Udaipur and Mysore
Udaipur and Mysore are former princely states where I stayed
in what used to be royal palaces.  These rulers retained their
palaces, but lost political power when India became
independent.  Thus, palaces became tourist hotels to help with
the royal cash flow, once government support was lost.  Above
is the Udaipur Lake Palace Hotel, my hotel for one night.  
There may be nothing else like it.  The ruler, (called a
Maharana), built the palace in 1754, and apparently then built
the lake to surround his palace.     
The current Maharana has retained several other palaces,
including the City Palace, whose balcony is shown above.
Udaipur loves a parade.  
The elephant on the left
is all dressed up to be
part of a wedding
procession.  In Udaipur
my video shows the
wedding parade, plus an
elephant walking the
streets along with many
other vehicles and
In Mysore, this remains the Maharaja's Palace, built in
1907.  My hotel was elsewhere, the Lalitha Mahal Palace.  
I'm sure it was hard for the Maharaja to decide which of
his palaces would become hotels.  But the main palace
above offers a surprise, as crowds gather at dusk.      
The Maharaja of Mysore lights his palace, creating a
scene worthy of Disneyland, India style.  
If you have a high speed internet connection, watch the
Intrepid Berkeley Explorer's free video of this trip by
clicking on:
India and Nepal