Jaipur’s culture and history reminds us of an epic novel; there are grand buildings, intricate love stories, heroic battles and glamorous, multi-faceted characters (especially the Maharajas). Rajasthan is one of the flashiest and most colourful states in India, and as its capital Jaipur does not fail to live up to this reputation. Jaipur has been a cultural jewel in Indian history for hundreds of years and we’re excited to tell you more about it.
One of the most popular questions about Jaipur that we hear often is: why is Jaipur pink? Well, once upon a time a clever Maharaja had a smart plan to impress some Royal guests (Queen Victoria and Prince Albert) on their Royal visit in 1876. Pink is the colour of warm welcomes and he wanted to make sure the relations between Jaipur and its British Empress were water-tight. Jaipur’s pink is really more a red/brown colour, as the buildings are built with red sandstone, the warm appearance of the city has always resonated well with proud locals and excited visitors.
So if you haven’t decided whether the majestic Jaipur is for you or perhaps you have and need some guidance on what to do, you’ve come to the right place. We’ve built our Jaipur Tourism Guide in order to guide your decisions and ensure you have the best trip possible; which means not missing out on the key sights..
Places to Visit in Jaipur
The Amer Fort
The Amer Fort (also known as The Amber Fort or Amber Palace) is a grand fortress, located just over 10km outside of the Pink City; with its serpentine staircases and plethora of passages this is a key sight to see for anyone visiting Jaipur. Overlooking Maota Lake, this Hindu style fort takes around 2hours to explore; we recommend getting an audio guide to lead you through this incredible building sharing all the stories of the history and beauty of this building.
We recommend you get there early to buy tickets, but still be prepared to wait as The Amer Fort is incredibly popular place to visit in Jaipur so queues are inevitable. The sight is open from 8am-6pm and last entrance is at 5.30pm, but go earlier if you want to see as much as you can. Entry for Indians is ₹25 and guides and audio guides can be arranged for ₹150-200 depending on your preference.
Be warned: it is usually popular to get an elephant ride up the stairs to the fort, however animal rights groups have been very active in fighting this as it is believed the elephants are sorely mistreated.
Amer, Jaipur, Rajasthan, 302001, India
No visit to Jaipur is complete without a visit to the City Palace; once the home of Maharajas built in 1729-1732, this predominantly pink building is now a museum where visitors can learn more about the history of Jaipur. City Palace includes the Chandra Mahal and Mubarak Mahal buildings; the bottom floor of the Chandra Mahal is open to visitors, but the other 6 floors of this 7 floor citadel are currently where the Maharaja’s decedents reside. The Mubarak Mahal showcases the fine silks and clothing designs worn by royalty throughout the ages.
From the beliefs and attitudes of the people all the way to the buildings that make up the city, this destination is a great place to discover more about how the history of Jaipur has moulded its reputation today. The palace is open for visitors from 9.30am-5pm and entry and guide fees range from ₹100-300. Or if you’re feeling really lavish you can embark on the Royal Grandeur tour for ₹2500.
Jalebi Chowk, Near Jantar Mantar, Tripolia Bazar, Jaipur, Rajasthan, 302002, India
It is not all glitz and glamour of yesteryears in Jaipur, Jantar Mantar is an astronomical observatory site built in the 1738. Now a UNESCO World Heritage Site, this observatory contains the world’s largest sundial and around 20 fixed instruments designed to make astronomical observation easier with the naked eye. They reflect the enlightened advances of science in India and are architecturally incredible; this is a must see destination on your Jaipur To Do List. It is open from 9.00am-4.30pm daily for visitors and the entrance fee for Indians is ₹40. If you’d like to learn as much as you possibly can about Jantar Mantar then we recommend you get an audio guide (₹150) or join one of the groups with a personal human guide (₹200).
Near the Tripoliya Bazaar, Near entrance to City Palace, Jaipur, Rajasthan, 302020, India
Thought to have inspired great Hollywood Director Wes Anderson’s Grand Budapest Hotel, the Hawa Mahal is an architectural astounding building to behold. This 5-storey palace was built in 1799; its pink honeycomb complexion is an architects dream and adds to the glamour of this dazzling city. The women of the Royal family were once not allowed out in public, so the Hawa Mahal was built to ensure they had a great view of the comings and goings of the city; the 953 windows within the building helped facilitate this.
Hawa Mahal Rd, Badi Choupad, Pink City, Jaipur, Rajasthan 302002, India
For an aerial view of the entire Pink City, take a trip to the Nahargarh Fort, where you will be above to gaze over all that Jaipur has to offer. Located high up in the Aravalli Hills, this fort was one of three that stood to defend this rich city from any enemies. This fort has had many vocations; a hunting lodge for maharajas, a safety house for British diplomats and the location where peace treaties were signed, but never as a war fort.
Narghard Rd, Krishna Nagar, Brahmpuri, Jaipur, Rajasthan, 302001, India
Located approximately 10km away from Jaipur is Galtaji Temple, also known as the Monkey Temple; this historic temple is a site of pilgrimage for Hindus and is a peaceful, interesting sight for tourists. The temple is set across fresh water springs and holy kunds (water tanks); one of the kunds, named Galta, is rumoured to never dry out, making it the most holy of all them all. The temple’s intricate walkways and beautiful architecture is built into the rocks surrounding it and is known for the monkeys that call the area home. If you ask nicely and pay a little money, usually one of the local kids who feed the monkeys will show you around whilst fending off these cheeky animals.
Galta Ji, Jaipur, Rajasthan, 302031, India
The Jaivana Cannon, Jaigarh Fort
The story goes that during the war between the Jaipur Royalty and Mughals (and a few others) in the 17th century, the Maharaja of Jaipur wanted to build a canon so large that it could destroy large amounts of men in one shot. This is how the Jaivana Cannon was born – it is the world’s largest wheeled cannon and could shoot as far as 40kms with around 100kgs of gunpowder! A visit to the Jaigarh Fort (connected to the Amer Fort via passages) will mean that you get to view this cannon.
Above Amber Fort, Jaipur, Rajastha,n 302001, India
“Do not miss out the sunset from the Nahargarh Fort in Jaipur. People visit Amber Fort or Jaigarh Fort but miss out on Nahargarh. The sunset view of the city from Nahargarh Fort and the road next to it is amazing. Carry a tripod to click the city lights too.”
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