A very busy day taking in all the highlights of Jaipur, the Pink City – Hawa Mahal palace of the winds, Amber Fort (via elephant!), Jal Mahal lake palace, City Palace Museum, Jantar Mantar royal observatory, and the Royal Gaitore.

We had booked this trip in advance online, with bhati tours. An excellent service, with the company keeping us informed by email throughout. Our very experienced and safe driver, Bavar, took great care of us all day, from the on-time pickup in the morning at the hotel to ensuring he met us after each of the tour locations. We can happily recommend their services!

First stop was little more than a drive-by photo opportunity at the Hawa Mahal, or ‘Palace of the Winds’. The latticed windows were intended to allow the ladies of the court to discreetly watch processions taking place in the street down below.

Hawa Mahal, Palace of the Winds
Hawa Mahal, Palace of the Winds

Next was a drive a few miles out of town to the Amber Fort. A huge site, taking a good couple of hours or more to fully explore. It’s also one of the very few opportunities to take a ride by elephant, all the way up the hill to the fort’s main entrance courtyard.

On the way back into Jaipur, another brief photo stop this time at the Jal Mahal or Water Palace, in the middle of Man Sagar Lake.

Jal Mahal Water Palace
Jal Mahal Water Palace

A couple of adjacent attractions once we returned to Jaipur centre. The City Palace Museum, and a short walk away the Jantar Mantar or Royal Observatory. The City Palace Museum is still the home of the Jaipur royals, so some areas are off-limits but there’s still enough to explore over an hour or two.

A few minutes walk from the Palace Museum, the Jantar Mantar or Royal Observatory. A collection of huge astronomical instruments, commissioned by Sawai Jai Singh II in the 1700’s.

Finally, a short drive out to the Royal Gaitore. It’s where all of Jaipur’s Royals are remembered, with some magnificent tombs built on the places of their cremations.

We finished the trip with a couple of shopping opportunities for local handicrafts, then back to the hotel exhausted from our day’s sightseeing.

Tomorrow, we head south to our next destination, Ranthambore National Park!