48 Hours in Jaipur – Travel Like a Local in Pink City
Jaipur, the capital city of Rajasthan is also the city of some of India’s most iconic monuments. The city came to be known as Pink City when the then king of Jaipur, Maharaja Ram Singh painted the whole city to welcome Prince of Wales and Queen Victoria on their visit since pink represents hospitality and warmth. From ancient sites to world class shopping malls, Jaipur is absolutely a traveler’s paradise. Spending 48 hours in Jaipur may not do justice with the city’s ancient culture and heritage.
It is something next to impossible to completely drench in the vibes of the Pink City, yet there are some activities and some places which you can visit in two days. Considering that the time is very limited and there is so much to explore, we have picked up some major places of the city which aren’t just Instagram worthy but they are masterpieces of Jaipur’s Indo-Saracenic and Rajput military hill architecture.
Welcome to the most cultural and colourful city of Rajasthan! Whether you are entering Jaipur from Delhi or you are directly landing here, you will have to take the city’s very own tuk-tuk riksha which is the easiest way to penetrate through the traffic of the city. Whether you are booking it online or you are taking from the roadside itself, you will find it everywhere. Lucky you are if the driver knows a little English and he will feel proud of being your guide on the way. Plus the Bollywood music in the auto rickshaw will make you feel desi (local). Please note that most of the historical monuments are close by 5 PM.
A major city of India’s Golden Triangle circuit, the city is interconnected with metro and city bus services as well as pre-booked cabs. Start your day with a delicious, local breakfast. Pack your bags and note to do list of the day.
(You may want to spend a few minutes at Patrika Gate, one of the most Instagram-worthy places of Jaipur. If you plan to stay one more day in Jaipur, you should check out the hot air balloon in Jaipur. This adventurous activity is carried out at many places in Jaipur including Shiv Vilas, Jal Mahal, Amer Fort, etc. An incredible way to explore the city from the sky, it’s worth trying when you are in Jaipur.)
1. Jaipur Local Bazaar Heritage Walk – 10 AM
The Pink city Jaipur shines with colours of traditions in every corner. Immersed in the culture, the city has been a hub of artisans and craftsmen since its royal times. The city has still kept its artistic glory which can be witnessed in its local bazaar. A walk through these bazaars stops the time and takes you back in history. Known for textile, block printing, jewellery, embroidery, leather juttis, tie & dye, bangles and several other indigenous art and craft items, these markets are an integral part of the city’s ancient heritage. Experience how the bazaars narrate their ancient past to immerse in the city’s cultural heritage.
2. Hawa Mahal – 12:30PM
Just around 2 km away from Albert Hall is situated the iconic Palace of Winds, the Hawa Mahal. Perhaps, artistically the most intriguing monument of the city, Hawa Mahal is made up of red sandstone, which looks marvelous when looked from the roadside. Built in 1799 by Maharaja Sawai Pratap Singh, the monument is composed of 953 Jharokhas (small windows) which look like a honeycomb. These were used by the royal ladies to see the activities outside. Just for an experience, meet the guy who owns a very rare vintage old camera and get clicked 1860 and frame your memories in monochrome B&W colours.
There are many rooftop cafes opposite to Hawa Mahal which give an incredible view of the monument. Visit any one of them; relax for a while before resuming your trips for the day.
3. Jantar Mantar – 2 PM
Jantar Mantar is a UNESCO World Heritage Site that contains 19 astronomical instruments. Built by Sawai Jai Singh II, these instruments were used to observe the astronomical positions which would tell the time. A nice example of Ptolemaic Positional Astronomy, a similar site is also located in New Delhi. Though not operational anymore, yet this place deserves a visit to know how the people back then used to calculate time. Built around 1728, the instruments in this observatory feature all the three classical celestial coordinate systems. After some damage in the 19th century, the monument went under restoration. It should take around 1 hour to explore this site.
Take a break and try the city’s samosa chai or kachori.
4. City Palace – 3 PM
After a chai break, head to the City Palace which is located next to Jantar Mantar. Built by Maharaja Sawai Jai Singh II in 1727, this palace has Arms and Armour Gallery which showcases all types of arms, swords and other weapons used back then and a museum dedicated to the personal life of the Sawai Kings of Jaipur. A painting and photography gallery houses artworks and photographs from the 18th and 19th centuries. Saba Niwas (Diwan-e-Aam), Sarvato Bhadra (Diwan-e-Khas), Pritam Chowk Niwas, Chandra Mahal, Mubarak Mahal, etc. are some prominent attractions of City Palace. You should at least spend 2 hours here. Don’t forget to click some amazing photographs at Peacock Gate, an incredibly designed and decorated gate with peacocks’ motifs.
It is around 5 PM and the city visit for the day comes to an end here. There are several local markets around where you can take a walk Johari Bazaar – a jewelry market, Tripolia Bazaar – a marketplace for bangles, Kishanpole Bazaar – shop textiles here, Bapu Bazaar – famous for all Jaipur local items, etc.
