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A short escape from Delhi: Patan Mahal

Lasyapriya Sundaram

Updated: March 11, 2013, 6:16 PM IST
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Young urban Indians have the urge to take the much-needed weekend break to get away from the city and its hustle and bustle. While Goa has always been a preferred destination, it often turns out to be tedious given the lack of time and sometimes unaffordable airline ticket prices. And keeping this in mind, 'Lonely Planet' Guide Books who set up office in India in 2012 have come out with three travel guide books targeted at dwellers of Delhi, Mumbai and Bengaluru. Aptly titled 'Short Escapes', the series gives a detailed list and review of destinations which are easily accessible from the metros and can be covered in a short span of time. Moreover, the series of guide books are fine tuned for the domestic Indian traveller. But most importantly, it's all about rejuvenating the mind, the body and the soul in a new place which has its unique history and identity.

One such place featured in the 'Short Escapes from Delhi' guide book is 'Patan Mahal' and I had the opportunity to visit this palace steeped in history. Located in the lap of the Aravalli hills, 'Patan Mahal' reminded me of the past glory of Rajasthan's royal families. Owned by Rao Digvijay Singh, a descendant of the Tomar Rajputs, the palace had retained the architecture, ambience and hospitality quintessentially associated with the community. One of the first things which caught my eye was the staggeringly high ceilings and the arches of the doorways which framed the interiors of the structure. Another distinct feature which was difficult to miss were the two courtyards which serve as a meeting ground for lazy lunches, dinners or evening tea. But I was earning to get away from the incessant noise and clamour which has become a bane for every city inhabitant and 'Patan Mahal' was an ideal place surrounded by greenery and quietitude.

Photograph by Lasyapriya Sundaram

But it was not just about lazing around, there was a trek up to the old Haveli, Badal Mahal, at the crack of dawn and also a walk through the in-house vegetable garden. But what appealed to me the most was a trip into the village surrounding the palace which is home to a number of bangle makers and potters. The locals are friendly and sportingly shared some interesting stories about the place.

So what are you waiting for? Pack your bags and head for the serenity and calm of Patan Mahal, just 177 km from the national capital. Board a bus or hop into a car and land up at this palace which abounds in history, natural beauty and a royal lineage.
First Published: March 11, 2013, 6:16 PM IST

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