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Old 25th November 2015, 13:38   #1
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Default Mewad Sojourn - A Memory Immortal. Mumbai - Rajasthan - Mount Abu

A memorable trip to Rajasthan Mewad!

The Team

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

Left to Right

Me – Team-BHP Handle tejas08
Roshan – A close friend of mine
Imran – Team-BHP Handle IPathan
Amit – Team-BHP Handle amit

The Plan

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

The Ride

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BACKGROUND

People on a Tight Schedule move to Post Number 2

It’s been just over 18 Months on owning a car and ‘LIVE TO DRIVE’ is what runs through the heart every time I crank that engine.

The first ever longish road trip was Gujrat last December. My personal opinion about the Roadtrip to Gujrat ‘Nothing much to write about on the Gujrat Roadtrip’, no offense to anyone. The only thing good about Gujrat was the driving pleasure and nothing really felt good enough as a Travel Experience, except the White Dessert (Rann of Kutch). Something felt missing in the Gujrat Road Trip. Rajasthan gave that to me. Combining a road trip with a vacation to explore a region is probably the best way to celebrate your passion for Cars and Travel. Rajasthan Travel had been on the cards for a couple of years. A couple of times tried planning a Rajasthan Trip with my family but the whole of Rajasthan would take just a little under three weeks. Extremely difficult to do that with 6 member family in which 5 members are working.

The urge to drive all the way to Rajasthan post the Gujrat Road trip was ever growing. But this wouldn’t be possible with family, as 4 out of the 6 family members are not keen on travelling about 12-15 hours in a car. With ideas like family members go by flight and I drive all the way to Rajasthan, the plan was there but the co-ordination of leaves never happened.

About 4 months back, I decided to put up the Road Trip idea to my close friends. One of my very close friends agreed. Something told me to put up this idea on the Team-BHP Navi Mumbai Whatsapp group. Very few better places to find people with like-minded passion.

A good initial response received from the Team-BHP Navi Mumbai group. The discussions began with approx. 8-9 people on board to this idea. The dates were decided well in advance for people to plan their leaves. 14-Nov-15 to 21-Nov-15. The duration had to be kept to just one week as all may not be able to get leaves over one week. With about 2 months remaining for ‘THE’ date, the preps started with planning which cities to see, routes, hotel options. On starting the preps, we realized that we will be going to Rajasthan during the peak time just after Diwali. The Hotel Rates were high accordingly and so was the possibility of excessive crowds.

The choices of cities was narrowed down to two
1. Udaipur – Jodhpur – Mount Abu
2. Udaipur – Jaipur – Mount Abu

Udaipur and Mount-Abu were kept fixed considering a single day travelling distance of 750 kms each from Mumbai to Udaipur while going and Mount-Abu to Mumbai while returning. Between Jodhpur and Jaipur, Jodhpur was decided considering lesser Travel time and more time for sight-seeing. We were already spending two full days out of a total 8 on Travelling with another 2 days (Udaipur to Jodhpur / Jaipur and Jodhpur / Jaipur to Mount Abu) of major travelling. Although Udaipur to Jaipur was similar to Udaipur to Jodhpur but Jodhpur to Mount Abu was much lesser as compared to Jaipur to Mount Abu.

Also, the plan for these two days of inter-city travelling was to take detour and go to other nearby major places to cover maximum tourist’s spots as possible and not just head straight for the next destination. Doing all these permutations and combinations, we decided on the plan indicated above.

With about 8 Weeks to go, we had approx. 8-9 people pretty sure to join. That would mean about 3 cars. With about 2 weeks to go, we were down to 5 people and two cars with Imran and Amit looking at the possibility of adding a couple of more people. Imran had the added incentive of the possibility of getting his car to the road trip. With less than 24 hours to leave, we were down to 4 people and one car. Our Cameraman Sajan (Team-BHP Handle - sajands) had to opt out due to sudden medical emergency. The sad part – We ended up with just 4 people going for the trip in one car. But Quality is always better than Quantity. No offense to anyone who couldn’t make it to the trip. (Three BHPians had to drop out of those 8-9 people due to some personal reasons of theirs)

Accomodation

We started looking at the Hotel options. The search began with some budget options as well as some 3 / 4 star hotels. OYO rooms marketing was picking up fast with the referral bonus and stuff. We decided to try out OYO rooms. A couple of people intending to travel got into the referral thing and earned referral rewards to try and get discounts on the OYO rooms app. We ended up booking OYO rooms for Udaipur and Jodhpur at the price of peanuts. We were in for a big shock. Read on to know about it!

The following was the accommodation decided.

Udaipur – OYO Rooms
Jodhpur – OYO Rooms (Later changed to Mapple Abhay)
Mount Abu – Kishangarh House (A Heritage Hotel)

The OYO Experience

OYO rooms are strictly for people on budget. For the amount of money being paid, they are fair enough. (Rs. 795 per person per night after referral discounts) But OYO rooms are not upto the mark when you are out on a vacation and don’t want the hotel people to spoil your mood in any which way.

First of all, the location of OYO rooms was horrible (Very hard to locate). One of the two rooms booked was good but the other had its share of problems. We got the room changed on the second day. The hotel staff was courteous, but that did not help on the average hotel environment. Breakfast was a big disappointment. We had to call up the property owner to have his people get up and make breakfast for us. Limited choices of breakfast were available and just about average taste. Wi-Fi wasn’t consistent and pretty low speeds at times.