You may roam around the market streets to better understand the lifestyle and culture of Pink city or you may opt to bet back to your hotel to relax and rejuvenate from the day’s journey. Jaipur is a metropolitan city and a major city of Rajasthan, thus you will find all sorts of cuisines when it comes to food in Jaipur. From local dishes to all famous global cuisines, Jaipur has many fine dining restaurants and food joints. From several top class restaurants such as Suvarna Mahal, Peshawari, Dragon House, cafes like Praddy’s Diner, Tapri Central to Jaipur’s famous Chokhi Dhani which is a luxury heritage hotel and ethnic resort, there are so many options.
Good Morning in the capital city of Rajasthan. You may have breakfast in your hotel or you can choose to have it in any cafés of the city including Tapri Central, Serving Spoon, Café Bae, etc.
Today we will visit the three forts of Jaipur i.e. Amer Fort (also spelled as Amber Fort), Jaigarh Fort and Nahargarh Fort.
As discussed earlier, there are plenty of options to travelling within the city, you may book a cab online or you may even choose to commute by public transport. There are regular bus services to Amer Fort from Narayan Singh Circle (city interconnection). If you want to use public transport, board AC 1 bus from here which will drop you at Amber Fort. Else you want to avoid the hassle of hotchpotch created by public transport, want to avoid the strange stared at by the locals and want to avoid honking and chaotic traffic, you can hire a cab and reach your destination.
1. Amber Fort – 10 AM
One of the most famous forts of Rajasthan, Amer Fort is a UNESCO World Heritage Site located on Cheel Ka Teela (Hill of Eagles) in Aravalli range. Around 12 km away, out of the main city, Amer Fort is known for its marvelous architecture which is a mix of Rajput military and Mughal style. Built in around the 16th century, Amer fort is based on the remnants of structures that were built during the rule of Raja Man Singh. Amer was an ancient city and capital of Kachwaha Rajput kings of Jaipur. The palace has several incredibly beautiful structures inside such as Ganesh Pol entrance with its magnificent colourful design, Sheesh Mahal (Palace of Mirrors), gardens, several courtyards, etc. Invest at least 2 hours here flipping the pages of history and exploring the glorious past of the city.
There is a wonderful restaurant by the name 1135AD in the fort where you can sit, relax and have some light snacks.
2. Jai Garh Fort – 1 PM
Next to Amer Fort is Jaigarh Fort (Victory Fort). This fort is connected to Amer Fort via a subterranean passage which was an escape gate in the situation of emergency. Built by Sawai Jai Singh II, this hilltop fort was never conquered by anyone through tried by a lot. The fort had cannon foundry and Jaivana Cannon which was considered to be the largest cannon on wheel in the world during its manufacturing in 1720. The cannon is a major attraction of the fort. An armory chamber showcases a number of weapons such as guns, shields, swords, a cannonball weighing 50kg (110 Ib), etc. From the top of the fort, you can get a panoramic view of the surroundings including Amer Fort as well.
3. Nahargarh Fort – 2:30 PM
The next and the last fort of Jaipur, Nahargarh Fort is located in the same surrounding near Jaigarh Fort. Built in 1734, this fort was named Sudarshangarh in the beginning and later the name was changed to Nahargarh (abode of tigers). The fort has several places inside to visit. There is a sculpture park which is a project run by an NGO, Saat Saath Arts along with the State Government which showcases the artworks of several national and international artists. You can also visit the Sheesh Mahal and Max Museum inside the fort. Nahargarh Fort is surrounded by a thick deciduous forest of Nahargarh Biological Park which is known for several wild animals.
Completing the visit of this fort, you can either book a cab or you can find cabs there as well. While on the way to the main city from the fort, you can stop at Jal Mahal (Water Palace) on the way to click some photographs. Located in the middle of Man Sagar Lake, the Jal Mahal was built by Maharaja Jai Singh II in the 18th century. If you don’t have a flight back to your home the same day, you may even consider enjoying the sound and light show (SON ET LUMIERE) at Amber Fort which starts at 6:30 PM in English from October to February, 7 PM from March to April, May to September at 7:30 PM.
The city has a couple of more places such as the famous Galta Ji Temple known for a large population of monkeys which were also featured in a documentary Rebel Monkeys by National Geographic Channel. Gaitore Cenotaphs is an offbeat place to explore in the city which is usually visited by photographs for photo shoots. As you take a tuk tuk ride through the city, you will find most of the buildings in sandstone colour which highlights the city’s heritage which has been kept alive for ages.
Jaipur is known for its cultural heritage. Whether you want to try street food or you want a cozy candle light dinner in some rooftop restaurant, whether you want to shop locally in the markets of the city or want to visit shopping malls (World Trade Park), this city never disappoints. The city which brims with beauty and splendour architecture, Jaipur welcomes you with its heart-warming hospitality and never ending memories.