THE BEAUTIFUL CITY....................LACK OF CITY UDAIPUR
Text of MY UDAIPUR CITY
1. MY UDAIPUR CITY LACK OF CITY BY:- SANDEEP PRAJAPAT
2. HISTORY OF UDAIPUR
Udaipur is the jewel of Mewar - a kingdom ruled by the Sisodia dynasty for 1200 years. The foundation of the city has an interesting legend associated with it. According to it, Maharana Udai Singh, the founder, was hunting one day when he met a holy man meditating on a hill overlooking the Lake Pichhola.
The hermit blessed the Maharana and advised him to build a palace at this favourably located spot with a fertile valley watered by the stream, a lake, an agreeable altitude and an amphitheater of low mountains. Maharana followed the advise of the hermit and founded the city in 1559 A.D. Overlooking the aquamarine expanses of the Lake Pichhola stands the splendid City Palace - a marvel in granite and marble.
This city of Dawn, Udaipur is a lovely land around the azure water lakes, hemmed
in by the lush hills of the Aravalis drenched in romance and beauty. Udaipur is a fascinating blend of sights, sounds and experiences - an inspiration for the imagination of the poets, painters and writers. Its kaleidoscope of fairy-tale palaces, lakes, temples, gardens and narrow lanes strewn with stalls, carry the flavour of heroic past, epitomising valour and chivalry.
3. JAGDISH TEMPLE
The temple of Jagannath Rai, now called Jagdishji, is a major monument and should be seen carefully. Raised on a tall terrace and completed in 1651, it is a tribute alike to the tenacity of its builders and the resilence of the art - tradition it represents. It attaches a double storeyed Mandapa (hall) to a double - storied, saandhara (that having a covered ambulatory) sanctum. The mandapa has another storey tucked within its pyramidal samavarna (bell - roof) while the hollow clustered spire over the sanctum contains two more, non - functional stories.
Lannes taking off from many of the sheharpanah (city wall) converge on the Jagdish Temple and walking leisurely through them brings you face with the many layers of the cultural palimpsest that Udaipur is.
It was built by Maharana Jagat Singh Ist in 1651 A.D. It is a good example of Indo - Aryan architecture.
4. CITY PALACE
Standing on the bank of lake Pichola, are massive series of palaces built at different time commencing from 1559 A.D. The balconies of the palace provide panoramic view of "Jag Niwas" (Now world wide famous Lake palace hotel), Jag Mandir on one side and on the other the city of Udaipur. It's main entrance is through the triple-arched gate-The tripolia, built in 1725. The way now leads to a series of courtyards, overlapping parations, terraces, corridors and gardens - a harmonic profusion hard to describe. There is a Suraj Gokhda, where the maharanas of Mewar presented themselves in the times of trouble to the people to restore confidence. The Mor-chowk (Peacock courtyard), get its name from the vivid mosaics in glass decorate its walls. The chini chitrashala is noteworthy while a series of wall paintings of Krishna are on display in Bhim Vilas. There are numerous other palaces Dilkhush mahal, Sheesh mahal, Moti mahal and Krishna vilas- in memory of princess of striking beauty who poisoned herself to avert bloody battle for her hand by rival princess. Now the palace is housed with many antique articles, paintings, decorative furniture and utensils which attracts thousands of visitors every day.
5. SAHELION - KI - BARI
Udaipur is a city of lakes and gardens, big and small. The Sahelion - ki - Bari is a fine specimen. On the eve of his departure from Mewar, Col.Tod had shifted to it so as to have some needed solitude. Much later, a thoughtful had located a library in it !
This small ornamental garden was a popular relaxing spot where royal ladies came for a stroll and hence the name. The garden has many fountains in its four delightful pools, chiselled kiosks and marble elephants.
6. FATEH SAGAR
A beautiful lake, overlooked by a number of hills on the three sides and the Pratap Memorial on the north was built by Maharana Fateh Singh. In the middle of the lake is Nehru Park - a lovely garden island with a boat shaped cafe accessible by an enjoyable boat ride.
