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Old 25th November 2016, 11:57   #1
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Default Padharo Mare Des - Our Rajasthan Trip

Padharo Mare Des -- Our Rajasthan Trip -- The prequel


The big question.

“Where to this year?”, asked my wife. The question came too soon and too suddenly for me to give a “good” answer. So, I did what I could do best, and that is to pretend to think while avoiding to answer. While I went by my natural male tendency she went by her feminine decisiveness and before I knew it, it was declared that we would be travelling to Rajasthan - The Land of Kings!

The ‘HOW’ ?

Whether I wanted to go there or not was out of question. Mulling over another destination would have served no good so I started working on the ‘commute’ aspect of our trip. Anyone who loves driving would never let go of an opportunity to cover this place by his own vehicle. And that is how it was for us. “We would be doing a road trip”, I declared one day as an act of putting my foot firmly down (or at least attempting to do so). Quite unexpectedly a smile spread over her face. And before I could think of why she exclaimed, “More car space means more shopping!”. Men never win, no matter how hard you try. Thus I started working on another aspect of our trip, the budget.


Things begin to roll (dragging me with them)…

“I am reading about Rajasthan in order to chart out our tour. You too start reading stuff.” said the woman of my house. I wanted to remind her that it was a bit too soon to ‘study’ but I love peace on all fronts. Google docs were made and updated by her and shared with me on a regular basis. Every time there would be an addition there it would be followed by many rounds of discussion at home. Frankly speaking, I could not get the head or tail of it. Holidays are meant for unwinding. If you have to slog so hard before a holiday, why take one? Again, I kept these thoughts to myself and did what I do best, NOD!


The plot thickens.

Sometimes when I did go through those innumerable sheets shared with me by my wife, I seriously felt like reminding her about the relationship between speed,distance and time. The only way we could cover all those places which she had put in there was to FLY from one to another. Again, a trip is a BREAK from routine meant to be taken for relaxation! To convince her of that, I needed to sugar-coat my opinion and tread very carefully. I had to look like I too had done some homework. So I actually started talking to people at work about Rajasthan and taking inputs from them. Eventually after innumerable changes and re-thoughts and late night discussions and arguments and what not, we had an itinerary ready!

It would be Pune-Mumbai-Jodhpur-Pushkar-Jaipur-Udaipur-Mumbai in 10 days during November. The total run when I got back to Pune was "3310 km".

Day 0, 12th Nov: Pune - Mumbai, Stay at in-laws place
Day 1, 13th Nov: Mumbai - Ahmedabad, Stay at hotel Grand Elegance
Day 2, 14th Nov: Ahmedabad - Jodhpur, Stay at hotel Lord's Inn
Day 3, 15th Nov: Jodhpur, Stay at hotel Lord's Inn
Day 4, 16th Nov: Jodhpur - Pushkar - Jaipur, Stay at hotel Royal Orchid
Day 5, 17th Nov: Jaipur, Stay at hotel Royal Orchid
Day 6, 18th Nov: Jaipur, Stay at hotel Royal Orchid
Day 7, 19th Nov: Jaipur - Udaipur, Stay at hotel Lavitra
Day 8, 20th Nov: Udaipur, Stay at hotel Lavitra
Day 9, 21st Nov: Udaipur, Stay at hotel ShikarBadi
Day 8, 22nd Nov: Udaipur, Stay at hotel ShikarBadi
Day 10, 23rd Nov: Udaipur - Mumbai, Trip concludes

Following are the routes which I took:

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Old 25th November 2016, 15:55   #2
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Padharo Mare Des -- Our Rajasthan Trip -- The first leg, Day 1



‘Shree Ganesh’ of our road trip.

As per our plan we kick started our longest road trip to Rajasthan and back on 12th November 2016. The first halt was Mumbai at my in-laws’ place. From there we left for Ahmedabad in the early morning of 13th November, 2016. The first challenge was to reach Ghodbunder bridge near Fountain hotel well before truck traffic started moving. Thankfully our little one got ready without fuss and we were there around 7.15 am. Although the traffic was light we realized that they took turns and left only one side of the road at a time, thus bringing the other side to a complete stop for 5-10 mins. Luckily when we reached this spot our side was open. In no time we were cruising along Mumbai-Ahmedabad highway.

As the road unwinded before us.

