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Could this be India's most romantic city? We think so. A fairytale collection of ornate turrets and domes that seem to float above the glistening waters of Lake Pichola. Peaceful funeral ghats fringe the lake's edge and, at its centre, two superb palaces perch on their own private islands. History buffs will love the myriad palaces and museums full of opulent rooms dripping with intricate carvings and royal heirlooms. Delve into the narrow cobbled lanes of the old town, past elaborate haveli townhouses, Hindu temples, and streets adorned with colourful frescos, then return to present day life amidst the bustling bazaars.

Three things to do in Udaipur

Obviously there's a lot more, this is just to get you started...

From sunrise to sunset

It shouldn’t be possible, but Udaipur seems even more beautiful in the early morning. Take a walk around the city and watch the curving architecture, pastel hues and rippling lakes bask in the soft glow, then reward yourself with a cup of fragrant coffee or gently-spiced chai. Following a day of exploring, take in Udaipur’s charms once again with a late afternoon boat cruise on Lake Pichola, when the views across the water showcase a city bathed in golden sunlight. Even then it’s not over, as Udaipur’s sunsets are especially memorable. In fact, they’re amongst the country’s most photogenic sights, and that’s saying something.

Udaipur boat

Palaces galore

If you’ve travelled through Rajasthan (where palaces are not in short supply) you might be tempted to give Udaipur’s bounty of regal residences less attention. In our opinion that would be a mistake. The stunning lakeside City Palace, which was constructed over hundreds of years by successive rulers, holds the title of the largest palace complex in the state. If that piques your interest, board a boat to Jag Mandir, the Lake Garden Palace set serenely mid-lake, or head up to Sijjan Garh, the Monsoon Palace. Originally built so occupants could keep watch over the approaching monsoon clouds, the panoramic views are enjoyable at any time of year. If you are feeling particularly flush, return to Udaipur to stay at the luxurious Taj Lake Palace Hotel.

Udaipur India

Relax lakeside

After you’ve spent time exploring beautiful Udaipur and its surroundings, you might find yourself not wanting to leave. In that case, our advice is simple - don’t! Several charming (if slightly idiosyncratic) hotels are dotted along the shores of Lake Pichola, with options to suit a range of budgets. Perfect vantage points to sit back, relax and take in even more of those outstanding views from the terrace or swimming pool. Alternatively, if it’s time to escape the city, consider a couple of nights on the outskirts at Bujera Fort, a newly built heritage-style property in the Aravali Hills, or go further afield to the peace and tranquility of the luxurious Raas Devigarh.

Udaipur India

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