As part of our tour of Udaipur on our tour of Rajasthan conducted by Hi Tours and booked through Indus Travels of Canada we stopped at a shop for demonstrations of miniatures painting. This was followed by offers of beer, tea or soft drinks, then the hard sell of their miniatures. We saw one that we liked but couldn't negotiate down from the equivalent of $400!!! At lunch our waiter mentioned a co-op art shop where he and his father had works for sale. We went there and saw several miniatures painted on silk that we liked very much - far more detail and much larger than the ones at the tourist stop, and for the two about a quarter of the price of the one we saw(one of these was nearly 24 inches in largest dimension, so not so much a "miniature.") after bargaining. The framing back in the U.S. cost more than the artwork!
Commission on tickets
Once you would need the service of an agency, for example to book a train ticket or whatever, before to agree for somehting, ask them which is the % or value of their services.
So, before to confirm something, bergain also about the provvision!!!!
Another very common thing that will definitely happend to you during your stay in India is this: You will take somewhen a rickshaw or whatever to reach a site, and they will definitely bring you in some shop (a shop of a friend or a brother or whatever). Keep in mind that the owner of the shop will pay the driver a commision cuz he brought there some tourist and clearly the prices of the goods will increase...
So, be strong and tell to the driver that you will not leave the rickshaw! This is the only thing that works out...
(Not-So) Musical Fountain
The musical fountain is about 15 minutes away from the Lake Palace. We took one of the three-wheelers to get there. We got to the top of the hill, paid the admission for foriegners, and walked down the hill to see the musical fountain.... but it was blocked off! I guess it was closed by the time we got there... but we couldn't even get a view, or hear the music! What a rip-off!...
hehe... ok, ok, I must admit, I didn't mind getting ripped off. Sometimes you just have to make the best of the situation.
Unique Suggestions: Bring some instruments and make your own music. Bring one of those nose flutes, or one of those drums, or even a sitar, ANYTHING to keep you from dying of boredom!
Fun Alternatives: Just stay at your hotel and watch TV, at least sound comes out of that one....
Lake Palace restaurant
The restaurants at the Lake Palace Hotel are certainly acceptable, but if you think you're going to get a great view along with great food, you're mistaken. The food is only OK (the restaurant that faces the water has a pretty mediocre buffet with a lot of bad Western options) and even the views are not what they should be, given the setting.
Fun Alternatives: If you really want to splash out on a high-end meal, do it right and go to the Udaivilas restaurant. You can eat outdoors on the terrace and have vastly better food, along with a spread-out view of the lake and mountains.
- Food and Dining
Not a trap:) but its the...
Not a trap:) but its the desert state after all!
In the pic-- the road to Udaipur... i loved the landscape- the rugged Aravalli mountains, 20 million years old (compare that to 5 million for the himalayas) and perhaps the oldest mountain range in the world. Over the years, the mountains have been weathered down by the elements (and now quarrying), an therefore their present shape and form...
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