We took our first stop near Vapi. There are many decent eateries here and one could afford to spend some 10-15 minutes for tea. The one where we stopped did not have any breakfast ready so we only had tea there. Thankfully mother-in-law had packed some theplas and we feasted on them as we moved ahead on those smooth and excellent roads driving at triple digit speed.

Crossing into the GJ state...

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The Ahmedabad-Baroda Eway (NEH1) is too good to be true. I am used to driving on our Pune-Mbai Eway but this thing is different ballgame altogether. The surface is so smooth that you hardly feel any undulations. You can keep on munching miles effortlessly on this road and can cruise in triple digits with ease.

TIP: Take the "old" bridge on Narmada river at Ankleshwar. We could pass it in 15 mins flat.

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The big concern (and subsequent relief).


The recent demonetisation of 1K and 500/- rupees notes was one of the major impeding factors of our journey. Although we had managed to gather as many “chutta” change as possible there was still some concern as to how smoothly we will manage the entire trip. As we went ahead we did face some challenges, of which we had no inkling right then. However, waiving off toll fees across India did provide some solace to our troubled minds. At first the waiving was till 18th November which was then extended till 24th November thus making our whole trip TOLL-FREE!


First night halt.


Thanks to the roads we were travelling as per our estimated time. And like I said earlier our respective mothers had packed so many things to eat that we decided to forgo our lunch break and had it in car! Thus we made it to Ahmedabad by 3.30 pm that evening and checked into Hotel Grand Elegance on Sindhu Bhavan Marg, Bodakdev area for our first night stay.

As the evening was free we took a rick and went to see Sabarmati River Front. It is a beautiful sight especially during evenings. The whole premise looked like a small, shining ring and provides for an excellent retreat to localites. The fact that it is spic and span increases its ‘face value’.

On our way back from there, as we headed to Athiti Dining Hall on Judges Bunglow Road in our hotel’s vicinity, my wife spotted a Wagh Bakri Tea Lounge. We had seen coffee lounges but a tea one was new for us. Coming back to dinner, the thali at Athiti was excellent, perhaps the most delicious one I had on this trip marred only by the fact that they refused payment by card.

It was a long day today, with total run of 530 kms completed in 8.5 hours (Around 7.5 hours driving time and 1 hour break time). Tomorrow there will be new roads to take and new places to see as we reach Jodhpur.

Couple of clicks from the Sabarmati Riverfront Garden..

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The route which I took:

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IMO.

Stay at : The Grand Elegance Hotel (3.5 stars) -> https://goo.gl/maps/iPUqDWx4ndE2
Eat at : Athiti Dining Hall (4 stars) -> https://goo.gl/maps/E3T5fe9c9z32
See : Sabarmati River Front (4 stars) -> https://goo.gl/maps/Go5s5WsJ1s12
About the city : Clean.

Last edited by neoonwheels : 28th November 2016 at 14:52.
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Old 25th November 2016, 16:20   #3
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Padharo Mare Des -- Our Rajasthan Trip -- Into the land of Marwar - Day 2, Jodhpur

It’s a new day..


On day-2 of our road trip we were going to reach Jodhpur, the land of Marwar. Our enthusiasm got us ready sooner than the hotel could get their breakfast started. So in order to save some time we decided to have breakfast somewhere on the way and checked out by 7.15 am.

I was dying to hit Ahmedabad - Mehsana - Siddhpur - Palanpur - AbuRoad- Sirohi - Pali - Jodhpur track. And I must confess that the roads did not let me down. They are surreal to say the least. The only problem is that we could not find decent eateries here. Apart from this small setback (which we could easily overcome because we still had enough food to feed an army,courtesy our MOTHERS) and a small traffic bottleneck at Siddhpur the whole drive was fantastic.

First brush with Rajasthani hospitality

Around noon we decided to pull over for lunch. We chose to stop at Baba Ramdev Hotel at VeraVilPur after some 15 kms from Sirohi on NH-62. It looked clean and airy with ample parking space. We had Paneer Butter Masala which was made less spicy according to our preference and served with Makka roti , butter naan and tava chapati all drenched in ghee. No matter how much you try to stop them, they will not be happy unless they have poured enough ghee on your rotis which will promptly get reflected on your waistline. This restaurant accepts Debit and Credit cards.