Post this, we did not want to take chances on the OYO Rooms Jodhpur, as it was much cheaper than the Udaipur one (Rs. 487 per person per night after referral discounts). We searched and finalized on the Mapple Abhay in Jodhpur. A decision we did not repent in any which way.

I could go on and on about the 8 Weeks of preps and discussions on who’s coming and who’s not and how many people travelling, but I will end the prologue here itself and head on to the real stuff.

Last edited by tejas08 : 27th November 2015 at 10:53.
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Old 25th November 2015, 14:10   #2
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Default re: Mewad Sojourn - A Memory Immortal. Mumbai - Rajasthan - Mount Abu

DAY 1 – MUMBAI TO UDAIPUR

Total Kms. Driven – Approx. 775 Kms

Travel Time (Including Breaks) – 13 Hours (Approx. 2 Hours of Breaks)

Toll Paid – 771 Rs.

Departed at – 07:00 AM (Gathering Point – Fountain Hotel)

Arrived at – 08:00 PM (Udaipur Hotel)

Accommodation – OYO Rooms, Ambavgarh Homestay, Udaipur

Route Taken: Mumbai – Baroda – Godhra – Modasa – Udaipur

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The drive from Mumbai to Udaipur was pure bliss, munching away miles easily. Roads upto Gujrat Rajasthan Border were Super-Duper Excellent. Once we entered into Rajasthan the roads were bumpy and a lot of Wrong-Side Driving & Cattle even on National Highways. It seemed to us that Gujrat & Rajasthan have a rule of ‘minimum Three People on a bike and NO Helmets’. Once each in Gujrat & Rajasthan, we saw five people on a bike (A couple of kids or young teenagers out of the five). Clearly Safety is the last thing in their mind across Rajasthan. Some of the Pics taken will indicate that.

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This drive was a personal best for me. Drove 775 kms in a day all by myself.

We had dinner at the Rooftop Restaurant ‘Afeem’ of the OYO Rooms Hotel (Ambavgarh Homestay). Good Food. A saving grace for OYO Rooms.

Some photos of OYO Rooms Udaipur (Ambavgarh Homestay).

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A Special mention towards the OYO Bathtub (One of a Kind, made of Cement, Plaster and Tiles)

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

Time to get some rest and move on to our first sight-seeing in Rajasthan

DAY 2 – CHITTORGARH / MAHARANA PRATAP MUSEUM

Total Kms. Driven – Approx. 325 Kms.

Toll Paid – 200 Rs.

Route Taken


Mewad Sojourn - A Memory Immortal. Mumbai - Rajasthan - Mount Abu-route-day-2.jpg

Originally the plan was to do City Sight-seeing on Sunday and Chittorgarh and Maharana Pratap Museum on the second day alongwith Eklingji and Nathdwara. We decided to interchange it considering there would be heavy crowd for City Sight-seeing on Sunday. The decision did not help much on either days in Chittorgarh / Museum or the City Sight-Seeing.

Vijay Stambh (Victory Monument)

Mewad Sojourn - A Memory Immortal. Mumbai - Rajasthan - Mount Abu-vijay-stambha1.jpg
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Battlefield Area in front of Chittorgarh Fort. Originally the entrance to Chittorgarh fort was from this side with horses being used to climb up the Fort. Now the back-side entrance is used for tourists.

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The Spikes seen on the Door were the defense mechanism against Elephant Ramming.

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Kirti Stambh

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One of the many Water Reservoirs on Chittorgarh Fort to fulfill the needs of the fort then.

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One of the 100+ temples inside Chittorgarh Fort.

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We had lunch at Dominos in Chittorgarh and moved ahead towards Maharana Pratap Museum.

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The museum would appeal more to children as its got a short 7-minute video, some scenes of Maharana Pratap's life created using puppet-like figures etc.

Mewad Sojourn - A Memory Immortal. Mumbai - Rajasthan - Mount Abu-maharana-pratap-battle1.jpg
Mewad Sojourn - A Memory Immortal. Mumbai - Rajasthan - Mount Abu-maharana-pratap-battle2.jpg

One thing still puzzles me as to how can a horse be disguised as an Elephant just by attaching a fake trunk to the horse. Don't mean to offend any historians.

Mewad Sojourn - A Memory Immortal. Mumbai - Rajasthan - Mount Abu-maharana-pratap-museum.jpg

A couple of snaps of the Scenes created of the Maharana Pratap's life

Killing a Forest Beast

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Chetak's last breath

Mewad Sojourn - A Memory Immortal. Mumbai - Rajasthan - Mount Abu-museum-animation1.jpg

Doing some research on the internet for Food Joints reaps its rewards. I had zeroed down on two places for dinner; Natraj Dining Hall for Rajasthani Thali and Hotel Hilltop Palace. A glimpse of the Rajasthani Thali for your guys. Unlimited Thali @ Rs. 200 only.

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

Nathdwara and Eklingji Temple were part of the original itenary but we could not make it due to running late and needing extra time at Chittorgarh Fort & Museum.

Last edited by Eddy : 27th November 2015 at 16:44.
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Old 25th November 2015, 14:55   #3
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DAY 3 – UDAIPUR CITY SIGHT-SEEING

Total Kms. Driven – 0 Kms. (Yeah, you read it right!)

