Forts, Jaipur's most iconic landmarks
Jaipur is known for its beautiful Pink City, crafts and delicious food. However, above all, Jaipur is famous for its breathtaking and monumental forts - Amber, Jaigarh and Nahargah. While being here, one can't miss visiting them.
Rajasthan have been home to many significant battles that shaped the region's history and future. No wonder its capital city of Jaipur holds multiple forts and palaces, placed at high ground on top of the Aravalli Hills, to allow great visibility, reconnaissance and ease of defence and attack. Nowadays, forts are the main touristic attraction of Jaipur, and a great place to spend the day, discovering the 16th century Mughal's architecture and history.
Amber, pronounced amer, derives from Ambikeshwara, the local name for the god Shiva. It is by far the most iconic and majestic of Jaipur's forts. The palace was Raja Man Singh the first's creation and since underwent a lot of improvements. It consists of gates, squares, indoor and outdoor gardens, an intricate network of hallways and chambers with beautiful marble and ivory decorations on the walls and ceilings, paved with expensive glass that was brought in XVIII century from Belgium. It's connected to Jaigarh fort through a subterranean passage used as an escape route by the royal family when under siege. It is recommended to visit the place early in the morning (starting from 7.30am), as the elephants leave at 10.30am.
The Jaigarh fort is more of a military facility and was built to protect the Amber fort. It featured a gallery of photos of the last two maharaja of Jaipur Sawai Man Singh II and Sawai Bhawani Singh,"Jaivana", a wheel cannon which was back then the largest and most powerful cannon on wheel, with a range of 30km. Also monkeys are roaming everywhere in Jaigarh fort, so there's a good chance to bump into a herd of them. Jaigarh fort's architecture is similar to Amber's, but not as fancy, as it was built for different purposes.
Nahargah fort is about 20min away from Jaigarh across the hill. Rickshaws are always available and cost no more than 250 INR. Nahargah Fort features a Wax Museum displaying Indian famous personalities, a food court and an awesome panoramic view of the whole city from the roof. It also has elements of Mughal architecture with halls, windows over-looking Jaipur and beautiful mural decorations, and was before a defence facility. It is said to be the best spot in Jaipur to observe the sunrise.