As you leave Maharashtra, roads in all directions are too good. The Palanpur - Mt Abu road - Sirohi road is quite scenic and too good. When you start climbing down the Mt Abu road winding roads, you are treated with a nice view. Few clicks of this route:

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BTW, you cannot, just cannot escape 'CID'

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First detour, first shock

After cruising at 65-70 kms/hr we were finally into Jodhpur by 2.30 pm or so. This is where our first sightseeing spot was marked. It was a durry factory called Pukhraj Durry Udhyog, located in some remote village and accessible via a mesh of narrow lanes. After losing our way a couple of times we finally reached this lovely village house and were welcomed by an elderly man with cheeks covered with his curled mustache. His young son (or nephew) gave us a minuscule demo of how durries are made and got down to business. After rolling out some 5-6 durries of varied dimensions he waited for us to make a selection. We on the other hand were in a state of shock after hearing their prices. A moderately sized durry was for 14,000/- . We checked and cross-checked, then asked for a smaller one. This process continued till we had reached the smallest piece priced at 4,000/-. Needless to say we beat a retreat from there and headed back to our hotel as fast as we could to make up for lost time.


Check - in at the Inn

Nearly after an hour we were unpacking at our room in Lord’s Inn Hotel at PWD circle. It is a decent place to stay. The room was very comfortable and well priced. The breakfast options however were redundant. In fact, during our entire stay across different hotels in Rajasthan we saw Idli and Upma served almost everyday for breakfast. I wonder how and when these Rajasthanis forged such deep gastronomic ties with Southies, forgetting all about their North-Indian neighbours? What happened to those yummy parathas?

In the evening we went for some BANDHEJ shopping near Ghanta ghar locality. For the noobs, Bandhej is the local fabric art of tie and dye process. A word of caution, the lanes here are very crowded, extremely narrow and difficult to handle. So stick to rickshaws or Uber. Let your car enjoy in the comfortable environs of your hotel’s parking lot.

The second day of our road trip on which we covered 443 kms in a total journey of 7 ½ hours including 6 ½ driving hours and 1 hour break time ended with dinner at Indique (aka Pali Haveli Hotel) near Clock Tower, Gulab Sagar. With its roof-top seating and candle lit tables, the ambiance is beautiful. As you soak in its heritage look accentuated with the backdrop of Mehrangarh Fort, things can get slightly noisy as it is located in the middle of the local market. But overall it is worth a try and while you are here do try their tasty dal makhani. Remember though that the service is relaxed and items are costly. This restaurant accepts all credit and debit cards .

The route that I took:

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IMO:

Had lunch at: Hotel Baba Ramdev (3.5 Stars) -> https://goo.gl/maps/M5a6JJLTXHq
Stay at : The Lords Inn (4 stars) -> https://goo.gl/maps/y9eF2Nwa3dr
Dinner at : Indique (4 stars) -> https://goo.gl/maps/bgo7csVPaSD2
About the city : Dirty, You can see litter everywhere

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Padharo Mare Des -- Our Rajasthan Trip -- A day at Fort Mehrangarh - Day 3, Jodhpur

Getting ready for our first brush with Rajasthan’s Royalty

Day 3 would be spent in the bylanes of history. After a relaxed breakfast at our hotel we started for Fort Mehrangarh situated in the heart of the city. The roads are wide and there is ample parking near the fort so I will recommend that you take your car. The fort opens at 9.00 am. If you are here around that time you will not only be able to get a good guide but also see the fort when it is less crowded. Eatables are not allowed inside so stuff yourself before you start the tour of this fort. Only towards the exit there is a cafe which serves tea, coffee and some titbits.


As history unfolds

As soon as you enter the fort towards right there is a miniature version of this fort. When we glanced at this little copy little did we know that the actual thing will impress us so much! Towards left is the ticket window. This is the only Indian fort that has elevator facility. As our guide informed us, the work of putting an elevator went on for 5 years as they did not want to use any explosives to make a tunnel. The whole gap is created by carving out the rock by hand! Do buy elevator ticket to save you time and efforts. Also opt for a guide because the tours around this fort are unidirectional for better traffic control and guides know precisely where and how to take you. Audio guides are available but getting to the right spots can be a challenge, given the size of this fort.

