This post-trip extension offers a wonderful immersion into Rajasthan's less-traveled villages where traditional tribal cultures flourish, along with the allure of romantic Udaipur, with its white palaces, blue lakes, and inviting gardens. A highlight is a stay at the Udaipur's Lake Palace Hotel, set on a rock outcrop in Lake Pichola and one of India’s most breathtaking heritage hotels.
Jodhpur / Rohet
Departing Jodhpur, we head to Rohet, a village settled by the Bishnoi community, renowned for their worship of nature. A small lake attracts winter migrants as well as resident birds, and a small 16th century fortified chieftain's house lies beside the lake. Our explorations here include a safari to some of the surrounding communities, where we witness traditional folk ceremonies and watch artisans at work as they create leather goods, pottery, and textiles. Overnight at Rohet Garh, with its pleasant lakeview terraces and swimming pool...BLD
Approximate Driving Time: 1 hour
Rajasthan truly is a land of wonders and the people are generous with their beliefs, which often extend to worshiping all sorts of things. On our journey to Ranakpur we stop at the small village of Chotila, where there is a shrine dedicated to a Royal Enfield motorcycle! We continue to Ranakpur, famous for its marvelous complex of finely ornamented Jain temples, and we head out to visit them this afternoon. Nestled at the base of the Aravalli Hills, these hilltop temples are in a peaceful setting where peacocks and langur monkeys roam. One of the temples we visit is the Adinatha, the complex’s most noteworthy building, with its 1,444 engraved pillars, no two of which have the same carvings. Overnight in bungalow-style rooms at the Maharani Bagh Orchard Hotel in Ranakpur...BLD
Approximate Driving Time: 4 hours
We drive through peaceful rural villages to reach little-known Kumbalgarh, with its enormous fort, the most imposing of the 32 forts built by the Maharana Kumbha in the 15th century. Set atop a high ridge, the fort is encircled by massive and spectacular walls that measure more than 20 miles in length. It’s a steep walk to reach the palace at the top but well worth the effort for the panoramic views. After lunch, we continue to Udaipur, one of the most romantic cities in the world, with its palaces, traditional havelis (mansions), parks, fortresses, and temples on the shores of Lake Pichola. Our accommodation is the legendary Lake Palace, the 250-year-old former summer palace of the Maharaja of Udaipur, one of the world’s most breathtaking heritage hotels, set on an island in tranquil Lake Pichola. The afternoon is free to enjoy the atmosphere of the hotel and relax. Dinner is on your own this evening. Overnight at the Lake Palace..BL
Approximate Driving Time: 4 hours
Today we explore the City Palace, set on a rocky bluff above the shore of the lake. It is truly an architectural marvel, actually a blend of 11 palaces, each built by successive maharajas during the 16th to 18th centuries. The crenellated walls of the City Palace are adorned with brilliant miniature paintings and decorative tiles and mosaics, and a warren of narrow passages connect courtyards and royal apartments. The triple-arched marble main entrance is where the maharanas (queens) of Udaipur were weighed and their weight in gold distributed to the populace. On the grand Suraj Gokhada (“Balcony of the Sun”), the Suryavanshi Maharanas of Mewar once stood to present themselves to the people. The Zenana Mahal, the women’s quarters, are among the most spectacular spots in the palace. We also visit the the elegant 18th century Sahelion-ki-Bari gardens, created as a retreat for the royal ladies, and Udaipur’s local markets. The city is proud of its heritage as a center for the arts, and there is an abundance of craftwork including colorful Rajasthani puppets. We enjoy an evening boat ride on the lake, then gather for our Farewell Dinner this evening. Overnight at the Lake Palace...BLD
Udaipur / Delhi / Depart
After a morning for independent exploration, we fly to Delhi, where day rooms are held for us at the Radisson Blu Airport Hotel until 8:00 pm. Transfer to the airport for flights departing in the evening of Day 5 or early the following morning...BL
Note: For flights departing after 2:00 am on Day 6, we recommend you extend our hotel day room to a full overnight (extra cost).