The journey from Jodhpur to Mt. Abu is about 5 hours by road. Mt. Abu is the cooling (in my case icing) comfort in the middle of the warm Royal trip to Rajasthan. Of course another aspect is, it’s the popular hill station of Rajasthan and tightly packed on the weekends being very close to Gujarat as well. People of this state or neighboring state along with long haul tourists from and out of India, often prefer to spend their weekends here.
Carrying thick warm clothes, especially November onward (which should also include gloves, woolen cap, muffler, socks etc) is very important otherwise one can opt for becoming a frozen Rabdi in that bone prickling cold. Though to break the monotony of regularly becoming sweating wax, a change of spending 1-2 nights under the cozy blanket is quite comforting. Where the mornings are good to soak in the Vitamin D with a pair of light warm clothes to warn you, evenings are better to be under those solid heavy jackets and sweaters, and looking for hot smoking coffee. Mt. Abu is also a place for cheap yet chic shopping, be it junk jewelries, warm clothes, souvenirs, gifts and many more. Don’t miss the evening shopping here.
Places to visit in Mt. Abu, Rajasthan: There are couple of places to go around in the day time:
The “must visit” attraction when one is going to Mt. Abu is The Dilwara temple. The outer walls of the temple has an illusion of white cement quoted, plain and simple ordinary construction, until one enters the temple ground and takes a tour of the place from inside, which will change the entire assumption. The entire temple is built is 5 stages and each stage has been built in different times by different generation of the same ancestry. Every stage is a sheer creation of prowess handcrafting; the fine and detailed marble carved temple is so intriguing and walking around bare foot on the cold marble floor is mighty etheral.
** No entry fee required to enter this temple.
Brahma Kumari Ashram:
The headquarter of Brahma Kumaris World Spiritual university is in Mount Abu. This is one of the internationally acclaimed community for practicing meditation and spiritual learning. They have centers all across India and overseas. There is a museum inside for general tourists and there are yogi teachers who willfully help and guide people seeking courses here. Once inside you will need about an hour’s time to give to this place.
** NO entry fee required.
Situated in the city center, quite soothing to spend an evening at the park by the lake or boating on the gently flowing water. The park has lot of activity for kids including taking pictures in Traditional Rajasthani attire for all ages. There are shops lined up across the road, and a good 3-4 hours can be spent in the market area doing shopping, eating, and roaming.
Arbuda Devi Temple:
One needs to bring in a tiny drop of hiker’s spirit to visit the temple. Arbuda Devi temple or Adhar Devi temple is actually a cave up on the hill, of course what we see now is a lot more accessible form of a temple, being managed by some authority to manage the daily crowd. However if you can take 365 stairs to go up, you get to see the temple inside the small cave, which is still more or less intact from any refurbishment. The hassle of this small trek is quite worthy as the view of the valley from that height is very graphic and impressive. This temple is highly worshiped by the locals; one has to stand in the queue to get a Darshan of the deity during season time and during festive season.
Sunset View Point in Mt Abu:
This is a convenient option to enjoy a leisure evening, about 30 minutes drive from Nakki Lake, the bus/car will drop at the parking area, from there it’s a small 2 km trek. The road is smooth but it’s going up, hence people may be unwilling to walk up till the view point. But no worries!! There are small carts available, which can accommodate 2 person, literally pushed by humans,(rate can be 150-200 INR for a cart appx), so one can take that to go up. The View point is quiet if there aren’t a lot of people chattering aloud… and if luck permits, the sunset will be a treat to watch, but then it’s really rare. While coming down the walk is easy, better to opt for the walk down, because it’s cool, breezy and healthy!!
** be aware of Monkeys— they have fetish for spectacles/ sunglasses, hence would love to try their hand on yours!!
** No entry fee required.
Shopping in Mount Abu:
The central area of the hill station, Mt. Abut (Around Nakki lake and surroundings) is a shoppers zone. Be it street shopping (those junk jewelries of different species, patterns and colours, cloths, home decor specially brass minakari handicraft, gift souvenirs and that too at fair price) or opting for local big shops, a shopper’s spree can’t just go miffy here.
**Stay in Mount Abu: A minimum 2 nights stay is must in Mt Abu.