Capital of Rajasthan
Founded in the 18th century by Maharajah Jai Singh, Jaipur is the only city of this era built according to urban plans. The Maharajah, a fan of astronomy, as evidenced by the Jantar Mantar Observatory, a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2010, entrusted the city’s plans to a mathematician priest-architect. The latter imagined a square divided into 9 equal portions by four wide avenues intersecting at right angles. Each square was divided by caste, that is, by craft. The right-handed streets have been planned for this merchant city in order to transport customers as quickly as possible to the shops. Some of the facades were built of pink sandstone, others were painted in pink (welcome color) in 1875 for the Prince of Wales’ arrival, giving it its world-renowned “pink city” nickname.
Samode Haveli and its elephant slope
The arrival in the pink city of today can nevertheless surprise, as the streets are noisy and traffic complicated. The location of our hotel was absolutely amazing. In the central district, not far from the City Palace and the Wind Palace, in a small, crowded street where our driver had the greatest difficulty in driving, we arrived in a haven of peace and tranquillity. A real jewel that is unsuspected from the street, such as we love them! The arrival by the slope for the elephants is surprising, the reception is impeccable, and the place loaded with history. In short we love it (Samode Haveli, to know more click here)!
In Jaipur you will find many places to visit but also quality shopping. I especially recommend Hot Pink, an adorable concept store located in the gardens of the Narain Niwas Palace Hotel. You will find jewellery, designer clothes for the whole family (men’s shirts are must), decorative objects as well as small gifts for children (notebooks, bags, stickers).
To visit preferably in the morning, for its pretty light and the reflection on the water that surrounds it. We enjoyed watching the elephants and their mahouts who ride tourists to the fort. Beautiful pictures in perspective! Exceptional shop, take your rupees and credit cards!!!
I also recommend the Anokhi Museum right next to Amber Fort. You will learn how the fabrics are printed by hand and the children can even leave with their own printed tee-shirt!
Just after the Anokhi Museum, do not miss the amazing baoli Panna Meena ka Kund, a photographer’s delight!
We came back to Jaipur two days at the end of the trip and picked up the plane here, which allowed us to test two more hotels; The Raj Palace, to live like a maharajah at least once in your life, and Diggi Palace, a great address for small budgets.