Thanks to the tips received from sdp1975’s Travelogue (Link Below) just a week before our trip

http://www.team-bhp.com/forum/travel...ml#post3839533 (Bangalore to Rajasthan : 2 week road-trip in a Fiat Punto)

We took the decision to hire an Auto-Rickshaw for Udaipur Sight-seeing. Paid the Rickshaw fella Rs. 900 for about 11 Hours and the following sight-seeing. I second the tip giving by sdp1975 in his travelogue. People from City like Mumbai cannot drive in the Older parts of cities like Udaipur and Jodhpur. Narrow lanes, people, rickshaws and what not coming from all sides. Best to stick to local transport as they know the way around and it's much faster.

While me and my friend were getting the tickets for Moti Magri, BHPians Imran and Amit were reviewing an Auto-Rickshaw of Udaipur. A detailed review of the Auto-Rickshaw coming up soon.

Mewad Sojourn - A Memory Immortal. Mumbai - Rajasthan - Mount Abu-amit-autorickshaw.jpg
Mewad Sojourn - A Memory Immortal. Mumbai - Rajasthan - Mount Abu-imran-autorickshaw.jpg

Moti Magri (Pearl Hill)

Moti Magri is the memorial of the Rajput hero Maharana Pratap, which has a bronze statue of the Maharana astride his favourite horse 'Chetak'. It’s situated adjacent to the Fateh Sagar Lake. Moti Magri offers some splendid views of the City and the Fateh Sagar Lake

Mewad Sojourn - A Memory Immortal. Mumbai - Rajasthan - Mount Abu-maharana-pratap-smarak-info.jpg
Mewad Sojourn - A Memory Immortal. Mumbai - Rajasthan - Mount Abu-maharana-pratap-smarak.jpg

Happy BHPians posing!

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Panorama of the Fateh Sagar Lake and the part City Seen

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Saheliyon Ki Bari (Courtyard of the Maidens)

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City Palace

View of Udaipur City from City Palace

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

Entrance to the City Palace. The guide informed us that whenever a Prince is crowned a King (Maharaja), during the ceremony the Maharaja comes sitting atop an Elephant and has to touch the upper design portion of the Door with his sword while entering the Palace

Mewad Sojourn - A Memory Immortal. Mumbai - Rajasthan - Mount Abu-city-palace-entrance.jpg

View of Taj Lake Palace from the topmost level Window of City Palace.

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By the time we finished the City Palace sight-seeing, it was already 02:30 PM and too tired to go search for lunch options outside. Decided to have lunch in the restaurant at City Palace itself. Food is strictly meant for Foreigners. Pretty Bland and tasteless. Don’t know what came to our mind and we ordered Biryani. The Pulav we get in our regular hotels are spicier than that. To top it all, the restaurant was pretty pricey. Just to give an idea, Keema Pav was priced at Rs. 750.

Talk about being a Pricey Restaurant

Mewad Sojourn - A Memory Immortal. Mumbai - Rajasthan - Mount Abu-keema-pav-750.jpg

Vintage Car Museum

I will cover this in another thread under the Vintage Car Section as this will cover almost all the cars displayed in the Vintage Car Museum.

Please go to the following link for the Vintage Car Museum Photos:

http://www.team-bhp.com/forum/vintag...ar-museum.html (Pics: Udaipur Palace Vintage Car Museum)

There is one Vintage Car we spotted for which I would like to make a special mention.

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

Lake Pichola

The Taj lake Palace in Lake Pichola

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Sunset at Lake Pichola

Mewad Sojourn - A Memory Immortal. Mumbai - Rajasthan - Mount Abu-lake-pichola-sunset.jpg

Bagore Ki Haweli (Cultural Show)

Another one of those tips I got from the Rajasthan Travelogue link posted above was the cultural show at Bagore Ki Haweli.

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Another one of the places researched on the internet for great Food in Udaipur – Hotel Hilltop Palace. We weren’t disappointed in any which way. Great Food, Good Ambience and Setup. Had Dinner at Hilltop Palace and retired in our hotels.

Mewad Sojourn - A Memory Immortal. Mumbai - Rajasthan - Mount Abu-dinner-hilltop-palace.jpg

Last edited by tejas08 : 27th November 2015 at 12:26.
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Old 25th November 2015, 16:13   #4
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DAY 4 – UDAIPUR TO JODHPUR VIA AJMER

Total Kms. Driven – Approx. 515 Kms

Travel Time (Including Breaks) – 12.5 Hours (Approx. 4 Hours of Breaks. Read on to know more)

Toll Paid – 190 Rs.

Departed at – 06:45 AM

Arrived at Ajmer – 12:30 PM

Left from Ajmer in a couple of hours by 02:30 PM

Arrived at Jodhpur Hotel – 07:15 PM

Accommodation – Mapple Abhay, Jodhpur

Route Taken – Udaipur – Nathdwara – Beawar – Ajmer – Beawar - Jodhpur


Mewad Sojourn - A Memory Immortal. Mumbai - Rajasthan - Mount Abu-route-day-4.jpg

We started early in anticipation of going to Eklingji and Nathdwara temple which we missed on Day 2. Somehow, we weren’t able to locate Eklingji Temple. Google was sending us in all directions. Despite asking some of the locals, we failed. We decided to move on to Nathdwara, reached Nathdwara @ around 08:15 AM only to find out that Temple will open at 09:15 AM. There are specific Temple Darshan timings through the day for Nathdwara Temple. The kind of crowd that was coming in, it wasn’t going to be easy to have Darshan at 09:15 AM and leave immediately. We decided to skip this on too and headed to Ajmer.

