Jaipur, popularly known as the Pink City, was founded in 1727 AD by one of the greatest rulers of the Kachhawaha clan, the astronomer king Sawai Jai Singh and designed by the brilliant young Bengali architect Vidhyadhar Bhattacharya.
The pink color was used at the time of making to create an impression of red sandstone buildings of Mughal cities - and repainted in 1876, during the visit of the Prince of Wales. It has, long been established, on tourist itineraries as the third corner of India's Golden Triangle, just 300 kilometers southwest of Delhi, and 200 kilometers west of Agra.
The old city of Jaipur is partially encircled with seven gates - the major gates are Chandpol, Sanganeri, and Ajmeri. Designed in accordance with Shilp Shastra - an ancient Hindu treatise on architecture - Jaipur follows a grid system. The wide straight bazaars, raastaas (streets), galis (lanes), mohallas and uniform rows of shops on either side of main bazaars are arranged in nine rectangular city sectors called chaukris. Encircled by a formidable wall, Jaipur was the only planned city of its time.
Upon visiting the magnificant City Palace, it's easy to see that the royal family of Jaipur was one of the richest in India. The huge complex of courtyards, gardens, and buildings blend both Rajasthani and Mughal architecture. The Peacock Gate is exquisite, and contains an alluring display of detailed workmanship featuring bright peacocks.
Location: Chokri Shahad, Old City, Jaipur.
Entry Cost: 300 rupees for foreigners (includes camera fee and entry to Jaigarh Fort). 75 rupees for Indians, plus 75 rupees for a still camera.
Opening Hours: 9.30 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily.
Jantar mantar is one of Jai Singh's five remarkable observatories. Constructed with stone and marble its complex instruments whose settings and shapes are precisely and scientifically designed represent the high points of Medieval Indian astronomy. The Ram Yantras used for gauging altitudes are unique in their isolation. this is the largest of the five observatories founded by Sawai Jai Singh-II in various parts of the country.
This old and famous museum was modeled on the Victoria and Albert Museum in London. Its collection includes portraits of local kings, costumes, woodcarvings, paintings, and arts and crafts. Unfortunately photography isn't allowed.
Location: Ram Nivas Bagh, south of the Old City, Jaipur.
Entry Cost: 300 rupees for foreigners (includes camera fee and entry to Jaigarh Fort). 75 rupees for Indians, plus 75 rupees f30 rupees (60 cents) for foreigners.
Opening Hours:10 a.m. to 4.30 p.m. daily
Centrally located in the city, Moti Dungri is a small hill. Dedicated to Lord Ganesha, this temple is famous for the scenic beauty it offers. It is one of the great temples that is attracts people from far and near to offer their homage to Ganesha. Moti Dungri palace close to temple is a chief tourist attraction. Imitation of Scottish castle in the palace draws interest of many people.
The 'Hawa Mahal' or the Palace of Wind is one of the main landmarks of Jaipur, the capital of Rajasthan. The Hawa Mahal is a five storey building of remarkable architecture and a spectacular example of the Rajput style of architecture made of red and pink sand stone, beautifully outlined with white borders and motif's done (painted) with quick lime.
You can get a spectacular view of the Jaipur city from the Hawa Mahal. It is believed that the Hawa Mahal was originally conceived with the aim of enabling ladies of the royal household to watch the everyday life and royal processions in the city without being seen.
The massive Jaigarh Fort was built in 1726 and holds great appeal for military lovers. Flanked by towering gateways and watchtowers, it contains the world's largest cannon on wheels. The cannon has never been fired though, and neither has the fort been captured. As a result the fort has remained intact over its long life, and is very well preserved
Nahargarh Fort, also known as Tiger Fort, is perched high on the rugged Aravali Hills overlooking Jaipur city. The fort was built 1734 to help defend the city. It found fame in 2006, after many scenes from the movie Rang De Basanti were filmed there. Nahargarh Fort offers spectacular views, which are best seen at sunset.
built in 16th century by Maharaja Man Singh, it sprawls on the hillside. Its construction was started by Raja Man Singh but completed by his descendant Jai Singh. Amber is the classic romantic Rajasthan fort palace. Amber today is nothing but a reflection of the glorious past of the fierce Kachwaha Dynasty that ruled over this region from 12th to 18th century. the Amber fort is built in re sandstone and white marble; the palace complex has very interesting apartments. the old township of Amber lies at the foothills of the palace and has an old world charm.
The Birla Mandir is a architectural landmark of Jaipur. Devoted to Lord Vishnu and Goddess Lakshmi, the temple was originally known as Lakshmi Narayan Temple. It has to be the glorious Jaipur temples and monuments of pink city. The name “Choti Kashi” to jaipur is given because of the holy importance which is carried globally. The kachawa leaders of Amber had deep faith in the power of omnipotent Lord which resulted in building various temples of vivid deities in the Jaipur region. Many temples in Jaipur have gained heritage, architectural, Vastu and religious importance because of their existence from more than 1000 years in the region.