Jaipur, the legendary "pink city" in the royal deserts of the state of Rajasthan, is the last stop on the circuit of the Golden Triangle of India. Magnificent with magnificent forts, magnificent palaces, havelis, museums, temples and colorful bazaars, Jaipur is the capital and largest city of Rajasthan. Founded in 1727 by the ruler of Amber, Maharaja Sawai Jai Singh II, the monuments and fortresses of Jaipur reflect its glorious past.
Majestically located in the heart of Jaipur, the City Palace offers a perfect example of Mughal and Rajput architecture. The complex is home to several beautiful buildings including the Chandra Mahal (Palace of the Moon, a 7-story palace; the Diwan-e-Khas, the private audience hall, and the Diwan-e-Asm (public audience hall) Mubarak Mahal, which houses a museum with a rich collection of Mughal artifacts, costumes and manuscripts.
The Hawa Mahal, the "Palace of the Winds", is the most impressive monument in Jaipur. This five-story, semi-octagonal building is actually a sandstone screen with 593 windows with barred balconies. It was designed as a "veil" for royal women to watch and enjoy processions and activities without being seen.
Jaipur's Jantar Mantar was also built by the city's founder, who was an avid astronomer. This huge stone and marble astrological observatory is more like a futuristic sculpture garden than a collection of nearly 400-year-old devices used to determine the movements of the universe.
On the outskirts of Jaipur, the ancient city of Amer was the original seat of power, full of life and prosperity. Sawai Jai Singh, the last Maharaja of Amer, changed capital when he founded Jaipur. The Amber Fort, originally built in the 17th century, rises in all its glory on a series of jagged hills. It is not only characterized by its mighty battlements and magnificent palaces, but also by the majestic splendor of its surroundings.
The red sandstone and white marble pavilions are reflected in the water of the lake at the foot of the hill, giving it an amber hue. The richly decorated palace complex shows Amers wealth. The Sheesh Mahal, the breathtaking mirror chamber, the beautifully proportioned Diwan-e-Am, the hall of the audience, opens on 3 sides and stands on 2 rows of ornate columns. The Diwa-e-Khas, the private audience hall, is adorned with a delicate glass mosaic, and the Sukh Mandir is protected by ivory inlaid sandalwood doors. The Massive Fort is designed with intricately carved lattice windows, exquisitely painted doors and corridors and carved columns and is a fine mixture of Hindu and Muslim architecture.
About 15km. Far away is Jaigharh Fort, which sits on a hill overlooking the city of Amer and its palaces and has the largest cannon on wheels in the world. It was built during the reign of Maharaja Sawai Hai Singh and is positioned to protect the city. The Nahargarh Fort, built in 1734 on a hill above the city, houses architectural beauties such as Hawa Mandir and Madhevedar Bhawan within its walls.
Jaipur is a royal city at its best, with an ancient culture and traditions. Besieged by historical monuments and majestic palaces, it is a dominant region ruled by crowned leaders who passed their kingships down to future generations. As such, it is the perfect climax to a trip through India's famous Golden Triangle.
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