The pink city
Capital to the country’s most resplendent state Rajasthan, Jaipur harbours a special kind of awe-inspiring charm found nowhere else. Also known as the ‘Pink City’ because of the sprawling stretches of pink houses that dot the city, Jaipur is also one of the largest and most populous cities of India.
Jaipur packs a punch that comes laden with a spectacularly alluring history and all the glamour of a modern metropolis. Located 280km away from the Indian capital, the city forms one end of the Golden Triangle of tourism along with Delhi and Agra. Jaipur is also the stepping stone for a further venture into desert destinations of Rajasthan like Jodhpur, Jaisalmer and Udaipur.
The history of the city can be traced back to 1727, when Sawai Jai Singh II, the King of Amber established Jaipur as India’s first planned city when he decided to move his capital away from Amber. Eminent architect Vidyadhar Bhattacharya put his knowledge of architecture and Vastu Shastra to build the whole city. Later awaiting a visit from the Prince of Wales in 1876, the city was painted with pink all over as the shade symbolises hospitality, and from then till today the pink walls of the houses stand old yet tall adorning the busy streets of Jaipur.
Amidst the chaos and cacophony that Jaipur is, stands its major attraction – the City Palace. Located deep within the walls of the fort, the Jaipur Palace complex was erected combining the finest traits of Mughal and Rajput architecture. The palace is till date the residence of the royal lineage, and one can visit the collections inside like the grandest of royal jewellery at the Maharani Palace or the preserved clothes and weapons of Maharaja Madho Singh I.
The towering structure of HawaMahal with its iconic latticed windows, from where the royal ladies of the yore could look outside without being seen, is yet another star attraction of the city, and so is the idyllic JalMahal, floating in the middle of Man Sagar Lake. Jaipur also happens to own the world’s largest cannon, known as Jaiban, housed within the imposing citadel of Jaigarh Fort.
Nahargarh Fort and its formidable barriers, JantarMantar and its unbelievably advanced scientific technology and the breathtaking splendour of the Amber Fort are also some of the many spectacles the Pink City has to offer.