Miniature version of the fort:

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A painting to greet you to the fort:

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The elevator leaves you at a big balcony like landing from where you get to see the glimpse of Blue city! The blue houses traditionally belonged to the Brahmin community but now people from other communities also paint their houses in blue in order to beat the heat during summers.

As you proceed ahead you are taken to the coronation seat of kings. Overlooking this courtyard is a series of lattice worked windows or ‘zarokas’ meant for the womenfolk to watch the proceedings underneath without being seen. The design, symmetry and attention to details is mesmerizing. Also seen here is a small portrait of King Rao Jodha, the founder of Jodhpur.

The Coronation Seat:

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The Zarokas: This is NO woodwork, its done in Sandstone!!!

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Next, you will be taken to the ‘Howdah’ section where you will get to see different types of elephant seats used by the kings and their families. Here lies a particular, ‘Haathi Howdah’ which was gifted by Shah Jahan to Maharaja Jaswant Singh in the year 1657. There are many such gifts given by Mughal emperors from time to time which indicate friendly relations of this state with Mughal rulers of that time.

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Another interesting thing that you will see here is an old man sitting beside a hookah! Our guide explained to us that this represents the tradition of the land where during a marriage ceremony bride’s father has to offer opium incensed water to groom’s father to welcome them to the wedding. Although opium is banned in India, this tradition is still pretty much alive.

Swiftly we moved from one part of the fort to the other seeing gold plated palanquins, minutely hand painted curtains, changeable sword hilts and miniature metallic wine decanters. Each item more awesome than the previous one.

The Hookah

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Changeable Hilt

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One of the hilts

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Beautiful is an understatement

Just when we thought that the fort tour will be like a walk in a museum our guide took us to Sheesh Mahal. Sheesh as in Mirror and Mahal as in Hall, the Mirror Hall. As of now entry into this chamber is prohibited so you need to peep inside through the side doors. But even from here the view is absolutely maddening. They say in earlier times they used to illuminate this whole place with small lamps, now we have a big chandelier giving it a magical glow. This is a place that redefines ‘art’.

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Next, we were shown Phool Mahal. As the name suggests this hall is full of flowers drawn in its every nook and corner. The ceiling has specially fitted Belgian glass globes of multicolour and the windows have Belgian glass tiles. All done to reflect lights of different colors and give a disco light like effect! The floor is hand painted using organic colors. To use organic colors made from flowers and vegetables seemed to be a popular trend across Rajasthan. We were told that many artisans over here still indulge in this art of painting. Phool Mahal used to be King’s bed chamber.

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Masterpiece isnt it? The golden color is result of the gold polish!

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Moti mahal used to be King’s court. Its walls has depressions to hold small lamps. Once illuminated, the whole place shines like pearl, thus giving it its name. Around this mahal there are secret windows which could be used by the Queen to overhear courtroom proceedings without being seen. The ceiling is breathtaking!

Moti Mahal: The painted glass is imported from Belgium

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The secret window

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The biggest section of the fort is Zenana Deodi. As we learnt gradually that each fort of Rajasthan had a separate female section where entry to men was prohibited. Meharangarh’s female section is beautifully sculpted and very big.The restoration work of this place is on since more than 10 years and entry to the whole section is not possible. However whatever you get to see of the sandstone screens and carvings is superb!

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As a memorable day wraps

Being a native of Maharashtra my wife and I had never seen such grand and artistic forts. Our forts are more rugged and carved in stone. But what we got to see today was beyond words. Tomorrow it will be time to bid farewell to Jodhpur and proceed to Pushkar for some spiritual uplifting of the soul.

Last edited by neoonwheels : 28th November 2016 at 19:05.
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Padharo Mare Des -- Our Rajasthan Trip -- Day 4, Pushkar, where creation meets the Creator


On the path of spiritual rekindling.

Pushkar was a late addition to our itinerary. My wife somehow stumbled upon this place and its numerous ancient temples and from then on this became an absolute must-do for us. So, as per planned we started for Pushkar on Day-4. The plan was to cover its Brahma temple, lake, couple of nearby temples and hit Jaipur. I had checked with friends, acquaintances and HVK FB group about the roads and reaching Jaipur slightly later in the evening looked alright to us. After a quick breakfast at our hotel we hit Jodhpur- Dangiyawas- Binawas- Jaitaran - Bar- Beawar - Ajmer - Pushkar road by 8.30 am. The roads as per the norm in Rajasthan were great. Only the 10KM stretch around Bilara was bad but then that did not delay overall traveling time much. By 1.30 pm we were comfortably in the land of the Creator, Lord Brahma!

