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Old 27th December 2010, 18:37   #61
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Default Re: Our Incredible India Drive - 13 days on the GQ !

@roamingrao: Great trip boss. Hats off to you and your family as well.

The pictures of the road to Udaipur brought back memories of my drive last year to the city. I agree completely, Udaipur is a fantastic city.

One questions that is really lingering on the mind is that you seem to have so little sleep and you are the only driver. How did you manage this? I drove to Udaipur and was dead tired; forget wild horses, even a nuclear explosion would not have woken me up the next day at 3:00 AM!

Looking forward to the shape of the road to come.
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Old 27th December 2010, 19:01   #62
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Default Re: Our Incredible India Drive - 13 days on the GQ !

@ptushar,
Great to do this epic journey. Hats off to your family for the enthu.

Myself and two of my friends did a GQ run last March. (CW from Bangalore). That was a 15 days trip in my Magnum. Our learning: India is an incredibly amazing country.

I was (and am) too lazy to write a travelogue in Team BHP. But my co-traveller, Sourav, tooks the pains of writing and updating a blog. You can find it at Snapshots of our Journey through the Golden Q: 19-03-2010
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Old 28th December 2010, 10:52   #63
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Default Re: Our Incredible India Drive - 13 days on the GQ !

Amazing travelogue and drive, that too considering it was with family makes it all the more special.

As asked by ptushar, I could also feel that you were having very little sleep and driving so much. How did you manage?
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Old 28th December 2010, 20:50   #64
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Default Re: Our Incredible India Drive - 13 days on the GQ !

I completely agree with you RR, sitting with the map and wondering what was achieved even after 60 days. You could feel the smile at your heart as those thoughts pass through you

Quote:
Originally Posted by ptushar View Post
One questions that is really lingering on the mind is that you seem to have so little sleep and you are the only driver. How did you manage this?
I too have the same question. Very little sleep & early morning start is definitely tough, very tough for me. If he can hint the secret, will try that for my next trip
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Old 31st December 2010, 15:16   #65
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Default Re: Our Incredible India Drive - 13 days on the GQ !

Rao Sir, Hats-off to you!! It's a feat by itself.
Quote:
Originally Posted by roamingrao View Post
I share your ideas on exposing children to travel and changing situations which expands comfort zones which in turn builds their confidence / character. We as kids grew that way and now would like to see our kids experience that and stand on their feet with confidence !
Admirable thoughts Sir. I could relate myself. The several trips that my Parents have taken my Sis & me when we were in school/college, which we still continue to do.

Such exposure definitely builds into ones character and outlook. I still cherish many moments. Your thread reminds me of our 10 day trip across Maharashtra in a hired Amby in the early 90s and the adventures that we had.

Quote:
Originally Posted by roamingrao View Post
the tulsi plant / pot is brought inside, kept inside the kitchen, a pipe from the ajar tap managed to do ' drip irrigation' for 13 days !!
OT: Thanks for sharing this. My wifey badly needs this tip, she's wondering what would happen to Tulsirani and other plants when we are off for a week long home-town trip.
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Old 2nd January 2011, 01:26   #66
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Default Re: Our Incredible India Drive - 13 days on the GQ !

Rao sir, I was looking forward to an update from you for this weekend. I hope you post it today! sorry, but kinda sitting on the edge of our seats here
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Old 2nd January 2011, 10:47   #67
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Default Re: Our Incredible India Drive - 13 days on the GQ !

Hello Rao Sir,

Was hooked on to this TL of yours for the past couple of day. I have got one word for you. AWESOME. We did a similar sort of drive earlier this year but with friends, all adults, but to do this with your kids is just unprecedented. I hope more of us will get the confidence to explore our Incredible India the way you did. Waiting for more updates. Thanks again.
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Old 2nd January 2011, 13:33   #68
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Default Re: Our Incredible India Drive - 13 days on the GQ !

An incredibly detailed travelogue roamingrao. This tour could be the biggest done in T-BHP so far. I admire your family's enthusiasm and your wife's support for a mega trip like this, kudos to you.

You have covered some of the most splendid places in our country in this short time. Your kids are definitely lucky in this respect.

Please continue with the rest of the travelogue. May I know what was your budget and how much fuel your Scorpio cosumed during this trip.
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Old 7th January 2011, 23:29   #69
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Incredible drive such as this can only be conceived by a diehard roadie.It is not everybody's cup of tea.Hats off 2 ur wife and kids to have accompanied u.I am sure it must have been a memorable trip for them 2.The kids will remember this for life and hopefully this would have kindled the spirit of adventure in them if not already hooked on 2 it.Congratulations to u all.Keep it up.


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Old 8th January 2011, 20:01   #70
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Default Re: Our Incredible India Drive - 13 days on the GQ !

Quote:
Originally Posted by SilentEngine View Post
Very inspiring read It's my dream to cover GQ, and your travelogue has shown me that it's possible
Thank you. Yes ! it's possible - WITH family. You've sown the seeds. make it happen ! all the best.

