Jaipur is an exciting place to visit in Rajasthan. Here are some of the attractions:
For seven long centuries before Jaipur was built, Amer served as the capital of the Kachhwaha rulers of the old state of Dhundhar. Very little of the early structures survive now. What stand today with magnificient glory are the complex of palaces, halls, pavilions, gardens and temoles built by Raja Man Singh, Mirza Raja Jai Singh and Sawai Jai Singh over a period of one hundred and twentyfive years. Centuries of disuse have not withered their pristine beauty. The palace complex rising from the placid waters of the Maota lake is approached through a steep path, now often traversed by tourists on elephant-back, to Singh Pole and Jaleb Chowk. Two flights of stairs rise from one end of the chowk, one leading to the elegant temple of Shila Mata and the other to the palace complex. The image of the mother Goddess worshipped with reverence by thousands of devotees every day was brought from Jessore in Lower Bengal (now in Bangladesh) by Raja Man Singh and installed here.
The front courtyard of the palace complex is dominated by the spectacular pillared hall of the Diawn-i-Am and the double-storyed painted gateway Ganesh Pole. Beyond the corridors and galleries on either side of a small elegant Char-bagh styl garden are Sukh Niwas to its right and Jai Mandir to its left. The Jas Mandir in the upper floor combines the finest elements of Mughal architecture and interior decoration in a Rajput setting with intricately carved jali screens, delicate mirror and stucco works and painted and carved dadoes. The older and simpler structures at the far end were built by Raja Man Singh in later years of the 16th century. The well-proportioned Mohan Bari or Kesar Kyari in the centre of the Maotha lake and the Dilaram Bagh at its north end provide a spectacular view from the palaces above.
Built by the orders of poet-king sawai Pratap Singh, the Hawa Mahal is the most strikingly designed monument in Jaipur. What is seen from the Siren Deorhi Bazar is the multi-niched five-storey high back-side of the complex. It was conceived to provide adequate vantage position behind delicate stone-carved Jali screens to the palace women for watching the royal processions passing through the bazar below.
Just outside the gateway of the City Palace is Jantar Mantar, the Yantralaya of Sawai Jai Singh II, the last great classical astronomer in India. The modernistic structures known as Yantras are the unique creations of this astronomer-King designed by him and built by experts to observe the movements of sun, moon, planets and the stars. This is the largest of five observatories founded by him in various parts of the country.
The full lenght white marble statue of Sawai Jai Singh installed in the centre of the Circle in the newly developed ‘C’ Scheme area, was erected as a homage to the founder of Jaipur. The latest addition in this area is the B.M.Birla Planetarium and Science Centre.