Jaipur was my favorite place on our trip to India as part of the golden triangle tour. I remember when our driver asked which city we liked the most? With no hesitation, my answer was Jaipur, because it has everything! The excellent infrastructure, and the masses of tourist attractions, a must-see in India.
As the capital of Rajasthan, Jaipur it’s a bustling city but relatively organized compared to other places. You see less waste on the streets and have a lower pollution level. The positive aspect environment gives a mood of relaxation.
What I like here is the mindset of people, they’re less intrusive than in Delhi and Agra. We have encountered a few hawkers while wandering around, but once you say NO, without any fuss, they leave you alone. People have more respect than elsewhere.
Seven Topmost Things To Do In Jaipur
Jaipur is a city full of magic, where you find beautiful temples, lively bazaars, elegant palaces, and fortresses. Spend at least two nights, and take the time to discover the pink city and make the most of it. It can be overwhelmed where to start, and luckily most of the city’s attractions are within walking distance.
It’s noticeable that some of the tourist attractions are expensive, especially for the tourists who will charge almost twice than the locals. So it can run up if you want to see all – therefore, we skipped some of them. India is a cheap destination, but when it comes to tourist attractions, it can rupture a wallet at the end of the trip.
Below are the places we have visited. You may notice that some of these are not located in the city center but surely worth seeing when in Jaipur.
The Architectural Style of Hawa Mahal
Hawa Mahal (Wind Palace), is the most photographed building in Jaipur, because of its imposing outer facade. The five-story wall with 953 small windows looks like a honeycomb.
But you should see inside and learned the history of the palace. Behind the windows, the women those days allowed them to peek into the lively main street of old Jaipur without being seen for themselves.
It’s undoubtedly a pleasant wandering through bridgework and seen some of the Mughal style balconies, colored glass, and mirrored panels. On each level, you can peek to the window outside. And definitely, take the final stairs to the top for a beautiful city view and see the bustling street of Jaipur.
Tips! The location is in the center of Jaipur, and the admission fee is 200 rupees (2 euro). For full lookout, go across the street at the Wind View Cafe up to the rooftop.
Wandering Through The Colorful Old Town Of Jaipur
Exploring the pink city on foot is the best experience you can do during your trip to Jaipur. The Metropolis is a shopping paradise with an innumerable incredible range of handicrafts, jewelry, textile, and precious stones. If you are not into shopping, simply take a walk around and immerse yourself in cultural wealth.
Jaipur is less busy and hectic than Delhi; their grid street is easy to navigate. However, it’s pretty generic in India that you are annoyed by hawkers. But I noticed here they have more respect for tourists than in other places. If you say NO, they leave you alone, and no longer crossed you.
Tuk-tuk drivers in Jaipur can be steadfast. Fortunately, there’s plenty of tuk-tuks around. For a short ride within the city center with the accompanied person, it cost between 30-50 rupees for the trip. Some drivers are charging 100 rupees and determined with their price, but there are some honest drivers.
Just the same on shopping, if you want to buy something, bargain the price up to less than 60% if they don’t agree with you, try the next shop.
The Ancient Architecture of Albert Hall Museum
The magnificent building is visible from the outside of the New City Gate, locates on a roundabout. The Albert Hall Museum is famous in Jaipur, opened in 1887, design of the Gothic Revival building inspired by London’s famous Victoria and Albert Museum.
The two-story building has a rich collection of carpets, paintings, sculptures, and colorful crystal works, etc. For the admission of 300 rupees gets you access to a few glass cabinets with old carpets inside and a mummy. I’m not really into a museum, but this was such an interesting one.
The Grandiose Amber Palace
Agra has the Taj Mahal, Jaipur has the Amber Fort, the number one attraction in the capital of Rajasthan. However, the location is 11 kilometers from the city center, which makes it easy for people with a vehicle, but as a famous site, you can get there with ease by bus or a rickshaw. The imposing monument has been a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 2013.
The immense structure perched on a hill enhanced by the stunning vista of the Maota Lake in front. On top, it has an excellent view of Jaipur and the surroundings.
The Fort is an example of the Rajput architecture built-in four-levels, consists of a series of breathtaking palaces, halls, courtyards, and temples.
