JAIPUR- THE AREA OF MAGNIFICENT FORT AND PALACES
Jaipur is a beautiful and charming city in India. It is the largest city and state capital of Rajasthan. During the British Raj in India, it was the capital of princely state of Jaipur. It is also the fist well-planned city of India. This beautiful city was founded in the year of 1727 by Maharaja Sawai Jai Singh II, the ruler of Amber. Located in the semi-desert lands of Rajasthan, Jaipur is today one of the most enticing and enthralling tourist destinations in country with many tourist places and attractions. The city presents fabulous tourism opportunity and excellent accommodation facilities. There are a number of heritage hotels and palace hotels in this city offering excellent and luxury accommodation facilities for guests.
The major attraction of Jaipur is City Palace Jaipur, Hawa Mahal, Jal Mahal, Amer Fort, Jaigadh Fort and Nahargadh Fort. These forts and palaces tell the story of the glamorous lifestyle of Indian Raja and Maharaja. These are the landmark in the field of architecture. These ancient palaces and forts, with elaborate architecture serve as a resplendent reminder of their royal heritage.
The Amber fort is set in a picturesque location a little away from Jaipur, the capital of Rajasthan state. The Amber Fort presents a fascinating blend of Hindu and Muslim architecture. Raja Man Singh built the Amber fort in the sixteenth century (the construction of the Amber Fort was started in 1592).
The massive Jaigarh Fort was built in 1726 and holds great appeal for military lovers. Flanked by towering gateways and watchtowers, it contains the world’s largest cannon on wheels. The cannon have never been fired though, and neither has the fort been captured. As a result the fort has remained intact over its long life, and is very well preserved. In fact, it’s one of the best-preserved military structures of medieval India. Jaigarh doesn’t have the delicate interiors of Amber Fort, and therefore appears as a real fortress. Climb the Diwa Burj watchtower to get an excellent view over the plains.
Upon visiting the magnificent City Palace, it’s easy to see that the royal family of Jaipur was one of the richest in India. The huge complex of courtyards, gardens, and buildings blend both Rajasthani and Mughal architecture. The Peacock Gate is exquisite, and contains an alluring display of detailed workmanship featuring bright peacocks. Today, the royal family lives in the graceful Chandra Mahal (Moon Palace) bordering the courtyard. Also inside the City Palace complex is a museum, art gallery, and interesting displays of royal costumes and old Indian weapons.
Hawa Mahal – Palace of the Winds
The intricate and fascinating facade of the Palace of the Winds is probably Jaipur’s most recognized building. Constructed in 1799, it has five floors that contain rows of small windows and screens. Wind used to flow through the openings, giving the palace its name. However, the wind has now gone from the Wind Palace. Legend has it that the palace, which overlooks the main street of Jaipur’s lively Old City, was built so that the women of the royal household could watch the streets below without being observed. A panoramic view can be had from the top of the building. Take a peek behind the facade of the Hawa Mahal. It is located next to the City Palace.
Nahargarh Fort – Tiger Fort
Nahargarh Fort lies North-West of City Palace and provides some stunning views of the city. Built by Sawai Raja Jai Singh in the year 1734. A royal retreat for the Maharanis, it was also used as a personal treasury for many years. Originally called Sudarshan Garh, it affords a splendid view of Jaipur. Beyond the hills of Jaigarh, stands the fort of Nahargarh like a watchful sentinel guarding Sawai Jai Singh’s beautiful capital. Much of the original structures are now in ruins, but the lovely buildings added by Sawai Ram Singh II and Sawai Madho Singh II in the 19th century are preserved in a good condition.
The Fort, which is also known as the Tiger Fort, is reached by a walk past the streets at the base followed by a 2 km trek up the towering hill. On the top of the hill, the beautiful Man Sagar Lake spreads a welcoming glance. Right in the middle of the lake, Raja Jai Singh II built a duck blind, a shelter for screening duck hunters, for his shooting parties.
Jal Mahal of Jaipur is a pleasure palace built in the 18th century. Situated amidst the picturesque Mansagar Lake, the palace has the Nahargarh hills forming its backdrop. Jaipur Jal Mahal Palace is an architectural beauty and was meant to be used for the royal duck shooting parties. Developed as an enjoyment spot, it is entered through a causeway situated in the middle of Mansagar Lake. Jal Mahal of Jaipur, Rajasthan is a five-storey palace, with the first four floors being submerged under water. The Nahargarh Fort situated nearby offers a splendid view of the lake as well as the palace.
The first four floors of this building are under water; only the top floor remains outside. One can have a wonderful view of the lake and the palace from Nahargarh Fort Built in 1799, the palace is now abandoned, but reasonably well preserved. The lake eco system is home to a variety of migratory and resident birds. The Mansagar Dam on the eastern side of the lake acts as a vantage point for viewing the lake and the valley
Rambagh Palace Built in 1835 AD for the queen’s favorite handmaiden Kesar Badaran, The Rambagh Palace, Jaipur was transformed into a palace in 1925 and became the residence of the Maharaja of Jaipur. In 1957 it was converted into a plush hotel by Maharaja Sawai Man Singh II, and taken over by the Taj Hotels Resorts and Palaces in the year 1972.
There are 85 well-appointed rooms and suites including Luxury Rooms, Historical Suites, Royal Suites, Grand Royal Suites, and Grand Presidential Suite at the hotel. All rooms are beautifully decked with marbled corridors.
Apart from these famous forts and palace we have some other forts and palaces as well in Jaipur and places around it like Bissau palace, Samode Palace, Narain Niwas palace, Moti Dongri Palace etc.