WELCOME TO UDAIPUR - The city on the move
Udaipur city was founded in 1568 by Maharana Udai Singhji-II as a new capital for his kingdom of MEWAR in wake of the changing situation of the 16th century India (details in Significance of Founding of Udaipur). Udaipur is strategically located on the eastern flank of the (protracted erosional) Aravalli Hill Range on the millennia-old trade route connecting north India with the west coast and peninsular India. Significantly even now, Udaipur is located on the Delhi-Mumbai arm of the golden quadrilateral under the ambitious world-class National Highway Development Project (NHDP) of Government of India. Likewise, Udaipur is also located at the junction of NS-EW railway network of India. The city is located in an amphitheater valley surrounded on all sides by Aravalli hills.

Location: 24° 35’N : 073° 41’E Survey of India Topographical Sheet No. 45 H/16
Altitude: 579 m for Udaipur Railway Station, Highest point: 938 m, Sajjangarh

Because of rich mineral resources in the area, Udaipur city has headquarters of Department of Mines and Geology, Government of Rajasthan (www.dmg-raj.com); Hindustan Zinc Limited (www.hzlindia.com, www.hzlmetal.com); Rajasthan State Mines and Mineral Limited (www.rsmm.com); Wolkem India Ltd (www.wolkem.com); All India Soapstone Producers’ Association and important building stone producers and exporters (www.trade-india.com, www.ucciudaipur.com). Udaipur is also an important education center, both for school and higher educations, providing quality primary, secondary, higher, and professional education (medical, engineering, management, polytechnic). Some of the schools in Udaipur boast of campuses bigger than those of the Universities. There is one multi-faculty University (www.mlsu.org), Maharana Pratap University of Agriculture and Technology (www.mpuat.ac.in), a deemed University and several government and private colleges including medical, dental, management, and engineering colleges (www.udaipurplus.com).

Sun is held in great veneration and esteem in India in general and Udaipur in particular because of (mystique) reverence for the solar energy. Sun was the emblem of the rulers of Udaipur (Mewar, www.mewarindia.com for 75 generations since 935 AD). In the contemporary society, the solar energy continues to maintain a special significance in life of the people of this area. They have adopted solar energy for rural electrification and cooking for economical and environmental reasons. Udaipur receives ample solar radiations for over 300 clear sunny days in a year and therefore United Nations and other international agencies are actively supporting this scheme. The Maharana Mewar Foundation has taken lead in promoting use of solar energy for (no-polluting) vehicles and boats!

Coincidentally, Udaipur also has one of the six GONG - Global Oscillation Network Group -stations (www.gong.noao.edu) which is an international project conducting a detailed study of internal structure (turbulence) of the Sun using helioseismology (measurement of the frequencies of millions of waves that echo around and inside the Sun). The other five stations around the World are at Learmonth (Australia), Mauna Loa (Mid-Pacific Ocean), Big Bear (USA), Cerro Tololo (Chile, South America), el Teide (East Africa). (www.prl.ernet.in)
Favorite: Top-ten tourist sites of Udaipur – Vox Populi
1. City Palace, museums, view of the part of Udaipur Valley, the Pichola Lake           and Lake Palace in it. (www.mewarindia.com)
2. A drive on the Fatehsagar ring road and evening stroll in Shilpa Gram – the arts & craft village (www.wzccindia.com)
3. Boating in Fatehsagar lake and visit to island garden – the Nehru Park
4. Maharana Pratap Smarak & Moti Magri and view of the Fatehsagar Lake and part of the Udaipur valley from      the site.
5. Shalio-ki-Bari - Garden & Fountains
6. Walk down the lanes from the city palace – Jagadish Chowk-City Clock Tower, Sharraffa Bazar-Mandi-Bapu     Bazar
7. Sajjangarh - deer park & the monsoon palace constructed on the highest peak of Udaipur.
8. Machala Magra (the fish hill) its fort and a breath-taking view of Udaipur city & Udaipur valley, lakes & islands
9. Remains of the pre-historic (> 4000 BP) Ayad (Ahar) civilization & visit to Maha-Satiya (cenotaphs).
10. Geology (rock, mineral, fossil) and science instrument museum, University Department of Geology.
Top ten sites around Udaipur- Vox Populi

  1. Chittaurgarh: The most historic fort of India, renowned for its saga of history, sacrifice, and chivalry. It was capital of the kingdom of Mewar from AD 734 to 1568. Built on a plateau 180 m high and having an area of 700 acres, that overlooks a vast plain; at the foot of the plateau flows the Gambhari River. 110 km E.
  2. Eklingji and Kailashpuri Temples: constructed in AD 734. Lakes and other temples (9th–10th centuries) e.g. Sahastrabahu (Saas_Bahu) Temples are also worth a visit. 22 km N.

  3. Rajsamand: Intricately carved marble arches & canopies on a marble embankment constructed by Maharana Raj Singh in AD 1660. 66 km N. En-route is located the second richest temple in India – the Shrinathji Temple of Nathadwara – the statue of Shrinathji and the temple wealth found protection here from the wrath of Mughal Emperor Aurangzeb in the 17th century. 48 km N.

  4. Haldighati: The battlefield where Maharana Pratap and his loyal supporters challenged the Mughal might on 18th June 1576.
    40 km NW. Museum and Chetak Samadhi.
  5. Jaisamand: One of the biggest artificial lakes constructed by Maharana Jai Singhji in 1685. Marble embankment and hilltop palaces and island hills are its unique features. A thick forest adjoining the lake hosts the Jaisamand wildlife sanctuary. 51 km SE.
  6. Kumbhalgarh: A strategically located picturesque & historic fort overlooking the plains of Marwar, built by Maharana Kumbha in the 15th century, on a strategically located hill 1100 m above sea level. 84 km NW.
  7. Ranakpur: Splendidly carved marble pillars (1444)) & halls (29) of Jain temples. 90 km to NW, a picturesque drive.
  8. Baghdhara: A secluded lake surrounded by thick forest being developed as a crocodile park. 20 km SE.
  9. Rishabdeo & Mechanized Serpentinite Mine: A 15th century temple devoted to – Rishabdeo – the Jain Trithankar. 65 km S. The area is worlds renowned for decorative stone – serpentinite (erroneously called green marble), butter-smooth blocks of which are mined by latest techniques.
  10. Jagat Temple: for temple architecture