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Old 29th November 2015, 09:36   #16
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Default Re: Mewad Sojourn - A Memory Immortal. Mumbai - Rajasthan - Mount Abu

Very nice Travelogue. Kudos!

I felt like i was reliving my drive to Udaipur which was done last October from new bombay to Udaipur and back in a ANHC with 4 adults and my 2.5 year old son.

Driving on the roads to GJ and RJ is really fun and my friend and myself (joined by both our wives) used to fight for turns at the wheel of the City which was a different beast on the highway.

But the trip never really materialized in the form of a travelogue due to lack of time and other commitments.

I would also be interested to join the Navi Mumbai whatsapp group of Team BHP and would love to meet up with fellow petrol heads.

cheers and look forward to the next sojourn
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Old 29th November 2015, 16:08   #17
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Dear tejas08,

You fully deserve the 5* rating that I have given.

May you have many more successful trips!

Just a thought - you could have added a halt on the first and last day. That way you might have enjoyed the trip even more! Irrespective of my stamina - I feel driving 750 km in a day is pushing luck!

Girish Mahajan

P.S. I stay in Pune (2 weekends a month) and Mira Road (the rest of the days).
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Old 29th November 2015, 18:40   #18
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Default Re: Mewad Sojourn - A Memory Immortal. Mumbai - Rajasthan - Mount Abu

Beautiful Travelogue. Recalled my road trip from March when we visited Jodhpur and Jaisalmer. We were fortunate to get to stay at the Umaid Bhawan Palace, Jodhpur. It was an absolute royal retreat and it is certainly one of the best properties I have ever stayed in.

Attaching a of pic from my phone:
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Old 29th November 2015, 21:58   #19
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Originally Posted by GKMahajan View Post
Just a thought - you could have added a halt on the first and last day. That way you might have enjoyed the trip even more! Irrespective of my stamina - I feel driving 750 km in a day is pushing luck!
Thanks for your good comments.

With regards to driving 750+ kms in a day, even after reaching the hotel there was no fatigue whatsoever. As a matter of fact, I could have easily gone for another 75-100 kms.

With the newer cars and better highways, driving 700-odd kms in a day is becoming a cake-walk, but only if you love driving.

You might want to have a look at the below thread. (Just food for thought)

http://www.team-bhp.com/forum/street...drives-33.html
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Old 30th November 2015, 09:44   #20
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Originally Posted by tejas08 View Post
Thanks for your good comments.

With regards to driving 750+ kms in a day, even after reaching the hotel there was no fatigue whatsoever. As a matter of fact, I could have easily gone for another 75-100 kms.

With the newer cars and better highways, driving 700-odd kms in a day is becoming a cake-walk, but only if you love driving.

You might want to have a look at the below thread. (Just food for thought)

http://www.team-bhp.com/forum/street...drives-33.html

Ha Ha Ha Ha.......

I share the love the driving. In fact, I have two addictions in life - reading and driving.

I have actually been in a car where the driver started to doze. So, believe me when I say this - you do not 'feel' your tiredness! It is better to be safe than sorry.

On the other side, each person has a different threshold. So, maybe, I am wrong... No offense intended!

I am a bit busy at present. I will definitely look at the link.
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Old 1st December 2015, 15:51   #21
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09/11/2015 sometime in the afternoon my throat started to itch, a couple of minutes later I started to sneeze. By evening I was under a full blown viral attack - the second in a fortnight! (Honestly, it surprised me then but doesn't now because a few days after we came back from our trip I was hit by a viral attack again! I am still down with it as I write this). The thought of backing off from this trip never occurred to me. I had decided no matter what I will go on this trip simply because I had been looking forward to it for months now.

Day 1: Mumbai to Udaipur.

So on 14th when we set off for Udaipur, I was not in the best shape - physically & mentally. The weakness was bad and I was starting to develop a really bad cough. I did the best thing you can do in a viral. Go to sleep in the back seat of the car but I could sleep just for about an hour. Tejas had decided that he would monopolize the driving seat till Udaipur so that gave me time to enjoy the smooth roads of Gujarat. Honestly, I feel Gujarat roads are a huge reason why a 750kms drive is do able in 12 hours. As we closed in on Udaipur, I wanted to reach our lovely Oyo rooms (or so I thought!) and sleep off. Oyo turned out to a disappointment but down with the viral I was just happy to get a bed and crashed for the night post dinner.

