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Udaipur, the White City of India or the City of Lakes as it’s also known in Southern Rajasthan is full of attractions like the City Palace, Monsoon Palace, many Temples and Museums, much like the other big Cities in Rajasthan. But what I found really interesting is that it’s also full of fun and unique activities and classes!
If you are visiting Udaipur and you are a bit ‘over’ all of the Fort’s, Palaces and Temples or you’re just looking for something unique to do then you’re in luck as you can spend 2, 3, 4 or even 5 days in Udaipur enjoying the classes and activities that are on offer without even stepping into many of the major tourist attractions in Udaipur.
Cooking Classes are a really popular thing to do in Udaipur. They are advertised all over the City. Prices range from 300Rs to about 600Rs and you’ll get the chance to make a few different Indian dishes.
I even saw a Vegan Cooking Class in Udaipur advertised.
If you are interested in Cooking Classes in India, Udaipur is a great place to visit to test out cooking a range of dishes in a range of ways.
I’ve never really seen art classes advertised but art classes are offered all over Udaipur and there is a large range of classes too like henna art, nail art as well as painting and drawing.
Yoga is offered in Udaipur in a few places which I was a very happy about. I went to morning yoga at Nukkad Guest House which is on from 8:00-9:00am. It’s a bit of a make shift class and when I went there were only 2 of us. The teacher definitely knew his stuff but I get the impression the type of yoga he teaches is decided by him in the morning.
Another place to do yoga in Udaipur is Enteyoga (to be honest, I’d recommend going to them over Nukkad as they seem more professional). Enteyoga hold two sessions daily depending on the bookings. 8:30-9:45am and 5:00-6:15pm and it’s common for these classes to be held in a temple by the river which is really special. You need to book the class in advance but you can contact Enteyoga by email or by instagram.
One thing I was really recommended to do in Udaipur as it’s a popular tourist attraction is an evening cultural show. At first I thought it might be a bit too cheesy for me but the day I went to see I was recommended it by a girl who went the night before and said she thought the same but still recommended it so I decided to go.
A popular cultural show in Udaipur is the Dharohar Folk Dance in the Bagore Ki Haveli Museum where Rajasthani men play music, women dance and there is a short puppet show at the end.
The Dharohar Folk Dance is on from 7:00-8:00pm but to get a good seat I recommend getting there at 6:00pm as the ticket booth opens at 6:15pm, it does get very busy and the area of seats is only quite small. Also the earlier you get there the more likely you’ll be to get a seat or a seat on a small bench, otherwise you have to sit on the floor. Also, it’s outside so taking mosquito spray to spray beforehand is a good idea.
To SEE the show, have a look at my YouTube video here.
The one tourist attraction in Udaipur that you must visit and that will not disappoint is the City Palace, and before you visit, be sure to read my tips on visiting here: Tips for Visiting Udaipur’s City Palace & Doing a Boat Trip Around Lake Pichola!
Although the Dharohar Folk Dance Show does have a puppet show section at the end, there are shows that are totally dedicated to puppets as this is something that is very popular in Rajasthan. Also, you may think that this is a bit cheesy too like me but honestly, it’s very impressive. The people who told the puppets are in full view and they are making them dance incredibly well with only very slight movements by the puppeteer.
To make a real evening out of it, why not look into this Puppet Show with Evening Boat Ride and Dinner in Udaipur!
Ayurveda comes from India and although it’s most popular in Southern India in Kerala, around Udaipur you will find a lot of Ayurveda stores and Ayurveda massages on offer. I found it to be a bit of a sell out to be honest and it’s hard to choose a good place as so many places offer a massage and some claim to be recommended by Lonely Planet. But like everything, speak to the person inside the shop, or out on the street, and see what vibe you get. Ayurveda is a science (the Indian science of life infact) so I believe it’s important to see a therapist that is really passionate about it rather than just a good sales person.
I went for an Ayurvedic massage in Udaipur at the place pictured below. I was able to barter down the price a bit and had the full body with facial ayurvedic massage. It was a bit strange but it was good, the only issue I had is that the rooms were right next to reception so it wasn’t exactly relaxing!
