Incredible Northern India Garden Tour
March 3rd - March 15th, 2010
DELHI –AGRA – BHARATPUR - JAIPUR –JODHPUR –UDAIPUR – DELHI

 

March 6th, 2010

Was a day of driving for us…a chance to sit back and see what the country was like on our way from Delhi to Agra. We made a stop in the morning before leaving to Cottage Industries to have a lesson in what the difference is in carpets. Sure there are many hand made but the one you want is hand knotted. These are the crème de la crème and are that way for many reasons.

Know how they are made – the knots should be in a figure 8 with each knot pulled to tighten. They go through such a weaving and finishing process that it makes them only get better with age. They are strong – thin carpets are better as furniture does not push the carpet down. You should never be able to see where the chair leg was sitting on a good hand knotted carpet. Each carpet is different and the patterns and size determine the length of time need to weave and of course the cost. An 8 x 10 can take 3 people working on it and if one is sick the other 2 must wait because of the tension that each person has in their arms. Not many families are making them any more as they are so labour intensive. The younger generations don’t have the patience or desire. Needless to say some of our group took advantage of getting a very good quality carpet while here…and when you buy it you sign the edge of it…that is what you might see in some of the pictures…people signing carpets. Now you know why.

We drove for awhile then had a lunch break at a most unusual restaurant. It was wonderful. Now picture this. We all walk in and ask if possible to have lunch outside as it was so pretty. We were the only ones there and the gardens were ours to enjoy. No problem, they just packed up the whole buffet lunch and moved it outside. You can have beer inside, but not outside so if you look closely you can see what they are doing with the beer too! A great meal and in the area was a huge cage filled with fan tailed pigeons. I had never seen these before – very pretty indeed.

We arrived into Agra about 5:30 after a long, but a very enjoyable day sightseeing, learning and eating. Of course after checking in we were ready to eat again! The regal Jaypee Palace Hotel and Convention Centre, a glorious structural blend of red sandstone and marble, is spread over an unbounded 25 acres of elegantly landscaped luxuriant greenery. Sprinkled with enormous water bodies and endless walkways, this magical creation impeccably blends Mughal and contemporary architecture with modern amenities. There are over 1300 species of trees, exotic bamboo and climbers such as Casia Fistual, Ficus Panda and Jacquemontia.

Another glorious place to rest our heads.
 

 

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