jag Niwas, where is built the Lake Palace
- Jag Mandir, with the palace of the same name
- Mohan Mandir, from where the king would watch the annual Gangaur festival celebration
- Arsi Vilas, a small island which was an ammunition depot, and also a small palace
Jag Niwas or Lake Palace
Lake Palace was known as Jag Niwas. Earlier, it was the private summer resort of the erstwhile royal family which has been turned into a luxury hotel. It is located at one of the island of Lake Pichola which has 83 rooms and suites featuring white marble walls. Its natural foundation spans 4 acres (16,000 m2). The hotel has been ranked the best luxury heritage hotels in the country.
It is built on an island in Lake Pichola and is known for its beautiful interiors and grand style of architecture. It is also known as the “Lake Garden Palace”. This palace is now the Jagmandir Island Palace, a heritage hotel.
Day 4: Fateh Sagar Lake, Deen Dayal Upadhyay Park, Doodh Talai Lake, Bharatiya Lok Kala Mandal, Badi Lake and Shilpgram
Fateh Sagar Lake
It is an artificial lake situated to the north of the Lake Pichola, in the north-west of Udaipur city, around 6 km from Udaipur City Railway Station. It was named after Maharana Fateh Singh of Udaipur and Mewar.
Doodh Talai Lake
It is a small pond located adjacent to the Lake Pichola which is surrounded by small hillocks which hosts Deen Dayal Upadhyay Park and Manikya Lal Verma Garden or Rock Garden or Musical Fountain Garden. It provides few options for fast food centers, camel and horse rides and boat ride.
Deen Dayal Upadhyay Park
This is a garden developed around the Dudh Talai by Urban Improvement Trust (UIT) Udaipur, the local development authority. Visitors may enjoy watching a musical fountain here. A ropeway has been set up here to reach Karni Mata Temple at the top of Machhla Mangra.
Monsoon Palace at the hilltop
Monsoon Palace was built in 1884 by Maharana Sajjan Singh of the Mewar Dynasty giving it the name Sajjangarh. The palace is near Fateh Sagar Lake. The palace was also used in the 1983 James Bond film Octopussy.
Sajjangarh Biological Park
It is a zoological garden which is situated just beneath the Monsoon Palace or Sajjangarh Palace around 4 km from the city center. The zoo houses vast varieties of animals and birds brought in from different parts of the world. At present, it has more than 60 animals of 21 species including tigers, panthers, lions, ostriches, alligators, and rhesus monkeys.
Saheliyon-ki-Bari or ‘Courtyard of the Maidens’ is a garden and a popular tourist destination. With fountains, kiosks, a lotus pool and marble elephants it was built for the royal ladies. This renowned garden is located on the banks of FatehSagar Lake and also has a small museum with the collection of royal households.
Bharatiya Lok Kala Mandal
Bharatiya Lok Kala Mandal, a cultural institution, is engaged in studying folk art, culture, songs and festivals of various regions of India, including Rajasthan, Gujarat and Madhya Pradesh. It also aims at popularizing and propagating folk arts, folk dances and folk literature.
Badi Lake is an artificial fresh water lake built in the village of Badi, about 12 km from the city of Udaipur. Built by Maharana Raj Singh I (1652–1680), it was aimed to counteract the devastating effects of a famine. This lake covers an area of 155 km2., and is graced by three artistic chhatris (kiosks or pavilions). Devoid of any commercial activity, the Badi Lake gives a view of a never-ending expanse providing a serene and calm atmosphere to the visitors.
It is a rural arts and crafts complex, situated 3 km west of the city of Udaipur. The complex was established with a purpose to depict the lifestyles of the folk and tribal people of the region. With an objective of increasing awareness and knowledge about the rural arts and crafts, the Shilpgram provides opportunity to rural and urban artists to come together and interact through camps and workshops.