Kumbhalgarh and Ranakpur

Another car ride from Udaipur took me to Kumbhalgarh and Ranakpur. I shared the journey with three friendly Koreans: a mother and son living in the UK and a solo South Korean traveller.

The driver was definitely overachieving on the beep front – never ceasing to use his horn at the slightest traffic ambiguity.

Kumbhalgarh is a fort 1100m high with thick walls stretching about 36km. Enclosed within are over 300 temples some of which go back to 2nd century BC. From the fort, there are wonderful views disappearing into the blue distance. Second in importance only to Chittorgarh, Kumbhalgarh was taken only once in its entire history.

After a buffet Indian lunch, where we saw a man and cow turning a water wheel, we drove to Ranakpur, which is one of India’s biggest and most important Jain temple complexes.

After returning and a quick break, the Koreans and I went to a fantastic and dangerous all-you-can-eat thali restaurant. Unlike other similar restaurants, you didn’t have to get up to top up your plate. The waiters floated around and topped you up if they spotted any unoccupied region on your thali! The food was so good the restaurant was packed with Indians, us being the only tourists.

When we showed the slightest sign of being satiated and that we might refuse attempts to top us up, our thalis were whipped away to be replaced by clean ones and cutlery. Before we knew it, the next group of famished diners were salivating behind us ready to gorge. We took the hint.

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