Sunday, May 28, 2017

Jaipur

I had visited Jaipur during the last week of September in 2014. It was an official visit for me. I had gone to an engineering college as part of the Campus Placement Team. My flight and hotel expenses were covered by the company. It was our first time to Rajasthan. I completed my two days work in the college and then extended the stay to explore the city and to visit Taj Mahal. Sathya and Tan accompanied me.
  
We stayed at Hotel Amer View. The host was very friendly and treated each guest like family.
The only negative thing was the complimentary breakfast. One week of eating aloo parathas and bread-butter drove us nuts.

There was just no other option. When we requested for a change in the menu, we would be generously served omelette!

It took several months for us after we returned to Bangalore to be able to even look at parathas again without being disgusted.

It was reasonably priced, and had comfortable, spacious rooms with beautiful wall decors and traditional paintings featuring kings and queens adorning the corridors.














The first morning I went to the hotel terrace and witnessed this beautiful sunrise.

And just as I stood there soaking in the atmosphere and savoring the slow break of dawn, I noticed something in the sky.  I was shocked to see, in the distance, a hot air balloon in flight. When I inquired around and realized hot air ballooning is held in the city, the first thing I did was arrange money (Rs 10,000 for a one hour ride). But the office that handles the bookings was located somewhere else and even though I tried very hard to contact them and make the payment and go on the ride, I couldn't.

The hotel was walking distance from the take-off site of the balloon ride. As a last resort, I thought Chalo, let me request them and pay at the spot of the take-off. Early next morning, I woke up, (what I thought was in the middle of the night), got ready and literally ran the whole distance to the site. But the staff refused to take me on saying the ride had to be booked through their office. I remember begging them. I remember crying the whole way back to the hotel. I was so sad that morning. I missed going on such a unique adventure.

From our room, we could see the famous Amer Fort. That's why the name Hotel Amer View. It was a mere stone's throw away.
The palace and Jaigarh Fort are one complex connected by a passage. The passage was used as an escape route during war to help the royal family and others in the Fort to move to the Jaigarh Fort. 
The Amer Fort is a must visit.The fort overlooks the Maota Lake, the main source of water for the Palace. 
It was built from red sandstone and marble by Raja Man Singh during 967 CE. Imagine that! So long long back! It is laid out on four levels. Each level has its own courtyard.  
The Fort is known for its beautiful Hindu style elements. It gets its name from Amba, the Mother Goddess Durga. It houses the Sukh Niwas where a cool climate is created artificially. The winds blow over a water cascade inside the palace. It was the residence of the Rajput Maharajas.
Nearly 5000 people visit the Fort in a single day. 1.4 million visitors were reported during 2007.  In 2013, the Fort was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site along with 5 other forts of Rajasthan.

Across our hotel, was the site of the cremation ground of the Kachwaha Kings.  From 1733 onwards the final rites of every Kachwaha king were done here. It is now used for morning walks.

Jaipur is a historical city founded by Sawai Jai Singh in the 17th century. The Kachwaha rules built many wonderful monuments dotting the length and breadth of the city. Indulge in a casual stroll through the streets and you are most likely to bump into some monument or the other. The city throws back history at you at every corner. A must visit for all lovers of Indian history. Truly, the land of the Rajas and Maharajas. 

28 comments:

  1. What a fabulous city replete with palaces,forts and monuments.I have visited the city like you on official work half a dozen times and never even knew of these places except what was on main bazaar road.I have missed much.
    I draw comfort, though small, that I could get a glimpse of the beautiful places through your excellent pictures and descriptive writing.

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  2. Were you in Jaipur in September 2014? What a coincidence. We were also there at the same time. We had a great time. Thanks for these beautiful photos. Did you happen to visit Chokhi Dhani? I wrote 2 posts on our visit to Jaipur. Will send them to you by email.

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    1. Oh true....what a coincidence!!!

      Your Jaipur posts are not on your blog ?

      Yes, we had been to Chokhi Daani too. That in the next post :)

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  3. I am sorry you were not able to make the balloon ride. What is their problem in accepting the money on the spot if they have a vacancy in the balloon.? Little people want to shove their authority.

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    1. I know! I had literally fallen at their feet and they still didn't budge :(

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    2. Most likely the owners did not have faith in the guys handling the actual balooning stuff. Or, there might have been some kind of due diligence which would have needed an office, like taking your ID copies and making you fill a form stating you won't hold them responsible for any mishap.

      Or some other mental gymnastics. We will never know :-)

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  4. You have covered the city beautifully through your photos and write up

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  5. I enjoyed touring the city with you. The architecture is absolutely beautiful. I hope you have another chance to ride in a hot air balloon.

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  6. Read a lot about Jaipur in particular and Rajasthan in particular. Have been just to Mt Abu. Have to go, some time.. Good pics!

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    1. Yes, Worth a visit.

      I haven't been to Mt.Abu. Must try to go.

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  7. Me and a friend visited Jaipur, Ranthambore (Sawai Madhopur) and Keoladeo (Bharatpur) in December 2015, mostly on the cheap. It was a great experience. Reading your post makes me want to do it again.

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    1. Ranthambore... wow !

      Never heard of keoladeo. Have to look it up. First time heard that name. If you have written about it on you blog, will read

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  8. Wow Jaipur is beautiful city.
    You choose great place to stay from where you were able toexplore such glorious sunrises and such marvellous fort and sites !
    I laughed on your reaction about consistency of breakfa2but you made me said when expressed you disappointment for not being able to sit in hot balloon but it's okay it must have some good for you because everything happens for reason I believe

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  9. awesome place and amazing snaps !

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  10. Very beautiful pictures.I love travelogues very much.

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  11. Beautiful narration complemented by lovely photos of the monuments. Also, your take on paranthas left me amused. :D

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    1. Thank you Ragini :)

      hehe...yeah seven mornings being served only aloo parathas - in a hotel - too much it was for us

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  12. Great experience.Your words display all 5he splendour s of the pictures.

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  13. Geo.May 29, 2017 at 10:56 PM
    Intriguing and rewarding blog. I have signed in to follow it on GFC. Best wishes to you.

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