Roads to Ajmer were pretty good and reached earlier than expected. Ajmer town traffic is another topic altogether. Horrible traffic once you enter the town. Courtesy Imran’s contact, we had a VIP entry into Ajmer Sharif Dargah and were out of Ajmer by 02:30 PM headed towards Jodhpur.

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Entrance of Ajmer Dargah

Mewad Sojourn - A Memory Immortal. Mumbai - Rajasthan - Mount Abu-ajmer-dargah-entrance.jpg

Finally, it was Amit’s turn on the wheel. We were nervous because Amit had been driving an Automatic for a while now.

Mewad Sojourn - A Memory Immortal. Mumbai - Rajasthan - Mount Abu-amit-taking-charge.jpg

He didn’t take much time getting used to it (and we knew that all the time, but we loved pulling his leg), but he had those occasional forgetting of driving a manual. I had to remind him on one occasion to downshift.

Took a break for lunch and headed towards Jodhpur again. Roads towards Jodhpur were good enough but about 50 Kms was a two lane highway.

Mewad Sojourn - A Memory Immortal. Mumbai - Rajasthan - Mount Abu-two-lane-road-jodhpur.jpg

Driving on a Two Lane highway at twilight can be irritating. Reached Jodhpur Hotel by 07:15 PM. Mapple Abhay was a welcome relief post the OYO Rooms in Udaipur. Here’s a couple of pics of the Hotel Rooms

Mewad Sojourn - A Memory Immortal. Mumbai - Rajasthan - Mount Abu-jodhpur-hotel1.jpg
Mewad Sojourn - A Memory Immortal. Mumbai - Rajasthan - Mount Abu-jodhpur-hotel2.jpg

and the view from the Hotel Room. Mehrangarh Fort right in front of the Window.

Mewad Sojourn - A Memory Immortal. Mumbai - Rajasthan - Mount Abu-view-hotel-window.jpg

Last edited by tejas08 : 27th November 2015 at 12:32.
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Old 26th November 2015, 12:26   #5
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DAY 5 – JODHPUR CITY SIGHT-SEEING

Total Kms. Driven – 0 Kms.

We stuck to our idea of not driving around the City for Sight-seeing. We utilized a rickshaw in Udaipur but we improvised in Jodhpur. We used Ola Cabs. I had free ride of Ola Cabs and we downloaded Ola Cab App on another couple of cell phones.

So for a total of 5 rides in Ola Cabs, we ended up paying only Twice (a total of Rs. 163) and had three free rides. Only hired a Rickshaw once for a very short ride of less than 2 kms.

The gist of the Jodhpur Sight-seeing was

Hotel – Umaid Bhavan Palace – Jaswant Thada – Mehrangarh Fort – Lunch – Mandore Garden – Hotel – Shopping near Clock Tower - Hotel

We started from the Hotel @ 09:15 AM and headed to Umaid Bhavan Palace. The timings of all the three Major Attractions (Umaid Bhavan, Jaswant Thada & Mehrangarh Fort) are pretty much same at 09:00 AM to 05:00 PM.

Umaid Bhavan Palace

Umaid Bhavan Palace is one of the Largest Private Residences around the globe with 300+ Rooms. Currently, it is divided into three parts viz. one part for the Royal Family, one part given to Taj Hotels and the third part converted to a museum. The museum is the place where the tourists are allowed.

Mewad Sojourn - A Memory Immortal. Mumbai - Rajasthan - Mount Abu-umaid-bhavan.jpg
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A look at the miniaturized Umaid Bhavan Palace to give an idea of the size of the palace.

Mewad Sojourn - A Memory Immortal. Mumbai - Rajasthan - Mount Abu-miniature-replica-umaid-bhavan.jpg
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The grand rooms of the Museum with Paintings near Ceilings

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Some of the Paintings on the wall of the Palace

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Umaid Bhawan Palace being a private property is super clean and well maintained.

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Some of the Clocks kept in the Museum

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A Dining table kept on display in the Musem

Mewad Sojourn - A Memory Immortal. Mumbai - Rajasthan - Mount Abu-ub-dining-table.jpg

I am not much of a Museum guy so not many photos of the artifacts but there were a pretty good number of artifacts in the Umaid Bhavan Palace Museum.

It took just over an hour to complete Umaid Bhavan Palace. There are some vintage cars kept in front of the Umaid Bhavan too. It has glass panels in front which probably has finger-prints of all Jodhpur tourists through the week. There was no point in even trying to get a good photograph of any of the vintage cars over there.

From Umaid Bhavan Palace, we moved to Jaswant Thada.

Jaswant Thada

Jaswant Thada is a Cenotaph built in the memory of Jaswant Singh II. Currently, the surrounding area serves as a burial ground for the rulers or Marwar. The white Marble used for the construction of Jaswant Thada and the carvings are just exquisite. Even at near noon with the sun beating down on us, the marbles were almost ice cold.

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Mewad Sojourn - A Memory Immortal. Mumbai - Rajasthan - Mount Abu-jaswant-thada.jpg
Mewad Sojourn - A Memory Immortal. Mumbai - Rajasthan - Mount Abu-jt-royal-cenotaphs.jpg

After about half an hour at Jaswant Thada, we decided to walk over to Mehrangarh Fort. It’s less than a Kilometer from Jaswant Thada.

Mehrangarh Fort

View of the Mehrangarh Fort as we walked towards it.

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

A 14th Century monument, Mehrangarh Fort has a very imposing structure as soon as you enter. The sheer size of the fort as soon as you enter mesmerizes you. It has a total of 7 gates.

