The travels begin! Tonight I am catching a train to Rajasthan (NW India) with a whole load of fun on my agenda. I wanted to let you know that I will not have internet access so don’t worry when you see that my blog is silent for 9 days. There will be lots to read upon my return 🙂
Here is the preliminary information to wet your mind:
This is Harper Ganick, my travel partner for the week! Harper is from Nashville, TN and has been in India for the entire year. Actually this is her second time in India! She enjoys trekking and sleeping 🙂
We are beginning our journey with a long train ride up to the city of Udaipur. Udaipur is sometimes called the “Venice of the East” due to its whimsical environment. It is also known as the City of Lakes. The city was formally known as Mewar and was founded in 1559 by Maharaja Udai Singh II. There are splendid palaces to take in, craft bazaars, and even artistic/cookery classes to take part in. Due to the beautiful environment, Udiapur is a prime spot for movie shootings…such as the James Bond film, Octopussy. Udaipur is also mentioned in Kipling’s The Jungle Book as the birthplace of Bagheera, the panther!
After a few days, we will head further north to Jaipur. Jaipur is the capital of Rajasthan is is part of the “Golden Triangle” of India (Jaipur – Agra – New Delhi). As one source puts it, “It is a bustling capital city and a business centre with all the trappings of a modern metropolis but yet flavoured strongly with an age-old charm that never fails to surprise a traveller.” The old parts of the city are dressed in pink with a backdrop of ancient forts. royal buildings and palaces that this city offers. Other than these captivating attractions, Like Udaipur, Jaipur displays exquisite handicrafts and spectacular jewelry. All this makes a picturesque view that enthralls visitors, therefore it is a very popular tourist destination in India. It is here in Jaipur that Harper and I will be celebrating the Elephant festival (Mar 26) and Holi, the festival of colors (Mar 27).
After that we will climb further north to Agra, making our way into the state of Uttar Pradesh. Of course, our main purpose is to experience the Taj Mahal! (No, the Taj is NOT in New Delhi for those of you who think it is 🙂 However, Agra was actually the original capital of Hindustan before it was moved to Kolkata and then Delhi.) Other than that we plan on visiting Agra Fort and exploring around the city for 24hrs before taking the long 28 hour train ride back to Hyderabad.
We will be back on Saturday March 30th, just in time to celebrate Easter!
Yes, I will be missing a week of classes, but I promise that I have not skipped any other class this semester! Harper and I are excited to set off an explore!
- Lonely Plant