A part of the Golden Triangle Tourist circuit, Jaipur along with Delhi and Agra is one of India's most popular destinations. The city's regal aura coupled with its excellent infrastructure and the traditional Rajasthani hospitality of "Padharo Maro Desh" is the main reason why tourists from all over the world flock to this princely state again and again.
The capital of Rajasthan, Jaipur also known the Pink City is renowned the world over for its majestic forts, opulent havelis, beautiful lakes and shimmering sand dunes. Designed by Vidyadhar Bhattacharya as per the Shilpa Shastra- an ancient treatise on architecture and built by Maharaja Sawai Jai Singh II to accommodate the increasing population at Amber, Jaipur is one of the best planned cities of the pre modern era. Built entirely of pink stucco in imitation of the red sandstone buildings of the Mughal cities, the city has been divided into nine blocks and is encircled by a wall that has seven gates. Even today, the city is still remarkable for the width and regularity of its streets.
A thriving tourist destination, people from all over the world come to visit Jaipur. The city's many forts and palaces are what attract the tourists in the first place. The City palace, the Amber Fort, Jaigarh Fort, Hawa Mahal, Jantar Mantar observatory, Jal Mahal and Nahargarh Fort are some of the famous attractions of the city.
Shopping in Jaipur is always pleasurable. Jaipur is famous for its semi-precious stones, miniature paintings, silver jewellery and lac items and the city's colorful bazaars make shopping an exhilarating experience. And for those wanting to try their hand at some delectable Rajasthani cuisine, there are many restaurants around the city which provide clean, hygienic and sumptuous traditional Rajasthani cuisine.
History of Jaipur
The history of the Amer-Jaipur region can be traced way back to the 11th century when Prince Dulha Rai left his patrimony of Narwar for Dausa in Eastern Rajasthan. Married to a daughter of a Chauhan Chief of Moran, he with the help of the army of his in-laws captured Dausa and Bhandarej and consolidated his position further by annexing Manch (Ramgarh),and defeating Bargujar chief of Deoti (Rajorgarh- Paranagar region). A very brave name, his chivalrous acts are narrated in the bardic tales and also in a love lyric originally composed by Kushal labh, a Jain, resident of Jaisalmer in 16th cent. His son and successor Kakil Dev was equally brave. He established his control over the Amber-Bairath region, built the Ambikeshwar Mahadeva Temple, and made Amber his capital.
The city of Amer continued to grow as each successor began to consolidate his position and extend the frontiers of the kingdom. Prince Pajwan, who fought alongside the valiant Prithvi Raj in the campaigns against the Chandelas of Mahoha, Jaichand of Kanauj and in the battle of Tarain and Maharaja Prithvi Raj, who led the Rajput confederacy alongwith Rana Sanga of Mewar against Babar were some of the brave Kachhwaha rulers who fought valiantly for the glory of Amer.
However, it was under Maharaja Bharmal, the fourth son of Prithvi Raj that Amer became a very powerful Rajput state and began to play an important role in the subsequent history of Rajasthan. He was the first Rajput king who realized the importance of allying with Akbar- the great Mughal king. This alliance, which continued for well over two centuries proved to be of great help to both the parties. While the Mughals gained unflinching loyalty and great administrative skill from the Kachhwaha Rajputs, the rulers of Amber by allying with the Mughals were able to give the much needed peace and prosperity to their people, which in the long way went in establishing Amer-Jaipur as one of the most thriving city in the State.
The next important ruler to have come to the throne of Amer was Sawai Jai Singh II. A great Statesman and a keen astrologer, he along with his architect Vidyadhar Bhattacharya laid the foundation of the present city of Jaipur. Built to accommodate the increasing population at Amber, the city of Jaipur designed as per the ancient Shilpa Shastra is one of the best planned cities of the pre modern era. Divided into nine blocks and encircled by a masonry crenellated wall that has seven gates, the city follows the grid system with wide straight roads, streets and lanes.
However, it was in the 19th century that Jaipur earned the epitaph “Pink City'. There is a very interesting story behind it. According to the local fables, when some ambassadors of the Prince of Wales visited the city prior to his visit, someone insultingly called them the 'pink-faced monkey', as a result of the contempt for the British who had India under their clutches. To make up for his rashness and as a diplomatic tact, Raja and his ministers maintained that the person had called them so in reverence, as the 'monkey' was worshipped in the region as 'Hanuman' and pink was the sacred color of the region. To give conviction to their seemingly improbable reason they painted the city pink on the Prince's arrival. Others maintain that city was painted pink merely because the contractor was unable to supply any other color in such huge quantities. Since then the pink color has been associated with Jaipur.
Climate of Jaipur
Located near the desert, Jaipur has an extreme climate- hot and scorching summers and cool winters. The temperature varies from 45 degrees in summer to below five degrees in winters. Monsoons are not much of a problem and visitors can visit Jaipur anytime between September to March.
Facts and Figures of Jaipur
• Population : 2,324,319
• Altitude : 431 meters above sea level
• Languages : Hindi and English
• Best time to visit : October to March
• STD code : 0141
How to reach Jaipur
The capital of Rajasthan, Jaipur is about 258 kilometers from Delhi, 232 kilometers from Agra, 350 kilometers from Gwalior and 405 kilometers from Udaipur. Being a part of the Golden Triangle Tourist circuit that includes Delhi and Agra, Jaipur is well connected with major parts of the country and easily accessible by air, road and rail.
Jaipur is well connected by road to all major towns of India. A network of good motor able roads and private and government buses connect Jaipur to the nearby cities.
Jaipur is well connected by trains to all the major cities of India. There are many trains that connect Jaipur with all the major cities of India. For those keen to enjoy a royal ride, there is the Palace on Wheels, which leaves Delhi every Saturday and passes through a number of tourist destinations in Rajasthan.
The Sanganer Airport located just 10 km from the city connects Jaipur to all the major cities of India.