The village of Kailashpuri is
famous for its 108 temples enclosed by a high, fortified wall. This complex was known as
the Shri Eklingji temple, is associated with Lord Shiva. Some of the structures date back
to the 15th Century. The main temple, built of marble and granite, has an enormous
double-storied hall under a vast pyramidal roof. The regaining deity is the four-faced
Shiva carved in black marble. Yet another temple in the complex is the Lakulish Temple,
built in 971 A.D. It is the only temple of the Lakulish Sect in the whole of India.
When the Emperor Aurangzeb
prohibited idol-worship, devout Hindus decided to move their statue of Shrinathji to a
safer place. During the move, their chariot got
Known as "The Yellow
Vale" because the earth is the colour of haldi (turmeric). This area was the site of
the famous battle of 1576 between Maharana Pratap and Emperor Akbar. The battlefield was
in a narrow pass that ends in a wide plain. It was on this plain that the main battle was
fought. The Maharana was deeply wounded and his faithful horse, Chetak, carried him to
safety. There is a memorial to this loyal horse in Haldighati.
One of the most contested seats of
power in India, this city (once Mewar's Capital) has witnessed many battles. The seemingly
impregnable fortress was first attacked in 1303 and then periodically until 1567, when the
battle against Akbar, the Mughal Emperor resulted in the wholesale looting and virtual
destruction of every building. following this, it was decided by Maharana Udai Singh to
shift capital of Mewar to the area that became Udaipur. The spectacular fortified ruins
are perched on a plateau 180 Meters high and they cover an area of over 700 acres. The
formidable nine-storeyed Victory Tower was constructed in 1440 to mark the victory (albeit
short-lived) over the Muslim enemy.
This small, traditional town near Haldighati is renowned for the production of terra cotta ware. Over forty households are involved (although they originate from two families) in working the fine black local clay into fantastic and beautiful items. Perhaps the most important object made there are the figures of Hindu Gods and Goddesses. Typical Rajput figures, decorated tiles and animals are also exquisitely modelled. Besides these, all sorts of bowls, pots & crockery are made and decorated with folklore patterns.
A tiny settlement set in the wild
& picturesque hills, Ranakpur boasts one of the India's finest Jain Temples, dedicated
to Adhinathji. Building of the Temple commenced in the 15th Century and the dedicated work
went on for hundreds of years. Traditional stone masons are still working on one of the
gateways to the sight. This vast and amazing piece of architecture is of creamy marble. No
glass is used and no electricity employed, so it bears a sort of simplicity despite its
intricacy. One noteworthy point is that it contains 1444 beautifully carved pillars, no
two of which are alike. There are a couple of resort hotels in Ranakpur perfect for those
who need break in complete tranquillity and fresh air.