Jaipur Pictures, Rajasthan, India
Jaipur is a large city, the capital of Rajasthan and one the best planned cities in India – for the time. It was carefully laid out with wide streets in a Mandala grid in 1727 by the Maharaja of Amber.
The whole city was painted pink in 1853 to welcome Britain’s Prince of Wales, and has remained that colour ever since.
A typical Jaipur street scene.
Jaipur’s main attractions
– the spectacular and opulent City Palace complex – that includes the Hawa Mahal and the Peacock Door (see below).
– the water-cooled Jal Mahal summer palace.
– the amazingly advanced celestial observatory of Jantar Mantar built in 1734 (see below).
– Nahargarh Fort offers panoramic views over Jaipur from the battlements tho’ needs a steep climb part of the way. There is a neat little café serving beers with the pink sunset.
– the brilliant Amber Fort and its sparkling interior. Most tourists go there on elephant back tho a tuktuk is faster and cheaper.
– neighbouring Jaigarh Fort for gardens and views; and a handful of little temples.
The Amber Fort, 11 kms outside Jaipur.
The Amber Fort that is so popular with travellers was not in fact originally a fort. The real Amber Fort is further up the hill but is now known as the Jaigarh Fort. The current Amber Fort so loved by tourists is actually the ostentatiously ornate palace section of the never-defeated Amber Fort up the hill.
A fleet of four-legged taxis deposit their fares in the Amber Fort’s central plaza, Jaleb Chowk, where victorious returning armies used to parade.
The Diwan-i-Aam, Hall of Public Audience, the Amber Fort’s most spectacular sight.
Yet another Maharaja’s palace, this one is the water-cooled Jal Mahal summer palace, visible below the Amber Fort.
Getting to Jaipur
Flights: Jaipur is served by the airport in the neighbouring town of Sanganer. Some international charter flights arrive there and also domestic flights from other major Indian cities.
Rail: Jaipur Junction is the city’s main station and trains run frequently from all over the country; the most popular route, however, is the morning Shatabdi Express from New Delhi that leaves at 6. 0 am and arrives about five hours later.
Bus: Jaipur is well served by various grades of Indian buses, especially from Delhi, which take about six hours.
Road: the route from Delhi to Jaipur is fine and will take about 4 hours by car.