Jaipur, in the state of Rajasthan, is also dubbed the Pink City (pink sounds nicer than orange, but let’s not discuss colours). It is the third city of the popular tourist trail called the “Golden Triangle”: Delhi, Agra and Jaipur. On my first trip to India I had to visit at least these cities. (My post on Agra you can find here).
Jaipur is bursting with ancient palaces and temples, and 3 days isn’t barely enough to discover it all (I tried, but failed) ;-)
1. Royal Gaitor
Beautiful white mausoleums, comprising of three different parts; the third one is the most ornately decorated. For its beauty, there were not many visitors, which was a welcome change from the herds of tourists in other spots. And only 30 roupies too (0,4 euro)!
2. Amer fort
The yellow fort in Jaipur is again a massive place to visit; it takes at least 2 hours to walk around in. Even reaching the entrance up the hill is about a 15 minute walk. Longer if you want to stop at one of the people with bathroom scales to weigh yourself. (I didn’t.) (Anyone can start a business in India). You can even take an elephant ride to the top, if you’re feeling particularly lazy or in need of spending a lot of money.
3. Jal Mahal – Water Palace
I didn’t visit it, but asked the driver to stop for a bit so I could take some pictures…
4. Hawa Mahal – Wind Palace
Apparently built for the women to watch parades peacefully, without being seen. After 3 months in India, I understand why.
Invariably, your driver will take you to some handicrafts ateliers, where you get a brief explanation about the process of creating hand printed textiles/hand stitched embroidery/silver jewellery/the power of gem stones, and then you are conveniently ushered into the adjoining shop where you are offered tea and a good or bad sales talk, depending on your luck of the day. If you have the time, look, ask prices, and DON’T buy. Go to another shop the next day (they will have the same kind of stuff), and then you won’t pay for the commission of the driver, which can be quite hefty. (Don’t tell your driver the next day where you are going – get dropped off at the corner of the street – they are all part of the same scam). And good luck negotiating… :)
There are many other sights to see, such as the Royal Palace and Jantar Mantar, but by this time I’d had it with sightseeing, and decided to just walk around in the streets of Jaipur… And eat some amazing masala dosa. Mmmmm…