Talking about the statistics of Fateh Sagar, the lake extends to the length of 2.4 km, 1.6 km. in width and deep to the extent of 11.5 meter. During the monsoons, the lake covers the total area of around 1 sq km.
A former Monsoon Palace 1100 ft. high above the surrounding and 3100 ft. from sea level was built by Maharana Sajjan Singh in 1884. The palace looks its best during the rainy season. It offers a panoramic overview of the city's lakes, palaces and surrounding country side. The hillside is thickly wooded and the former rulers maintained this as a royal shooting preserve.
8. SHILPGRAM (ARTISAN's VILLAGE)
West Zone Cultural Centre in Udaipur, Rajasthan has set up an artisan's village called - Shilpgram, 3 Kms west of Udaipur. It is a living ethnographic museum depecting life style, traditions, customs and folk arts of the rural and tribal people of the states of Rajasthan, Maharashtra, Gujrat, Goa, Daman, etc. There are several huts constructed in the traditional architectural style using mud and local building material to reflect the geographical and ethnic diversity of the different states of west zone of India. The rural artisans and folk artists reside here and perform in the natural surroundings in a village environment. Every year, more than a lakh visitors visit this village which is spread out in an area of 55 acres, surrounded by Aravali mountains. The Shilpgram Utsav organised every year from 23rd December to January 1st, attracts massive crowd creating a scene of rural market fair and festival with live performance of folk artist from different parts of the country. The Terracotta Museum, the museum of masks, folk and musical instruments are of particular attraction.
9. BHARTIYA LOK KALA MANDAL
Bhartiya lok Kala mandal was founded by Padma Shri Devi Lal Samar in 1952. The main objective of the Institute is to conduct studies on the folk art, songs and festivals of regions like Rajasthan, Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh etc and to revive a vanishing folk culture. The institute has a puppet unit that trains children, teachers and other artists in the art of puppetry, as this is a very powerful non-conventional educative medium. It also boasts of regular performances that are a feast to behold. A group of 25 artists go on tour, both within India and abroad with a repertoire of puppet-shows and various folk dances. Their performances have brought the Institute a number of honours on a national and international level.
10. BAGORE KI HAVELI
Situated on the picturesque bank of Pichola Lake, This Haveli was built by Shri Amarchand Badwa, who was the Prime Minister of mewar Maharana Ari Singh, Maharana Hamir Singh during the period 1751 to 1778. This palatial building reportedly has 138 rooms, balconies, terraces, courtyards and corridors. The glass and mirror inlay within the Haveli is Unique and procured in its original form. The two peacocks made with small pieces of colored glasses are unique reflection of the finest craftsmanship of glass work. What was once upon a time a living centre of nobility of Udaipur lay in darkness and ruin for nearly half a century till when it was handed over to the West Zone Cultural Centre (WZCC) in 1986.
11. GULAB BAG (ROSE GARDEN)
A spectacular rose Garden laid out by Maharana Sajjan Singh, is situated near the palace on east side of Lake Pichhola. A library in the garden has a rare collection of ancient handwritten manuscripts and books. Within the garden, there is a zoo with tigers, leopards, chinkara and many wild animals and birds are being kept.
12. THE OBEROI UDAIVILAS
Udaipur, in the heart of Rajasthan, is a city of majestic palaces and beautiful lakes. Here, adorning the banks of Lake Pichola and standing witness to the historic City Palace, The Oberoi Udaivilas captures all the romance and splendour of a royal era.
Conceived as a traditional Indian palace, The Oberoi Udaivilas showcases the rich heritage of the Mewar region of Rajasthan with its rambling courtyards, gentle rippling fountains, reflection pools and verdant gardens. Grand architecture inspired by the palaces of Rajasthan present a picture of majesty resplendent with pavilions and domes that lead you to a journey of discovery. Interiors embellished with decorative domes, hand painted frescoes, intricate mirror work and beautifully crafted artefacts create an ambience of regal splendour .