Quote:
Originally Posted by sagarpadaki View Post
if i told this kind of experience or idea to a non TBHPian,they would laugh and snub at me!
Laugh and snub ? yes, we passed thru that stage !

Quote:
Originally Posted by neoonwheels View Post
Very good narration sir. Keep it coming
Thank you sir !

Quote:
Originally Posted by ptushar View Post
One questions that is really lingering on the mind is that you seem to have so little sleep and you are the only driver. How did you manage this?
No tushar, there was no lack of sleep. apart from day 1 and day 2, we could manage atleast 6 hours of sleep on all days. Beside that, during driving, when i could not refuse the call of sleep, we would pull over and have 20 min power naps ( at toll plazas / big dhabas / petrol stations ). During these breaks, wife / kids used to play / read and wake me up like an alarm !

Quote:
Originally Posted by kj302 View Post
Myself and two of my friends did a GQ run last March. (CW from Bangalore). That was a 15 days trip in my Magnum. Our learning: India is an incredibly amazing country.
You can find it at Snapshots of our Journey through the Golden Q: 19-03-2010
Hi kj302, the blog doesn't open

Quote:
Originally Posted by BusyBoyKK View Post
Such exposure definitely builds into ones character and outlook. I still cherish many moments
so true ! Its advantage todays generation - its so easy to travel !

Quote:
Originally Posted by selfdrive View Post
Rao sir, I was looking forward to an update from you for this weekend. I hope you post it today! sorry, but kinda sitting on the edge of our seats here
Oh my god ! Sorry sir, i apologize for the break in posting. First it was back breaking year end work and then had to grab the opportunity to be with my family during the new year weekend - we drove to hyderabad and then to - as always on the new year day - Mantralayam.

We are on Day 5 of the trip. I promise to complete this travelogue in as many days as the remaining trip days ! Thank you.

Quote:
Originally Posted by sami316 View Post
I hope more of us will get the confidence to explore our Incredible India the way you did.
Thank you sir. what we did - Dream of it, make a plan and TAKE THAT STEP !

Quote:
Originally Posted by zaks View Post
I admire your family's enthusiasm and your wife's support for a mega trip like this, kudos to you. May I know what was your budget and how much fuel your Scorpio cosumed during this trip.
Thank you Zaks. I will post a detailed sheet on all the expenses at the end of the travelogue. In brief, we planned to spend 18k on hotels, 15k on food, 24k on diesel and 3k on tolls and we achieved it despite extending our tour from the planned 11 to 13 days. Many kudos to my wife in limiting her shopping expenses to just 3k ! total 63k.

The scorpio consumed 710 litres of diesel returning with figures of 10.56 km / lit (with 100% AC - not because it was required but to reduce travel fatigue )


Quote:
Originally Posted by Ramanjit View Post
Hats off 2 ur wife and kids to have accompanied u.I am sure it must have been a memorable trip for them 2
Thank you Sir, Koi shak nahi on that !

Last edited by Eddy : 8th January 2011 at 20:49. Reason: as requested
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Old 8th January 2011, 22:01   #71
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Default Re: Our Incredible India Drive - 13 days on the GQ !

Day 4, October 11th 2010 : Udaipur - Chittorgarh - Jaipur - 456 kms

6am - Waking up to chirping birds outside our room on the first floor of Hotel Kajri, Udaipur - my first overnight sleep of over 6 hours in as many days !

I try coaxing my wife and kids to wake up and get ready to have quick ride to the Monsoon palace at sajjangarh to view the sun rise on Udaipur. No luck. instead, they ask me to go alone. This was enough for me to steal another nap - the city palace opens at 9.30am.

The City Palace as seen from Hotel Kajri.

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We check out of the hotel after breakfast at 9.00am. The complimentary breakfast included roasted sandwich bread slices, veg sausages, a plantain, a serving of corn flakes with milk and coffee / tea. At Rs.1200 for a spacious non a/c room with good service, extra bed and breakfast included and above all - courteous staff, we enjoyed our brief stay at the hotel.

Joined by our guide, we drive to the city palace through the narrow roads of old udaipur - very colourful indeed. Even at that early hour we see shops and road side eateries open and putting up items for display. Yes, many eateries had people standing in front and savouring hot samosas and jilebis.

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At the palace entrance, a long queue of cars waiting to enter the complex greet us. Lot of foreigners around - is it a part of the golden triangle ? Our guide takes over, starts to explain the features of the palace. We buy the entrance and parking tickets at the Badi Pol ( great gate. Pol - gate ) and enter through the triple arch made of marble, the tripolia gate to enter the Manek chowk.

At the Manek chowk

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Looking up towards Baadi Mahal

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The Darikhana pol with the royal insignia

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Notice the tree on the highest level of the palace - its on solid ground !

