Today I am going to take you up to the mountains with me to Mount Abu.
Few years back I traveled with my family to this beautiful place in Rajasthan. Situated in the Aravali range, Mount Abu is an oasis in the desert sands of Rajasthan, it accedes the honour of being the only hill-station in Rajasthan as well as the whole of North-West India. Mount Abu is home to the world famous tourist destination: the ancient Dilwara Jain temples. It has a very cool and soothing climate.
We had gone in month of November and it was freezing cold compared to Mumbai climate. After 12 hours of journey by train, we reached the Abu Road railway station. From there we took shared taxi up the winding road towards the hill station with travel time of approximately 45 mins. The first day we just rested and later went to nearby sunset point. Spectacular view of setting sun atop the mountain.
Day 2: We went to explore the market which was about 10 mins from our hotel. We hired a taxi to show us around, to places like the Dilwara Jain temple, Adhar devi temple etc. Photography is prohibited in Dilwara jain temple and we had to deposit our camera and cell phones at security. Adhar devi temple is at great height and I didn’t go up but my husband and son went up to see the spectacular view of the valley below.
Day 3: We found the best way to travel around Mount Abu by rented motorbikes and scooters, the easiest medium to enjoy the beauty of Mount Abu to its fullest. Please note you require a valid driving licence for availing this service.You can hire the bike for whole day and roam around at your own convenience and we found this very useful and cost is very reasonable too. We went around more places and roamed market lake and far off places.
Day 4: We roamed around market to buy some stuff while my kids took the bike to explore some more regions including the museum.
Day 5: We had checked out of hotel and since we had enough time to catch our train we spend time at Nakki lake in afternoon and visited some shops. After lunch we got sharing taxi which took us down the winding road back to Abu Road station from where we took our train back to Mumbai thus bidding good bye to a beautiful hill retreat.
Though Mount Abu can be visited throughout the year I preferred winters as it was all around pleasant with chill in the air in the evenings. While travelling Mount Abu you must feast on the Maharashtrian, Gujarati, Rajasthani, south Indian, Punjabi, Chinese or Continental dishes. The variety offered is so vast that you may try new dishes in every meal. Even the smaller eating joints in Mount Abu are shining clean. Amongst the many delicious dishes you must try out the pav-bhaji and the Rajasthani thali. My personal favorite was sev tomato sabzi.
Places to see
Dilwara Jain Temple: These beautifully carved temples built between 11th and 13th century A.D. are sheer elegance in marble, dedicated to the Jain Tirthankaras. The Vimal Vasahi temple is the oldest of these dedicated to the first Tirthankara. Built in 1031 A.D. (by Vimal Shah-a merchant and representative of then Gujarat ruler), it is a superb example of temple architecture.
Adhar Devi Temple: The temple is chiselled out of a huge rock reached by a flight of 360 stairs. A favourite tourist spot.
Sunset Point: Spectacular sight of the setting sun when the hills are covered in the golden glow can be viewed from here.
Honeymoon Point: Also known as Andra Point, it offers an enchanting view of the verdant plains and valleys. The place looks most beautiful during the dusk hours.
Gardens and Parks: Beautifully laid parks and gardens are interspersed throughout the hilly paradise. Ashok Vatika,Gandhi park, Municipal Park,Shaitan Singh Park and Terrace Garden are some of the noteworthy gardens.
Museum and Art Gallery: Located at the Raj Bhawan, it was a collection of archaeological excavations dating back to 8th-12th century A.D. It also has Jain bronze carvings,brassworks etc. for viewing.
Nakki Lake: Situated within walking distance from the main market and almost 80% of Hotel’s and restaurant’s of Mount Abu, Nakki lake posses the crown of being the heart of Mount Abu. The hub of evening activity and boating – Nakki Lake is the perfect place to spent your evening with your partner, friends and family.The picture perfect location of the lake surrounded with mountains, gardens and rock formations also make it a very good location for photography. In the evening the setting sun makes the canvas
How To Reach Mount Abu
By Rail: Abu Road is the nearest railway station just 28 km from the main city, Which is very well connected by rail routes to New Delhi, Ahmedabad, Jaipur, and Mumbai. From Abu Road you can opt for state transport service (usually every hour) or Taxis on both sharing and private basis.
By Air: The nearest airport is Udaipur at a distance of 185 km, But Ahmedabad is having better connectivity and daily flights with other parts of the country and is just 221 km from Mount Abu, from Ahmedabad or Udaipur.
By Road: Mount Abu is well connected by road with major cities of the country, nearest national highway no. 14 is just 24 km.
There are many budget hotels in Mount Abu and very centrally located near the lake and market. We had however stayed in Hotel Sunset Inn. Reasonably priced, good food and good ambiance with very helpful staff. It is also very near to sunset point.
A trip of 4 nights is enough to enjoy the beauty of this hill station I would like to share with you all some of the wonderful pictures which I took on my trip.
Editor’s Note: Meena is a housewife and multitasker from Mumbai, Maharashtra and likes to unwind every few months and visit nearby places. A part time blogger who loves online games. Catch her awesome blog here!