Situated in the state of Rajasthan, Jaipur is better known as the pink city due to its buildings’ trademark colour. As a destination, the pink city is usually overshadowed by its neighbours, Agra and Jaisalmer. But, with just 24 hours you can experience some of the most beautiful architecture, get close to a monkey and even ride an elephant! Here are some of the best ways to make the most of your day.
See the beautiful Amber Fort
Opening its doors in the 16th century, the Amber Fort combines architectural beauty, a view to astound and charm around every corner. Located 11 km, approx 7 mi, north of Jaipur, a tuk tuk will drop you right outside the Amber Fort gates, (but be aware touts will swamp you). Situated next to the Maota Lake, the scenery is incredibly picturesque so don’t forget your camera!
After a 10 minute walk up to the fort you will reach the courtyard where you can purchase your tickets. Entrance fees will cost you 200 INR (approx 3.0 USD) or if you’re lucky enough to have a student card, 100 INR (approx 1.5 USD). You can hire a tour guide, but for a traveller who wants to take their time I would recommend hiring an audio guide.
Inside you can enjoy the mirrored ceilings, marble carvings, and beautiful gardens. Not forgetting the small temples and losing yourself in the ongoing hallways and chambers. Taking photos is an obvious choice, but do be aware that there are occasional ‘no photo’ signs dotted around temples and sacred elements. However, Indian women are sitting throughout the courtyards charging a small fee for their photo to be taken – trust me, they look beautiful sat amongst the architecture, so 10 INR, approx 0.15 USD is worth it!
A word to the wise, the Amber Fort is a hotspot for Indian tourists so if you don’t want your photo taken, avoid walking past anyone with a selfie stick. You will be dragged into the family photo for sure.
See the city from the back of these gentle giants
A different take on the Amber Fort is riding an elephant. Whether you want a ride up to the fort to have a look around or just take the ride for an incredible view, elephant rides are available for about 900 INR (approx 13.5 USD). I would definitely recommend getting there early to beat the mobs of tourists and the sweltering heat and you may even find there are less touts.
Elephants are absolutely beautiful animals, and it is incredibly common for tourists to have a ride despite the mix of opinions that surround it. Now I would suggest if you want to see the elephants but don’t feel comfortable riding them, again arrive early so you can take some pictures as the Amber Fort is an amazing backdrop for them.
If you love monkeys and love hiking, the Monkey Temple is no doubt the perfect place for you! Located 4 km, approx 3 mi, inside Jaipur’s eastern hills sits the Galta Gate. Here you can get dropped off before starting your hike amongst the monkeys and temples. If you’re brave enough, bananas and nuts are available to buy to feed the monkeys at around 10-20 INR (approx 0.2-0.3 USD). From experience, avoid going in the middle of the day as the heat is unbearable and due to this, not many monkeys are out. I would recommend either going in the early morning or at dusk. I would also advise not getting too close to the monkeys, let them come to you. They definitely aren’t afraid of tourists so hold onto your things!
More sightseeing in Jaipur
If 24 hours in Jaipur has left you wanting more, you can take a tuk tuk tour throughout the city showing you different markets and traditional stores. Puppets, art and fabrics are common crafts sold in Jaipur and you can easily lose hours indulging yourself in a shopping spree! Or perhaps if you want more history and culture, visit Hawa Mahal - a magnificent palace built for Indian women to view street festivals without being seen.
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