Ayurvedic massages in Udaipur are priced higher than a standard full body or back massage so if you are on a budget in Udaipur, you could opt for a standard massage instead as it will save you a bit of money.
There are lots of mopeds being ridden though the main streets of the Old City of Udaipur and whilst I wouldn’t recommend this as it’s very busy with people, other bikes and rickshaws, plus the fact that there is no need to ride a moped in the Old City of Udaipur.
However if you are a confident moped driver then hiring a moped in Udaipur would be a great way to see the surrounding countryside and temples instead of having to get a rickshaw or driver.
I was recommended by a friend to do a bike tour around Udaipur and whilst I didn’t do it, I can imagine that the best way to see Udaipur is by bike as it’ll give a great unique perspective of the City are surrounding areas. Art of Bicycle Tours are highly recommended.
I know this isn’t a really unique thing to do but one of the best things about Udaipur is the fact that it has so many rooftops and with rooftop restaurants so there’s no need to climb a mountain or overly plan a way to watch the sunset in Udaipur. The best place to see the sunset is from one of the rooftop’s right along the river’s edge on the Eastern and main side of Udaipur Old City so you do not get any other buildings in view and you’ll see the sunset into the Mountains and the buildings on the other side of the City.
Be sure to stay on the rooftop until it gets dark to see the City light up as it does quickly after the sunset’s and it’s really impressive.
The Spice Market in Udaipur is a bit out of the centre of the Old City of Udaipur so you’ll need to get a rickshaw there. Man Vs Globe recommended the Spice Market to me after his visit earlier in the year and if you love the atmosphere of markets and the hustle and bustle then visiting the Spice Market in Udaipur will be a good thing to do and something that not all tourists do!
If like me you stay in the ‘main’ side of Udaipur where the City Palace is, be sure to cross the River and check out what looks like on a map as the island in the River. There is plenty of accommodation on this side of Udaipur as well as restaurants, cafes, art classes and cooking classes but it’s a lot quieter with slightly less traffic and fewer people trying to sell you things. I walked around here and then continued to walk along the Northern Bridge into the main land area of Ambamata which is a very local side to Udaipur, and then I crossed back into the Eastern Side.
If you do want to do a tour of the City so you can see the City quickly and then get on and enjoy these activities and classes, have a look at these tours on offer in Udaipur:
I stayed at the Pratap Bhawan Hotel in Udaipur. It was in a really good location not far from the river in the Centre of the Old City but the street that it’s in isn’t too busy. The Hotel staff were all really friendly although we had a few issues with communication as their English is quite limited, which is fine if you want to stay there, as long as you don’t need to ask many questions.
What I loved most about Pratap Bhawan Hotel is that my Double Room was a great size with an ensuite, comfy double bed and a window seat with views over the lake and nearby buildings! It really added to my stay in Udaipur!
India Travel Assistance
I visited Udaipur as part of a 1 week solo trip around Rajasthan with India Someday who provide planning assistance for people who want to explore India independently but want a bit of extra help, a personalised service and access to extensive information and knowledge on India! India Someday will tailor make a trip to work with all budgets and all interests.
India Someday offers a 20% discount off their fees to solo travellers, and The Wandering Quinn readers get an additional 5% off. So, if you are a solo traveller you will get a 25% discount on India Someday’s fees if you book your India travels with them.
I hope this shows that you can enjoy a few days in Udaipur learning new things and enjoying the Rajasthani Culture without needing to tick off every Palace and Temple that’s on offer there. After all, there’s more to travel than just visiting all of the ‘tourist’ sites.
But I do still recommend you see the City Palace, and when you do, here are my tips: Tips for Visiting Udaipur’s City Palace & Doing a Boat Trip Around Lake Pichola!
For more of my posts on India see:
To SEE my stay in Udaipur, have a watch of my YouTube video:
My stay in Udaipur was in collaboration with India Someday but all tips, recommendations, thoughts and opinions are my own.
I’m Ellie Quinn!
I’m a travel addict who has been travelling on and off since 2010. In the Summer of 2018 I quit my office job in London, left my flat and I now travel and blog full time! Yes, I’m living that dream!
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