We left Ranakpur early the next morning and were in Udaipur by 2:30 p.m. Udaipur is a large city of over half a million with five major lakes.
My hotel was located in a lively neighborhood near Lake Pichola. I’ve noticed that all hotels that have “royal” or “palace” as part of their names are always neither one. It was clean and comfortable but not otherwise noteworthy. The best thing about it was the location.
There were plenty of shops and restaurants within walking distance, which was great. The streets were extremely narrow and congested, and parking was a problem, but we didn’t need to take the car out of the hotel garage at all for the three days that we were here.
I needed a very small day bag and found an ideal one in a leather shop a couple of blocks from the hotel. Nirmal, the shop owner and his friend Pushkar (red shirt) were very friendly and loads of fun. I stopped by the shop to visit them several times in the days I spent in Udaipur. (Note: since cows are holy in India, even after death, all the leather goods are made from camel hide.)
Prem wasn’t too tired after today’s long drive, so we took an auto rickshaw to the docks and looked for a boat trip. We passed on a large boat with a dozen tourists already seated and opted for the more expensive private boat. We found a nice American couple to split the cost with.