Treasure hunt for the most exquisite hidden havelis

Beauties and bounties in the bylanes of Bikaner…

“You won’t be able to find them on your own.” The hotel manager dismisses our valiant declaration of self-exploration with a mysterious smile. “I’ll arrange an auto rickshaw to guide you. The lanes are too narrow for a car.” Intrigue levels: brim high.

Our driver, Wali, nods knowingly, when I show him the google pictures in my phone. We climb into the well-padded back seat of our colourful three-wheel drive towards the oldest part of the city. At 11 am, its still a lazy morning in the marketplace. Steamy curls rising from chai cups, brooms swooshing across verandahs and biscuit-laden carts rumbling along to designated spots. The man stirring hot milk at Ramji Ghewar Wale sweet shop seems absent-minded…still not fully awake yet?  

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Senses awaken at the city of sunrise

Give in to Udaipur’s charms…

We were booked in Trident Hotel and our choice couldn’t have been more perfect. Trident shares expansive gardens with Oberoi Udai Vilas, one of the most uber-lux hotels in the world. Location, location, location…the words raced through my head, as we walked to the hotel’s boat jetty. There, we were rewarded by a stunning sight of the colossal city palace shimmering on the Lake Pichola. Even better things awaited…an exclusive one-hour boat ride to remember.

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