Mewad Sojourn - A Memory Immortal. Mumbai - Rajasthan - Mount Abu-mehrangarh1.jpg
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Cannonball hits Imprints on the Fort Wall from the attacking armies of Jaipur (Circled on the Wall)

Mewad Sojourn - A Memory Immortal. Mumbai - Rajasthan - Mount Abu-mf-cannon-ball-hits1.jpg
Mewad Sojourn - A Memory Immortal. Mumbai - Rajasthan - Mount Abu-mf-cannon-ball-hits2.jpg

The Royal Coronation Seat made in Marble

Mewad Sojourn - A Memory Immortal. Mumbai - Rajasthan - Mount Abu-mf-coronation-seat.jpg

Take a Look at the Windows of the fort. No two windows have the same design.

Mewad Sojourn - A Memory Immortal. Mumbai - Rajasthan - Mount Abu-mf-window-design.jpg

An Important Tip - Opt for the Audio Guide in Mehrangarh Fort. It's probably the best decision we took there. We were looking for a guide but there were no guide available and we ended up taking the Audio Guide. The Audio guides are way better than the local guides that we hire in such areas. One can listen to the piece of information as many times as required. The Audio Guides are steeply priced but worth it definitely. And they have guides in multiple languages. Here's a photo of Imran wearing the Audio Guide.

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

Price Perspective - A local guide for four people would have cost us Rs. 300 whereas the Audio Guide cost us Rs. 680 for Four people.

Post Mehrangarh Fort, we headed to the market area of Jodhpur City for Lunch and landed up in Sam's Pizza. A Pizza Buffet for Rs. 230 + Taxes.

I don't have a snapshot of the Pizza but I do have a pic of the starter plate filled up by one of us.

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

One more final destination for sight-seeing after lunch was Mandore Garden. Booked an Ola Cab and reached Mandore Garden by 03:30 PM. We left for the hotel from Mandore garden by 04:00 PM at the same speed we came. Mandore Garden is a disaster. The less I talk about it, the better it is.

DIRTY is what describes Mandore Garden.

Reaced hotel, took a couple of hours break. Everyone had a bit of Shopping to do. Check up with the Hotel guys and were informed of the Clock Tower Area for Shopping. Did some shopping and were back in the hotel by 08:30 PM.

Something Interesting about Jodhpur City. Here's is a photo of the Unique Auto-Rickshaw of Jodhpur City.

Mewad Sojourn - A Memory Immortal. Mumbai - Rajasthan - Mount Abu-jodhpur-autorickshaw1.jpg



What do you guys think this Auto-Rickshaw Resembles with.



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Last edited by tejas08 : 26th November 2015 at 14:24.
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Old 26th November 2015, 16:52   #6
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DAY 6 – JODHPUR TO MOUNT ABU VIA RANAKPUR

Total Kms. Driven – Approx. 325 Kms

Travel Time (Including Breaks) – 9.25 Hours (Approx. 3 Hours of Breaks)

Toll Paid – 255 Rs.

Departed at – 09:15 AM

Arrived at Ranakpur – 12:15 PM

Left from Ranakpur in a couple of hours by 02:15 PM

Arrived at Mount Abu Hotel – 06:30 PM

Accommodation – Kishangarh House, Mount Abu

Route Taken – Jodhpur – Pali – NH14 – Mundara – Ranakpur – Pindwara – Mount Abu


Mewad Sojourn - A Memory Immortal. Mumbai - Rajasthan - Mount Abu-route-day-6.jpg

The original plan was to visit Ranakpur Jain temple and Kumbhalgarh Fort and move to Mount Abu. We had our doubts about climbing the ghat section of Mount Abu at Night. The thought of dropping Kumbhalgarh Fort was already there. Thursday morning we were packed and ready to leave from the hotel at 09:15 AM with one pit-stop near a sweets shop to take back some Rajasthani Sweets. We ended spending more than desired time in the sweet shop. We dropped the idea of going to Kumbhalgarh Fort as it would have added at least two more hours to the day’s journey which would mean climbing the Ghat Section in complete darkness.

This is how the boot looked after leaving from the Sweet Shop.

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

So Ranakpur Temple was the only stop and probably was one of the best things seen in Rajasthan.

Ranakpur Jain Temple

Ranakpur Jain Temple is considered to be one of the most spectacular Jain Temples, constructed in the 15th Century made out of White Marble.

Mewad Sojourn - A Memory Immortal. Mumbai - Rajasthan - Mount Abu-ranakpur-jain-temple.jpg

The first feeling when I entered the temple was ‘WOOOW’! You get goosebumps looking at the intricate details on the pillars and ceilings and everything else. I will let the pictures do the talking.

Mewad Sojourn - A Memory Immortal. Mumbai - Rajasthan - Mount Abu-ranakpur-temple-1.jpg
Mewad Sojourn - A Memory Immortal. Mumbai - Rajasthan - Mount Abu-ranakpur-temple-2.jpg
Mewad Sojourn - A Memory Immortal. Mumbai - Rajasthan - Mount Abu-ranakpur-temple-3.jpg
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Mewad Sojourn - A Memory Immortal. Mumbai - Rajasthan - Mount Abu-ranakpur-temple-10.jpg
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Mewad Sojourn - A Memory Immortal. Mumbai - Rajasthan - Mount Abu-ranakpur-temple-13.jpg

There is an adjacent Parshwanath temple which is smaller but nothing less beautiful than the main temple.

