Jaipur Travel Guide

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Hawa Mahal

Hawa Mahal

Jagat Bandhu Nagpal

The Prince of Wales came to visit Jaipur, the capital of Rajasthan, in 1867. In order to show their hospitality, the city was painted pink (pink being the colour in Rajput culture to express hospitality), hence Jaipur’s surname: ‘the pink city’. Not only the remnants of the old city parts give a colourful impression. In Jaipur, many tribal people dress up in their traditional costumes and sell bangles and other handicrafts at one of the many street markets. These markets are especially concentred in the older area of the city that is enclosed within a long wall (at least within what is left of it) with seven gates.

The jewellery markets are good places to spend your time and money. The Iswari Minar Swarga Sul minaret and the city palace are both interesting historical sights and landmarks. Both the Jantar Mantar (observatory) and the central museum will keep you from the city’s hustle and bustle for quite some time.

However, the main reason why Jaipur is famous is because of its Hawa Mahal, or ‘Palace of the Winds’. Although you might expect it to be a bit more impressive, it sure makes a strange impression to see this red sand-stone palace amidst all Jaipur’s recent hustle and bustle. The story goes that the ladies of Singh’s harem where not allowed to go outside, but that they were allowed to look outside without being spotted by the ordinary people. Hence they all got their own window and in case you’re wondering, don’t start counting. There are 953 of those little windows that served as a gateway to a little glimpse of city life and, probably, freedom. Another historical place worth visiting is the Amer Palace.

A good place to stay while there is the Rambagh Palace, which is a big palatial hotel right in the heart of the city.

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June 21, 2005 change by giorgio

June 21, 2005 change by abhatia

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