Jaipur, along with Agra and Delhi, forms the glorious and historic ‘Golden Triangle’ route in India. This majestic city also acts as a gateway into the desert and the historic state of Rajasthan or can easily be combined with a trip to Ranthambore National Park.
Founded in 1727 by Maharaja Jai Singh II, Jaipur was India’s first planned city built on a grid pattern with wide streets, perfect for royal parades. In 1876 Maharaja Ram Singh of Jaipur painted the entire city pink to welcome Queen Victoria and Prince Albert, granting the city its nickname ‘The Pink City’. To this day the buildings pink exteriors are maintained and its royal architecture is fiercely protected.
Although the city is mostly famed for the magnificent Amber Fort and the City, UNESCO has recognised its Jantar Mantar as something particularly extraordinary. This astronomical observatory, which was built in the 18th century, is on the UNESCO World Heritage List and includes some 20 incredible fixed instruments.
In the side streets, Jaipur teems with traditional life that compliments its elegant hilltop forts and glimmering palaces. The city is also well known for its artisan crafts and textiles and the vivacious bazaars are the ideal stop for bargainous shoppers.