Mewad Sojourn - A Memory Immortal. Mumbai - Rajasthan - Mount Abu-adjacent-temple-1.jpg
Mewad Sojourn - A Memory Immortal. Mumbai - Rajasthan - Mount Abu-adjacent-temple-2.jpg
Mewad Sojourn - A Memory Immortal. Mumbai - Rajasthan - Mount Abu-adjacent-temple-3.jpg
Mewad Sojourn - A Memory Immortal. Mumbai - Rajasthan - Mount Abu-adjacent-temple-4.jpg

Had lunch at a nearby Restaurant La Pizzeria, serving Pizzas and other international cuisine (Don't ask how it came there right in the middle of nowhere). Also best to be avoided. We did not experiment much as we had our doubts about the international cuisine it would Serve. We ordered regular Pizzas which were OK. Nothing great though.

Post lunch, headed straight for Mount Abu and reached at Kishangarh Hotel (A Heritage Property) by 06:30 PM. Temperatures at Mount Abu were around 18 Deg. C at 06:30 PM, when we reached Mount Abu.

Some photos of Kishangarh House. We did not as much photographs as much weithage we should have given to the Hotel.

Mewad Sojourn - A Memory Immortal. Mumbai - Rajasthan - Mount Abu-img_8091.jpg
Mewad Sojourn - A Memory Immortal. Mumbai - Rajasthan - Mount Abu-20151119_190713.jpg
Mewad Sojourn - A Memory Immortal. Mumbai - Rajasthan - Mount Abu-20151119_190748.jpg
Mewad Sojourn - A Memory Immortal. Mumbai - Rajasthan - Mount Abu-img_8040.jpg

Spent the evening relaxing, doing nothing, having dinner and .

Last edited by tejas08 : 26th November 2015 at 19:16.
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Old 26th November 2015, 18:49   #7
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DAY 7 – MOUNT ABU SIGHT-SEEING & RELAXING

Total Kms. Driven – Approx. 50 Kms

Originally we wanted to use Auto-Rickshaws for local sight-seeing like that of Udaipur and Jodhpur. Mount Abu did not have any Auto-Rickshaws due to the steep roads everywhere. It has Jeep Type vehicles (Traxx etc.) to go around the town and other sight-seeing.

Since, we arrived in Mount Abu on Thursday evening and did the sight-seeing on Friday, we did not encounter much traffic. We had an easy time going through the Mount Abu Streets.

The whole mindset towards Mount Abu was 'A Destination to relax'. Sight-seeing was completely secondary.

After a heavy breakfast, we headed towards Gurushikhar. We had an early morning Hoodie Group Photo before leaving.

Mewad Sojourn - A Memory Immortal. Mumbai - Rajasthan - Mount Abu-hotel-morning-group-photo.jpg

The roads towards Gurushikhhar were pretty good Two laned roads.

Mewad Sojourn - A Memory Immortal. Mumbai - Rajasthan - Mount Abu-roads-gurushikhar.jpg
Mewad Sojourn - A Memory Immortal. Mumbai - Rajasthan - Mount Abu-roads-gurushikhar1.jpg

Gurushikhar

Gurushikhar is the highest peak of Aravalli Range and of Rajasthan at above 5600 Feet (1700+ mtrs). On reaching Gurushikhar, one needs to park the vehicle in the parking area and head on foot. About 200 off steps to be climbed to reach the top. Even on an odd day like Friday, the parking lot was full and it took us time to find a parking spot. Don't want to imagine want happens on weekends. We had a similar situation even at the Sunset Point.

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

We did some window shopping on the steps to Gurushikhar, had a cup of tea and headed back towards the Town. Dilwara Jain Temple was another sight-seeing option but neither of us was interested in going to another temple. We headed straight back to the hotel.

A group photo on the way down from Gurushikhar to Mount Abu.

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

Time for lunch.

Upon recommendation of a couple of shop-keepers, we decided to go to Sher-E-Punjab Hotel (Old one) in the market area. The food was strictly OK. Don't know why those people recommended it. I wouldn't go their a second time neither would I recommend to anyone.

Post lunch, came back to hotel and took a nap (all of us). This is what I call relaxation. Planned to leave hotel 04:30 PM for Nakki Lake and Sunset Point.

Left the hotel at 05:00 PM with Google Maps as our navigator. Google Maps took us to such roads once again where we could not see many cars. Google Maps has another Sunset point of the map for Mount Abu. The actual sunset point is in the opposite direction. While going to Sunset Point, we got a glimpse of Nakki Lake. By no means was it impressive. Looked like an ordinary lake with some boating options and we decided to give it a skip.

We reached the parking near Sunset point by 05:45 PM. The Parking was full. It was like the whole of Mount Abu was there to watch Sunset. Took us a while to get a parking place and then had to walk to the sunset point for about 8-10 mins. By the time, we reached the sun had already set.

Never disappointed, we decided to take a Selfie with the Orange Skies background post Sun Set.

Mewad Sojourn - A Memory Immortal. Mumbai - Rajasthan - Mount Abu-sunset-point-selfie.jpg

We had asked the hotel person to arrange for a bon-fire in the evening for dinner and

Here's a glimpse at the bon-fire & Dinner setup.