Few of the clicks of this RJ road:

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First parking, then moksha.

One enters Pushkar after descending a small winding ghat. But the road that meets your eyes can be deceiving. Even before you realize you enter a mesh of narrow lanes populated by roadside shops, cows, naked, semi-naked and properly clothed holy men and locals. If you succeed in maneuvering your car through all these then skip Brahma temple because you have already attained MOKSHA!


We lost our way into this mesh but luckily spotted a ‘parking’ sign and parked our car there for 50/- for couple of hours. From here, discovery of Pushkar would be made on foot. The first task at hand was to locate an eatery which my wife had shortlisted. This place is towards the end of a small lane and called Sun and Moon. Food is alright but I do not think you will be able to find anything better than this. And contrary to its location this place serves Italian too. So, no complaints.

Typical spotting:

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Gurur Brahma.

There are many stories in Hinduism explaining why Lord Brahma, despite being the creator of this universe, is not worshipped commonly. One of those stories is when Brahma decided to have a ‘yagnya’ on the land of Pushkar, he called for his wife Savitri to join him. She (as is the case with all women) got late. All the priests gathered there could not wait and suggested that Brahma takes another woman, Gayatri, as his wife. Thus Gayatri sat for the ‘yagnya’ posed as Brahma’s wife. When Savitri arrived she was enraged to find her man sitting with another woman and in a feat of rage cursed Brahma that he will only be worshiped at Pushkar and nowhere else on this ‘mrutyuloka’ (earth). This makes Pushkar’s Brahma temple so special.


Neither photography nor taking any sack, bag , etc inside the temple is allowed. So either leave your stuff in the car or wait for a locker. The idol is beautiful and sits between the idols of Savitri and Gayatri towards right and left side respectively. Temple complex is clean and well maintained. There are many smaller temples within the complex which you can check out. For more enthusiastic people there is a separate Savitri temple on a nearby hill which accounts for 40 (or more) minutes trek one way.

The holy (?) dip.

Close to Brahma temple is the revered Pushkar lake. It is believed that this lake was formed when Lord Brahma dropped a lotus petal on earth. As is the condition with maximum pious water bodies in our country, this lake too is littered with garlands, flowers and holy men trying to fleece you of your money by forcing you to sit for performing ‘shraddh’ of your dead family members because it is a belief that this small pooja done on the banks of Pushkar lake promises ‘swarga-sukha’ (heaven) to the dead. Beware of these cunning men and do not fall victim to their sweet-talk.

Once you cross this hurdle the next complication is the water body itself. Although the religious belief propounds a dip (even better a bath) here, there is no way you can bring yourself up to doing that. The farthest we could go was to dip our feet into the waters.

Kiddo finally got to sit on a camel.. We dont get to see this animal in Pune.

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There are (still) miles to go.

Last round of torture for me in Pushkar was shopping. There are innumerable small shops here that sale everything, from earrings to clothes, bedspreads to camels. My better-half went berserk with shopping despite the fact that many shopkeepers flatly refused to accept card and we were operating on a limited cash flow. However, in her opinion she had the best shopping spree at Pushkar. Still, beware of those cunning shopkeepers as well.

Parting shot of the Pushkar:

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Finally after satisfying all our senses we headed for Jaipur by 4.30 pm via Pushkar-Kishengarh-Dudu-Jaipur track. Traffic was light and we could check into our Jaipur hotel, Hotel Royal Orchid by 7.15 pm. For dinner we visited a nearby place, Guruji ki Rasoi that serves good food with live music.


Even before we realised, day 4 was over. We had already covered plenty to miles by now and thankfully our kid had been amazing! Not only that, even the roads were amazing and the trip was going excellent. With this upbeat mood, tomorrow we explore the Pink city. Some more miles, some more Rajasthan!

The route which we took for Jodhpur - Pushkar - Jaipur

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IMO.

If you do not have a religious bend of mind then avoid Pushkar. However this could mean a severe setback to your wife’s shopping plan. How much risk to take? Well, to each his own! Also since photography was not allowed, no pics for this day.

