Jaipur, India

The Rose Pink City founded by Maharaja Jai Singh II (1693-1743), is the capital of Rajasthan. It is a major attraction for the first-time visitor. Jaipur is surrounded on all sides by rugged hills, crowned with forts & enclosed by embattled walls. Houses with latticed windows line the streets with their rose pink colour, lending enchantment to the scene which is almost magical at sunset.

The Old City (Known as the Pink City) is a great place to wander around. The whole city was painted in Pink colour by Maharaja Man Singh II when Prince of Wales, later Edward VII, visited Jaipur in 1876. Today, every home within the city is obliged by law to maintain his facade. It is a very well planned city laid out in a grid pattern and was designed by a Young Bengali engineer and scholar by the name "Vidyadhar Bhattacharya".

Jaipur was and remains the only city in the world, symbolising the nine divisions of the universe, through nine rectangular sectors sub-dividing it. Jaipur is a royal city & this is its most noticeable aspect, small Buildings & festivals testify to it.

Jaipur & its surroundings are rather like an endless museum. The city also offers an endless variety of crafts. Jewellers here still fashion the beautiful enamel-on-gold pendants, studded on the reverse with precious stones or pearls & turquoise that one sees in miniature paintings. Jaipur's lacquer bangles are famous all over the world. This is a city to be visited.

Location
300 kms southwest of Delhi, : Rajasthan

Best time to visit
The best time to visit Jaipur is between October and March.

How To Get There
AIR: Jaipur has its own airport, and is well connected to all other tourist and business centres.

RAIL: An excellent connection to Delhi by Shatabdi Express and the Pink City Express. Other connections to Jaipur are from Bikaner, Jodhpur, Udaipur, Ahemadabad, secunderabad and Lucknow.

ROAD: A network of reasonably comfortable tourist buses, run by road corporations of Rajasthan, Haryana and others.

Attractions
The magnificent fort with its huge ramparts & watchtowers, overlooking the Delhi-Jaipur highway. It is believed to have been the capital of the "Minas", the original inhabitants of Rajasthan.

City Palace -
city palace jaipur
Nakkarkhana-ka-Darwaza, the imposing gateway of the City Palace guarded by stone elephants, is monumental.

Hawa Mahal - A Pandora's box of wonders, the enchanting Hawa Mahal is a multi-layered palace, with a profusion of windows and stone screens.

Jai Garh -
Built on a peak, overlooks the palace & city of Amber below. Jal Mahal - Is Jaipur's lake palace. Surrounded with water.

Jantar Mantar -
The amazing astronomical three-storey-high complex observatory, of an 18th century Rajasthani king named, Jai Singh.

Nahargarh Fort -
Originally called Sudarshan Garh affords a splendid view of Jaipur

Sisodia Rani Ka Bagh -
Has beautiful gardens, fountains, pools & some magnificent pieces of Sculpture. Government Central Museum: This is the oldest Museum in the State. The building, designed by Colonel Sir Swinton Jacob is located in the centre of the sprawling Ram Niwas Bagh. Built in 1876 when King Edward VII visited India as the Prince of Wales, it was opened to public in 1886

History
One of the loveliest cities in the world, Jaipur owes much of its grandeur to the careful planning of great warrior-astronomer Maharaja Jai Singh II and brilliant architect Vidhyadhar Bhattacharya. This city was made to order by Jai Singh in 1727 when Mughal Power was on the wane. The architect Vidhyadhar Bhattacharya used the principles of town planning laid in the Shilpa Shastra (an ancient Hindu treatise on architecture), while designing the city. The same principles were employed when he built the city Palace as well as the largest stone observatory in the world.

Festivals
Of Rajasthan are Makar Sankranti in the middle of January, Shitla Mela at Chaksu held in March-April, Gangaur in March-April, Elephant Festival around March, Teej held in between Feb.-March

Shopping A major gem and jewellery centre, it is famous for Kundan work (enamel work on gold). Also there are woollen carpets, cotton rugs, marble statuary, enamelled wares, brass ware, hand-block printed Sanganeri and Bagru Cotton fabrics, exotic blue pottery made from crushed quartz, leather footwear and more Excursions
11 kms out of Jaipur is the awe-inspiring piece of Rajput architecture, the Amber Fort. Amber was an ancient capital of Rajasthan. On the road to Amber at a distance of 6.5 kms from Jaipur are the cenotaphs of the royal family, at Gaitore. A causeway leads to Jal Mahal Palace situated in the middle of a lake, opposite the cenotaphs. At night the Nargarh fort situated 6.5 kms away is floodlit. Built in 1726 is Jalgarh Fort which is walking distance of Amber.
The spectacular Samode palace is located in a small village of samode, located 50 kms north of Jaipur. Other places of interest to the tourist are, the temple of Sun God at Galta, Sisodia Rani palace and gardens, Vidyadhar's garden, Balaji and Sanganer