Mewad Sojourn - A Memory Immortal. Mumbai - Rajasthan - Mount Abu-bonfire1.jpg
Mewad Sojourn - A Memory Immortal. Mumbai - Rajasthan - Mount Abu-bonfire2.jpg

DAY 8 – MOUNT ABU TO MUMBAI

Total Kms. Driven – Approx. 760 Kms

Travel Time (Including Breaks) – 15.5 Hours (Approx. 3.5 Hours of Breaks & about half an hour of near standstill traffic near Bharuch)

Toll Paid – 414 Rs.

Departed at – 09:15 AM

Arrived at Mumbai (Fountain Hotel) – 12:45 AM

Detour & Halt at – Gandhinagar (Read on to find out why)

Route Taken – Mount Abu – Palanpur – Mehsana – Gandhi Nagar – Ahmedabad – Baroda - Mumbai


Mewad Sojourn - A Memory Immortal. Mumbai - Rajasthan - Mount Abu-route-day-8.jpg

So Day 8 was supposed to be the simplest of all days. Pack up all the stuff and leave for Mumbai. Post the experience of doing Mumbai - Udaipur (750 Kms Approx.) in 13 Hours including breaks, we decided to leave from Mount Abu at around 09:00 AM. We started around about that. The slowest of the Drives was going to be the 25 odd Kms Ghat section from Mount Abu to the National Highway. Leaving at 09:15 AM, we were pretty much on target to reach Mumbai by 11:30 PM including some breaks.

We did a photoshoot of the Valley and the car while going through the Descent of the Ghat Section.

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

The ride Dwarfed by the Mountains
Mewad Sojourn - A Memory Immortal. Mumbai - Rajasthan - Mount Abu-valley1.jpg

The Sun Shining Bright on us through the Mountains
Mewad Sojourn - A Memory Immortal. Mumbai - Rajasthan - Mount Abu-valley2.jpg

Here’s a look at the Twists and Turns of the Ghat Section going to Mount Abu on Google Maps

Mewad Sojourn - A Memory Immortal. Mumbai - Rajasthan - Mount Abu-google-maps-ghat-section.png

We were done with the Ghat Section and onto the National Highway doing easy cruising of about 120 kmph. We had had our close shaves through the tour on National Highways with regards to the Cattle and the reckless riders. But this time, it was just not in our control to stop an incident from happening. Coming down from a flyover, we had an XUV in front of us and we saw a Cow crossing the road. The XUV swerved and went through only for us to see that there was another smaller cow following the first one.

The gap between the two was enough only for possible an A Segment car to pass through. At 120 kmph, 4 people on board and a boot full of luggage, coming to a standstill by braking was pretty much out of question. Braked hard, bringing down the speed to somewhere near 40-50 kmph and swerved between the two cows only to realize, the rear end of one cow hitting the right-side mirror and the face of the smaller cow nudging the left bumper corner. The cows did not look in bad shape but we were certainly shaken. The thought of hitting the cow head-on was something which scared us, because that possibly would have meant the Airbags inflating and leaving us in the middle of nowhere.

This is how the Right-side rear view mirror looked after the incident.

Mewad Sojourn - A Memory Immortal. Mumbai - Rajasthan - Mount Abu-incident-1.jpg
Mewad Sojourn - A Memory Immortal. Mumbai - Rajasthan - Mount Abu-incident-2.jpg

I called up my Honda Service advisor for advice. There was no way we were driving without a right-side rear view mirror for another 650 odd kms. From the Service Booklet started searching for the nearest Service Centers and locating a Service Center which had the Mirror readily available.

After about 12-15 phone calls and 4 different Service Centers, we got lucky. Emerald Honda in Gandhi Nagar had the Mirror Assembly readily available with them. By the time we reached Gandhi Nagar and got the mirror assembly replaced, it was already close to 03:00 PM. Approx. 530 kms more to go from here.

Mewad Sojourn - A Memory Immortal. Mumbai - Rajasthan - Mount Abu-incident-3.jpg
Mewad Sojourn - A Memory Immortal. Mumbai - Rajasthan - Mount Abu-incident-4.jpg

We had a quick lunch in Dominos on the Sardar Patel Ring Road of Ahmedabad and were off towards Mumbai again. With two Three Hours stints of driving with a stop only for tea, reached near Vapi and had dinner at close to 10:00 PM in Subway. There was a delay of around 45 mins due to near standstill traffic near Bharuch, due to the road widening project ongoing. From Vapi, we did a non-stop run upto Fountain Hotel near Ghodbunder Road, reaching at around 01:00 AM.

After dropping off one by one, I was the last person to reach home at 02:30 AM.

Final Status of the Road Trip as I parked the car in my Parking Lot.

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

Trip Expense Summary: (For Four People)

Accommodation - Rs. 45,320 (for 7 Nights)
Fuel - Rs. 11,341
Toll - Rs. 1,770
Rickshaw / Cabs - Rs. 1,222
Parking / Car Entry - Rs. 250
Sight-Seeing Tickets - Rs. 5,085
Food / Water / Snacks - Rs. 26,784
Miscellaneous - Rs. 3,265

Total - Rs. 95,037 (That's Rs. 23,759 Per head)


P.S. - Another Interesting fact about my Roadtrips (Gujrat and Rajasthan). The first expense in each of the state (other than toll or Petrol) has been to a 'PANDU' of Rs. 200 in each case. Looks to be more like a donation in each state for the Road Trip to go successful.

