Planning a Trip to Mount Abu, Rajasthan's Only Hill Station

Nakki Lake in Mount Abu
Nakki Lake in Mount Abu | © Arunsbhat / Wikimedia Commons

Situated at an elevation of 1,220 meters (4000 ft) in the Aravalli ranges is the only hill station of Rajasthan, Mount Abu. It has evolved over the years into the state’s favourite getaway for beating the sweltering desert heat. Covered with lush greenery, scenic lakes, hilltop temples, undisturbed trekking trails, serenity and abundant heritage, this hill station offers a relaxing atmosphere. Check out our guide to planning a trip to this hill retreat.

What to see and do

Whether you’re religious, a nature lover, adventure enthusiast or history buff, Mount Abu has something for every kind of traveller.

Dilwara Temples

Located just 2.6 km from Mount Abu is a sacred pilgrimage site, the Dilwara Temples. Constructed between the 11th and 13th centuries CE, the Dilwara Temples consist of five Jain temples – Vimal Vasahi, Pithalhar, Luna Vasahi, Mahavir Swami and Parshvanath. They boast a very fine architectural style with intricate marble carvings, stunning sculptures, splendid entrances and ornamental detailing in doorways, panels and pillars. Besides being visually impressive, this temple offers beautiful views of forested hills.

Dilwara Temples, Mount Abu, Rajasthan.

Dilwara are beautifully carved Jain temples

Nakki Lake

Said to be dug out from the nails of god, the Nakki Lake is sacred. Surrounded by scenic mountains and trees, it is a haven for nature lovers. You can enjoy a picnic along the banks, go boating on the lake or horse riding around it. The Maharaja Jaipur Palace and Raghunath temple lie on he shores of the lake. Another key attraction is the Toad Rock set on a hilltop. As the name suggests, it resembles a toad, and you can either walk or climb the rocky path to reach it and enjoy the stunning lake views below. Entry costs INR 50 ($0.77)-INR 100 ($ 1.54).

Nakki Lake, Mount Abu.

Nakki lake
Toad Rock

Sunset Point

If you’re seeking peace and quiet, the best spot in Mount Abu is Sunset Point, a stone’s throw from Nakki Lake. This place makes for a relaxing and serene evening excursion. You can set off on foot along the cobblestone path or take a pony ride to the point. With the green hills and the ethereal sky painted many hues as the sun sinks behind them, it’s worth the walk up to Sunset Point.

Sunset Point, Anadara Rd, Mount Abu, Rajasthan.

Mount Abu Wildlife Sanctuary

The Mount Abu Wildlife Sanctuary is home to a variety of wildlife, including the Indian leopard, jungle cat, sambhar, Indian wolf, sloth bear, black bear, and 250 species of birds — but the specialty is the grey jungle fowl. There’s plenty of flora too, with 112 plant species, 89 shrubs, 81 tree species, and three species of wild rose. It is the only place in Rajasthan with a diverse range of orchids.

Mount Abu Wildlife Sanctuary, Rajasthan.

Trevor’s Tank

Trevor’s Tank is a crocodile breeding ground. Besides crocs, you can find a plethora of birds and other fascinating wildlife, too, making this a birdwatcher and nature-lover’s spot.

Trevor’s Tank, Trevor Tank Road, Block No. 3, Mount Abu, Rajasthan.

Guru Shikhar Peak

Just 15 km from Mount Abu lies the highest peak of the Aravalli range, Guru Shikhar, an altitude of 1,722 meters. You can trek to the peak and enjoy the bird’s-eye view of the town. Besides the scenic vistas, the peak is home to the temple of Dattatreya, who is said to be the embodiment of the trinity Lord Vishnu, Shiva and Brahma.

Guru Shikhar Peak.

Temple at Guru Shikhar peak

Peace Park

As the name suggests, you will find peace and quietude here, away from the hustle and bustle of the city. You can meditate and soak in the natural beauty around. There are also a variety of plant species in its vast garden.

Peace Park, Guru Shikhar Road, Oriya, Mount Abu, Rajasthan.

Peace Park

Achalgarh Fort

About 6.8 miles from Mount Abu is Achalgarh Fort, which is falling into dilapidation but worthy of a visit nonetheless, because of its religious and historical importance. The fort has two intricately carved towers, and just outside is the Achaleshwar Mahadev Temple, where you can see the impression of Lord Shiva’s foot, three stone buffaloes and a brass Nandi statue.

Achalgarh Fort

Enjoy adventure activities

Adventure enthusiasts can enjoy camping, rappelling, zip lining, mountain biking, trekking in the mountains and rock climbing. You can hike along the Craig path, up Shanti Shikhar peak, to table rock and the Adesh Avdhoot cave; trek in the jungle and spot diverse flora and fauna; or go rappelling on the igneous basalt rocks. There are 18 nature trails for a nature walk, too. Hot air ballooning, jeep safaris and horse riding are also on offer. There are several companies that run these activities, like Mount Abu Adventures.

Zpi lining

Chacha Museum

A trip to Mount Abu is incomplete without buying some souvenirs, and the best place is at Chacha Museum, close to Nakki Lake. Local art, Rajasthani handicrafts, gifts, brass artefacts, quilts, and wooden items can all be bought here.

Chacha Museum, Main Bajar, Mount Abu, Rajasthan.

Museum and Art Gallery

This is a perfect spot for history buffs as it houses statues of Jain gurus, Lord Shiva and Apsaras, historic furnishing, miniature paintings and artwork. A section features the everyday life of the locals and displays items such as musical instruments, ornaments, weapons and traditional clothes.

Museum and Art Gallery, Sani Gaon, Mount Abu, Rajasthan.

Where to stay

Mount Abu has accommodation for every taste and wallet size. If you want to spoil yourself, there are havelis and palaces that have been turned into lavish resorts, and hotels with personalized service and modern amenities.

Excellent luxury options include: Cama Rajputana Club Resort, Hotel Udai Garh, WelcomHeritage Connaught House, Manek Manor and Humming Bird Resort.

For top mid-range picks, check out Kesar Bhawan Palace, Rising Sun Retreat or Hotel Lake Palace.

Good budget options include Hotel Vishram, Hotel Shree Vinayak or Hotel Blue Valley.

Bikaner Palace Hotel at Mount Abu

Where to eat

At Mount Abu you can get everything from traditional Rajasthani fare to Italian, Chinese, Indian and Tibetan. Some popular restaurants include Daawat Restaurant for North Indian thalis (platter) or Rajasthani food; Mulberry Tree Restaurant for Indian, Chinese and Continental; Cafe Shikibo for the best coffee and snacks; US Pizza for pizza; Jodhpur Bhojnalya for authentic Rajasthani fare; and Sher-E-Punjab Restaurant for Punjabi cuisine.

How to get there

Mount Abu is not situated close to any airports, but the nearest railway station is Abu Road Railway Station, approximately 17 miles (27.4 km) away. Taxis are available from there.

Abu Road Railway Station, MDR49, Falna, Railway Colony, Abu Road, Rajasthan.

Several state government-run and private buses operate between Mount Abu and the major cities, like Delhi, Udaipur, Jaisalmer and Jaipur.

Alternatively, you can drive to Mount Abu via National Highways 14 and 8.

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