Jaipur, the lively capital of Rajasthan, popularly is known as 'Pink City' due to the pink sandstone utilized in the building of old walled city. The city owes its foundation and name to the famous warrior Maharaja Jaisingh II. Jaipur has magnificent palaces, massive forts, marvelous gardens and exquisite temples. Jaipur is a visitors’ delight. From the delicate, intricate Hawa Mahal to graphic form of Jantar Mantar - an excellent open air scene of outsized astronomical instrument, Badi Chaupar lined up with business establishments and shops on both the sides to the regal fort-palace of Amber; from colorful fountains to the magnificent Birla Temple; from architectural delight of City Palace to serene Jal Mahal.
Attractions of Jaipur
Amber Fort: Located in Amber, about 11 km from Jaipur, is among the most popular forts of Rajasthan. Originally Amer was capital of Rajasthan before Jaipur. Though this fort is very old and may look so from outside, it’s beautiful on inside and it boasts of numerous buildings of prominence such as 'Diwan-i-Aam', 'Sheesh Mahal' and 'Sukh Mahal'. The Fort has great influences of both Muslim and Hindu architecture. It also has 'Ganesh Pol' and 'Shila Devi' Temple.
Jaigarh Fort: Built by Sawan Jai Singh, this fort is a royal stronghold. Other than its intricate architecture, this fort is also well-known for a big treasure thought to be buried under this fort. It houses the world’s biggest cannon on wheels, an armory, a museum, assembly hall of warriors and majestic palace complex. The western skyline tends to be dominated by extensive walls, gateways of Jaigarh and watch towers. It is one among the very few military structure of medieval India that are preserved almost intact, having gardens, palaces , covered and open reservoirs, an armoury, a granary, several temples and a canon foundry. It is royal treasury for numerous years. The fort also has its museum and provides an outstanding view of the Amer Palace.
City Palace: A great complex of courtyards, buildings and gardens, the inspiring City Palace is situated in centre of this Old City. The exterior wall was created by Jai Singh; however, within it this palace has been adapted and enlarged over the centuries. Despite the steady development, the whole palace is a striking merge of Mughal and Rajasthani architecture.
Nahargarh Fort: Constructed in 1734 and then extended in the year 1868, this strong fort overlooks the whole city from a steep edge to the north. Its views are magnificent and it is a superb sunset spot. In addition, there is a restaurant which is ideal for a beer.
Central Museum: The museum is located in spectacularly ornate Albert Hall located in south of Old City. The museum was designed by Swinton Jacob, and it combines elements of North Indian and English architecture, along with huge friezes celebrating world’s outstanding cultures. It became the pride of new Jaipur when this palace opened in 1887. Its majestic old building hosts eclectic range of tribal dress, musical instruments, sculptures, miniature paintings, dioramas, carpets, and even Egyptian mummy.
Jal Mahal: This was the single lake that offered water for 200 years for Amber. It has now been developed by Government and tourists can view gorgeous evening with boats riding. You can witness Aravalli mountain hills, with ancient temples and forts on the other side of this heritage city. It’s a very popular romantic place.
Jantar Mantar: Located adjacent to City Palace is the Jantar Mantar, a great observatory started in 1728 by Jai Singh which resembles a group of huge bizarre sculptures. Created for measuring the heaven, its name came from Sanskrit yanta mantr and in 2010 was added to the list of UNESCO’s World Heritage Sites.
Hawa Mahal: The Hawa Mahal, Jaipur most unique landmark, is fairy-tale, extraordinary, pink sandstone, precisely honeycombed hive which raises dizzying five storeys. This was constructed by Raja Sawai Pratap Singh in 1799 to allow ladies of royal household to observe the processions and life of city. The top provides stunning views over City Palace and Jantar Mantar one way and Siredeori Bazaar on the other.
Govind Devji Temple: The Govind Dev Ji temple is one among the most famous and sacred tourist destinations in Rajasthan. It’s located in City Palace complex. The Govind Dev Ji deity is Lord Shri Krishna. It’s believed that the icon in this temple exactly looks how Krishna Ji looked during his embodiment on earth. The statue was kept in Vrindavan tempple in Uttar Pradesh originally and was later sent to Jaipur by Maharaja Sawai Jai Singh. The Govind Dev Ji idol is outstandingly beautiful for its absolute resemblance with Krishna Ji and this temple is located between Badal Mahal and Chandra Mahal in City Palace complex. Daily, various 'Aartis' and 'Bhogs' or 'Prasad' are offered at this temple, at 7 different times. The Janmashtami festival is amongst the most imperative ones as it commemorates Lord Krishna’s birth.
Birla Temple: Situated below Moti Dungri Fort, Birla Temple was originally called Lakshmi Narayan Temple. Committed to Goddess Lakshmi and Lord Vishnu, this is a great architectural landmark in Jaipur. An excellent art work, this temple represents the architectural beauty in modern form. The glorious temple embodying the highly rich sculptural and architectural heritage of Rajasthan state, is located in the tranquil surroundings at the bottom of Moti Doongri hills. Built in white marble, this temple complex has an AC museum, library and meditation hall.
Moti Doongari Temple: A Lord Ganeshji’s temple and local citizens don’t start any work prior to preying him. This temple was built to guard the entire City.
Galta: Perched between cliff faces of rocky valley, Galta tends to be a desolate, if reminiscent, place. It’s known as Monkey Temple too and you will locate hundreds of monkeys residing here –aggressive and bold macaques and more tolerable and graceful langurs. You can buy peanuts at gate of the temple to feed those monkeys, but be ready to be rabbled by teeth-barring primate. The temple houses lots of holy tanks, into which a few daring souls jump out from the nearby cliffs.