1. Left Jodhpur at 8:30 AM and reached Pushkar at around 1:30 PM
2. Had tea at Bar while on the way to Pushkar - https://goo.gl/maps/tLYSfgsbXZn
3. From Pushkar we started around 4:30 PM and reached our hotel at 7:15 PM
4. Stay at: Hotel Royal Orchid - 4 Stars - https://goo.gl/maps/ziokM9LNtim
5. Dinner at Guruji ki Rasoi - 4 Stars - https://goo.gl/maps/iHxkizgsoEu

Last edited by neoonwheels : 28th November 2016 at 19:14.
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Padharo Mare Des -- Our Rajasthan Trip -- Day 5, Pink City Jaipur


Late start

With the intention of seeing the Sound and light show at Amer fort at 6.30 pm we started our first day at Jaipur in a relaxed manner. Our hotel room as well the breakfast spread were perfect excuses to dillydally till late morning which is when we finally left for Amer fort. The plan was to first visit Panna Meena ka kund and post lunch proceed for Sheesh Mahal followed by Sound and Light in the evening. However we reached Amer Fort a bit too soon and as the day unfolded we realized that we were not as much LATE as we would have loved to be.

Step-well

We took a wrong turn on our way to Panna Meena ka kund. As we were trying to manage a U-turn here one person identified himself as an official guide and offered us services of his colleague for locating the step well as well as seeing the fort for 200/-.

I recommend opting for guide for two reasons: Guide will easily navigate you to Step well and the fort and will make sure you will get a parking slot on fort, the second being, since its a big fort, its convenient if you first cover the important parts of the fort.

The tour started with Panna Meena ka kund. As per our guide this is a 10th century step well built by then king Meena, for social gatherings. As of now it is not used by the locals. In case one wants to reach this place it will be a good idea to take a guide along because this place is reached through narrow, one-way lanes and a guide would be the best person to navigate you through those lanes. This should not take more than 10 minutes of your time. Add some 5 minutes more if you want to put your camera to good use. I shall recommend a quick visit to this place to those who haven’t seen a step-well before and would like to get a hang of it. But for those who seen better step-wells, you can ignore this plain Jane.

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And now the fort

Next we went to Amer fort. Like I said before these spots are accessible through some interconnected lanes so having a guide will be a good idea not only for moving about those narrow lanes but also to find a good parking spot within Amer Fort.

Like all forts of Rajasthan, Amer fort is vast and surrounded by a wall running around the fort. This wall keeps making unexpected appearances from here and there adding to the charm of your fort pictures. In addition to being vast, Amer fort is also multi-level with each level laid out spaciously. The lowest level of the fort is an open space, Jaleb Chowk meant for taking army parades. You can take elephant ride here as well as buy your ticket. On the next level is Diwan-i-Aam used by the king as public audience hall. It consists of 27 pillars which support its dome shaped canopy.

Padharo Mare Des - Our Rajasthan Trip-img_4051.jpg

Padharo Mare Des - Our Rajasthan Trip-img_4058.jpg


As you move up through Ganesh Pol (beautiful entry gate to the next level) you see Diwan-i-Khaas or Sheesh Mahal. The whole place is done up in mirrors and looks absolutely stunning.We had fun clicking some interesting snaps here with the help of our guide. For one of them we were made to look into one mirror and our guide stood with the camera focusing on another mirror and clicked a snap of our image reflected in that other mirror!

Padharo Mare Des - Our Rajasthan Trip-img_4056.jpg

Ganesh Pol:

Padharo Mare Des - Our Rajasthan Trip-img_4066.jpg

Sheesh Mahal:

Padharo Mare Des - Our Rajasthan Trip-img_4075.jpg

Padharo Mare Des - Our Rajasthan Trip-img_4080.jpg

Padharo Mare Des - Our Rajasthan Trip-img_4082.jpg

Padharo Mare Des - Our Rajasthan Trip-img_4084.jpg

As the tour progressed

As the tour of Amer fort proceeds you are taken from one section to another but nothing beats the marvel of Sheesh mahal. There is a colorful Sindoor mahal from where one can catch a glimpse of first three levels of this fort. This mahal is a good spot for some selfies. As you walk towards the exit there is some scope of buying souvenirs on the way. Bargain well with the hawkers here but avoid proper shops within the fort.

