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All things about Jaipur

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Lovely Peacock Gate

Pink is not just a color, truly it’s a myriad of emotions. This is my re-visit to Jaipur and although the trip started with a small glitch of hotel bookings (by OYO), the whole experience of 3 days in Jaipur turned out to be amazing afterwards.

I will share with you the places I would recommend you to visit while in Jaipur. I am also trying to put up an itinerary suggestion and the list of places to eat at Jaipur (completely based on our experiences and culinary preferences).

|| Places you must visit in Jaipur ||

1. Galtaji ki Temple:

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Galtaji ki Mandir

I had to put this one at first, since this place will satiate the souls of both an explorer and a history buff. Galtaji is the grandson of Brahmaji. The compound consists of magnificent temples built in pink sandstone which looks more like a palace. There is also a holy ‘Galta kund (lake)’ which is believed to never get dry.

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Beautiful architecture at Galtaji

To Reach:

The local auto-rickshwas/cabs can go to the foothill of the temple, after which you have to walk up around 1 km and go down around another to reach this Hanuman Temple (the other name for Galtaji).

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Me at Galtaji

The walk is pleasant among the nature, and obviously among the monkeys. They don’t disturb you as long as you don’t disturb them. If you love small treks, you would enjoy going to this temple from the city side. There is another way from the Rani Bagh, though we didn’t find any exit from that side while returning.

Tip: Don’t pay any fees as Camera charges or entry fee as there is none. Some local came up randomly to ask for Camera charges from us. We avoided and went ahead as we could not find any kind of sign-boards for the same.

2. Amer Fort

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Cloud hits at Amer Fort

Next it has to be the Amer Fort, for the beauty it is. By the time we were about to reach Amer Fort in cab, it had started raining in drips. The temperature declined instantly and as we entered the fort, the rains started vigorously. The plenty of winds and the rain drenched Amer fort gave us a completely different experience.

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View of Aravalli from City Palace
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Rain drenched Amer Fort

3. City Palace:

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The magnificent gate within the palace

City Palace was the seat of the Maharaja of Jaipur. The Chandra Mahal palace now houses the museum, but the greatest part of it is still the royal residence. There is also a fine dine restaurant inside, which can be accessed without the ticket for the museum.

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Intricate Carvings over Palace gate

There are also special tickets for tour inside the palace, though it pretty costly for Indians.

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Front Garden after the rains

The credit for the urban layout of the city and its structures is attributed to two architects –  Vidyadhar Bhattacharya and Sir Samuel Swinton Jacob, apart from the Sawai (king) himself who was a keen architectural enthusiast.

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|| Tinted glass at the Hawa Mahal, photography by Aparajita Paul ||

4. Hawa Mahal and Jantar Mantar:

Constructed of red and pink sandstone, the palace  is best viewed from the opposite roof-top cafes, though the food is not recommendable. The ‘Palace of Winds’ is a high screen wall built so the women of the royal household could observe street festivals while unseen from the outside.

Jantar Mantar is at a walking distance from the Hawa Mahal. It is good to spend some time, and if you get a guide you will have better understanding of all the structures.

5. Albert Hall Museum:

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|| A view from Jaipur Museum by Aparajita Paul ||

It is the oldest museum of the state and functions as the State museum of Rajasthan. Situated in Ram Niwas Garden, its Indo-Saracenic architecture is worth to watch.

Inside the Museum, only mobile photography is allowed. So all the photos here are through my Samsung C9 Pro.

6. Jaigarh and Nahargarh Fort:

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|| Painted walls at Madhavendra Bhawan, photography by: Aparajita Paul ||

Personally speaking, the Jaigarh Fort is much behind the artistic and beautiful Nahargarh Fort. Still give a visit to the Jaigarh to experience the view of Amer Fort  and the Aravalli Range from here. It also houses a cannon named “Jaivana“, which was manufactured in the fort precincts and was then the world’s largest cannon on wheels.

Nahargarh Fort was constructed as a palace of retreat. The Madhavendra Bhawan (main building) has 12 identical suites for the queens of Jaipur and a suite for the king himself. The fort has been featured in many Bollywood songs for its beauty and elegance.

View of sunset from this fort is highly recommended.

|| Away from city & a day’s tour ||

There are 2 jewels of history residing a bit far from the city of Jaipur.

To Reach:

We took a rented cab (Ola) from Jaipur for 1-day trip to Chand Baori and Bhangarh Fort. Following the Google Maps, one can reach both the places.

Chand Baori:

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Chand Baori

An ancient water-collecting reservoir in the district of Abhaneri (Abha Nagari – City of Lights) is one of the world’s largest stepwell built in early 9th century AD. The precision of flights of steps and the symmetry is mind-blowing at this step-well.

Hollywood movie ‘ The Dark Knight Rises’ (2012) had been picturized at Chand Baori

There is a temple in front of the Chand Baori compound, which is really in ruins, yet an active temple. This temple really needs an immediate restoration.

Bhangarh Fort:

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The most haunted fort of India – the Bhangarh Fort. Many folklores, stories, experiences were read before visiting this place. I don’t know about its truth, but I can assure there is something about this place that you would certainly like and remember while leaving.

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Towards Emptiness
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Up next?

In this ruined fort city, there are many Hindu temples. The residence of the priest (Purohitji Ki Haveli) is located in the precincts of the temple complex. Next is the Nachan Ki Haveli (dancer’s palace) and Jauhari Bazar (market place), followed by the Gopinath Temple, built above a raised plinth. The Royal Palace is located at the extreme end of the fort’s limits.

I would share the snaps I took over here. Rest I would suggest you to go and visit to experience it.

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Royal Palace gate
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Bazaar Area in the Fort
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Roads within Bhangarh Fort

|| Our suggested Itinerary for 4 days at Jaipur: ||

Day 1: Galtaji ki Temple, Amer Fort, Panna Meena ka Kund (adjacent to Amer Fort)

Day 2: Albert Hall Museum, Jaigarh Fort, Nahargarh Fort

Day 3: Chand Baori, Bhangarh Fort

Day 4: Hawa Mahal, City Palace, Shopping and Bazaar visit in the Pink city

|| Where to eat ||

For fine dining experiences – Samode Haveli and Palladio Bar

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Fine Dining at such a place is itself exquisite

For a warm sumptuous dinner, I can suggest a visit to Samode Haveli palace to anyone who has a bit relaxed budget for the trip. You will experience some good food in an exquisite Hall room at the palace.

I could not manage time to visit Palladio Bar, but I can assure this is a place you won’t like to miss when you are in Jaipur.

For simple lunch with mid-range budget – Café Palladio

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The lovely decor of Cafe Palladio

This café became really close to my heart, not just for the food, but for the ambience, décor and what not!. It is just made for a person like me.

For nightlife experience – Skyfall – the resto bar

Not so glam like Mumbai, but a very humble place with live music, great food and prompt services. The cost is also in mid-range, hence a great place in the city to experience night-life.

For authentic Rajasthani thali experience – Chokhi Dhani, Ghoomar

Chokhi Dhani is a great place experiential dinner. It opens around 5 p.m. and gets really crowded. The system of ‘thali’ with different formats are available.

Ghoomar is a nice Thaali restaurant place, which is good if you are up for only food. Although I found the food to be a bit spicy, the taste was never compromised.

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Whirling

Let us know if you have any different experience or suggestions in this city. We can share the same with our other readers too.

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