Located on the hills outside Jaipur, Amber Fort is a magnificent place one must not miss to visit. Raja Man Singh began building the fort in 1600 AD and what stand today with magnificent glory are the complex of palaces, halls pavilions gardens and temples built by Raja Man Singh, Mirja Raja Jai Singh and Sawai Jai Singh over a period of one hundred and twenty five years.
Built in red sandstone and white marble, the structure is a blend of Hindu and Muslim architecture. The major attraction of the fort is the Shesh Mahal (Mirror Palace), a palace known for its craftsmanship in mirrors with large ramparts, terraces and pavilions. Dilaram Bagh & Mohan Bari gardens, well laid in the Moghul style, are a feast to the eyes from the terrace of the palace. There is a temple of Shila Mata inside the palace complex. Raja Man Singh brought the image of the Mother Goddess, the deity of the temple, from Jessore in Lower Bengal.
Jaigarh is on the western side of Jaipur. It is one of the few military structures of mediaeval India preserved almost intact. Jai Singh, in 1726, built the extensive watchtowers and gateways of Jaigarh. It was the royal treasury for several years. Asia's largest cannon on wheels is exhibited here. The intricate water supply and storage system that is considered a marvel of planning is also of interest to visitors. The fort has palaces, gardens, open and covered reservoirs, a granary, an armoury, a cannon foundry and several temples. It also has its own museum and provides an excellent view of Amber palace.
Nahargarh or the Tiger Fort was built in 1734 and extended in 1868. The fort lies northwest of City Palace, 8km from Jaipur, and provides some stunning views of the city down below during daytime and at night. A royal retreat for the Maharanis, it was also used as a personal treasury for many years. The fort is floodlit at night.
Rani Sisodia's Garden & Palace
Sawai Jai Singh built it in 1728 for his Sisodia Queen from Udaipur. The palace house several galleries, pavilions and beautiful murals depicting scenes from the life of lord Krishna, which are a visual delight. The garden is laid in Mughal style and it depicts the legends of Radha and Krishna. The garden is located 8km from Jaipur on the Agra route.
Located near the Sisodia Gardens is the beautiful Vidyadhar Garden, which unfolds itself in the valley. It is named after Vidyadhar Bhatacharya the architect of Jaipur.
Ghat Ki Guni
Ghat Ki Guni is another beautifully landscaped garden, laid out in the 18th and 19th centuries by kings and courtiers, that dot the narrow gorge, south east of the walled city, along the road to Agra.
Located on the Tonk road, Sanganer is 12km from Jaipur. It has ruined palaces and exquisitely carved Jain temples. The town is an important centre for handicrafts and produces some of the finest block and screen-printed textiles. These hand-printed textiles are popular in the country and abroad alike.
Ramgarh Lake is a huge artificial lake created by constructing a high bund amidst tree-covered hills. It is located 32km northeast of Jaipur. Boating in the lake is available. The temple of Jamwa Mata, the ruins of the old fort and its beautiful landscape makes Ramgarh worth a visit.
Samod is situated 40 km north west of Jaipur. The beautiful Samode Palace has been rebuilt and renovated. It is a fine example of the Rajput haveli architecture.
86km from Jaipur on the Shahpura-Alwar Road, Bairath is an important historical place with the excavated remains of a circular Buddhist temple. It is believed to be one of the earliest known temples in India. The town has relics from the Mauryan, Mughal and Rajput periods. Other attractions are a mint built by Akbar, a Mughal garden and a remarkable monument with painted chhatris and walls built by Jahangir.
Maharani Ki Chhatri
This traditional site is where the last rites of royal ladies were performed. It has a number of cenotaphs, some of which are still in very good condition.
Located in the foothills of the Nahargarh hills, this is the funeral ground of the rulers of Jaipur. The cenotaphs of all Jaipur rulers, with the exception of Sawai Ishwari Singh who was cremated outside the Jai Niwas Garden were built at this place. The cenotaph of Sawai Jai Singh II stands out for its delicate carvings and beautiful shape
Opposite Gaitore is the picturesque Jal Mahal Palace, in the middle of the Man Sagar Lake. It was built for royal duck shooting parties and can be reached by a causeway. The Jal Mahal palace is considered an architectural marvel built in the Rajput and Mughal styles of architecture providing a picturesque view of the lake and the surrounding Nahargarh hills. The palace, built in red sandstone, is a five storied building, of which four floors are submerged when the lake is full. The rectangular Chhatris, elevated dome-shaped pavilions used as an element in Indian architecture, on the roof are of the Bengal type. The chhatris on the four corners are octagonal. The palace had suffered subsidence in the past and seepage due to water logging and have been repaired under the restoration project undertaken by the Government of Rajasthan.
Galta is a pilgrimage centre with several pavilions, natural springs and the only sun temple in this part of India.