Towards the end of our tour the guide suggested a local handicraft workshop for buying dress materials, other items and having food. It is called Rajasthan Small Scale Cottage Industry. It is a big building located somewhere near the fort. Please avoid going here as these people will force you to take a tour of the whole building and buy different things at each floor. You also won’t be able to bargain and your guide will have a sure shot commission in everything you purchase. So for shopping stick to local markets. And avoid listening to your guide.

Padharo Mare Des - Our Rajasthan Trip-img_4096.jpg

The garden has the same pattern as the carving on the Sheesh mahal.

Padharo Mare Des - Our Rajasthan Trip-img_4100.jpg

Padharo Mare Des - Our Rajasthan Trip-img_4106.jpg

Padharo Mare Des - Our Rajasthan Trip-img_4116.jpg


Win some but lose many.

It was early evening by the time we were done with all the sightseeing. Our guide informed us that the sound and light show will not start till 7.30 pm as opposed to our assumption of 6.30 pm. As it was not possible to spend more time there we decided to skip that show and returned to our hotel feeling very sad. Like I mentioned at the beginning of this write up, we were not as LATE as we wanted to be. May be next time we will be able to plan better and come here for that show. Something for then!

Over dinner at Hotel Natraj on MI Road, we mentally went through today’s tour. We realised that apart from Sheesh Mahal, Amer fort was not as impressive as Mehrangarh Fort and we could have utilised our day in a better way. Whatever we lost during the day we made up for it at night by having this delicious thali here.

That is the beauty of exploring a new city. You win some, you lose many but for that one has to play and play sportingly.


IMO

See : Sound and Light show since it covers Sheesh Mahal and other important sections of Amer Fort. Unless you want to take an elephant ride you can give a day-tour of Amer Fort a miss.

Eat : Thali at Hotel Natraj on MI Road. There is also, Niros located nearby. Natraj is pocket friendly and serves excellent food. Niros could be costly. Natraj map link: https://goo.gl/maps/H6nELYsws862

Avoid : Any places for shopping suggested by guides.

Last edited by neoonwheels : 30th November 2016 at 19:05.
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Old 1st December 2016, 07:25   #7
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Default Re: Padharo Mare Des - Our Rajasthan Trip

Thread moved from the Assembly Line (The "Assembly Line" Forum section) to the Travelogues Section. Thanks for sharing!
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Old 1st December 2016, 10:07   #8
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Default Re: Padharo Mare Des - Our Rajasthan Trip

Brilliant travelogue Abhijeet ! And as usual, great photography. I loved the photo of your kid on the camel.

I did a very similar trip last July, but I did not drive. We flew to Jaipur and then roamed around for 6 days.

Thanks for sharing.

Here's the Ganesh pol from my archive:

Padharo Mare Des - Our Rajasthan Trip-ganesh_pol.jpg

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Old 1st December 2016, 10:51   #9
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Default Re: Padharo Mare Des - Our Rajasthan Trip

Nostalgia, This January even i had a roadtrip to Udaipur and back,
but i could not have the luxury of visting all the places as i had to finish the whole trip in matter of 4 days.
Yes the Gujarat roads are really smooth. In fact time flies faster than car , there was even an incident where i missed the exit from Halol because i did not even know when 100kms went by.

Few of observations I had
1. I still think Gujarat roads are better than that of Rajasthan
2. Petrol is cheaper in Gujarat but not in Rajasthan
3. Gujarat had a better night life, but night life in Rajasthan to me felt a little spooky

For stay i referred to TripAdvisor and in Gujarat i stayed at Tansha Comfort Residency, in Udaipur it was Hotel Dalal. Good hospitality and good breakfast.

Thanks for the beautiful pics
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Old 1st December 2016, 10:56   #10
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Default Re: Padharo Mare Des - Our Rajasthan Trip

Awesome travelogue Abhijeet. Very well written and nice pics too!

I am sure there are many more pics. We can check those out during one of our paan meets.....if only you come for one

Last edited by Aditya : 5th December 2016 at 06:55. Reason: Typo
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Old 1st December 2016, 11:21   #11
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Default Re: Padharo Mare Des - Our Rajasthan Trip

Thanks for sharing.

