Last week when I told my folks that I was going for a short getaway to WelcomHeritage Inderpura Resort in Udaipurwati, they asked me, “So is it somewhere close to Udaipur“? I immediately cleared the confusion and told them that these two places were not even close. Even your first instinct can be the same and hence let me clarify that Udaipur and Udaipurwati are two different places and separated by a distance of 500 kilometers. Now, whether these two places have anything in common or not, that is still a question. So you must read and find out for yourself. Also, in this blog, I talk about some offbeat places of Rajasthan and a new nature resort of the WelcomHeritage family.
Where is Udaipurwati?
130 kilometers away from the capital city Jaipur, Udaipurwati is a culturally-rich city in Shekhawati and a municipality in Jhunjhunun district in Rajasthan. This is all that I knew about it, before my visit there. To be honest, I had heard some fascinating stories about the grand Marwari havelis and frescoes of Shekhawati but surprisingly nobody had mentioned Udaipurwati before. Thus, the wanderer in me was thrilled at the prospect of exploring yet another offbeat place. And not just this, the idea of experiencing winters in Rajasthan was yet another compelling reason. For once, you should also go there to experience the warmth of the winter afternoons and the drastic dip of temperature in the nights.
WelcomHeritage Inderpura Resort in Udaipurwati
Just 5 hours away from my house in Faridabad and 4 hours from Delhi-Gurgaon border, it is a very comfortable and smooth drive to WelcomHeritage Inderpura Resort. Located right on the highway on the Salasar Balaji Road, and with the Aravalli ranges on the three sides, the natural landscape of the area lends a unique and charming character to the resort.
Old style architecture, new construction, haveli like facade, Rajasthani arches & pillars and manicured gardens, created a perfect first impression on me. The traditional style of welcome, a quick check in and a huge lunch spread under the winter sun made me feel at home almost immediately. For next few hours, I ate to my stomach full and literally lounged in the sun. My friends decided to retire to their rooms but I did not budge from the lawn. The views of the Aravallis did not let boredom settle in at any point of time. I enjoyed the serenity in silence and this was my kind of holiday. I like these offbeat and small towns in India, where there is no rush to check out the touristy spots and everything about them takes you closer to people and nature. I was happy to be in Shekhawati region and was looking forward to exploring the neighborhood villages, the next day.
Soon, the chirping of the birds, the sunset and the nip in the air forewarned of a cold night. All that my heart desired was for some chilli pakodas, piping hot coffee and bonfire. The wishes were granted as desired and the evening mood was revved up with Rajasthani folk songs and puppet show.
For next few hours, our conversations over bonfire took over everything. And the dinner was the best that we could ask for to end the day. However, the cherry on the cake was the interaction with the owners of the resort (father and son duo), who are native of Inderpura village. It was good to hear from the horses mouth as to how they developed this place in one of the most organic ways. It was heartening to hear that travelers had motivated them to make a place that could help people take a break or a night halt on their way to Bikaner. And now they wanted to invite more and more wanderers to explore the offbeat beauty of Shekhawati. Last but not the least, they also wanted to give a premier holiday-like experience to those who were looking for weekend getaways, not very far from the capital.
Udaipur of Shekhawati
The location of the property is one of its USP. If you want to take a break from the din of the city, you have a place to go. But more than that, the history and heritage lovers will be pleased to know that some of the most popular temples like Khatushyam Temple, Rani Sati Temple, Salasar Balaji temple and The Lohargal Surya temple are just few kilometers away. Personally, I was keen to see Dr. Ramnath A. Podar Haveli Museum in Nawalgarh and forts & havelis of Mandava.
Some of the information that I picked up during my stay will definitely interest you. So Udaipurwati is one of the thikanas of Shekhawati. In the previous times, Thikanas used to be the state or an estate of a Thakurs (princely men or people from the royal families). King Bhojraj Singh Ji (Shekhawat) was the ruler of Udaipurwati. The previous name of Udaipurwati was Kaushambhi. The historians and writers of Rajasthan have mentioned in one of their writings that once the ruler of Mewar was invited to Shekhawati and when he saw this area, he called it Udaipur of Shekhawati on finding this place adorned with rivers, dams, stepwells and hills. The most famous river that flows through this region is Katli and it is the main source of coarse sand used for construction in its nearby region.
For many years, it was called Udaipur Shekhawati, but the government did not want to keep up with two names and hence it became Udaipurwati.
Udaipurwati and Neighborhood
When you are in Rajasthan and especially in a heritage-rich area you just can’t keep being lazy. You got to step out and explore the beauty around. On the next day, we chalked out a plan and made the best of the warm and sunny day. After a hearty breakfast, we drove down to Surya (Sun) Temple in Lohargal.
Lohargal Surya Temple
Though many folklore are popular for this place, the most important one remains that when Pandavas were seeking liberation from their sins committed during the war of Mahabharata, they were asked to visit a number of religious places. Naradji had suggested that whenever and where ever their weapons will melt, liberation will be done. So it was here in one of the water kunds it happened, thus the name of the place is Lohalgal (Iron or weapons melted here).
This place is also very famous for its pickles, especially mango pickles. I was surprised to learn that mangoes are produced in this part of Rajasthan too. The lane leading to the Sun temple was full of pickle shops and I bought some too. Don’t miss to see the kund in the temple where the weapons had melted.
From the temple, we traveled to one of the colleges in Inderpura and took a camel cart ride towards the village. Well, one side of me wanted to avoid it because I do not support animal rides but on the other, I wanted to support the people whose only source of income is this. They raise and feed the camels as their children.
Girdharpur Shahpura village
After soaking in the vibes of Rajasthani villages, we stopped at some point in the middle of the sand dunes and had some tea and pakodas made by the local villagers. Such gestures are the real takeaway from such trips.
Finally, the second half of the day was well-spent at the famous havelis of Nawalgarh. Even a day is not enough for this place, where almost every house is a piece of art work but we did make it two beautiful havelis – Morarka and Podar Haveli Museums. Both the houses are worth every minute. If you appreciate Indian art, you got to love this place.
Nawalgarh is called the frescoes capital of India. The town is full of one-of-its-kinds vibrant havelis, and rightly qualifies to be called an open art gallery. “Fresco work was colloquially called गीला-आला पद्धति , where “geela” means plaster and “aala” refers to painting. The uniqueness of this artwork is that natural colours were painted on the wall while plaster was still wet.
On the third day, we had to start early for Delhi because of the CAA protests and the jams but whatever time we had, I wanted to see the stepwell (baoli) of this area. While hunting for one, we reached a temple and water kund. This place was absolutely isolated but it had one of the most amazing landscapes. The water body added to the reflections and it looked ethereal.
Go for this vacation
On one of your free weekends, you must drive down to Inderpura Resort. I would highly recommend it for its great ambiance, cheerful hospitality and great food. I really liked the subtle and tasteful decoration of the rooms. Every corner of the place speaks for itself. There is a swimming pool for the summer days and an in-house wellness center along with gym is on its way.