Jaipur, the capital of the North Indian State of Rajasthan, is named after its founder Maharaja Sing ll (1693-1734). The city is surrounded by hills and dotted with forts. The Old City, also known as the Pink City is a wonderful place to wander around. The whole city was painted pink by Maharaja Man Singh ll when Edward Vll, visited Jaipur in 1876. Today, every home within the city is obliged by law to maintain this facade.
We stayed 3 days in Jaipur and fell in love with all the things this city has to offer: a lively culture, rich history, stunning palaces, wonderful art, and delicious cuisine. In other words, there is always something to do in Jaipur.
Jaipur was definitely one of the highlights of our trip to India. In this post, you will find our favorite things to do in Jaipur.
Amer was originally the capital of Rajasthan until the 18th century. The Amer Fort or Amber Fort was constructed in the 16th century by Raja Man Singh I who was one of the Navratnas (nine gems) of the Mughal Emperor Akbar. It was further expanded and renovated by Raja Singh I and other successive rulers. Amer Fort had served as a royal residence to Rajput rulers until Jaipur was declared as the Capital of Rajasthan.
This magnificent fort comprises an extensive palace complex, built from pale yellow and pink sandstone and white marble, and is divided into four main sections, each with its own courtyard.
The fort is open for visitors from 8:30 am – 5:30 pm every day and then reopens at 6:30 pm for a sound and light show.
You can get to the fort by rickshaw, taxi, or bus. They will drop you off at the foot of the hill, atop which the fort is situated. You can walk (10 minutes), take a vehicle, or even ride an elephant to get to the top. We don’t recommend riding an elephant. Most elephants are mistreated and carrying passengers can cause lasting injuries to these amazing animals.
The entrance fee is 250 rupees for foreigners and 50 rupees for Indians.
A scrubby green hill rises above Amber and is topped by the imposing Jaigarh, built-in 1726 by Jai Singh. The fort, punctuated by lookout towers, was never captured and has survived intact through the centuries. It’s an uphill walk (about 1km) from Amber and offers great views of the surrounding hills and the Amber Fort down below. The fort has reservoirs, residential areas, a puppet theatre, and the world’s largest cannon, Jaya Vana.
Within the fort, you will find an armory and museum, with the essential deadly weapons collection and interesting photographs, maps of Jaigarh.
The fort is open from 9 am – 5 pm and the entrance fee is 100 rupees for foreigners and 50 rupees for Indians.
You can get to Nahargarh Fort by climbing the steep path to the top, starting from the end of Nahargarh Fort Rd. (2km).
The fort is open from 10 am – 5 pm and the entrance fee is 200 rupees for foreigners and 50 rupees for Indians.
Panna Meena Ka Kund
Stepwells are not new to the state of Rajasthan, as half of its land is on dry desert soil. Many locals suggest Panna Meena ka Kund was built so the people of Amer could collect water, which was later used at the temples nearby. Women also came here to fill their water pots for household work. Apart from this, Panna Meena ka Kund was a resting place for many travelers as the temperature inside the stepwell is cooler.
Panna Meena ka Kund is a square-shaped stepwell, with adjoining stairs on all four sides and a room on the northern wall. It’s believed this room was used for religious ceremonies before weddings or on popular festival dates.
Panna Meena ka Kund is not one of the biggest stepwells in Rajasthan, but it’s worth visiting!
Panna Meena ka Kund is open from dusk till dawn and there is no entrance fee. You can get there by foot from the Amber fort.
Located in the middle of the Man Sagar Lake, a man-made reservoir created in 1596, the Jal Mahal also known as the Water Palace only appears to be one story high, although there are four more levels to the building hidden beneath the water.
Since it’s been leaking for several decades, it’s closed for the public. There’s not much to explore here but it’s a very scenic and peaceful place and a pretty place to stop for pictures.
It’s a free stop between the forts and the city worth checking out!
The City Palace
The City Palace complex is spread over a large area occupying one-seventh of the old city of Jaipur. It has a sequence of gardens, buildings and courtyards, temples, and a museum to give it a grand view that reflects its historical importance a magnificent Royal grace.
The inner courtyard of the City Palace took are breath away. There are four small gates known as Ridhi Sidhi Pol which are decorated in brilliant colors. Each gate has a different role to play and a story to tell. The gates are adorned with themes symbolizing the four seasons and are dedicated to a specific Hindu God & Goddes.
Peacock gate; This gate is dedicated to Lord Vishnu and symbolizes the autumn season. The carved peacocks surround the statue of God and are brilliantly decorated with colorful paintings.
Lotus Gate; Beautified with lotus petals and stunning floral patterns representing the summer season. The Lotus Gate is dedicated to Lord Shiva and Parvati.
Lehariya Gate; The green gate represents the green of spring season and is dedicated to Lord Ganesha.
Rose Gate; The repeated petal pattern represents the winter season and is dedicated to Goddes Devi.
We took the Royal Grandeur Tour and recommend it. Our guide showed us the blue room, mirror room, prayer room, the roof pavilion, and the dining room. The blue room was the best part of the palace for us!
Jantar Mantar is a collection of nineteen architectural astronomical instruments built by the Rajput King Sawai Jai Sing l. The monuments were built for measuring the heavens, the name is derived from the Sanskrit yanta mantr, meaning instrument of calculation, and in 2010 it was added to India’s list of Unesco World Heritage sites.
Jai Singh liked astronomy even more than he liked war and town planning. Before constructing the observatory he sent scholars abroad to study foreign constructs. He built five observatories in total, and this is the largest and best-preserved. The others are in Delhi, Varanasi, and Ujjain.
We highly recommend taking a local guide if you want to learn more about these instruments.
Jantar Mantar is open from 9 am – 4:30 pm and the entrance fee is 200 rupees for foreigners and 50 rupees for Indians.
Johari Bazaar is one of the most famous places to shop in Jaipur. The word ‘Johari’ in Hindi means ‘Jeweller’. The market is lined with shops that deal with exclusive jewelry representing the rich Rajasthani culture of the city.
Here you will find jewelry made from gold, diamonds, rubies, emeralds, and silver. Each piece is carefully crafted to represent the typical ‘Thewa’ and ‘Kundan’ jewelry.
Lassi at Lassiwala
We had a delicious Lassi at Lassiwala!! This iconic shop located at MI road has been serving Lassi to the Jaipurites for more than 70 years.
This shop sells lassi from 7 am – 4 pm
312, MI Road, Jayanti Market, Pink City, Jaipur, Rajasthan 302001, India
We had Rajasthani Thali, Pav Bhaji (a blend of soft bread and thick vegetable curry), and as dessert Kulfi falooda (Indian ice cream). DELICIOUS!!
The entrance fee for Masala Chowk is 10 rupees.
Laxmi Misthan Bhandar, or LMB is popularly known as a landmark modern sweet shop, restaurant, and hotel in Johari Bazar. Its sweets are famous for there sheer taste and quality. It serves over 200 kinds of sweets.
Try some they are really delicious!! There are so many choices which make it hard to choose, you can always ask to taste before buying.
There is so much more to do in Jaipur like the monkey temple, the Royal Tumbas, the Albert Hall Museum, and the Patrika Gate. We didn’t have the time to discover it all so we really recommend you stay 4 days in Jaipur!
Jaipur will make you look on the pink side of life!
Have you ever been to Jaipur? Let us know in the comment section below.