Day 2: Chittorgarh / Maharana Pratap Meuseum.

Tejas & Imran didnít share the funny anecdote in Oyo rooms on the morning of day 2. We were going to have a long day ahead driving & sight seeing so we decided to take off early from Udaipur. We discussed the breakfast arrangements with the hotel staff the previous night and they said we could choose from between 4 dishes for breakfast Ė Omlette, Aloo Paratha, Poha & sandwich. Timings for breakfast would be between 7.30 to 10.30. Tejas, Roshan & I were up at the roof top restaurant by 7.30 am only to see the sliding door shut. We pushed the door open and walked onto the terrace to see it empty. Some tables were not cleaned from last nightís dinner. This was not going well! Anyway, expecting the staff to walk in any moment we started exploring the surrounding area of the hotel from the terrace which is when we spotted an endangered species called the Suzuki Kizashi .

A good 15 minutes had passed and no one had come in so Tejas called the mobile number of the hotel manager. We didnít know we were giving a wake up call service! Yes, the home stay hotel staff was in their dreamworld. A few minutes later the Ďchefí cum waiter walked in and asked us what we would like to have. We unanimously answered omlette & aloo paratha. The Ďchefí said they are out of both eggs & potatoes so we will have to adjust with sandwich and poha today! I still donít know why he asked us what we would like to have.

Chittorgarh was impressive as was the story about Rani Padmavatiís beauty. Wish I was born then . After taking a round of the fort and shopping for some amazing handicrafts we were off on our way to Haldighati which turned out to be even more impressive with the life & times of Maharana Pratap Ė brought back memories of Bahubali.

Mewad Sojourn - A Memory Immortal. Mumbai - Rajasthan - Mount Abu-img_2824.jpg

A selfie taken on the way to Haldighati.

Last edited by amit : 1st December 2015 at 15:53.
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Old 1st December 2015, 16:11   #22
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amit - i am told that doing Chittod and Haldi ghati on same day is not advisable.
We have been advised that since we will be driving to Jodhpur from Udaipur we should cover Ranakpur, Kumbhalgarh and Haldi Ghati on the way to Jodhpur.

Please advise.
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Old 1st December 2015, 16:37   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ShaileshHinge View Post
amit - i am told that doing Chittod and Haldi ghati on same day is not advisable.
We have been advised that since we will be driving to Jodhpur from Udaipur we should cover Ranakpur, Kumbhalgarh and Haldi Ghati on the way to Jodhpur.

Please advise.
Shailesh,

Go through Post 2 of this thread. The details are all mentioned. We had two full days for sight-seeing in Udaipur. One day for Udaipur City sight-seeing and the other day for Chittorgarh and Haldi-Ghati. If you are doing an inter-city run on the same then then both may not be possible on the same day.

Since you are driving from Jodhpur to Udaipur, the plan you mentioned also works. We travelled from Udaipur to Jodhpur via Ajmer. This itself was about 520 kms. So we did not club anything else on that day.

Probably the reason both of them together are not advised as these two things are about 130-150 kms apart. But we did not find any issue in that.

Last edited by tejas08 : 1st December 2015 at 16:39.
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Old 1st December 2015, 16:39   #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ShaileshHinge View Post
amit - i am told that doing Chittod and Haldi ghati on same day is not advisable.
We have been advised that since we will be driving to Jodhpur from Udaipur we should cover Ranakpur, Kumbhalgarh and Haldi Ghati on the way to Jodhpur.

Please advise.
Tejas has posted the driving map from Udaipur to Chittorgarh & Haldighati on the first post of this thread. That will give you a good idea of the driving distances & if it seems doable to you.

I feel doing Ranakpur, Kumbhalgarh & Haldighati on the way to Jodhpur would be too much. Do note that you will be reaching Jodhpur at nightfall and you will be driving for almost 50-60 kms on 2 lane state highways in the dark. Don't under estimate the stupidity of the Mahindra taxi's and even many private car driver's are downright dangerous with no idea of safety.
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Old 1st December 2015, 16:45   #25
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Day 3: Udaipur City tour.

The highlights of the city tour for me were the:

Saheliyon ki bari (Courtyard of the maidens)

Mewad Sojourn - A Memory Immortal. Mumbai - Rajasthan - Mount Abu-img_2848.jpg

The place where princesses and their friends got together for kitty parties. Man what style the royalís had. Impressed!