Inside, ornately decorated with mosaic, small pieces of mirrors that reflecting the lights, it’s a maze of a place. It can take several hours to get around the narrow aisles.
The entry costs 500 INR. The fort is on the steep side, a long steep walk up to the fort, but it’s not that hard. There are elephants appointed for tourists – I propose don’t sit on the back of the animals. Walking is best while you can pause for picture taking.
The Floating Jal Mahal (Water Palace)
Another beautiful site to see in Jaipur is the profound architectural wonders during the Rajput time is the Jal Mahal, also called the (Water Palace). The light sandstone walls appear to float in the center of Sagar Lake. This low-rise symmetrical palace that once was a shooting lodge for the Maharajah was restored between 2001 and 2008 because it’s leaking.
It’s a five-storied building in which four floors remain underwater when the lake is full, and the top-level is exposed. The palace is no longer open to the public, and the activity is mainly limited to taking pictures of the outside. You can go down by the lake for a better vista.
Tip! The best time to visit here is late in the afternoon for better light. It doesn’t take long to see the palace. After that, you can take a walk through the street to see the markets.
The Unusual Architecture Of Chand Baori (Stepwell)
Chand Baori is a stepwell located in a small village of Abhaneri almost two-hours drive from Jaipur. Due to its remote location, and distance, visitors to Chand Baori only people with cars. It’s a beautiful place to wander where nearly nobody around, utterly worth a day trip from Jaipur.
Chand Baori (Stepwell) invented by the natives of Rajasthan and the largest stepwell in the world. A square of 64 feet deep consists of 13 floors built in the 9th century. The well no longer used, but the unusual structure remains as a true masterpiece.
The steps connect each platform is a wonder how it built with such depth and symmetry. The 3500 stairs surrounded, leading down to the reservoir. This genuinely worth a visit if anyone interested in history and architecture.
Next door is a ruin of the Harshat Mata Temple. The ruins show the pieces of sculptures and carved pillars in a degree of craftsmanship.
The ancient Galtaji (Monkey Temple)
The Galtaji monkey temple is not a popular tourist attraction. However, often skipped by most travelers, although, just a short trip from Jaipur approximately 30-minutes.
The gigantic Galtaji has been a holy pilgrimage site for centuries. The presence of beautiful nature around the sanctuary with a backdrop of mountains is just fabulous.
It’s undeniable that the whole area looks a bit run down and filthy. Some of the buildings have seen better days – it is like stumbling on to a lost world. But that’s I like here, it is not necessarily posh neighborhood. It’s an ancient temple, a holy place for the Hindus.
Walking time to the entrance will approx 15-30 minutes from the main road.
Also, multiple temples you can visit along the way. At the end of the road is the shrine with the pool. You have to take the stair, and there you find a large group of monkeys playing each other. The animals are tamed and used to humans, but be careful.
Avoid Tourist Traps In Galtaji Temple
The admission fee is free, but the foreign tourist compelled to pay the 50 rupees for donations.
Firstly, watch out for young people, because they can be intrusive. They will tell you to get a guide because the monkeys attack people.
The animals are not attacking humans unless you pissed them off. After you refused, be sure they’re not following you as they expect payment by just walking behind you.
And lastly, avoid the priest who speaks English fluently. He invites you to see his temple. Once you’re inside is hard to leave because he’s persistent asks you to stay while he is doing some kind of spiritual. But the whole thing is for the money, and he is not accepting a small amount, we’re in his pitfall.
Where to stay In Jaipur
Jaipur has tons of lodgings from backpacker guesthouses to luxury hotels with swimming pools. It’s a pretty big city, and there are different locations to abode.
As mentioned in my previous blog of India – we book a package tour for Rajasthan, which includes accommodation. During the booking, I request a quiet decent, and clean hotel, and it was adequate with our expectations.
We’re staying at Hotel Amer Valley situated outside the city center, opposite the lake (Water Palace). Beautiful rooms with free internet, but the staff somewhat less, they saw us as a walking wallet. We had a two-night stay at this hotel, and overall ratings are quite good.
The only disadvantage, this place is picked mostly by tour agencies and can be busy. But that’s likely to happen if you book a package, most agencies in Delhi book the same hotels.