The city Palace Udaipur in Rajasthan is like a fairytale palace. The majestic white City Palace located in the heart of Udaipur is a heritage building, which showcases the finest elements of Rajput culture and the arts. Overlooking Lake Pichola, the City Palace Udaipur in Rajasthan was built by Maharana Udai Singh of the ruling Sisodia clan at different times from 1559 A.D. and extended to its present form by subsequent Maharanas. Built in granite and marble and surrounded by crenellated fort walls, the City Palace of Udaipur is the largest palace complex in Rajasthan built on a raised height and encircled by ramparts. The spectacular buildings within the City Palace of Udaipur in Rajasthan, India are influenced by European and Chinese architecture and are amazing in the range and aesthetic beauty of their artwork.
The balconies of the City palace of Udaipur in Rajasthan, India provide panoramic views of "Jag Niwas" (the world wide famous Lake palace hotel), Jag Mandir on one side and on the other the city of Udaipur.
Attractions of the city Palace of Udaipur in Rajasthan, India
A blend of Medieval European and Chinese architecture, the City palace Udaipur complex has a number of remarkable buildings of immense beauty, gardens and fountains, well planned and finely executed over the years. The City palace Udaipur complex is approached through the 'Hati Pol’ or the ‘Elephant Gate’ from the main road. The biggest and most beautiful temple of Udaipur the Jagdish Temple (1651A.D), dedicated to Lord Vishnu is situated here. The 'Bara Pol' the 'Great gate' (1600A.D) on the northern end leads to the first court yard, which joins Tripolia or the 'triple gate'(1725 A.D). Between the two gates there are eight carved marble arches or 'Toranas' under which the rulers in the past were weighed against gold and silver, the value of which was then distributed to the poor. Beyond the Tripolia there is an arena where elephant fights were staged. The City Palace of Udaipur in Rajasthan, India looks rugged from the exterior but inside, the path leads to many enclosures with luxurious apartments surmounted by balconies, hanging gardens, massive octagonal towers and cupolas with breathtaking views over the lake and the city from the upper terraces.
The oldest part of the City Palace of Udaipur in Rajasthan, India is 'Raj Aangan' (Royal Courtyard-1571) which Maharana Udai Singh built in the 16th century. There are numerous other palaces such as Dilkhush mahal, Sheesh mahal, Moti mahal and Krishna vilas - in memory of a princess of striking beauty who poisoned herself to avert a bloody battle for her hand by rival princess. Now the palace contains many antique articles, paintings, decorative furniture and utensils and attracts thousands of visitors every day with its several ' Mahals' now preserved as a Museum. Almost all the rooms of the palace have beautiful paintings, inlay glass work, antique furniture and colourful enamel. The 'Krishna Vilas' has a remarkable collection of miniature paintings depicting royal processions, festivals and games of the Maharanas. 'Mor Chowk' has unique glass mosaics of peacocks, set in the walls showing the three seasons: summer, winter and monsoon. The 'Manak Mahal' (Ruby Palace) has crystal and porcelain figures. 'Bhim Vilas' with Radha Krishna stories painted on the walls has a glass mosaic gallery the 'Suraj Gokhala', with beautiful stained glasses and a panoramic view of the city below. The 'Zenana Mahal', the queen's quarters to the south and the 'Dilkusha Mahal' (Palace of Joy) has frescoes and wall paintings while the 'Laxmi Vilas Chowk', an art gallery, houses a distinctive collection of Mewar paintings.
The 'Chini Chitrashala' is famous for its Chinese and Dutch ornamental tiles, the latter of which has depiction of Biblical scenes including the flight to Egypt. The Moti Mahal (Palace of Pearls) has lavish decor and the Sheesh Mahal (Palace of mirrors) has inlaid mirror work. There is a Hawa Mahal and a Bari Mahal with a fine garden build on a 90 feet high natural rock formation. The Amar Vilas, the highest point has exquisite hanging gardens with fountains, towers and terraces and a majestic view of the town and Lake Pichola. Some more beautiful paintings can be seen in the Zenana Mahal or the ladies chamber, which leads to Lakshmi Chowk a beautiful white pavilion.
The Surya Chopar or the sun square depicts a huge ornamental sun symbolising the sun dynasty to which the Mewar dynasty belongs. Inside the separate palace enclosure, entered from the South of Badi Chowk, are the Shiv Niwas and Fateh prakash Palace, which are now run as hotels.
Facts of the City Palace of Udaipur in Rajasthan, India
Place: Udaipur, Rajasthan
Significance: Largest palace complex in Rajasthan
Best time to visit: October to March
Timings: Open 0930 - 1630 hrs.
The Sunset view terrace and gallery restaurants, the crystal gallery and the boat wharves for trips to Jagmandir and the Lake Palace cost Rs 25 for visitors to enter this area, or you can buy a package ticket (adult/child Rs 435/175) that includes entry to the City Palace museum and Crystal gallery, a boat ride to Jagdish mandir and two free drinks. The ticket must be used within two days.
Location and Transport of the City Palace Udaipur in Rajasthan, India
The majestic white City Palace of Udaipur in Rajasthan, India is located in the heart of Udaipur which attracts domestic as well as international tourists owing to a number of historical and religious land marks within the city as well as in the vicinity and hence is very well connected to the major cities of India by road, Air and Rail.
Road: Udaipur falls on the Golden Quadrilateral, lying midway between Delhi and Mumbai on National Highway (NH) 8 and is around 650 km from either metro. The roads in this part of the country are really nice, paved in the middle, and fit for self-driving. One can either drive from Jaipur (around 7 hours) or Ahmedabad (4-5 hours), or take a Rajasthan Tourism bus from India Gate in Delhi.
Air: Dabok airport is 24 km from the city centre. Daily flights connect Udaipur with Jodhpur, Jaipur, Aurangabad, Mumbai and Delhi. The Airport is going through modernization project and soon going to have a new terminal building with additional 4 stands.
Train: Train connectivity is established between Delhi, Jaipur and Ahmedabad through trains run by Indian Railway. Recently Udaipur got connected with Delhi Kota and Mathura with superfast Mewar express on broad gauge line. Udaipur is now also connected with the Kolkatta, by the train "Ananya Express".
Local Transport: Unmetered taxis, auto rickshaws, tongas, city bus, regular city bus service is available for Udaipur City Main roads to dabok airport, badi Lake, Bedala.
Distances of important cities from Udaipur: New Delhi (670 km), Jaipur (406 km), Mumbai (739 km), Ahmedabad (262 km), Jodhpur (275 km), Mount Abu (185 km), Agra (630 km), Chittorgarh (115 km).
Distances of important places around Udaipur: Kankroli (64 km), Ekling Ji (21 km), Haldigati (42 km), Jaisamand Lake (50 km), Nathdwara (42 km), Ranakpur (90 km), Rishabdeo (65 km), Badgaon (5 km), Bhinder (58 km), Dhariyawad (120 km), Gogunda (35 km), Jhadol (48 km), Kotda (128 km), Malvi (42), Salumber (70 km), Sarada (62 km), Kherwada (82 km), Vallabhnagar (42 km), Fatehnagar (52 km), Debari (13 km), Jawar Mines (48 km), Dariba (73 km), Jamar Kotda (16 km).