City Palace:

Mewad Sojourn - A Memory Immortal. Mumbai - Rajasthan - Mount Abu-img_2966.jpg

This was seriously impressive. The life & times of the royalís took us a good couple of hours. I was wondering how amazing it must be for the current royal family members knowing their ancestors from centuries back by name and by what they did. Imagine having Maharana Pratap as your ancestor!

Mewad Sojourn - A Memory Immortal. Mumbai - Rajasthan - Mount Abu-img_2855.jpg

This is picture of the gate of the palace. As explained by Tejas during coronation the king rides on an elephant and using his sword touches the upper portion of the door. On the wall to the right you can see the Sun God indicating the Suryavanshi dynasty of the Udaipur royals.

Mewad Sojourn - A Memory Immortal. Mumbai - Rajasthan - Mount Abu-img_2877.jpg

Mewad Sojourn - A Memory Immortal. Mumbai - Rajasthan - Mount Abu-img_2965.jpg

Pictures captured on the Udaipur lake. Thanks to Tejas we couldnít go boating!

Bagore ki Haveli

Truth be told I wasnít too charged up about the Bagore ki Haveli show. It was going to be a cultural show with folk dances of Rajasthan. Trust me, this is a show thatís not be missed! Problem is there are limited seats so reach early and line up before the ticket window. And yes, the show will be sold out so donít take the lining up for tickets part lightly!

Post this show, we reached Hotel Hilltop Palace for dinner and I had the best food during the whole trip here. Lip smacking with an equally good ambience. Only thing missing was a bit of chill in the air.

Last edited by amit : 1st December 2015 at 16:58.
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Old 1st December 2015, 16:55   #26
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ShaileshHinge View Post
we will be driving to Jodhpur from Udaipur
Quote:
Originally Posted by tejas08 View Post
Since you are driving from Jodhpur to Udaipur,
Apologies. I read your statement as travelling from Jodhpur to Udaipur as against the actual Udaipur to Jodhpur.

If you are driving from Udaipur to Jodhpur, then certainly you don't want to be driving on two-lane highway for 50-60 kms post night-fall.

If you are not planning on going to Ajmer, you can do Ranakpur & haldi-Ghati on the way. Just a word of caution that Ranakpur Temple is open for visitors only after 12 Noon.
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Old 1st December 2015, 17:10   #27
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If you are not planning on going to Ajmer, you can do Ranakpur & haldi-Ghati on the way. Just a word of caution that Ranakpur Temple is open for visitors only after 12 Noon.
Thanks for the advice. Will plan to reach Ranakpur accordingly. As it gets dark in the evening early all our days we plan to start at around 6.30 am. Lets see how many days we actually manage with family and kids .
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Old 1st December 2015, 17:45   #28
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Day 4: Udaipur to Jodhpur via Ajmer.

After we finished with Ajmer, Tejas grandly announced that it was my turn to drive. I have a 2010 Honda City V A/T and post 2011 when I sold off my Punto, the City is the only car I have driven so most of us including me expected that I must have forgotten to use my left leg while driving by now ☺. But, I took to the manual city like a fish to water and barring a few initial occasions when I was late in downshifting (The car beginning to jerk was my cue that I had forgotten to downshift). What I didnítí know however was Tejasís master stroke in handing me the car to drive on mostly 2 lane highway till Jodhpur. And it was in the night when the 2 lane highway started! We reached Jodhpur and Hotel Mapple Abhay turned out to be like Hotel Taj Palace for us after Oyo in Udaipur!

Day 5: Jodhpur City sight seeing

Jaswant Thada

Mewad Sojourn - A Memory Immortal. Mumbai - Rajasthan - Mount Abu-img_2899.jpg

Cenotaph built by Maharaja Sardar Singh in memory of his father Maharaja Jaswant Singh. It serves as a burial ground for Mewar rulers.

Mewad Sojourn - A Memory Immortal. Mumbai - Rajasthan - Mount Abu-img_2901.jpg

A picture taken from inside Jaswant Thada.

Umed Bhavan Palace

The famous Umed Bhavan palace. Part museum, part luxury hotel and part residence of the royal family of Jodhpur.

The surrounding area around the palace had a sprawling gated community of apartments & villas. The Ola cab driver told us it was developed by the royal family & was the most expensive piece of real estate in Jodhpur with prices running into crores for the villas.

