Top things to do in Jaipur

Top things to do in Jaipur

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 Fort

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. 

Jaigarh Fort

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.

Nahargarh Fort

Built-in 1734 and extended in 1868, this fort overlooks the city from a sheer ridge to the North. The story goes that the fort was named after Nahar Sing, a dead prince whose restless spirit was disrupting construction. Whatever was built in the day crumbled in the night. The prince agreed to leave on condition that the fort was named for him. The views are glorious!! 

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.

Jal Mahal

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 palace was constructed by Maharaja Sawai Jai Singh ll. Like most structures in Jaipur, this palace also reflects the fusion of Mughal and Rajput architecture. 

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 entrance fee for the City Palace is 400 rupees for foreigners and 100 rupees for Indians. If you want a glimpse of the private quarters of the Royal Family you can take The Royal Grandeur Tour which costs 2500 rupees for foreigners and 2000 for Indians. This tour comes with an official palace guide and light refreshments.

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! 

Hawa  Mahal

The name “Hawa Mahal” means “Palace of Winds” or “Palace of Breeze” attributed to the breeze that circulates through the building’s 950 windows. 

In 1799, the Kachhwaha Rajput ruler, Sawai Pratap Singh, ordered Lal Chand Usta to construct an extension to the Royal City Palace. The Purdah system at that time was strictly followed. Rajput Royal ladies should not be seen by strangers or appear in any public area. The Palace was built so that the ladies of the Royal Court could observe life on the streets below without being seen.

The architecture of the Hawa Mahal is a unique combination of Rajput and Mughal styles. The windows were designed to replicate the honeycomb of a beehive, which allows fresh air into the building without anyone inside being visible to the outside world. 

You can admire this magnificent building from the outside but we highly recommend to visit it inside as well.

Hawa Mahal is open from 9 am – 5:30 pm and the entrance fee is 200 rupees for foreigners and 50 rupees for Indians.

Jantar Mantar 

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

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

Lassi is a popular traditional dahi-based drink that originated in India. It’s a blend of yogurt, water, spices, and sometimes fruit. 

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 

Masala Chowk

Eat traditional Indian food at Masala Chowk. This open-air food court offers 21 flavors of the Pink City under one roof (or sky). Masala means spice and chowk in Hindi means an open area or public square. Here you will find a variety of authentic Indian street food. Masala Chowk is very popular among the locals. 

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.

Ram Niwas Bagh, Rajasthan 302004, India

LMB

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.

 
98, 99, Johari Bazar Rd, Bapu Bazar, Biseswarji, Jaipur, Rajasthan 302003, India

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. 

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1 Comment

  1. Martine
    August 14, 2020 / 6:51 am

    Dat was lang geleden zeg…
    Tof dat jullie er weer zijn 👍
    Weeral prachtige foto’s 😲

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