Wanted to check if you still need to put the 'yellow sticker' while passing through GJ?

The picture with the kid on the camel is simply amazing

I feel leaving out jaisalmer does not do justice to any rajasthan trip ( my personal opinion)
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Old 1st December 2016, 11:48   #12
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Default Re: Padharo Mare Des - Our Rajasthan Trip

Quote:
Originally Posted by ajay_satpute View Post
Brilliant travelogue Abhijeet ! And as usual, great photography. I loved the photo of your kid on the camel.

I did a very similar trip last July, but I did not drive. We flew to Jaipur and then roamed around for 6 days.

Thanks for sharing.

Here's the Ganesh pol from my archive:

Attachment 1581120
Thanks Ajay. Ganesh Pol is really beautiful. I wonder how much time people spent building that structure.

Quote:
Originally Posted by shridhar.s.i View Post
Nostalgia, This January even i had a roadtrip to Udaipur and back,
but i could not have the luxury of visting all the places as i had to finish the whole trip in matter of 4 days.
Yes the Gujarat roads are really smooth. In fact time flies faster than car , there was even an incident where i missed the exit from Halol because i did not even know when 100kms went by.

Few of observations I had
1. I still think Gujarat roads are better than that of Rajasthan
2. Petrol is cheaper in Gujarat but not in Rajasthan
3. Gujarat had a better night life, but night life in Rajasthan to me felt a little spooky

For stay i referred to TripAdvisor and in Gujarat i stayed at Tansha Comfort Residency, in Udaipur it was Hotel Dalal. Good hospitality and good breakfast.

Thanks for the beautiful pics
Totally agree, GJ beats RJ but being MH guy, both fared equally for me. NEH1 I thought would not be different than Pune-Mbai Eway but man, the quality is much much better.

We did not face any issues while roaming on RJ streets at night. Jaipur and Udaipur being the most friendly cities of course.

My stay at hotel ShikarBadi was awesome. The resort is a bit outside city and has a peaceful ambience. Its owned by the royal family and that reflects in the property and its upkeep. They have peacocks, peafowls and deers on this property which my son was very thrilled about.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ashtorque View Post
Awesome travelog Abhijeet. Very well written and nice pics too!

I am sure there are many more pics. We can check those out during one of our paan meets.....if only you come for one
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rajesh Rawal View Post
Thanks for sharing.

Wanted to check if you still need to put the 'yellow sticker' while passing through GJ?

The picture with the kid on the camel is simply amazing

I feel leaving out jaisalmer does not do justice to any rajasthan trip ( my personal opinion)
I will be writing about remaining 5 days that we spent and be sure that I will upload many more pics. I had put up the Yellow Sticker to be on safer side. I could see many cars without them but being outside state car, I did not want to risk.
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Old 1st December 2016, 13:06   #13
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Good travelogue, nic pics.

Brought back lots of memories when I had a Rajasthan trip in Nov 2015. We had visited 6 cities in 9 days. It was hectic but we had covered most of the places you have visited. It was a pity that I could not drive through the fantastic roads in Rajasthan.

We had done the camel ride in Jaisalmer in the sand dunes and that was a different experience all together. But the entry fees to most of the tourist spots burn a big hole in the pocket.
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Old 1st December 2016, 13:11   #14
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Awesome pics Barve sir!

Looks like this trip was well planned in advance. By the way how did your remapped Punto perform on this trip?
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Old 1st December 2016, 13:49   #15
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Default Re: Padharo Mare Des - Our Rajasthan Trip

Quote:
Originally Posted by ghodlur View Post
Good travelogue, nic pics.

Brought back lots of memories when I had a Rajasthan trip in Nov 2015. We had visited 6 cities in 9 days. It was hectic but we had covered most of the places you have visited. It was a pity that I could not drive through the fantastic roads in Rajasthan.

We had done the camel ride in Jaisalmer in the sand dunes and that was a different experience all together. But the entry fees to most of the tourist spots burn a big hole in the pocket.
The road trip was fun. Since the road condition throughout the journey was real good, we could manage our travel without getting tired.

Quote:
Originally Posted by asit.kulkarni93 View Post
Awesome pics Barve sir!

Looks like this trip was well planned in advance. By the way how did your remapped Punto perform on this trip?
You know the speed I clocked Remap has done wonders to the car.
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