Jaipur: A Taste of Royal Rajasthan

Tripoto
Photo of Jaipur: A Taste of Royal Rajasthan 1/16 by Aparajita
City Palace, Jaipur
Photo of Jaipur: A Taste of Royal Rajasthan 2/16 by Aparajita
City Palace, Jaipur
Photo of Jaipur: A Taste of Royal Rajasthan 3/16 by Aparajita
Jantar Mantar, Jaipur
Photo of Jaipur: A Taste of Royal Rajasthan 4/16 by Aparajita
Hawa Mahal, Jaipur
Photo of Jaipur: A Taste of Royal Rajasthan 5/16 by Aparajita
City Palace, Jaipur
Photo of Jaipur: A Taste of Royal Rajasthan 6/16 by Aparajita
Jal Mahal, Jaipur
Photo of Jaipur: A Taste of Royal Rajasthan 7/16 by Aparajita
Nahargarh Fort, Jaipur
Photo of Jaipur: A Taste of Royal Rajasthan 8/16 by Aparajita
Nahargarh Fort, Jaipur
Photo of Jaipur: A Taste of Royal Rajasthan 9/16 by Aparajita
Amer Fort, Jaipur
Photo of Jaipur: A Taste of Royal Rajasthan 10/16 by Aparajita
Amer Fort, Jaipur
Photo of Jaipur: A Taste of Royal Rajasthan 11/16 by Aparajita
Amer Fort, Jaipur
Photo of Jaipur: A Taste of Royal Rajasthan 12/16 by Aparajita
Jaigarh Fort, Jaipur
Photo of Jaipur: A Taste of Royal Rajasthan 13/16 by Aparajita
Jaigarh Fort, Jaipur
Photo of Jaipur: A Taste of Royal Rajasthan 14/16 by Aparajita
Chokhi Dhani, Jaipur
Photo of Jaipur: A Taste of Royal Rajasthan 15/16 by Aparajita
Chokhi Dhani, Jaipur
Photo of Jaipur: A Taste of Royal Rajasthan 16/16 by Aparajita
Chokhi Dhani, Jaipur

“Padharo Mhare Des”

This was the warm welcome of the ubiquitous Rajasthan Tourism hotels that I received as a child. The colourful and vibrant aura of this state, the welcoming smiles, the rich food which will make you drool, the mighty forts, the royal palaces, the puppets, the music, the dance…..there is so much to see and do in Rajasthan that I’ve always felt spoilt for choice.

The capital city of Rajasthan-Jaipur is a perfect amalgamation of the ancient and the modern. For the uninitiated, it can be a brilliant introduction to the spirit of this region, while those who have visited keep coming back for a new experience. It offers a glimpse into the royal heritage of this land of Rajputs while offering all the comforts and accessibility of a modern city. This post is a collection of my visits to Jaipur over the years.

Reaching there

Japiur has its own airport with connectivity to major cities. From Delhi it is easily accessible by train and bus. I have found the Double Decker train to be most convenient for my journey, because it takes about 4.5 hrs and has a lot of seats so reserved tickets are invariably available.

Best Time to visit

I find Dec-Jan to be the best time to visit here, because the rest of the year is too hot

Jaipur is famous as the “Pink City” because the old city of Jaipur is painted completely pink. In the heart of the pink city lies the city palace. Once upon a time, the entire “Pink City” was within the precincts of the city palace. Today, a part of the palace is still occupied by the descendants of the Royal Family of Jaipur. The other part, which is open to the public has been converted into a museum, and makes for beautiful pictures.

Day 1

Right next to it is the ‘Jantar Mantar’ or the observatory. It certainly piqued my curiosity to see how the our ancestors measured time and planetary positions so accurately. I particularly enjoyed the huge sundial.

The next spot on the itinerary is the iconic Hawa Mahal. It’s outer wall lined with dozens of windows makes it to almost every tourist guide of Jaipur city. One can choose to climb up the ramp to witness the view of Jaipur from one of those tiny windows. But I didn’t find the effort to be worthwhile.

Another interesting place to visit is the Albert Hall Museum, which is close by. The palatial building houses many ancient treasures. I was especially taken by the mummy on display.

All of these places are situated close to each other, and with a bit of stamina and an early start, can be covered in a day.

Day 2:

Day 2

Any trip to Jaipur is incomplete without a visit to Jaipur’s forts and palaces. They are located within close vicinity of each other and are best visited by hiring a vehicle for the day, which gives the flexibility to move at one’s own pace. On the way, is Jal Mahal, which looks really beautiful sitting in the midst of a vast expanse of water. It can be photographed from afar but entry inside is not permitted.

The most famous of Jaipur’s heritage is perhaps the Amer fort. Its sandstone walls overlooking the lake stand tall and proud. The inside of the fort is as breath-taking as the outside, and the sheesh mahal and the well preserved abode of the royal family is enough to transport one back in time.

Next destination is Jaigarh fort, which houses the world’s largest cannon ‘Jaivana’. I feel a guide is needed to roam through the labyrinthine passageways and marvel at the well kept quarters with model figures to depict the olden times. The Jaigarh fort is still under the Maharaja of Jaipur. The foundry which forged the massive cannon is also worth a look, and the height of the fort affords a breath-taking view of the city.

Finally around sunset, most people can be seen heading to the Nahargarh fort. The old baoli, where the song “Lose Control” from Rang de Basanti was filmed, is just outside the fort, but not in very good shape. The fort itself is not very big. It contains 9 identical rooms for the 9 wives of the Maharaja. The view from this fort is its highlight, as it is at a great height, and also doubles as a sunset point for Jaipur.

The newly opened wax museum at Nahargarh fort is worth a visit. It’s fun to see the world’s who’s who cast in wax waiting to meet you. The small sheesh mahal is also very beautiful.

Another interesting place to spend an eveningis Chokhi Dhani resort on the outskirts of Jaipur. The resort is built on the lines of a Rajasthani village, and is an introduction to Rajasthani culture. The food served is unlimited Rajasthani thali and it is amazing for someone who loves the flavours of this region. As of Dec 2016, the entry ticket was Rs. 800 per head. This includes a welcome drink, unlimited Rajasthani Thali and some other freebies.

Jaipur has given me memories of a lifetime, and every time I go there, I feel like a I have known a different facet of this city

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