Udaipur's magnificent City Palace in 20 pictures

By 02:51 Sunday 30 September 2018 , , ,

I visited Udaipur for the second time on the Independence Day long weekend last month and was super excited to rediscover this charming city. The last time I was here, I was too young to appreciate all things, big and small, that make this place special-the colours and the chaos, the art and the history, the food and the warm hospitality Rajasthan has always been known for.

Apart from all the lakeside cafes that I wanted to try, City Palace was on the top of my list. I wished to see the light and sound show too, but since the palace was gearing up for the grand Independence Day celebration, they had cancelled the show that weekend. But that little pang of disappointment soon vanished as I entered the palace's grand tripolia gate, named so because of its three archways. I looked forward to unravelling all the secrets this five centuries old royal residence held.

Tripolia, the main entrace

It took nearly 400 years to finish the construction of the fort with contributions from several rulers of Mewar. Maharana Udai Singh laid its foundation in 1533 as he shifted his capital from the erstwhile Chittor to Udaipur. The palace is located on the east bank of Lake Pichola and has several palaces built within its complex. Giving a stunning paranormic view of the city and the Aravallis, the exquisite palace is one of the largest in India and displays a mix of Rajput and Mughal architectural styles.

Chini Chitrashala with beautiful Chinese and Dutch tiles

Sheesh Mahal

Mor Chowk, the most ornate wing of the palace adorned with 3 peacocks made with 5000 pieces of glass, several jharokhas and paintings depicting stories from Lord Krishna's time

A portion of the palace has been turned into a museum with ticketed entry but a significant chunk remains with the royal family as their current residence. There are also two luxury hotels operating within the complex. There's also a bustling market around City Palace to buy quirky souvenirs and handicrafts. I for one, can't wait to go back and catch the light and sound show with the stunning backdrop of this architectural marvel.

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