The moment you set foot in Jaipur, you will feel like everything has come straight out of the pages of some epic novel. Majestic buildings, tales of heroic battles, resplendent forts and palaces, and multi-faceted characters – Rajasthan is one of the most colourful and flashiest states in all of India, and its capital Jaipur lives up to the same reputation as well. Jaipur is a vibrant amalgamation of the old and the new – highly urbanized pockets and shopping areas have casually sprung up beside gleaming forts and palaces. Jaipur has long been one of the shiniest cultural jewels in the history of the Indian subcontinent, and the royal corridors of the famously named 'Pink City' offer up a plethora of adventures and activities that make for a memorable holiday experience.
Jaipur is known for its forts and palaces, and the most famous fort in the vicinity is the Amber Fort. Also commonly known as the Amer Fort, this majestic building with its maze-like passages and serpentine staircases is a very popular tourist attraction. Overlooking the Maota Lake, the fort is big enough that it will take you at least two to three hours to explore it in detail, and you can also choose to avail of the audio guides to lead you through this fascinating building while explaining the history of the place. Getting an elephant ride up the stairs to the Amber Fort is also a popular tourist activity.
City Palace is another top draw for anyone wishing to know more about the rich history and culture of the Pink City. Home to Rajasthani Maharajas back in the 1700s, this building has now been converted into a museum where tourists can learn about the history of the city in detail. City Palace comprises Mubarak Mahal and Chandra Mahal, with the Chandra Mahal being only partially open to visitors, as the rest of the building is used as the residential place of the Maharajas’ descendants.
Jaipur is more than just ancient glitz and glamour. It is home to Jantar Mantar, an astronomical observatory site that has been declared as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Containing the world’s largest sundial and about 20 other fixed instruments used to make various astronomical observations, the Jantar Mantar is an exemplary example of how far architecture and science has progressed in India. You can avail of either audio guides or human guides to give you a tour of the entire place.
Other famous attractions in Jaipur include the Hawa Mahal, the Nahargarh Fort, and the Jal Mahal, and, with the Nahargarh fort situated high in the Aravalli hills, and offering spectacular views of the entire city and its surrounding landscape.
Jaipur is filled to the brim with bustling local bazaars where you can shop for local handicrafts and trinkets to your heart's’ content. Popular bazaars in the city include Bapu Bazaar, Tripolia Bazaar and Johri Bazaar. The entire state of Rajasthan is renowned for its delicious cuisine, and Jaipur is no exception! The local cuisine of Jaipur is as mouth-watering as it’s buildings are gorgeous. Don’t forget to try traditional Rajasthani dishes such as Ghewar and Dal Baati Churma.