Mehrangarh Fort

Mewad Sojourn - A Memory Immortal. Mumbai - Rajasthan - Mount Abu-img_2947.jpg

It took us a couple of hours to go through this fort giving us insights into the lives & times of the Jodhpur royal family.

We spent the evening lazily browsing through the bazaar near Ghanta ghar post which we retired for the night. Next day was another long day where we were to drive from Jodhpur to Mount Abu via Ranakpur.
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Old 1st December 2015, 18:05   #29
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Day 7: Mount Abu.

The coldest among all the places we visited. Finally we could put our hoodies to use! Honestly, I was beginning to miss the Rajasthan cold and Mount Abu compensated a bit for that. There isnít much to do in here except visit the lake and sunset point. The best thing to do in a hill station is go and relax. Chill out in the hotel and go for evening walks in the city square. The sunset point was horrendous in terms of parking arrangements. By the time we got parking and walked to the point the sun had already set.

Mewad Sojourn - A Memory Immortal. Mumbai - Rajasthan - Mount Abu-img_2934.jpg

A picture taken at the sunset point.

Itís amazing how hill stations in different states & thousands of kilometers apart have the same problems Ė referring to Mahableshwar here. Our hill stations are just not equipped or ready in terms of infrastructure to take on the kind of crowds that visit them. And we were there during week days, I shudder to think what would be happening over the weekends! Later that evening while we were having tea in the market, I remember watching the lines of ill-maintained taxi Mahindraís crawling past in a traffic jam and wondering how polluted would what we believe to be clear mountain air be? Our hill stations need to be protected from increasingly wealthy Indians who are travelling more on the back of more money and ever improving road infrastructure. Letís not forget the average Indian has scant regard for cleanliness or the fragile ecosystem of our hill stations. I really wish the government comes up with a proper eco policy specially for our hill stations and we Indianís realize that protecting the ecology is impossible for any government to do unless we actively support the governments attempts with good habits.

Mewad Sojourn - A Memory Immortal. Mumbai - Rajasthan - Mount Abu-img_2942.jpg

We went back to the hotel and had our dinner & fun around a campfire which was perfect considering the chilly night of Mount Abu. A big thank you to the staff at Kishangarh house for their hospitality. The smaller the town the better are the people isnt it?



Day 8: Mount Abu to Mumbai.

We thought the highlight of day 8 would be the long 760kms drive back to home base but 2 cows had other ideaís. I was sleeping when I felt sudden braking and by the time I could open my eyes fully and realize what was happening the rear view mirror on the driverís side along with itís cover had broken off. Thatís how fast it happened and like Tejas said we were lucky to escape with a little mis-aligned bumper and damaged RVM. In case of a head on collision we would have had to look for a towing van to take us to the nearest Honda ASC and at least 10-12 days of repairs. Imagine the Mehsana ASC didnít have rear view mirrorís in stock! Imagine how long it would take to source more critical parts to get the car on the road again.

Once we had dinner in Ahmadabad, I took over the wheel again and got a chance to drive on the best highway in India. The Ahmadabad-Vadodra Expressway. It felt as if I was sitting in my living room on the sofa. And I was in a Honda City not some European car. And I was doing 130kmph! Yes, it was over the speed limit but thanks to the accident we were running late and the expressway was the only portion where we could make up some serious time. I used that opportunity with both hands (and my right leg!). I drove till Valsad post which Tejas took us home.

The trip was amazing and what mattered more was that it was a road trip. I had a great time and full credit to Tejas, Imran & Roshan for making it such a memorable trip. Like I said, I wasnít feeling well and while the weakness went away I had a really bad cough throughout the trip that made eating and even talking difficult. Despite that we drove, shopped, laughed, ate, drank & had a wonderful time.

The success of a road trip is when you look forward to another one soon with the same team. For me this trip was a blockbuster.
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Old 1st December 2015, 18:15   #30
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Like I said, I have a 2010 Honda City V A/T and it was the first time I was driving a manual City.

I got the feeling that I was sitting lower down in the 2014 City compared to my car. I prefer the feeling of sitting in the car over the feeling of sitting on the car. It could be the high set dash of the 2014 City but I did feel like I was sitting lower down. I liked it!

The manual City is a different animal compared to the A/T. The engine felt more rev happy even though it's the same engine as my car!

I loved the gear shift. They are short, swift and sure. Not once did I miss a gear - they slot in where you want them to. Loved it!

I loved every minute of driving the manual variant of the City. It made me want to get a manual car for myself!
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