Friday, August 4, 2017

Monsoon Palace, Udaipur


Sajjangarh zoo and palace entry gates are adjacent to each other. Since the zoo excursion had been tiring, we were contemplating whether or not to visit Monsoon Palace. At last, we agreed as there was no point in missing a location after going that far!  



Sajjangarh Palace is located atop Bansdara Mountain of the Aravalli range at a height of 3100 feet. It was built by Maharana Sajjan Singh in 1884 to watch the monsoon clouds, hence it is also known as Monsoon Palace. It was a summer retreat for the kings in those times. As the legend goes, the Maharana built it at the top of the hill to get a view of his ancestral home Chittaurgarh. The palace is now under the control of the Forest Department of the Government of Rajasthan and has been recently opened to the public. The palace offers panoramic view of the city and beautiful surroundings. 

O did I mention, Monsoon palace featured in the 1983 James Bond film Octopussy as the residence of Kamal Khan, an exiled Afghan prince?  





 The access road to the palace is curvy, steep and prone to accident. Be careful while driving and brace yourself if in car.
Advisable to take a ride in the jeep or hire a local driver for the risky road.

As you hop out of the vehicle in the parking area, you might see the place swarming with Langurs. Harmless most of the times, they only attack if they find you threatening them.


Walk through this beautiful park to reach the palace
The walk way towards the palace



City's bird eye view prior to the Palace entrance
The main entrance to palace premises
          


A flight of stairs takes you to the vacant palace’s ground floor, now full of hoardings, indicating the flora and fauna around. Half the palace was under renovation. 


The exit door of the ground floor leads you to a vast space from where the surrounding forests, mountains and civilization is viewed. The canvas is mesmerizing indeed. Green and serene, anybody would love the view. 





Due to its location on hill top, the palace is windy and remains cool even in the scorching heat. 




This is how the palace looks like from the other side of ground floor

After touring the ground floor premises, we ascended to the first floor of the palace. Sun shines generously, filling in the balcony with bright warm light. Couple sneak in the quiet corners to steal some private moments. In our presence a langur appeared from one window and disappeared through the other. Oh I forgot to tell you, the palace is their home now. 



                                



Balcony of first floor

                     
The second floor was relatively vacant as it was under renovation. Still the place gave us good photo opportunity. 

Fateh Sagar Lake - View from second floor of the palace
More the height, better the bird's eye view




If maintained properly, Sajjangarh palace is indeed exquisite. After paying Rs 140 each (Ticket cost Rs 50 and Jeep fare Rs 90), Monsoon Palace turned out to be a bit disappointing. Blame it on the location or the ruined aesthetics, the palace needs lot of renovation and restoration.

 Advisable- Wear shoes or comfy flats. You gotta walk a lot here.

Entry ticket to palace- Rs 50 each
You can drive to the palace in your own vehicle. 
Parking chargesRs 100 for cars, Rs 30 for two wheelers
Or else hop onto the jeeps ferrying to the palace at Rs 90 for each seat.

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Monsoon Palace, Udaipur