We arrived to Jaipur on our recent trip to India and we were really blown away by “the pink city”. It is historic as a place of trade, markets and fabulous palaces and compared to many other major Indian cities it is a very organized so it really gave us a great impression.
Two cities to explore
There are really two cities within one to explore. The modern lays further afield and has all sorts of recent developments while the traditional pink city is walled in the central historic district. Here there are abundant landmarks and cultural things to admire. Just to walk around in the city is a safe and enjoyable thing to do as a visitor.
Palaces, Fortresses and Royals
Jaipur is home to some impressive architecture. Most of the palaces and museums require you to pay to enter however some of the best pictures of these places such as the famous Hawa Mahal (Window Palace) come from the street side view. Most places have great entry rates for students but you need to ask for it. Another great venue is the City palace, it is still the residence of the royal family and by paying 140 rupees to enter you can see part of it, if you want to film inside you need to pay extra.
A timeless market with tourist appeal
Since the city has long held a tradition of being an important trade center shopping is a must do attraction. Markets are extremely cheap, and you can take negotiation to the extreme. For example a piece of fabric in the hotel was quoted to us at $80, the same one a street shop cost $40 and the very same fabric was going for $20 in the market stalls and we ended getting it for $1. For souvenirs expect them to be of similar quality all around and market up 1000%.
If you are looking to buy something more precious such as good quality rings and jewelry, it is better to go to established shops that don’t allow as much haggling since these will be more authentic products.
Opulent hotels and abundant hospitality
We recommend heartily the Marriott which is around 5 minutes from airport, it is very nice and hospitable. The Oberoi is a bastion of luxury around half an hour from the city but it is an incredible palace in which to stay and dine.