A number of recommended excursions from Udaipur can either be tackled as round-trips or as stopovers on your way elsewhere in the state. The first option is the easiest, a half-day excursion (at most) that takes in some of the most important temples in Udaipur. The second option -- which you can combine with the first for a rather grueling but very satisfying round-trip -- takes you to the awesome Jain temples at Ranakpur through Kumbhalgarh Wildlife Sanctuary, past wonderful pastoral scenes that haven't changed since medieval times, to view magnificent Kumbhalgarh Fort. From here you can either head northwest for Jodhpur or double back to Udaipur, possibly taking in the temples at Nathdwara, Nagda, and Eklingji. (If you're pressed for time, leave out Nathdwara -- beyond the superb examples of pichhwai paintings, there's not much to see, as non-Hindus may not enter the temple.) To plan this as a round-trip, you will need to hire a driver familiar with the distances and terrain, and overnight along the way.

The third option is another long full-day trip, this time with the sole purpose of viewing Chittaurgarh, site of the most legendary Mewar battles. From here you can return to Udaipur or push on east to the little town of Bundi, and from there proceed to Jaipur or Ranthambhore National Park. For those interested in an off-the-beaten-track experience to the south, the fourth option, relatively undiscovered Dungarpur Palace, is well worth the time, not least for Deco fans who will relish overnighting in the family manse -- Udai Bilas Palace, a living Deco museum -- before returning to Udaipur. If Ranakpur's temples have whet your appetite for more, a fifth option, an excursion to the west ascending the Aravalli Hills to Mount Abu, the only hill station in Rajasthan and home to Dilwara -- the most famous Jain temples in India -- can also be tackled from Udaipur, though the distances will necessitate an overnight stay. Details of distances for all excursions are given in the listings.

An excursion to an attraction that is not described in detail below, but which may interest birders or those in search of more peace, is Jaisamand Lake, the second-largest man-made lake in Asia, created in 1691 by Maharana Jai Singh and, thankfully, still containing water. Located a little over an hour away from Udaipur, it has a number of marble pavilions but is more famous for the many aquatic birds that have found a home in what is now Jaisamand Wildlife Sanctuary.

Note: This information was accurate when it was published, but can change without notice. Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the companies in question before planning your trip.