In a world of cars and bikes, cycling tour seems like a boring activity. However, it all depends on your perspective. A cycling tour is not just about wearing lycra and sweating profusely as you pedal through your route. I had always wanted to do more cycling activities but the hectic routine offers me very little time. However, I somehow managed to experience a memorable bicycle tour in Udaipur and I was really excited about it.
After my major cycle accident in 1998, I never really had more cycling experiences. I moved on to using public transport, but my love for cycling never faded. When you wish for something with all your heart things do come true. I often see my friends in India and abroad (Mary you listening) cycling around and I envy them for that.
So, one day I was just browsing through the YouTube videos when I found out about Walk and Pedal Travel Tours. Apart from the bicycle tour in Udaipur, Walk and Pedal Travel Tours also offer Heritage Walk and Spirit of Art tours, which are equally fascinating. Walk and Pedal Travel Tours have also received Certificate of Excellence from TripAdvisor.
It was probably around the same time when I was planning my trip to Udaipur. Luckily, Walk and Pedal Travel tours offer bicycle tour in Udaipur and instantly I knew I had to take this opportunity. So, I went online, visited their official site and called up Pushpendra Singh Shaktawat, the man behind the concept. After a short telephonic conversation, we decided that I will take the bicycle tour in Udaipur.
Right after our arrival at our Airbnb homestay in Udaipur, we called up Pushpendra and we decided to take more tours including the bicycle tour in Udaipur. Since both, I and Sarah had no experience of riding bicycles at least in the last two decades we needed some help. Pushpendra was kind enough to allow us a trial. The quality of the bicycles was really good. Sarah was doubtful about her cycling abilities so she decided to skip. Eventually, I decided to go ahead alone.
So, the day right after our Sajjangarh Biological Park trip we decided to take the bicycle tour in Udaipur. Okay, most people who know me clearly know I’m not a morning person. I’m nocturnal. Hence, it was quite a challenge for me to wake up early, but I wanted to do this. It was a now or never situation. I had my own issues because back in my cycling days, I never had a geared cycle, so I had to learn how to use it.
Pushpendra was right on time to pick me up from my location. Officially, it was the first time we met him in person. Well, I’m not paid by Pushpendra to say this, but he is a really sweet, kind and a gem of a person. He is from Udaipur so he knows his city like the back of his hand. He has been working in the hotel and travel industry for around a decade now. However, he is an entrepreneur carving out his own niche in the travel and hospitality industry.
We headed to 1559 A.D. restaurant where the bicycled were parked. It was from here that we would resume our bicycle tour in Udaipur. Sarah got into the support vehicle with the camera as she would document the entire experience. It was a nice Saturday early morning and our bicycle tour in Udaipur was officially on.
In the first few moments, I was nervous because I was cycling on the road after two decades. Also, the fact that I was in a different city altogether made me slightly paranoid. However, Pushpendra was always talking to me making me feel comfortable so I knew I had little to worry. Even before I could tell myself to calm down I was enjoying the ride and talking to him.
We took the Rani Road and made our first stop here. While Pushpendra was busy telling us more about the Fateh Sagar Lake and the birds here Sarah was busy taking pictures. Also, before I miss out, I must introduce my readers to Shankar. He was assisting Pushpendra on the tour and was driving the support vehicle behind us. Not sure, if he is going to read this blog, but we appreciate his efforts in making our bicycle tour in Udaipur memorable.
After our short break, we moved ahead on the Fateh Sagar Road and into the smaller lanes of the village. Probably in the next ten minutes, my muscles were getting tired and I was desperate for another break. While Pushpendra was quickly pedalling ahead, I was struggling to keep my pace.
This might be a revelation to Pushpendra, but at a point, my body was on the verge of giving up. While I was pedalling my cycle, my mind was battling to make a decision. In the next couple of seconds, Pushpendra asked me for a cup of tea at a local stall. I readily agreed and that saved my bicycle tour in Udaipur. It would have been a disaster otherwise.
By this time, my body was going through some serious shocks. My body is not used to waking up early in the morning and definitely has no cycling routines. However, it wasn’t like I was struggling hard. I just had to encourage myself to push a bit more. Later we rode through some narrow lanes made the entire experience fun.
The pain had subsided and I was beginning to enjoy the ride when the landscape changed. The fun and the challenging part of the bicycle tour in Udaipur was that the topography never stays the same. Thanks to the research done by Pushpendra, the bicycle tour is never boring. You get these ups and downs that keep you invested in the process.
Just before you reach the Badi Lake, the steep road is the most challenging part of the bicycle tour. Although I tried to push my physical limits I eventually decided to climb the steep road manually. However, my bicycle tour in Udaipur just became better from here on.
The view of the Badi Lake in the morning sunlight made my day. The road was pretty smooth and the view was breathtaking. For me, this was the highlight of my bicycle tour in Udaipur. On a personal level, we believe Badi Lake is the best of all lakes in Udaipur. With mountains surrounding the lake from all corners, it offers a more peaceful experience.
We took a break here. Pushpendra had brought in some sandwiches and Tropicana which helped me to recharge my quickly depleting batteries. We saw some fishermen on the far end of the lake which was a good sight. Also, we sat for some time and had a small talk and I was ready for the tour ahead.
Then, took the road around the Badi Lake and it was a joyride. The descending road was making it easier to race quickly through the turns. The wind was blowing right on my face and into my t-shirt inflating it like a balloon. I was now in my element enjoying this bicycle tour in Udaipur and making the most of it.
So, I tried doing some tricks and balancing my bicycle without any hand support. Since we were circling around the Sajjangarh Monsoon Palace, we had a glimpse of it. In less than half an hour, we entered the city limits and we saw plenty of village houses and stalls. From here, the support vehicle decided to take the lead.
I and Pushpendra managed to reach the 1559 A.D. restaurant in the next few minutes and that is where the tour ended. It was a great experience that I enjoyed for the day, but trust me, I wanted more.
Well, this post has already stretched a bit, but I would like to end this post on why I would recommend this bicycle tour in Udaipur to others. The most important reason is that you create an experience like no other. Exploring a city in a car and on a bicycle are two different things. The perspective changes and you see Udaipur as you have never before. You pedal through interior roads, see things around at your own pace and observe.
Also, you get plenty of information about Udaipur from Pushpendra because he is a local. He knows information that you can’t find on Google. Now, isn’t that a cool thing?
Additionally, you also get to see the morning routine of the people in Udaipur. You see kids heading to school, women busy with their household chores, old men sitting on the porches chatting and men heading to work. You also see cows on their way to the fields or just loitering around on the streets. The more you see, the more it adds to your experience.
I would like to take this opportunity to thank Pushpendra for his immense support to make this cycle tour and many other tours memorable. Yes, we will see more of him in the upcoming posts. A big thank you to Shankar for assisting us.
Last but not the least, thank you Sarah for such lovely pictures. Let me inform my readers that most of the pictures you saw are taken from the back seat of the support vehicle through the windshield.
Watch the snippet of the bicycle tour.
Note: This is not a sponsored post.