Last edited by tejas08 : 27th November 2015 at 12:38.
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Old 27th November 2015, 16:46   #8
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Thread moved from the Assembly Line. Thanks for sharing.
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Old 27th November 2015, 20:10   #9
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Default re: Mewad Sojourn - A Memory Immortal. Mumbai - Rajasthan - Mount Abu

"This part of my Life, this part right here (photo attached) - This is called Happiness"

I was fortunate enough to drive from Ranakpur to Mount Abu, words would not do justice to the feel of driving through 24km ghat, mind and heart was at its redline multitasking to enjoy every moment, the stunning view varying with every turn - Bus/Cars/Vans taking blind-turns blindly trying their best to make the road more dangerous - rapid rise in altitude and swift drop in temperature (from 23 degrees at the start of the ghat to 16 degrees when we reached the hotel).

15 years of driving, I have yet not mastered the art of overtaking on blind turns; I guess I will never risk life for gaining few minutes or even just for the thrill - "Better late than never", during our travel we came across many Cars/Local Taxis/Jeeps which were crossing the line of safety, in fact if there was ever an actual physical line of safety - they would be so far away from the line that the line would no longer be a line - it would get converted to a dot
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Old 28th November 2015, 12:42   #10
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Seems like you guys had a lot of fun - it was quite evident in your write-up and pictures

Do you guys have regular Team-BHP meets in Navi Mumbai? I need to visit the meet section more often.

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Originally Posted by tejas08 View Post
Umaid Bhavan Palace is one of the Largest Private Residences around the globe with 300+ Rooms. Currently, it is divided into three parts viz. one part for the Royal Family, one part given to Taj Hotels and the third part converted to a museum. The museum is the place where the tourists are allowed.
I've been fortunate to stay at the Umaid Bhavan Palace and trust me, this place just oozes royalty. From its sheer size, to the wall paintings, to the decor, just about everything makes you feel like a king. No other 5-star hotel that I've been in even comes close. Apparently, the view from top of the Palace (they call this place something but I can't recollect) is supposed to be insane. Too bad that it was under renovation when I was there.

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While me and my friend were getting the tickets for Moti Magri, BHPians Imran and Amit were reviewing an Auto-Rickshaw of Udaipur. A detailed review of the Auto-Rickshaw coming up soon.
Eagerly awaiting a review, Team-BHP style Did you guys just pose or did the auto guy actually let you drive it?
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Old 28th November 2015, 20:29   #11
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Originally Posted by IPathan View Post

15 years of driving, I have yet not mastered the art of overtaking on blind turns; I guess I will never risk life for gaining few minutes or even just for the thrill - "Better late than never", during our travel we came across many Cars/Local Taxis/Jeeps which were crossing the line of safety, in fact if there was ever an actual physical line of safety - they would be so far away from the line that the line would no longer be a line - it would get converted to a dot
Please, please don't overtake on blind turns, as a matter of fact, don't overtake on any turns at all. As someone who has driven & ridden his whole life in hills, I strongly urge you that you should not attempt overtaking on blind curves or on any curves. Majority of accidents in Himachal, on the NH-21, Chandigarh-Manali highway, happen at curves because the drivers who are from the plains, do this mistake of overtaking on curves. Just imagine that you're overtaking at a curve and a bus comes out of nowhere, it would be catastrophic.
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Old 28th November 2015, 21:18   #12
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Default Re: Mewad Sojourn - A Memory Immortal. Mumbai - Rajasthan - Mount Abu

Thank you all !

This helps me plan my Trip to Rajasthan in dec better.

I will definitely take the advise of taking auto rickshaws in Udaipur and Jodhpur.

Cheers,
Shailesh
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Old 28th November 2015, 22:39   #13
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Originally Posted by 0xTKB View Post
Please, please don't overtake on blind turns, as a matter of fact, don't overtake on any turns at all. As someone who has driven & ridden his whole life in hills, I strongly urge you that you should not attempt overtaking on blind curves or on any curves. Majority of accidents in Himachal, on the NH-21, Chandigarh-Manali highway, happen at curves because the drivers who are from the plains, do this mistake of overtaking on curves. Just imagine that you're overtaking at a curve and a bus comes out of nowhere, it would be catastrophic.
I never overtake on blind turns and will never - the statement "15 years of driving, I have yet not mastered the art of overtaking on blind turns", I meant people irrespective of their driving experience attempt overtaking - risking their own and others life. I don't intent to ever master this art
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Old 29th November 2015, 01:23   #14
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I never overtake on blind turns and will never - the statement "15 years of driving, I have yet not mastered the art of overtaking on blind turns", I meant people irrespective of their driving experience attempt overtaking - risking their own and others life. I don't intent to ever master this art
Oh!! I apologize for taking it the wrong way. Sorry
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Old 29th November 2015, 09:06   #15
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Originally Posted by S2!!! View Post
Do you guys have regular Team-BHP meets in Navi Mumbai? I need to visit the meet section more often.
We have a Navi Mumbai Team-BHP Whatsapp group for almost a year now I gguess. This is where we plan our meets.

If I remember correctly, you stay in Mulund. We could meet sometime.

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Originally Posted by S2!!! View Post
I've been fortunate to stay at the Umaid Bhavan Palace and trust me, this place just oozes royalty. From its sheer size, to the wall paintings, to the decor, just about everything makes you feel like a king. No other 5-star hotel that I've been in even comes close. Apparently, the view from top of the Palace (they call this place something but I can't recollect) is supposed to be insane. Too bad that it was under renovation when I was there.
Would love to see some of the pis of the interiors of the Hotel. Do they allow visitors in the Hotel or is it restricted to people who have booked their stay in the hotel?
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