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One of the largest palaces in the world, this complex with a single facade houses four major palaces and eleven smaller ones. The first three :
  • The Shambhu Niwas is the present palace of Sriji Arvind Singh Mewar - the 74th inheritor of the Mewar dynasty.
  • The Shiv Niwas Palace is now a hotel
  • The Fateh Prakash Palace is also a hotel
We would go through a part of the city palace, now converted into a museum. Before we venture inside, our guide brings out a layout of the palace and explains the numerous mahals, chowks ( courtyards ) we are to go through.
  • The Rai Aangan ( royal courtyard ) - The earliest courtyard of the Palace ( 16th century ). It is here that Maharana Udai singh had met the hermit who suggested he build his palace here to ensure protection from the heavily armoured mughal army.
  • The Amar Vilas or Baadi mahal - The highest coutyard inside the complex with panoramic views of the town and the lake pichola.
  • The Baadi chitrashali - consisting the shiv vilas, madan vilas and kishan vilas
  • The Rang Mahal - also called the chandra mahal fully made of marble.
  • The Moti Mahal and Zenana Mahal - as the name suggestes, the ladies section of the palace.
  • The Sheesh Mahal - Palace of mirrors
  • The Mor chowk - The peacock courtyard - see it to believe it !!
This palace was used by the royals during winter, the Jag niwas and Jag mandir during summer and the Sajjan garh palace during monsoons.

What we saw during the next two hours transformed us to an era of grandeur and opulence unparalleled anywhere in the world. Keeping their history and glorious past aside, the culture and way of life observed here is to be seen to be believed. I entered the palace to click away at whatever could be seen but just could not take out the camera at some views - dumbstruck ! Upon exit, we had to jerk ourselves into reality. The fact that people were living in same region in dire hunger and poverty is to be taken with a ton of salt !

Sri Ganesh Deori at the Rai angan

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At the Maharana Pratap Singh Gallery.

Pratap singh's trusted horse, Chetak.

In the battle of haldighati, an injured Chetak took his master to safety across a river and breathed his last. The whole story is very moving and Rajasthan to this day has many folklores praising Chetak.
His memorial is near Nathdwara, 44 kms from Udaipur. I would have loved to visit this place - and salute Chetak !

For the child in you - why is Chetak's face masked to resemble an elephant ?

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Maharana Pratap Singh was a huge man - 7'3". His each sword weighed 90 kgs and at times he faught with both swords !

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At the Amar vilas - The Royal Bath tub made of single slab of marble.

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On the western side of amar vilas, we see the Sajjan garh Palace ( monsoon palace )

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Extremely reliable courier those days - the carrier pigeons.


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We cross over to the Baadi Mahal ( the big Mahal ). as mentioned earlier, these trees are on the highest level of the palace yet on solid rocky ground.

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Baadi Mahal - eastern view towards Udaipur city

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The tripolia Gate below and further ahead - Udaipur, The white city.

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The sheesh Mahal - palace of mirrors

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The Jag Niwas palace on Lake Picola. Now called the Lake Palace Hotel


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The Vani Vilas, The place where Poet Shyamaldas penned the 'Veer Vinod', The history of Mewar.

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Intricate paintings on Marble at the Moti Mahal

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Narrow stair ways between mahals

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Ivory Door at the Moti Mahal

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Last edited by roamingrao : 8th January 2011 at 22:07.
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Old 9th January 2011, 01:39   #72
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Default Re: Our Incredible India Drive - 13 days on the GQ !

Fabulous write up and photos again sir, I would like to go to these places, at least for the samosas and jalebis if nothing else! Your pic of Chetak brought back memories of the discussions we had at school after history class (we had a lesson on rana pratap, and chetak was the character that impressed us most).
Do you know if the Lake palace is built on an island or on foundations within the water? - one cant seeany land around it.
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Old 9th January 2011, 14:16   #73
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Dear Rao Sir

Rana Pratap and Chetak were the childhood role models. It is very inspiring to read the stories of such brave son's of our mother land.

Regarding your question about Chetak, my guess is that Rana Pratap riding on Chetak took on Raja Mansing who was riding on an Elephant. I have alwasy seen the picture where Chetak kept his front legs on the trunk of the elephant to enable Rana Pratap to throw his spear (or lance) towards Mansingh, which eventually killed his mahoot.

Probably to ensure the equality between the rides of the two kings Chetak might have been dressed like a elephant.

May you share the authentic rajasthani folklore version ?

I can not rate this thread again as i have already rated this earlier.
Look forward to read further.

Last edited by StarVegabond : 9th January 2011 at 14:19.
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Old 10th January 2011, 08:53   #74
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Your Travelogue has become the Mahabharat Serial of the 80s, when the everybody used to be glued or waiting in anticipation for the next episode.

I do understand that is not fair to ask you to write the Travelogue in a hurry. As you have created a buzz. I am planning the same route almost the same time, so let me know the planning part and places of stay.

You Rock!!!!!!!!!
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Old 10th January 2011, 11:03   #75
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Default Re: Our Incredible India Drive - 13 days on the GQ !

Waiting for the next leg of the trip!! Keep it coming!!

Cheers
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