Jait Sagar

Lake in Bundi

Round the far side of Taragarh, about 2km north from the centre of town, this picturesque, 1.5km-long lake is flanked by hills and strewn with pretty lotus flowers during the monsoon and winter months. At its near end, the Sukh Mahal is a small summer palace surrounded by terraced gardens where Rudyard Kipling once stayed and wrote part of Kim.

Just past the eastern end of the lake is the atmospheric, partly overgrown Kshar Bag, with the cenotaphs of 66 Bundi rulers and queens. Some have terrific, intricate carvings, especially of elephants and horses. The caretaker will probably show you around and detail the rulers’ names, dates and number of wives – 17th-century ruler Maharaja Satru Sele apparently had 64 queens, but even more are carved on his cenotaph. Fork right just after Kshar Bag to reach Shikar Burj, a small former royal hunting lodge (once there were tigers, deer and boars here) next to a water tank. It’s a popular place for a picnic.

It’s nice to visit Jait Sagar by bicycle; with a bike or autorickshaw you could combine it with other sights further out of town.